Day in New York City - Staten Island Ferry

How to Spend a Day in New York City

New York City is one of the most popular tourist destinations in the United States. The city brings in millions of tourists each year, both foreign and domestic. There’s no denying why this city is so popular. With such a rich and diverse culture, in addition to the breadth and depth of activities to choose from, New York is a great place for a visit.

There are countless ways to spend a visit to New York City. Leafcanoer, Daijie, recently shared a leaf titled “My Favorite Spots in NYC”, highlighting some of her favorite places to visit in the city. With so many things to do in the city, you can easily spend days or months exploring New York. But if your time is limited, here are five suggestions for spending a day in New York City.

Day in New York City - Central Park

Central Park
Start the day off with a walk through Central Park. Originally built in 1857, the park covers 843 acres of land across the central part of the island of Manhattan. Central Park offers a wide selection of attractions and activities for any visitor, all year round. Among the more popular attractions are the Central Park Zoo, Belvedere Castle, Conservatory Garden, the Lake, and Strawberry Fields. Museums line the eastern border of the park, so you can easily spend hours soaking up history, art, or science.

Rockefeller Center
Once you work up an appetite, head over to Rockefeller Center for a bite to eat at one of the cafes in the area. Comprising of 19 commercial buildings, Rockefeller Center covers over 22 acres between 48th and 51st streets. The complex was originally built by the Rockefeller family in the 1930s. It now has grown to 14 Art Deco style buildings and five towers. Visitors to Rockefeller can enjoy watching a taping of the Today show, take a tour of Radio City Music Hall, or go ice skating at the skating rink.

Day in New York City - Rockefeller Center

Chinatown
Spend the rest of the afternoon strolling through Manhattan’s Chinatown, which is home to the largest population of Chinese in the Western Hemisphere. Consisting of approximately 90,000 to 100,000 people, the neighborhood encompasses parts of Little Italy and a large part of the Lower East Side. Chinatown is filled with shops and restaurants offering food and goods from not just China, but other Asian countries such as Vietnam, Malaysia, and Indonesia.

Wall Street
When evening hits, head down to Wall Street to catch dinner and drinks with the city’s bankers and financial geniuses. Running across eight city blocks, Wall Street stretches from Broadway to South Street. It is home to both the New York Stock Exchange and NASDAQ. While visitors can no longer visit either of the stock exchanges to see the trading in action, they can walk along Wall Street and learn about the history of New York’s financial district. Many companies offer walking tours of the district, and visitors can learn about popular sites such as Trinity Church and the Federal Reserve Building, which are also located in this neighborhood.

Day in New York City - Wall Street

Staten Island Ferry
End the day with a ride on the Staten Island Ferry, which shuttles passengers between Manhattan and Staten Island. Operating 24 hours a day, and 7 days a week, the Ferry is a great opportunity to catch a glimpse of the Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island. You’ll also be able to see views of the Lower Manhattan skyscrapers and bridges.

If you can only spend a day in New York City, the above itinerary is a great starting off point for future exploration of the city. However, if you have more time, take the opportunity to spend some time in each neighborhood in Manhattan and beyond. There are so many hidden gems in New York. The best part of traveling to New York City is discovering these gems.

To explore more of New York, check out the rest of Daijie’s leaf, or download the Leafcanoe app.

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