This blog post was updated on September 12, 2014.


New Yorker in Times Square
A New Yorker's guide for tourists



Tourists visit New York City for glitz, glamour and a city that never sleeps. Often times people ask what it is like to find or even try to act like a typical New Yorker. Since they living in a city that runs 24/7 and just seems to have it all, travelers wonder what it is like to live a day as a New Yorker. (And hopefully survive doing so without having to flip someone off, in true New York style.)

Ride the Subway: Take a deep breath, grab a city subway map and possibly have a shot of whiskey. Tourists often complain about how confusing the New York City transit system is with over a dozen transit lines. New Yorkers simply laugh at how easy it is to navigate the system, but often forget how overwhelming it can be for travelers. Your best bet is to invest in a weekly Metro card pass if you are gallivanting around like a true New Yorker. Expect sardine like crowdedness, numerous train delays, but a system that runs all hours of the night.

Order a bagel and a coffee to go: There are two things a New Yorker loves for breakfast: A bagel and a cup of coffee on the go. While you're riding the subway, you might catch locals multitasking; reading the daily paper, taking a sip of hot joe and munching on their now cold bagel. Don't pay more than $3 USD for this combo, because then you are paying tourist prices. Extra New Yorker points if you pronounce coffee as “caw-fee”

Ride a Taxi across any bridge: Have you ever seen a movie taking place in New York and watched an actor or actress gaze outside of their taxi cab window as they cross over a bridge into Manhattan? The feeling is victorious; enjoying the city lights and looking forward to the fun coming ahead in such a busy city. Try to do this preferably over a bridge that does not have tolls, such as the bridges that cross over from Brooklyn.

Walk the High Line: Decades ago, the high line was used as a railroad system which was abandoned over time and left in shambles to let weeds and garbage pile up over the tracks. Renovated in recent years, the High Line is now a popular park and walking promenade loved by tourists and locals who want to enjoy overhead views of the city. In upcoming years, more of the high line walkway will be open to the public; giving you more reasons to visit New York.

Enjoy a happy hour: Granted, New Yorkers can easily complain about the high costs of living with increasing rents, expenses and the lack of jobs. But, fortunately, one can drown their worries in a good drink at a fabulous happy hour. The abundance of happy hours in Manhattan or New York City itself is plentiful for tourists and locals. Some of the best happy hours attended by New Yorkers are often after work specials on a Thursday or Friday night where drink specials can be as low as under $5 USD. As for a typical New Yorker drink to indulge in: the sky's the limit. Go for a traditional Manhattan drink if you truly want to feel like an old school New Yorker.

Make a day trip to Long Island: Have you ever wondered where New Yorkers go to relax and possibly find some peace and quiet in such a busy city? In the warmer months in the Big Apple, New Yorkers flock east towards Long Island where miles of beaches are available for some fun in the sun. These won't be tropical white sand, turquoise water beaches like there are in South Beach, but expect a melting pot crowd of locals and tourists, especially an interesting posh crowd in the Hamptons for a true local experience.

See a game at Yankee Stadium or Citi Field: To be a fair and balanced New Yorker (and journalist), we have to include attending both local baseball teams in this article. (Even if the Yankees are clearly the favorites.) Enjoy the true New Yorker spirit by spending a day at the ball game; America's favorite past time. Enjoy a hot dog, a cold refreshing beer and loud cheers for teams that New Yorkers pride in so much the local rivalry is an enthusiastic and contagious spirit any tourist will catch.

Enjoy free wi-fi at Starbucks: Starbucks may have locations all over the world and in American cities, but if you've been to New York, you can easily find one across the street from another. For your next java fix, why not bring your smart phone or laptop and enjoy people watching at Starbucks. Watch closely as New Yorkers fight over seats, outlet usage and long wait lines for coffee.

Dance the night away at any club: New York City nightlife is an experience in itself with such a wide variety of choices. Las Vegas may be the sin city capital, but New York will always be known for massive dance clubs, bars and lounges where anything can happen. Alcohol is served until 4:00am; one of the latest times where tourists can truly dance the night away. Some popular nightclubs include the famous Webster Hall, Pacha New York and Duvet. Look out for special price discounts before discounts or for females to save money on entrance fee's or drinks.

Get lost in Central Park: Tourists and locals love everything Central Park has to offer. It seems to have a little something for everybody; plenty of space to wander, statues to admire and interesting people to watch. Even New Yorkers who have spent their whole lives in the city tend to get lost in the maze of Central Park. Spanning well over 50 city blocks and going across the East to the West Side, it is easy to end up somewhere you didn't anticipate. Don't worry, no matter where you go in Central Park, it will be pleasing and photo worthy.  

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