A NYC stroll + 21 things you should do in NYC - Lets Jess-Up

A NYC stroll + 21 things you should do in NYC

Photography by Max Polito

Sweater: Zadig and Voltaire Jeans: 3×1 Coat: Something Navy Sneakers: Converse x Comme Des Garsons Bag: Gucci Socks: J.Crew

Hi Friends! I hope you’re all having a great weekend. I wanted to put together a list of things to do in NYC because I get asked for advice from my followers on this a lot. I put together a list of 21 things I recommend doing. The list is never ending because NYC has so much to offer. I hope you all enjoy!

  1. Top of the Rock: Everyone is Familiar with Rockefeller Center, but did you know that there are a few tours you can take there? The first is tickets to the top of the Rock. The 360 degree views will take your breath away. It’s definitely a must-do.
  2. Another really fun thing to do at Rock Center is to do the NBC Studios tour. I took this tour with Matt, my Mom and Papa a few years ago. It was SO COOL and actually really fun. We decided to do it last minute and really enjoyed it.
  3. The Campbell at Grand Central: Grand Central is of course a must-see when visiting NYC. One of my favorite parts of Grand Central is having a drink at Campbells. John W. Campbell was a very successful financier back in the early 1900’s. He leased an office and reception area out of Grand Central. He felt he needed to be in the heart of NYC but also close to the trains, hence renting a space at Grande Central. So cool, right?! Well they turned his office into a bar, restoring it to it’s glory day.
  4. Get a wine and Cheese plate at Nota Bene in Eataly. We are so lucky to live only 5 blocks from Eataly. Eataly is an Italian Market filled with different restaurants and curated Italian goods. They have fresh organic produce too. It’s a really cool place to visit. My favorite thing to do there is order a fresh cheese plate paired with some Rose at Nota Bene. It’s in the center of the market so you get to people watch and drink. Such a NYC thing to do.
  5. Have brunch at Tavern on the Green: I will never forget having lunch here when I was 13 years old. I felt like a celebrity! This place is such an iconic establishment and a must-visit. They have a beautiful outdoor bar and patio which I love to frequent over the summer months. That said, it’s so fun to visit over the Holidays. It’s decorated and cozy and charming, not to mention the food is delicious!
  6. Pier A: Matt and I actually had our rehearsal dinner at this incredible place. It’s located all the way at the end of the Island of Manhattan next to the ferry to the Statue of Liberty. It was built in 1884 to serve the New York City Department of Docks and Harbor Police. You can read all about the history of it on the website. Today, it’s a huge food hall and bar, and they do private events like weddings etc. on the top floor. I recommend going for an afternoon beer and sharing a large pretzel. My Papa would agree with you ;).
  7. Spend an afternoon in Battery Park City. Battery Park is such a gorgeous area. You can take the ferry to see the Statue of Liberty, or you can walk the outskirts of the park along the Hudson River. I remember when I took my Mom down to this area when she came to visit. She said she didn’t even think we were still in NYC! It’s so gorgeous and fun to visit. Matt and I had our wedding reception at Battery Gardens which is a beautiful restaurant right on the water. We love grabbing a bite there and watching the sun set :).
  8. Order the burger at the Spotted Pig: Best burger I’ve ever had. Not much more to say than that!
  9. Grab a bite at Minetta Tavern: I went on a date with a guy who took me here on our first date. I think I ended up dating him for way longer than I should have because he clearly had incredible taste in restaurants! Minnetta tavern opened in 1937 and was named after the Minetta Brook — which ran southwest from 23rd Street to the Hudson River. The Tavern was frequented by various layabouts and hangers-on including Ernest Hemingway, Ezra Pound, Eugene O’Neill, E. E. Cummings, Dylan Thomas, and Joe Gould, as well as by various writers, poets, and pugilists.
  10. Visit a Speak Easy: There are so many cool Speakeasies. One of my favorites is actually across the street from our apartment called Patent Coffee. During the day it’s a coffee shop. At night, you have to ring the doorbell outside and they let you in a secret door behind the counter. It’s a dark and cool bar! It’s so cool and they have a really great cocktail menu.
  11. Grab a drink at Lillie’s Bar. This bar is one of the coolest places to get a drink in NYC. The entire bar is decorated in crazy vintage finds. There is simply not a single empty space on the wall and the food and atmosphere can’t be beat. There are a few locations. I love going to the midtown location before or after seeing a Broadway show.
  12. Eat at Shake Shack in Madison Square Park. First of all, Madison Square Park is my favorite NYC park. We had our first date there, got engaged there and have lived around the corner from this park since 20012! The Shake Shack in the park is actually the very first Shake Shack ever. It’s so fun to grab a bite and eat outside under the sparkling lights.
  13. Play Ping Pong at Spin. This is such a fun date-night idea. You can sign up to play ping pong and drink and eat at the same time. What a great idea, right!?
  14. Go to K-town for some Karaoke. I do this every birthday. I just love karaoke and some of the best Karaoke bars are in the heart of Korea Town in NYC. MK Kareoke is my favorite spot but you really can’t go wrong.
  15. Go to a NYC Comedy Club: My personal favorite is Comedy Cellar. I love comedy and I especially love live comedy. NYC is known for it’s undiscovered talent and it’s such a fun way to spend a night out. The last few times I have been to a Comedy Club there have been some famous people make surprise appearances! I almost lost my mind when Jim Gaffigan walked on stage! You never know who you will see ;).
  16. Spend an afternoon in Dumbo. There’s so much to do in Dumbo. Matt and I spent a whole day in Brooklyn Bridge Park when Charlee was 10 months old. We walked all around and took her to a public pool and splash pad. Then we went to lunch at the 1 Hotel and sat outside looking at the NYC skyline while she napped. It was a perfect day!
  17. Eat a bagel from Best Bagel and Coffee. Every New Yorker has their favorite bagel place. This is mine. HANDS DOWN the best bagel I’ve ever had. They have hand rolled and kettle boiled bagels and all the bagels are made on the premises. My go-to order is a plain bagel with veggie cream cheese, tomato and onion. DELICIOUS!
  18. Play Mini Golf overlooking the Hudson River: This is such a fun little place along the West Side Highway of NYC. Best part is, it’s only $5 to play!
  19. Go to the Frying Pan for a boozy afternoon. This is one of my favorite places to go during the summer. The Frying Pan is essentially a big boat with a restaurant and bar. When the weather is nice I love to go sit outside and eat and drink with Matt and friends.
  20. See a Broadway Show: This is an obvious one, but so necessary. The theater in NYC is amazing! Did you know that you can go to the box office same day to see if they have any rush seats? They are usually much cheaper! You can also buy tickets same day at the TKTS booth!
  21. Take a lunch cruise on the North River Lobster Company boat: Matt and I discovered this amazing lobster cruise this past summer! We absolutely love taking this little lobster cruise. It only lasts about 1 hour, you can drink wine and order seafood AND bring your baby. It’s a super fun thing to do in the summertime.

There are so many more things I could list out as must-do’s in NYC but I think i’ll start with this list ;).

Thanks for stopping by!

xoxo-J

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