Visit New York in 5 days: 2 complete schedules so you don't miss a thing

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Carlos Laforet Coll
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The cultural itinerary to visit New York in 5 days

Day 1: the Upper East Side

Visit New York in 5 days: The Metropolitan Museum of Art

Le Metropolitan Museum of Art is a great must-see for anyone visiting New York, no matter how long your stay. So if you have 5 days, you will have no excuse not to be amazed by this museum. The latter contains more than two million works from all over the world! Also, these works sometimes date from 5000 years ago! Enough to take a hell of a leap back.



Note, however, that this museum is very well known and popular: it is the second most visited in the world. I therefore advise you to try to avoid a crowded crowd, by going there early in the morning. And then, plan your visit in advance. Find out about the different collections on offer and make your choice, because you won't have time to see everything!

Finally, even if entry is by donation, it is included in the New York City Pass and New York Pass, which I strongly recommend you purchase. This will allow you to optimize your budget greatly, and may well entitle you to other benefits. Also, I recommend that you make your choice and buy one in advance. You will thus benefit from 40% discount by buying it online! To purchase the New York City Pass, go here. If you're more into the New York Pass, click here.



Visit New York in 5 days: Central Park

Right next to the Metropolitan Museum of Art, Central Park is New York park that everyone knows. It is no less impressive and very pleasant. Its 341 hectares will allow you to visit it on foot, by running, or by bike. And the little squirrels that inhabit it will make you fall for sure. Bring your camera, because they are not shy!

If you are in New York in the summer, have a picnic there in the sun, and if you arrive in the winter, take the opportunity to take a trip to the outdoor ice rink that the park is home to!

Le Guggenheim Museum

Are you a fan of modern art? Make your way to the Guggenheim Museum, created by famous architect Frank Lloyd Wright. Its facade and interior structure will leave you speechless.

Its entry is also included in the New York City Pass et New York Pass, which is why I highly recommend you to enter, even for a short time. Its collections include works by Modigliani, Pollock, Chagall or Kandinsky.

The famous 5th Avenue

If you are a fan of shopping, you have heard of what to do in New York. Also, 5th Avenue, located exactly in this district, brings together all the biggest names in luxury. Louis Vuitton, Cartier, Fendi, Tiffany's… You will find what you are looking for on 4 kilometers long!

And then, if you are not too luxury shopping, take a stroll through the surrounding streets, you will find smaller shops revealing many surprises!


Don't forget to stop by Niketown if you are a fan of sneakers (or to give a gift). You can customize a pair of Nike before leaving with it. The store is located at the intersection of 5th Avenue and 57th Street.


Dine at Daniel's

Finally, to end your first day in style, go to the best restaurant in New York. Daniel, ranked N ° 1 on TripAdvisor, is on top of that a French restaurant! So pay tribute to your country, and go and test the creative and refined dishes of the famous chef.

Day 2: The Upper West Side and Chelsea

The Natural History Museum

For your second day, I suggest you stay in northern Manhattan, but on the west side this time. Start your day early at the Natural History Museum, to avoid too large a crowd. Admire the archaeological and historical collections that the famous museum has to offer.

As you walk through it you will discover dinosaur skeletons and when you look up you will even see a huge 28 meter long whale ! Very impressive and interesting, both for children and adults. Its entry is also included in the two passes mentioned above.

Finally, if you are traveling to New York with children, you can also visit the Children's Museum of Manhattan, the city's children's museum. The latter allows you to learn in a fun way and with the help of workshops around themes such as culture, health or education. Many performances are also offered there, such as exhibitions and shows.


Visit New York in 5 days: The Chelsea market and the highline

Then head south to the Chelsea neighborhood for lunch. Between 75 9th Avenue and West 16th Street is the Chelsea Market. It used to be the home of the famous Oreo cookies.

Within this building with old, industrial and modern looks, you will discover multiple displays of fresh fruit and vegetables and small take-out meals. There are also several small restaurants and cafes, such as the Lobster Place, Fat Witch (and its sublime brownies), and Eleni's, whose cookies will delight you.


So indulge yourself by buying several small portions in different stands. Then, go and sample your finds along the Chelsea Highline, a former railway renovated into a green promenade between Gansevoort Street and 34th Street. You will admire the view of the neighborhood, pleasant and peaceful.

Contemporary art galleries

Once you are satisfied and rested, go for a stroll in the neighborhood and discover the hundreds of art galleries contemporary it has to offer. Permanent or temporary exhibitions, recognized or emerging artists, you will find everything in old renovated warehouses.

Note that on Thursday evenings in summer, most galleries stay open late, which allows you to take your time and enjoy the neighborhood longer.

The Empire State Building and a dinner cruise

Just before dark, make your way to the Empire State Building and reach the top, to admire the magnificent view of the city, bathed in warm colors. You will be at the top of 102 floors and 443 meters high… Enough to take some pictures! Admission is included in both passes. Also, note that these allow you to access the top of the famous building twice in the same day. A godsend if you have the time: take in the view during the day or early in the morning to see the city waking up, then come back in the evening for the sunset.

Finally, once the night and hunger kicks in, go to Pier 61 for a dinner cruise unforgettable. The Spirit of New York will take you on a 3 hour trip in a warm and festive atmosphere. Enjoy the view, the food and the music, and appreciate your chance to be in New York!

Day 3: Ellis Island and Lower Manhattan

Visit New York in 5 days: Ellis Island and its Immigration Museum

How to visit New York in 5 days while learning more about its inhabitants? Go visit historic Ellis Island. Meet early in the morning at Battery Park to embark early (9am) on the ferry to the island. Be a little early, however, to make sure you get a seat.

Stroll around the island, admire the nearby Statue of Liberty, and enter the island museum, the Ellis Island Immigration Museum. Enjoy a free guided tour between 9h30 and 17h, since it is included in both passes! This will allow you to learn more about the history of this island and its many immigrants who came to live the American dream once.

Wall Street et Battery Park

Then, when the ferry takes you back to Manhattan, take a stroll through Wall Street, New York's financial district. Have lunch there and don't forget to take your photo near the Charging Bull, the famous bronze statue of a bull.

If the weather is nice, enjoy Battery Park while walking there and admiring the view offered from the quays. Then, head to One World Trade Center to admire this new tower, replacing the twin towers.

The September 11 Memorial and its museum

Then, be sure to visit the 11/XNUMX Memorial, which includes two water basins. The names of the victims are engraved there, which makes it a real place of contemplation. A underground museum September 11 also exists at the same location. Free on Tuesdays from 17 p.m. to 20 p.m., and included in the New York City Pass, it will teach you a little more about this tragic day of September 11.

Visit New York in 5 days: Chinatown and Little Italy

Finally, in order to end your day in a different but typically New York way, visit the districts of Chinatown and Little Italy. These offer many typical shops and restaurants, whose flavors and authenticity will make you travel for sure.

Pass by the Columbus Park in Chinatown, you might be lucky enough to witness a Tai Chi class outside. Then, go up by Canal Street in order to buy original and very inexpensive souvenirs. Finally dine in Little Italy to taste real fresh Italian pasta, or a delicious pizza!

Day 4: Statue of Liberty and Brooklyn

Liberty Island and the Statue of Liberty

You cannot visit New York in 5 days without seeing the Statue of Liberty closer. Board the ferry to Liberty Island. Sit in the back, so you can enjoy the view of the city skyline.

Then, once there, the visit of the Statue is free. However, you will need to book in advance if you wish climb to the top. Don't forget your camera, even purchase a miniature Statue of Liberty! The iconic souvenir that will please all your friends.

Brooklyn Bridge and its park

On your return, go up a little to the Brooklyn Bridge, and cross it. You will walk 44 meters high while admiring the view of Manhattan and Brooklyn at the same time. Allow about half an hour for the crossing.

Once on the other side, stroll through the streets of Brooklyn, and cross Brooklyn Bridge Park. If the weather is nice, take the opportunity to have a picnic there before setting off again!

Take advantage of being in this very pleasant and typical district to dine in a small restaurant that you will find at the bend of a street.

Day 5: Midtown and Broadway

Le Museum of Modern Art

To end your stay in style, go to the city's iconic modern art museum. The Museum of Modern Art, or MoMA, has been open since the 30s, and offers a very large selection of works by Warhol, Lichtenstein, Matisse or Picasso.

This is a great must-see, admission is included in both passes.

Times Square

When leaving the museum, don't forget to pass by Times Square, the famous New York crossroads. Full of shops and giant illuminated screens, you will find many international brands where you can do your shopping.

Don't miss entering the M&M’s World, the huge M & M's store where you will find flavors you do not yet know, and many related products. The perfect place to make a few gourmet gifts.

In the surrounding streets, you will discover many small souvenir shops where you will find, in particular, mugs « I love New York », mini statues of Liberty or t-shirts.

Grand Central Terminal

Then head to the iconic Grand Central Terminal station. Romantique and grandiose, this station offers an impressive architecture as well as a shopping place with many choices.

Admire its large clock and stroll from shop to shop.

The Top of the Rock and its panoramic view

Finally, for the sunset, climb to the top of Rockefeller Center. On the 70th floor of the building, you will reach the Top of the Rock, a panoramic terrace allowing you to admire the city in 360 °. Admission costs around $ 30, but it's included with the New York City Pass and New York Pass.

It is also my favorite panoramic terrace, since it allows you to admire the whole city with the Empire State Building included in the landscape.

And then, if you are present during the winter period, do not miss the rink, at the foot of Rockefeller Center!

Broadway comedy

After dinner, spend an evening in New York City going to a Broadway comedy. This is a great New York classic, which will leave you with great memories.

Also, there are still many comedies airing at the same time, like Frozen, Aladdin, the Lion King, etc. Find out more and reserve your seats in advance to save time and money.

Visit New York in 5 days like a local

Day 1: Harlem and Upper East Side

A gospel mass in Harlem

How to visit New York in 5 days like a local? Starting your stay with a gospel mass, in the heart of Harlem! Also, I highly recommend the Abyssinian Baptist Church, the most famous church, or the Metropolitan Community United Methodist Church, less populated and more authentic.

Mingle with the crowds and take in the spectacle, soak up the unique and unique atmosphere of New York.

Also, be sure to arrive early if you want to get a seat. Don't go through an organized tour, be more spontaneous and act like a local!

Le Metropolitan Museum of Art et le Guggenheim Museum

Then go down a bit to the Upper East Side, to have lunch in a typical New York restaurant.

Then, go to the unmissable Met, which brings together more than two million works from all over the world. Admission is included with both New York City passes.

If you wish, also visit the Guggenheim Museum, dedicated to contemporary art. Its building, invented by famous architect Frank Lloyd Wright, is one of a kind. Its entry is also included in both passes. Also, and even if you don't want to visit it entirely, I recommend that you at least walk past and admire its facade.

Central Park

Then take a walk through Central Park and take your time. Take a bike ride, take a trip to the ice rink held there in winter, or have a picnic with a nap in summer.

Bemelmans bar

 Day 2: Empire State Building, Soho and NoLIta

Visit New York in 5 days: the Empire State Building

Just before dark, make your way to the Empire State Building and reach the top, to admire the magnificent view of the city, bathed in warm colors. You will be at the top of 102 floors and 443 meters high… Enough to take some pictures! Admission is included in both passes. Also, note that these allow you to access the top of the famous building twice in the same day. A godsend if you have the time: take in the view during the day or early in the morning to see the city waking up, then come back in the evening for the sunset.

Have lunch at Tacombi

For lunch, meet at 267 Elizabeth Street at Tacombi, a shed converted into mexican restaurant warm and pleasant.

Vintage furniture, light garlands and homemade soda, Tacombi will seduce you and offer you a well-deserved gourmet break.

Shopping in Soho and TriBeCa

Once your Mexican stopover is over, go shopping in Soho and TriBeCa, or even as far as West Village and Greenwich. You will find many brands there such as Urban Outfitters or American Apparel, as well as small avant-garde designers.

My favorites ? The stores Crate & Barrell (decoration) and the Strand Book Store, huge bookstore where you will find anything and everything.

Chelsea's highline

In the early evening, head to the Chelsea Highline to enjoy the last rays of sunshine. Admire the view and the many locals who come to gather on this very pleasant green promenade.

If you plan to stay a little while and if the weather permits, bring something to make a small picnic or aperitif. Note, however, that alcohol is prohibited in public places in the United States.

Then, find a quintessentially New York restaurant nearby, and dine like a local, in peace.

Day 3: MoMA, midtown and Top of the Rock

Le Museum of Modern Art

To properly visit New York in 5 days, you owe it to yourself to do the essential museums. Also, for this third day, go to the city's museum of modern art, known and recognized worldwide.

You can admire works by Picasso, Warhol, Lichtenstein and Matisse in particular. And then, even if you are not keen on modern art, admission is included in both passes. So you have no excuse not to discover the world of art!

Shopping at Bloomingdale's and Macy's

Start your day with a bit of shopping at the two big New York brands: Bloomingdale's and Macy's. You will find clothing, furniture, decoration, and other varied items.

Many international and local brands can be found there, such as Michael Kors, DKNYC, Burberry and many more.

My advice: go there as soon as it opens, in order to do your shopping in peace. Also take advantage of the 15% reduction at Bloomingdale's thanks to your New York Pass.

At Macy's, you can benefit from a 10% reduction by going to their site and printing a discount voucher reserved for foreigners.

 Madison Square Park et Flatiron Building

After finding some wonders, head to the Madison Square Park for a pleasant and quiet lunch break. Enjoy the best burger of your life (probably) at Shake Shack, sitting on a chair in the middle of the park. At the same time you can enjoy the connection Free WiFi that is available there.

Then, walk past the atypical Flatiron Building, located near the 23rd Street subway stop, on the N and R lines. Built in 1902, this art deco building has a very original structure, reminiscent of the shape of the iron, which deserves the detour and the photo.

Gangster Museum

Finally, head to the Gangster Museum, for an unusual afternoon. The latter traces the history of some american gangsters of the United States and allows to know more about the period of prohibition in New York.

Open daily from 13 p.m. to 18 p.m., admission will cost you $ 20 per adult and $ 12 for students, children and seniors.

Day 4: Brooklyn

Brooklyn Bridge and a typical brunch

It's impossible to visit New York in 5 days without going through the famous Brooklyn neighborhood. Your fourth day will therefore be hipster and calm! Cross the Brooklyn Bridge early in the morning, to watch the city come to life, then head to the 5 Leaves Greenpoint (at 18 Bedford Avenue) to taste the best pancakes in town (in my opinion)! Don't miss out on the truffle fries either!

Prospect Park, Botanical Garden and Brooklyn Brewery

Once your brunch is over, take a trip to Prospect Park to take a boat, pedal boat or horseback ride. Continue your "nature" walk by going to discover the Brooklyn Botanical Garden. Created in 1910, it holds more than 200 cherry trees and 1.400 species of roses. Here is what to take a nice break in the green!

Then, don't miss the famous Brooklyn Brewery, a local brewery that you can visit for free on Saturdays. Taste the different local beers it has to offer, and take home a few bottles as a souvenir! It is the essential to visit New York in 5 days in a complete way!

Brooklyn Flea Market

Then enter the Brooklyn Flea Market, to try and find the best vintage bargains!

Comprising a hundred sellers, this market brings together decorative objects, souvenirs, accessories and jewelry of all kinds. It perfectly represents the spirit of the Brooklyn borough, and it is very pleasant to walk around.

That said, do not underestimate its potential: it will take you several hours to shop around, negotiate, and find great deals! And then, take the opportunity to nibble something there, since about thirty food stands are there. My favorite: ice cream sandwiches de The Good Batch !

Meet at 176 Lafayette Avenue on Saturday from 10 a.m. to 17 p.m. at Fort Green Flea, and at Dumbo Flea on Water Street, at Manhattan Bridge Archway Plaza, on Sunday.

Jour 5 : Coney Island, Chinatown et Little Italy

Coney Island and Luna Park

If you want to see New York in 5 days locally, why not spend your last day on Coney Island, the island of fun? The Luna Park, an amusement park located there, was created in 1903 and reopened in 2010 after many years of inactivity.

You'll do lots of different attractions, eat iconic hot dogs (Chez Nathan's), and maybe even participate in a hot dog contest, who knows?

Note that the park is open every summer day (from June to August) and every weekend the rest of the year.

Before heading back to Manhattan, be sure to take a short stroll on the island's beach, which is 6 kilometers long.

Chinatown et Little Italy

Then, back in Manhattan, head to Chinatown and Little Italy, small neighborhoods stuck together. Wander the streets, and choose the restaurant that will tempt you the most. Here you can be sure that the dishes will be authentic and delicious, without spending a fortune!

That said, try to book in advance, especially for a restaurant in Little Italy.

Here you are ready to visit New York in 5 days ! It's up to you to choose the route that suits you best, then arm yourself with your camera, New York City Pass or New York Pass, and patience. And then, do not hesitate to adapt these routes once there. You will certainly come to meet locals who will take you to their evenings or have tips to share with you. Take the opportunity, and enjoy every moment in the big apple!

Now you just have to pack your suitcase for New York, and off you go!

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