24 Hours in New York City

 

New York City is one of the most visited cities in the world and welcomes over 54 million visitors a year! It is a magical city that I believe should be on everyone’s bucket list. Between the iconic landmarks, museums, restaurants, parks and so much more, you could easily spend a month in NYC and still not see everything. However, since a month is not necessarily realistic for everyone I’ve created a “24 Hours in New York City” list. In my opinion, if you are new to NYC, are a first time visitor, or just want a good long walk with lots of pretty destinations- this is the route I would recommend.

I created the detailed map below, which you can save to your Google maps and use as you walk around the city. This map includes the main landmarks you should see along with the best walking route to hit them all. I’ve even added additional landmarks worth visiting if you have additional time.

So without further ado, let’s begin!

I believe the best place to start a tour of NYC is at the very southern tip of Manhattan in Battery Park. From here you can see views of the Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island. While a trip to Lady Liberty is worth it, I’d save it for a longer trip or follow my sunset cruise recommendation for a closer view of her {more at the end of this post}.

After soaking up views of southern Manhattan, make your way up Broadway and walk past the “Charging Bull” sculpture in the financial district. This bull represents the stock market in NYC. Fun fact about this iconic bull- in an act of “guerilla art” the artist secretly put the bull on the street in NYC and it quickly became popular. The city intended to get rid of it, but due to its popularity chose to leave the bull there “temporarily.” The bull has now been there since 1989.

24 hours in NYC

Continue walking northwest past Wall Street and on to the 9/11 Memorial & Freedom Tower. Take a moment to notice the two large square memorials. Each square is the exact size and in the exact place of the base of the original Twin Towers. Around each square you will find the names of those who lost their lives that day. If you have time, a trip to the top of the Freedom Tower is well worth it. To say the views are gorgeous would be an understatement.

Next continue walking north through Tribecca and SoHo. Please notice the architecture as you walk. Some of the buildings are incredible. Continue walking until you get to Washington Square Park. I believe this is one of the prettiest parks in NYC. Spend time people watching and take a break by the center fountain. You are sure to see a few street performers and locals lounging on the benches. When you are ready to leave, be sure to look through the Arc de Triomphe and notice how perfectly it frames the Empire State Building.

24 hours in NYC

A few blocks north you will run into Union Square Park. While this may not be the prettiest park, it is full of things to do. Farmers Markets are hosted here every Monday, Wednesday, Friday and Saturday and tons of artists sell their items every other day of the week. You will find everything from oil paintings and t-shirts to fake pigeons and musicians. There is also a Shake Shack if you need a pick-me-up {get the black & white shake- you won’t be disappointed!}.

After Union Square Park, continue walking north until you hit the Flatiron Building. This building is actually considered the oldest skyscraper in America. It is named after its shape, as it truly is triangular like an old cast-iron clothes iron. Please spend a couple moments to notice the gorgeous architectural detailing. It is a stunning building and should not be missed! You can even grab a cup of coffee from Eataly across the street for $2 and rest for a moment. Also next to the Flatiron Building is Madison Square Park.

24 hours in NYCContinue north a few blocks to the Empire State Building. You do not need to go in it, but I often use it as a frame of reference in the city. {It is also where my office is located!} Fun facts- it was the tallest building in the world for almost 40 years and is made up of 10 million bricks!

After the ESB, go across the street to see Macy’s. I personally love this store for their Thanksgiving Day Parade and I enjoy riding the original wood escalators at the top of the building. After walking past Macy’s continue north to Times Square. No visit to New York City is complete without a stop to Time Square. Notice the shows, the famous New Years ball from the ball drop and the plethora of bright lights.

24-hours-in-new-york-city-001

From there, continue walking east to Bryant Park. I love this little park. It is located right next to the New York Public Library and is the perfect place to rest, people watch, grab lunch and simply enjoy the views. In the summer it has a large green lawn for relaxing in and during the winter it holds the only free skating rink in the city. After you’ve spent time here, notice the grand lions in from of the New York Public Library and go inside. Some of the rooms are insanely gorgeous- specifically the old map room.

24 hours in New York City

Then continue walking east towards Grand Central Station. As you are walking, you will have gorgeous views of the Chrysler Building. Take the time to go inside Grand Central- again, you will not be disappointed! Notice the two grand staircases on either end {the design is based on those in the Paris Opera}. On the roof above one of the grand staircases you will see a tiny brown rectangle {watch my video to see it}, this rectangle shows just how dirty the cieling was before renovations were completed in 1996. Fun fact- over 750,000 people go through Grand Central a day!

After Grand Central, walk north on Fifth Avenue. This street needs little introduction, as it is home to some of the most high-end brands in the world. You definitely need to walk down this street- even if you have no intention of actually shopping. The windows and over all opulence is incredible. You will also walk past St. Patrick’s Cathedral. I love noticing the stark contrast between the modern buildings and the Neo-Gothic style church.

24 hours in NYC

Just before you make it to Central Park you will see The Plaza on your left. I recommend popping in just to see the beautiful foyer. Countless movies have been filmed here and it really is beautiful. It is on my bucketlist to have high tea here!

Finally, make your way into Central Park. We go into Central Park about once a week just to enjoy the slower pace, nature and views. It is gorgeous in literally every season. Once inside, be sure to walk down the Mall. The Mall is the long, straight path lined by trees and various artists. It is in just about every NYC based rom-com and is great for people watching. It also leads you to my favorite part of Central Park- Bethesda Terrace and Fountain. We’ve seen countless proposals and multiple weddings take place here. It is just about as picture perfect as it comes.

24 hours in New York City

To finish your day, I recommend either getting a glass of champagne from Tavern on the Green or booking the sunset or champagne cruise on the Classic Harbor Line. I’ve done each countless times and adore them both, but if you can- I would highly recommend the boat cruise. The boat takes you alongside the southern tip of Manhattan, right by the Statue of Liberty and under the Brooklyn Bridge. I cannot suggest it enough. We try to book it every time we have guests in town.

24 hours in NYC

New York City is a foodies paradise and we tend to just hop into any restaurant that looks good as we are walking. 9 times out of 10 we walk away impressed with our meals. But if you are a planner and want some suggestions, be sure to check out my list of where to eat in NYC based on occasion. As a tourist in NYC, I highly recommend getting a bagel for breakfast, a pretzel or hot dog from a street vendor for a snack {the best ones are on 6th Avenue} and a slice of pizza for lunch or dinner. Remember, you are walking a lot so you can justify the carb heavy day! ;)

24-hours-in-new-york-city

What are some of your favorite things to do in New York City?

be-blessed-chloe-540x405

You Might Also Like

53 Comments

  • Reply
    Jency Viator
    December 6, 2016 at 1:12 pm

    A big city like New York would make me so nervous!!! But I’m sure all of the beautiful sites would make it worth it! You are absolutely beautiful by the way.

    • Reply
      Chloé Arnold
      December 7, 2016 at 10:01 am

      NYC can be intimidating, but if you have intentional destinations it become less overwhelming! It is worth visiting at least once in your life! And the parks create good resting points!

  • Reply
    Allie
    December 6, 2016 at 1:39 pm

    First, you are beautiful! Second, you are making me so anxious to book a trip!!! It looks so pretty! Definitely will be using a few of your recommendations! And love your fun facts.

    • Reply
      Chloé Arnold
      December 7, 2016 at 10:00 am

      Yay!!! You must come! You will love it my dear! And thank you!

  • Reply
    Lauren Oliver
    December 6, 2016 at 6:05 pm

    Absolutely loved looking through photos and reading where you all visited! So pretty! And I haven’t been to NYC in a couple of years, but I’ve been dying to do a sunset cruise to see the beautiful skyline! I also really want to go to Central Park!

    Lauren
    http://oliverstwistblog.com

    • Reply
      Chloé Arnold
      December 7, 2016 at 10:00 am

      Thank you Lauren! You would love this cruise and Central Park is an absolute must!

  • Reply
    Ashley Hargrove
    December 6, 2016 at 7:00 pm

    This is SUCH a great guide!! I will definitely be saving this!!

    • Reply
      Chloé Arnold
      December 7, 2016 at 9:59 am

      Thanks Ashley! After having lived here for two years and having visited at least once a year with my mom growing up, I’ve finally narrowed it down to fit everything into one day! I’ll be creating a few other NYC guides for longer stays soon too!

  • Reply
    Follow My Gut
    December 7, 2016 at 12:16 pm

    You guys did so much in such a short amount of time. Great job on getting a ton of activities and seeing so many places done in just a day!!!

    Danielle | FollowMyGut.com <3

    • Reply
      Chloé Arnold
      December 9, 2016 at 2:23 pm

      We really did! It was so fun to play tourist in our own city for the day! It was a great reminder of how much you can really do/see in a day!

  • Reply
    Jennifer Ambrose
    December 7, 2016 at 1:09 pm

    I haven’t been to NYC in ages, I would love to go back. Great map, too!

    • Reply
      Chloé Arnold
      December 9, 2016 at 2:24 pm

      Oh you must come back! The city is changing so much! It is beautiful!

  • Reply
    kelsey bang
    December 7, 2016 at 1:32 pm

    what a fun adventure! love nyc!

    kelseybang.com

    • Reply
      Chloé Arnold
      December 9, 2016 at 2:24 pm

      It really was a fun adventure! I love NYC too! Such a great place!

  • Reply
    Mary Powers
    December 8, 2016 at 8:51 pm

    This is AMAZING!!!! It seriously makes me want to hop on a plane tonight and do all these things!!! I love your blog, Chloe!

    • Reply
      Chloé Arnold
      December 9, 2016 at 2:24 pm

      haha! YES! Hop on a plane and come!!! xox

  • Reply
    Annessa Smith
    December 9, 2016 at 3:09 pm

    This is such a great guide! I grew up 2 hours from NYC but never spent much time there, I definitley need to go back and explore when I’m in town next!

    Annessa
    http://www.seekingsunshine.com

    • Reply
      Chloé Arnold
      December 16, 2016 at 12:22 pm

      Thank you Annessa, yes- you definitely must come back and explore more! It changes so much every year!

  • Reply
    Kate • The Gold Sister
    December 9, 2016 at 3:49 pm

    Looks like you had such a full day!! I never knew the Bethesda Terrace was in Central Park, I’m definitely gonna have to check that out next time I visit from Philly! Thanks for sharing~

    x Kate
    http://thegoldsister.com/travel-6-essentials/

    • Reply
      Chloé Arnold
      December 16, 2016 at 12:22 pm

      Thank you Kate! It really was a full day- but such a perfect day! Bethesda Terrace is my favorite place to end the day, it is so peaceful and just gorgeous! You must visit Central Park next time!

  • Reply
    Rach
    December 10, 2016 at 10:03 am

    This is such a great guide! You compiled all the best things in NYC!

    http://www.rdsobsessions.com

    • Reply
      Chloé Arnold
      December 16, 2016 at 12:23 pm

      Thank you Rach! It was a busy day trying to get everything in- but it IS possible!

  • Reply
    Bryn Bradsher
    December 12, 2016 at 10:02 am

    I love this guide Chloe! You guys always find such fun ways to spend your weekends!! xo Bryn http://www.waktonroad.com

    • Reply
      Chloé Arnold
      December 16, 2016 at 12:23 pm

      Thank you Bryn! We’ve been very blessed and love exploring!

  • Reply
    Alice Kerley
    December 12, 2016 at 5:21 pm

    You hit on all the best spots in 24 hours!! Makes me want to plan another trip to NYC stat!

    xo,
    Alice at Lone Star Looking Glass

    • Reply
      Chloé Arnold
      December 16, 2016 at 12:24 pm

      We really did! You must come back! Even if it is for a long layover!

  • Reply
    Bridget
    December 12, 2016 at 9:19 pm

    This video is AMAZING!!! I love NY, in fact the hubby and I are talking about going back soon :) I love all the spots you hit!

    • Reply
      Chloé Arnold
      December 16, 2016 at 12:24 pm

      You are the sweetest Bridget!! Thank you!!! You must come back during the holidays or spring time! Both are so magical!

  • Reply
    Cece Lam
    December 13, 2016 at 1:14 am

    this looks like soo muc fun babe!! – http://www.cecelam.com/2016/12/velvet-winter.html

  • Reply
    Shane Prather
    December 13, 2016 at 8:46 am

    Such a great roundup of sights to see! I haven’t been to NYC in years and would love to go back and explore it all!

    • Reply
      Chloé Arnold
      December 16, 2016 at 12:24 pm

      Oh you must come back! It never gets old exploring this city!

  • Reply
    Katie Ann Lehman
    December 14, 2016 at 2:34 pm

    Next time we’re in NYC we are totally following this map! Loved it, Chloe!

    • Reply
      Chloé Arnold
      December 16, 2016 at 12:25 pm

      You will love it! And you won’t feel the slightest bit guilty about indulging in a glass or two of champagne due to all the walking!

  • Reply
    Mary Varghese
    December 14, 2016 at 11:39 pm

    Wonderfully exhaustive guide. Will definitely follow this on our visit to NYC. Do let me know in case you need any help if you plan a trip to India.
    http://www.widercanvass.blogspot.in

    • Reply
      Chloé Arnold
      December 16, 2016 at 12:25 pm

      Thank you Mary! It was a busy day- but so much fun. India is on my bucket list! I will let you know when we make it there!! Thank you!

  • Reply
    Alexa
    December 17, 2016 at 8:34 pm

    This is a great idea for a post! I have only been for NYC one time for a school day trip, but I want to go back and do it more thoroughly.

  • Reply
    Anne Thornley-Brown
    December 17, 2016 at 8:55 pm

    New York is one of my favourite places, especially at this time of year. I spent the Christmas season in New York a couple of years ago and I will never forget it. It was wonderful to view scenes that are familiar from movies and see the iconic seasonal decorations. Taking the 2 level bus and driving through Times Square on New Years Eve Day just as it started to get dark was to die for.

  • Reply
    Rachel C
    December 17, 2016 at 9:25 pm

    I’m planning a trip to Manhattan to visit family in a few months and I definitely have to do some sight seeing in the city!

  • Reply
    sara
    December 18, 2016 at 12:29 pm

    These photos are so great! Now I want to go to NYC. I need to take my daughter, she has never been and it truly is so magical.

  • Reply
    Donna
    December 18, 2016 at 8:43 pm

    Such an awesome guide for 24 hours in the city! There is SO much to do and you certainly got a lot in. These photos are gorgeous!

  • Reply
    Pack Your Baguios
    December 18, 2016 at 10:53 pm

    Love your pictures. I second all of your recommendations! Voted and pinned this!

  • Reply
    Christine Goulbourne
    March 9, 2017 at 11:35 pm

    As a native New Yorker, I feel you really nailed it by capturing the true essence of the big apple and all it has to offer!

  • Reply
    gennean
    May 19, 2017 at 3:14 pm

    Thank you SO much for this, friend! I am planning to hit lots of these spots when I am in NYC ina few weeks!

  • Reply
    Martin Gergov
    August 4, 2017 at 7:13 am

    The Best! One of my dreams!!!!

  • Reply
    zaha01
    August 31, 2017 at 12:39 pm

    Pretty portion of content. I simply stumbled upon your site and
    in accession capital to say that I acquire in fact enjoyed account your weblog posts.
    Any way I will be subscribing on your augment or
    even I fulfillment you access constantly quickly.

  • Reply
    streetwear
    September 1, 2017 at 9:38 pm

    Excellent way of describing, and nice piece of writing to get
    information on the topic of my presentation subject, which i
    am going to convey in school.

  • Reply
    Totalrenovering
    September 2, 2017 at 5:47 am

    Greetings I am so happy I found your webpage, I really found you by error, while I was looking on Aol for something else,
    Nonetheless I am here now and would just like to say thanks for a incredible post and a all round thrilling blog (I
    also love the theme/design), I don’t have time to go through it all at the minute but
    I have bookmarked it and also added your RSS feeds,
    so when I have time I will be back to read more,
    Please do keep up the great job.

  • Reply
    Cape Coral practitioner
    September 3, 2017 at 6:51 am

    Do you mind if I quote a couple of your articles as
    long as I provide credit and sources back to your blog?
    My website is in the exact same niche as yours
    and my visitors would genuinely benefit from a lot of the information you provide here.
    Please let me know if this okay with you. Thank you!

  • Reply
    Franco Parrella Associate Director
    September 4, 2017 at 5:07 pm

    Aw, this was an incredibly nice post. Spending
    some time and actual effort to produce a top notch article… but
    what can I say… I put things off a lot and don’t manage to get anything done.

  • Reply
    Franco Parrella
    September 4, 2017 at 6:22 pm

    Great info. Lucky me I ran across your blog by accident
    (stumbleupon). I’ve book-marked it for later!

  • Reply
    Hudson Valley Advertising Agency
    September 5, 2017 at 8:15 pm

    This article will assist the internet users for creating new website or even a blog
    from start to end.

  • Reply
    Vitae has Pappy Van Winkle
    September 5, 2017 at 11:32 pm

    Thanks for another excellent post. Where else
    may anybody get that kind of information in such a perfect means of writing?
    I’ve a presentation next week, and I’m at the look for such info.

  • Leave a Reply