With so much to see and do, planning a trip to New York can be difficult, particularly if you are on a budget or if you don’t plan on stopping over for more than a few days. Whether you’re a fervent foodie, a culture vulture or a history hound, there is plenty for you to see and do in the Big Apple.
Quick History of New York
Manhattan is the oldest part of the city and used to be home to the Lenape and Canarsees (ancient American islands). Before New York was first explored by Europeans in the 1500s, Florentine Giovanni de Verrazano found the entrance to the harbour which was later named the Hudson River in 1609 by Henry Hudson.
Europeans from the Netherlands settled New York in 1624. They named a fort Nieuw Amsterdam (New Amsterdam) which was to become the New York we know today. The English took over this area during the second Anglo Dutch War and changed the name to New York, in honour of the Duke of York, who later became King James II of England.
American Museum of Natural History
If you want to learn more about New York’s unique history, take a trip to the American Museum of Natural History. Among some of its permanent exhibitions is Tiny Giants, an exhibit about the lives of small animals. It explores some of New York’s smallest creatures and gives visitors an insight into what it’s like to live life pocket sized, when your natural habitat is Central Park or Times Square.
New York Historical Society
New York Historical Society is located in Manhattan’s Central Park West and is home to some of the most prestigious and current works of art in the world. Guests can visit many of its special installations including works of photography, light and sculpture and painting throughout the ages.
If you are travelling with kids, there is also a children’s museum, where little ones can learn and interact with some of the many activities available like arts and crafts and storytelling. It’s a great learning experience for adults and kids alike!
Sleep No More
Theatre lovers simply can’t leave New York without first taking in the unique Sleep No More- an interactive production of Shakespeare in classic film noir style. It takes place over five floors, and guides you on a haunting journey, where you are literally part of the show. Actors emerge from various rooms of the house, acting out famous scenes and involving visitors and engages all your senses. Don’t forget to try one of their famous absinthe cocktails at the Manderley Bar on arrival.
Before you book your trip to New York, be sure to check out some of the many price comparison sites online to ensure you are getting the best deal. The time of year in which you travel can effect the price massively, and visiting outside of peak season can make a world of difference.
Image by InSapphoWeTrust, used under the Creative Commons license.