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How to experience New York like a local

There’s nothing quite like a trip to New York. It’s exciting, there’s a lot of things to do, and it seems to be on the cutting edge of music, fashion, and all the good things in life. After you’ve visited the first time you’ll likely have seen all of the city’s main attractions, so what do you do after that? An interesting angle to approach the city is to experience it like a local. But how do you do this? We take a look at some useful tips below.

Avoid Times Square

Times Square was once the gritty epicentre of Manhattan, but, alas, those days have long gone. Today, it’s a collection of flashing lights, tourist traps, and millions of people. As such, virtually no-one from New York goes there voluntarily. It’s a bit of an oddity, actually: how many zones in the middle of a packed city can be said to be free of people who live there? Of course, you should go and see it – but there’s no point lingering there or making it a spot that you keep on returning to. There are much better places to see in the city!

Bus and Subway

Now, you should make sure you’re hailing one of those famous yellow taxis for a ride. It’s part of the fun! But for your standard “getting from A to B” job, look at the bus, or, better, subway. This is what the locals use every day, and they can be remarkably entertaining. On the bus, you get to see the city from a fresh angle. On the subway, you’ll be actively entertained – by singers, dancers, jugglers, and more. There’s a whole other world lying beneath the streets. Check it out!

Local Events

Why do people live in New York? It’s not because of the high rent…it’s because the event calendar for New York is probably the greatest in the world. On any given day, you’ll find world-class events taking place all over the city. They cater for any and all interests and bring together New Yorkers and locals. Whether it’s Shakespeare in the Park, or a Mozart Festival, or the opening of a new exhibition, you’ll find that there’s something – often many things – that interests you and your travel party.

Hit the Neighborhoods

There are plenty of people living in Manhattan, and that means that the neighborhoods are full of life, especially on Friday and Saturday evenings. If you want to see how the young and hip do things, head to East or Greenwich Village and seat yourself at a bar. If you’re more of a day person, then hitting the same spots on Saturday mornings – when the cafe culture is in full swing – will do the same job.

Venture Beyond Manhattan

There’s more to New York than Manhattan! Brooklyn, in particular, is noted for its awesome shopping, bars, and events. Take the subway “out there”, and you’ll be immersed in local life, purely because most tourists don’t make the trip out.

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Founder of Turn It To Trvl. After being made redundant from my digital marketing job, in the UK, I decided I no longer wanted to work the traditional 9-5. I found a volunteer opportunity in Malawi in 2015 and am now freelancing from the warm heart of Africa. Curently building a portfolio of clients and trying to inspire more people to live a life of travel.
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