What to do in New York in one day

New York is undoubtedly one the most incredible cities in the world, and it is time for you to find out why on this epic New York day trip. Stay at the calming retreat that is the 1 Hotel Central Park. Wander through the vast green space of Central Park and discover the treasures with the Metropolitan Museum of Art. Stand on top of that same museum for some coffee and an incredible view. Indulge in the best steak of your life at Del Frisco’s Double Eagle Steak House before you head to the exciting New York hotspots of Time Square, Broadway Street and Grand Central Station. Satisfy your sweet tooth at the perfectly charming and cupcake-filled Magnolia Bakery

Shop your cares away on the always luxurious 5th Avenue and then soar to new heights from the observation deck of The Empire State Building. The Little Owl in Greenwich Village is a friendly and cozy dinner spot that’s sure to impress and the famous Blue Note jazz club is a wonderful place to spend an evening listening to incredible music. End the night in style with drinks at the secretive, speakeasy-style bar, Raines Law Room and join the city that never sleeps by dancing the night away at The Marquee. Your day is filled to bursting with the best of New York’s sights and sounds


The 1 Hotel in Central Park is a great place to start off your New York day trip. This chic hotel is a New York favorite, describing itself perfectly as “a refuge in the middle of Manhattan”. 1 Hotel has an atmosphere that instantly calms you. The staff welcomes you into this serene oasis with caring and ready-to-help attitudes. You will be put at ease immediately when you enter the wooded lobby and check in with the friendly folks at the front desk. Be at one with nature in the inspiring environment at the 1 Hotel

The hotel has several social spaces to sit and relax if you have a minute. There are warm toned couches and chairs, many of which are designed out of recycled material. All spaces have natural textures and earthy comforts, which inspire a tranquility that is rare in a bustling city like New York. In fact, many of the features in the hotel are eco-friendly and they pride themselves on being responsible and gracious to the environment. They are very focused on creating a space that encourages ethical sustainability, so you’ll feel good about staying at the 1 Hotel at Central Park. Relax and let the staff and the atmosphere take care of you

Set down your bags in your unique and peaceful bedroom. Wooded walls and calming earth tones will greet you warmly when you enter the room. There’s a cozy window nook to sit in as you peek out at the New York City streets or Central Park. You will feel tucked away as if you’re in an elegant tree house above the city. Soak up the serenity and enjoy several moments of Zen at 1 Hotel in preparation for your exciting and full day in New York City  // 1 Hotel Central Park – 1414 Ave of the Americas, New York, NY 10019


Just across the street from 1 Hotel is Central Park, one of the most famous green spaces in the world. This is a massive area of grassy knolls, several lakes and ponds, playgrounds, meadows, and forests. It’s a sprawling and well-preserved piece of nature in the center of the city. Enjoy the beauty of the environment as you join with tourists and local New Yorkers on one of the many walking paths that wind through the park. This urban countryside offers beautiful juxtaposing sights of skyscrapers peeking over green foliage. A simple walk in the park will become a memory you won’t forget anytime soon

Head towards Central Park’s largest lawn, Sheep Meadow, and join the sunbathers lying on the grass. Here you’ll find various New Yorkers participating in a wide range of park activities. There are couples having picnics, people playing Frisbee with their dogs, yogis balancing in warrior pose and countless others enjoying the scenery and setting of Central Park. Find an open place to lean back and admire the city as it rises above the dense green woods

There are many things worth seeing in Central Park so spend some time seeking out a few of them before you leave. A short walk from the Sheep Meadow is a statue of Alice from Alice in Wonderland sitting atop a large mushroom with the Mad Hatter and White Rabbit alongside her. Strawberry Fields is a nearby memorial to the peace and love that the late Beatles’ member, John Lennon, was so representative of. Shakespeare’s Garden is home to many of the plants mentioned in William Shakespeare’s famous plays and his quotes are etched in the small bronze plaques that can be found throughout the garden. Central Park is filled with hidden treasures; so don’t be afraid to wander through the paths. You never know what you might find  // Central Park – New York, NY


As the name suggests, the Met Roof Garden Café is on the rooftop of the Metropolitan Museum of Art. With staggering views of the Manhattan skyline rising up over the treetops of Central Park, this is the perfect place to relax with a cup of coffee or a cocktail. The rooftop space itself is an echo of the greenery found in Central Park, and the surrounding New York cityscape is a reminder that you are right in the middle of one of the most incredible cities on earth. Let time stand still as you look out over this majestic view

Though the best thing to take in at the Met Roof Garden Café is definitely the view, the café itself offers cappuccinos, lattes, and other warm drinks for you to enjoy as well. There are also various kinds of snacks you can purchase if you’ve worked up a bit of an appetite. The café is best known as a cocktail bar, so feel free to order a mimosa or any other delicious breakfast cocktail. You’re sure to feel like a real New Yorker as you sip a raspberry cooler while standing atop the Met looking out over Manhattan

There are plenty of spaces to sit so choose a cozy park bench or find a place on the “grassy” lawn. Enjoy a moment of respite in the gardens while you people-watch. The Met Roof Garden Café attracts a very diverse crowd of people. From New York yuppies to international tourists to young high school couples in love, everyone enjoys this classic New York City spot. A good view is universally known to bring together all sorts of individuals. Join in the community activity of taking in the glorious view of a glorious city  // MET Roof Garden Café – 1000 5th Ave #5,  New York, NY 10028


Now that you’ve stood on top of the Met, it’s time to explore the inside of it. The famous Metropolitan Museum of Art is an icon of New York City. As the largest museum in the United States, it contains over 2 million works spread throughout various galleries for you to discover. The museum is of course home to an incredible amount of art, but it also features thousands of ancient historical artifacts from all over the world. This museum is truly a gem, so have a wander about the galleries and see what you can discover

On the first floor, you will find lots of interesting pieces. The great hall itself is a work of art with its rising limestone arches welcoming you in. Beyond that are galleries packed with things to see. There are several Egyptian temples and tombs, which are definitely worth a look. The Temple of Dendur in the Sackler Wing is an entire sandstone temple from the Roman period transported here from Egypt. The Charles Engelhard Court is a beautiful space filled with sunlight and American sculptures, and on the north side of the room is the original façade of the Branch Bank of the United States. The history and art packed on the first floor alone will astound and mesmerize you

Give yourself enough time to wander up to the other galleries as well to see some of the most famous art pieces in the world. In the Modern and Contemporary Art section, you will discover the complex piece, Autumn Rhythm by Jackson Pollock. Also here, you can find one of the famous cow-skull paintings by Georgia O’Keefe and the portrait of Gertrude Stein painted, of course, by Pablo Picasso. Van Gogh’s Wheat Field with Cypresses is also on display alongside the likes of Monet, Renoir and Cézanne. Use your time wisely as you discover some of the most incredible works of art ever created  // MET – 1000 5th Ave, New York, NY 10028


It’s lunchtime, and this is going to be a good one at Del Frisco’s Double Eagle Steakhouse in downtown Manhattan. You’ll be greeted warmly as you walk into the large and spacious restaurant. A deep mahogany balcony and a regal staircase reveal the two floors of seating. This place feels luxurious and homey at the same time. White tablecloths cover the wooden tables, and you might be seated by one of the many floor-to-ceiling windows that offer scenes of New Yorkers rushing by. With its energetic atmosphere and mouthwatering dishes, this steakhouse will not disappoint

As you might guess from its title, steak is the name of the game here at Del Frisco’s Double Eagle Steakhouse. Their lunch menu offers Filet Mignon, Prime Rib-Eye, and Veal Porterhouse, among others, cooked exactly the way you like it. They also have seafood options like bacon-wrapped sea scallops and sesame seared tuna, if that’s more your style. Don’t skimp on the sides either. Their lobster macaroni and cheese is to die for and they also have fresh vegetables and an array of potato dishes. Not to worry, the friendly waiter will help you make the right choice, but really everything on the menu is the right choice

Your meal will come elegantly and creatively displayed on the dishes, but you will hardly have time to notice. The food at Del Frisco’s Double Eagle Steak House has a way of making you lose all self-control. Indulge yourself. Order some wine or an expertly made cocktail. The atmosphere calls for it. If you have any room by the end of the meal have some dessert too! They have crème brulée, strawberry cheesecake, and banana bread pudding, just to name a few. There really is no better place for a delicious lunch on your New York day trip  // Del Frisco’s Double Eagle Steak House -10036, 1221 Ave of the Americas, New York, NY 10020


After a leisurely morning and an incredible lunch, it’s time to pick up your pace and experience the bright lights and loud sounds of New York City. Head to the famed Time Square and see what all the fuss is about. The colorful billboards and advertisements are diverting, and people from all over the world will stop in the square to take in the excitement. It makes sense that it is sometimes referred to as The Center of the Universe. As you stand there in the middle of it, it really does feel that way

Now join in with the rush of foot traffic as you walk onto Broadway Street. This is the oldest street in New York City and also one of the most famous. It is home to many Broadway theatres, which have featured hundreds of famous plays and musicals. This is the heart of the American theater industry, and it brims with the magic and drama of the stage. Walk along this infamous street and feel the buzz. This is a street where dreams come true for the starry-eyed performers who worked their way here and for the eager audience members enjoying the beloved performances

Stay in the dream of old, classic New York City and stroll over to the beautiful Grand Central Terminal. This spacious golden hall with its ornate green ceiling is the host to many travelers rushing through to catch their trains to various places. Check the time at the old clock on top of the information center. Speak softly into the whispering corner and be amazed that your friends on the other side of the hall are able to hear you perfectly. Grand Central Terminal is filled with wonder and vibrancy. Be enchanted by this lovely New York icon  // Time Square – Manhattan, NY 10036 // Broadway – Manhattan, NY 10036 // Grand Central Terminal – 89 E 42nd St, New York, NY 10017


Right inside Grand Central Station is a wonderful little spot to sit and people-watch, Magnolia Bakery. As you walk up to this pretty café you’ll see through the window the staff perfecting pastries and brewing coffee. Once inside you’ll notice charming décor that creates a pleasant and sweet environment to spend part of your afternoon in. You might have heard of Magnolia Bakery from the notorious New York City show, Sex and the City, proving that this café is a New York staple

The bakery is also known for starting a “cupcake craze” in New York City, so it’s a good idea to try one or two of these and see what everyone is talking about. Try the red velvet or the chocolate, or what is known as the Carrie Cupcake (named for Carrie Bradshaw), which is a vanilla cupcake with pink vanilla frosting. They also have special cupcakes featured daily. Some examples are the pistachio with meringue buttercream and the carrot cake with cream cheese icing and walnuts. If you weren’t a cupcake person before, you probably leave as one

Even if cupcakes aren’t your thing, don’t let that deter you. There are plenty of other sweet options as well, anything from double fudge brownies and peanut butter toffee bars to chocolate dipped macaroons and sea salt caramel cookies. This café is designed to satisfy your sweetest cravings. They also serve Peet’s Coffee and Tea, so order a drink to accompany your sugary treat. Make yourself at home in this café that is the epitome of sweetness  // Magnolia Bakery – 107 E 42nd St, New York, NY 10017


Continue on in the footsteps of Carrie Bradshaw of Sex and the City as you walk over to Fifth Avenue to get some shopping done. Fifth Avenue is one of the most popular locations in the world to shop, and it is a necessary part of your New York day trip. Saks is probably the most famous Fifth Avenue department store, and it has been around for decades, which adds to its elegance.  Stroll on by the windows and see its unique displays. Then head inside to be wowed by its opulence. But of course, Saks isn’t the only place for shopping, window or otherwise. On Fifth Avenue, there are any number of fabulous stores for you to dip in and out of

Fifth Avenue has been nicknamed “Millionaire’s Row” for the stretch of street where the rich New Yorkers of the late 19th century built their mansions. In keeping with the theme of wealthy New Yorkers, Trump Tower is also on this street, as is The Plaza Hotel. However, Fifth Avenue is most importantly the home to luxury shopping, so channel your inner millionaire as you head into some of the most beautiful and extravagant stores that New York has to offer. You’re sure to leave impressed and with several bags in your hand

On Fifth Avenue, there are high-end and expensive stores to meet your luxury shopping needs. Tiffany and Company, Valentino, and Bergdorf Goodman are all there for you. Of course, you don’t have to be a millionaire in order to make purchases on Fifth Avenue. There are also plenty of great, less expensive places to get an excellent deal. H&M and Zara are both nice spots for lower-end shopping. Whatever your shopping style, you are sure to find something excellent to bring back home for your friends or for yourself  // Fifth Avenue – 611 5th Ave, New York, NY 10022


The next stop on your New York City day trip is the most indispensable part of the city’s skyline, the Empire State Building. When the construction of the building was finished in 1931, it was the tallest building in the world. This American icon stands majestically at over 1,400 feet, and is the epitome New York City’s art-deco architecture. It also offers some of the best views of the city, so walk on inside this classic skyscraper

The marble lobby of the Empire State Building is famous in and of itself. The beautiful ceiling murals paying homage to the mechanical age and a gorgeous depiction of the building displayed behind the front desk all serve to inspire a sense of New York royalty. The Empire State Building is the crowning glory, due in large part to the glorious view at the top. Make the ascension to the 82nd floor to the well-known open-air observatory

Walk out into the splendor of the observation platform and take in the 360-degree views. You can see New York’s most celebrated sites from here. Be sure to notice The Brooklyn Bridge, Times Square, The Statue of Liberty, and Central Park, which can all be seen from this observation deck. If you want even greater heights, the indoor observatory on 102nd floor is worth a visit. Keep going up and you’ll feel lost in the clouds as you look down at the massive city below  // Empire State Building – 350 5th Ave, New York, NY 10118


Descend from The Empire State Building and head over to the trendy West Village for dinner. The Little Owl is an adorable restaurant on the bottom of a classic New York apartment building. This is the apartment building from the legendary TV show, Friends. Through the windows of the restaurant you can see sparkling lights, waiters weaving in between tables, and groups of friends from around the neighborhood laughing and eating. Warmth radiates from The Little Owl, inviting you to partake in this quintessential New York dining experience. Check your inhibitions at the door and join in the friendly and intimate atmosphere at The Little Owl

Once you’ve been seated at one of the cozy wooden tables, have a chat with the waiter about the menu. The dishes at The Little Owl are fresh takes on old favorites with an added bit of Mediterranean flair. Start with some appetizers such as the basil gnocchi or the gravy meatball sliders. When you move onto the entrees you might want to consider sharing a few among your friends, because everything is delicious and worth trying. Their Pork Chop is one of their most famous dishes and for good reason, but they also have incredible fish, chicken and steak options. The very accommodating and friendly waiter will be more than happy to help you decide

A fabulous feature of The Little Owl is the kitchen, which is completely visible from the dining space. Watch Chef Joey Campanaro work his magic in the kitchen while he creates his signature dishes. After your main course, there are desserts to choose from, so as you relish in the familial warmth around you, enjoy some peach cobbler or maybe a beignet. You are sure to end your night feeling enchanted by this cozy New York restaurant  // The Little Owl – 90 Bedford St, New York, NY 10014


The enchantment continues as you make your way to the Blue Note Jazz Club. Nestled in Greenwich Village, this fabulous music venue endeavors to maintain and pay respects to the beautiful history of jazz music, as well as encourage innovation and originality in the performances its guests. This is a favorite spot among some of music’s greatest legends. It’s not rare to find Liza Minelli or Stevie Wonder in the audience, and if you’re lucky they might even briefly take the stage. Join this illustrious crowd in getting lost in the sounds of jazz

The Blue Note has live music every night of the week, so there’s always something to hear. The stage is visible from every table so watch the musicians get lost in the music they are creating. There is groovy blue mood lighting and the room is cozy, so you’ll feel like you’ve discovered something great while you listen to some of the best jazz musicians in the world. Cocktails are available at the bar so get a drink to sip as you discover this New York music gem

Many famous musicians have performed here, and you’ll probably find their pictures framed on the walls. Dizzy Gillespie quickly became a regular performer here during the eighties, and Ray Charles has also been performing at The Blue Note for years. The jazz club also prides itself in featuring up-and-coming artists. A few different genre variations can be heard as well, like R&B, hip-hop, and funk. Jazz is always at the base of every performance though. This club is a favorite among performers and audience members alike so enjoy the classy vibrancy of New York’s favorite jazz club  // Blue Note Jazz Club – 131 W 3rd St, New York, NY 10012


Another jazzy, but slightly more secretive New York hangout is the bar at The Raines Law Room. It’s an absolutely perfect place for a fabulous evening of drinks with your friends. This classy bar feels just like a speakeasy, hidden away in Manhattan, waiting for you to come along and uncover it. You have to ring the bell at the door to be let into this dimly lit bar. Walls are darkly paneled and thick drapes curtain the room. This bar seems like a great secret and aren’t you glad you heard about it? Enter into this clandestine New York spot for an evening of excellent cocktails

Once you’ve slid into a seat on one of the over-stuffed couches or plush velvet chairs, press the call button on the wall. A waiter will appear before you and help you choose the best drink to suit your mood. The Raines Law Room is named for a law from 1896 that discouraged liquor consumption in New York, so you’ll feel a bit naughty ordering one of the bar’s excellent cocktails. Sip on a classic rum and coke or something more complex like the Garden Paloma, and enjoy the sexy, underground vibes

Allow yourself to be transported to another era, where prohibition is in full swing and speakeasies are the only place to meet your friends for drinks. Lucky for you, you know the spot and you know the secret password. The dim lights, cool jazz music and buzz of excited conversation help pull you into the fantasy. This mysterious version of New York is an experience not to be missed. Enjoy the dark and sensual ambience of The Raines Law Room and be glad you are in on the secret  // The Raines Law Room – 48 W 17th St, New York, NY 10011


Another sexy spot in New York is the nightclub known as The Marquee. With a red carpet and velvet rope leading up to the entrance, you will feel like a real VIP, and sure enough, inside you’ll find an array of classy New Yorkers from beautiful models to wealthy young professionals. Dance and sway along to the hypnotic music and party with New York City’s elite under the flashing lights of The Marquee

The incredible DJs at The Marquee will play the very best of Electronic Dance Music, so get ready to move your body. It’s impossible to stand still with these sick beats pumping up your heart rate. Make sure you’ve dressed up for the occasion, because there is a strict dress code enforced to keep this nightclub as classy and exclusive as possible. Reserve a table ahead of time or befriend some young New Yorkers, and sit down for a break and have bottle service all night. New Yorkers know how to party, so you better keep up

Dance beneath the disco ball and strobe lights as you end your New York day trip with a colorful bang. Keep up to the beat of whatever dance jams the DJ is spinning. As the night continues you’ll feel the stamina of New York’s energy. This is the city that never sleeps, after all, so revel in that atmosphere. New York is a party in and of itself, and The Marquee just keeps that party going. Lose yourself in the beauty of the night, because it’s one you’ll never forget. It’s been an amazing day in one of the greatest cities on earth  // Marquee New York – 289 10th Ave, New York, NY 10001

We mapped out your day trip in New York

Each highlight of your day trip is numbered, simply follow the guide

What you should know about New York

City highlights, food & drinks, expressions, weather, how to get there and how to get around

During your New York day trips, you couldn’t possibly be bored. Pick a rival baseball team and cheer them on from the Yankee or Mets Stadium. Explore New York’s eclectic downtown neighborhoods or head to a local bar to enjoy a selection of craft beer. The Big Apple also offers helicopter tours and walking tours to help tourists get a good vibe of the city. New York has great shopping, beautiful gardens, wonderful food, and a rich history of theater. Often hailed as “the city that never sleeps”, this great city has something for all types of people

Glimpse into the past at the Statue of Liberty. Stroll to Central Park and fill your lungs with fresh air. Tour many of New York’s zoos and museums. Relive history on a horse-drawn carriage tour of the city or take photos at Times Square

New York has great thin-crust pizza, handmade bagels, and amazing hamburgers. Don’t forget to grabs some friends and dive into a large cheesecake or indulge in chicken and waffles for breakfast. And don’t leave without having a pastrami on rye

New Yorkers have some different slang. “Brick” means “really cold” and most New Yorkers say “uptown” or “downtown” in lieu of “north” or “south”. If you hear someone referring to “The City”, they’re talking about the borough of Manhattan

Summer in New York is often humid, with temperatures in the 70s to 80s. Fall brings cooler weather that if pleasant for sightseeing. Winters are long and cold, with periods of ice and snow. Spring showers the city with lots of rain and wind

New York is serviced by three major airports: JFK, LaGuardia, and Newark-Liberty International (EWR). Taxis are the most convenient ways to get downtown, but costs upwards of $60. Subway lines F, T, or V also from the airport into the city

Zip around the city center with the iconic New York yellow taxi. If you’re going to be in the city for a few days, consider buying a weekly subway ticket for $30. New York is fairly walkable, as long as you can make your way when surrounded by skyscrapers

Feeling adventurous? Have a look at these city guides