7 Hidden Gems Of New York City


New York may not be the capital city of the United States of America, but it's certainly the American city that captures imaginations right across the globe, including in its neighbouring country of Canada. Walking the streets of New York can take the breath away, and it can seem that at every turn you're confronted by an iconic building or location. The Empire State Building, Times Square, Central Park; these are among the most famous tourist destinations in the world, but whilst these are all great places to see, there's more to New York City than just the cliched images of a thousand movies. By exploring the hidden or lesser known gems of New York City, you can get a true picture of this incredible, vibrant and diverse city, and have a vacation you'll never forget.
How to Get to New York City
One of the things that makes New York so popular is that it's incredibly easy to get to, with a fantastic infrastructure and three airports within its metropolitan area. As it's in the north of the United States it's particularly quick and easy to reach from Canada, which is why over three million Canadians visit the state of New York every year. Porter Airlines are the specialists in great value flights to New York from Toronto, as well as to locations across Canada. They not only provide quick and regular flights to New York at a great price, but they also pride themselves on providing a high-quality flight experience to all their passengers, including the provision of free beer, wine and snacks during the flight. That means you can touch down in New York City relaxed and refreshed, and ready to explore these seven delightful attractions.
The Whispering Gallery
New York has to be one of the most romantic cities in the world, so it's a perfect place for a honeymoon or anniversary vacation, or as a place to propose to the one you love. It's such a popular and bustling city, however, that you may not get the chance to whisper in your beloved's ear, and you can't easily shout romantic words. Fear not, for the Whispering Gallery allows you to utter words of love that only your significant other can hear. The whispering gallery is in the magnificent Grand Central Station, adjacent to the Oyster Bar, a fantastic place for travelers to dine. Simply stand at opposite ends of the archway and whisper, and by the magic of architecture and acoustics the person at the other end of the archway will be able to hear what you whisper perfectly. It's a lot of fun that can lead to a lifetime of memories.
The Flatiron Building
New York is famous for its skyscrapers, so of course we have to mention the Ground Zero memorial here - it's an incredibly moving sight. If we look further back at the history of skyscrapers however, our thoughts probably turn to the Empire State Building, with or without King Kong at its summit. There's another skyscraper which in our opinion is even more beautiful and which should be just as iconic, but you won't find the same crowds around it: The Flatiron Building, or to give it its official name, the Fuller Building. Dating from 1902, this 22-story building is one of the world's oldest skyscrapers and it's certainly one of its most beautiful high-rise structures. Once seen up close, its unique wedge shape will stay in your memory forever.
Off-Broadway
Broadway has become synonymous with high quality, large cast, expensive production musicals, and you'll certainly enjoy a night watching just about any show there. Watching a blockbuster production can be highly entertaining, but New York City also does some of the best radical theater in the world, and you can find something to suit all tastes at Off-Broadway theaters. These intimate theaters allow you to get closer to the action, not to mention having tickets that provide exceptional value for money. You'll find everything here from classics of world theater to brand new productions from tomorrow's stars, so you never know who you might see on an Off-Broadway stage.
The Elevated Acre
We all know of Central Park - wherever we live, it's the green urban space that our park aspires to, but whilst any trip to New York simply has to include a sojourn there, for something excitingly different and yet relaxing at the same time, it's hard to beat the Elevated Acre. It's an acre of green and pleasant land that's perfectly cultivated, but as its name suggests, it's high up in the sky. Located on Walter Street in the heart of Manhattan's financial district, it's suspended between two skyscrapers and that means that it provides incredible views over the Hudson River, Brooklyn Bridge and more. It's a great place to lie back and pass an hour or two, and if you feel a little thirsty, it even has its own beer garden area featuring some of New York's finest craft beers.
The Smallpox Hospital
You may not think that seeing a smallpox hospital could be the highlight of a visit to the United States' most exciting city, but once you've visited the Smallpox Hospital on Roosevelt Island, you'll see what all the fuss is about. It's a shell today that nature is beginning to take possession of once more, but what a marvelous ruin it is. This is a historically significant building, as it was at the forefront of New York's battle against smallpox until it closed in 1956, exactly a hundred years after it opened. This is unlike any other building you'll see in New York, and it resembles a cross between a medieval European castle and the kind of Gothic house of horror you'd see in a movie. Above all, it's a fantastic location to take some unique shots to impress your friends on social media with.
The Museum of Ice Cream
New York is a city of contrasts temperature wise, so whilst you'll need to wrap up warm in winter, you're sure to find warm, sunny days in summer. It doesn't matter how old we are, when the heat rises, we all want an ice cream, so why not head to the Museum of Ice Cream in Soho? It's one of New York's newest attractions, and it's sure to be popular for years to come. Don't expect a boring istory lesson, but do expect lots of interactive exhibitions that encourage you to get right to the heart of the ice cream fun. This is a museum that really does make learning cool, and there are plenty of gorgeous ice cream treats to enjoy as well.
The Berlin Wall
No single structure came to symbolise the second half of the 20th century as much as the Berlin Wall. It divided east from west, capitalism from communism, and when it was finally torn down in 1989 the world would never be the same again. You don't have to go to Germany to see remnants of this once fearsome wall, because there's a section of it to be found on New York's Madison Avenue. It's an art installation comprised of slabs from the Berlin Wall, but they've been transformed into an exhilarating mural by Kiddy Citny and Thierry Noir, two of Germany's leading contemporary urban artists.
From the Berlin Wall to a sky-high park and a spooky abandoned smallpox hospital, you'll be amazed what you can find in New York City when you head off the beaten track. And thanks to airlines like Porter, it's never been easier to reach the big apple, so make this the year you enjoy a big New York vacation.



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