Why Go To New York City

Cool, cosmopolitan, crowded, constantly evolving … the Big Apple blends big city splendor with small-town charm. Amid Gotham's iconic landmarks and towering skyscrapers, you'll experience a vibrant culture permeating each of the city's distinctive neighborhoods and boroughs. Follow trendsetters to the East Village and Brooklyn to check out indie boutiques, iconic bakeries and trendy coffee shops. Afterward, peruse the racks of the sleek shops lining Fifth Avenue, admire the cutting-edge art collections at the MoMA and the Met, catch a memorable show on Broadway or sit down for a meal at the latest "it" restaurant.

As the most populous city in the U.S. – set at the forefront of food, fashion and the arts – NYC requires stamina. But don't let the Big Apple's frenetic sights and sounds intimidate you from soaking up its grandeur. Wander through the concrete jungle and you'll discover roaring taxis zipping down bustling blocks, fast-paced pedestrians strolling past on their way to marquee galleries and trendy cocktail bars, and Times Square's neon lights flickering at all hours. And yet, the city's twinkling lights and chaotic corners also invite you to embrace every New York minute, explore every enclave and create your own urban adventure. There are endless ways to spend your time in the city that never sleeps, but before you leave, stop and look around – what's here today will be transformed into something bigger and better tomorrow.


The U.S. News & World Report travel rankings are based on analysis of expert and user opinions.

New York CIty is ranked as:

  • #1 in Best Places to Visit in New York State

  • #1 in Best Weekend Getaways

  • #2 in Best Christmas Vacations

  • #4 in Best Nightlife Cities in the USA

  • #4 in Best Foodie Cities in the USA

  • #6 in Best Places to Visit in the USA

  • #7in Best Family Winter Vacations

  • #12 in World's Best Places to Visit

  • #15 in Best Family Vacations in the USA

Best Things To Do In New York City


Even if you're not mesmerized by the city's soaring skyscrapers and monuments, you'll be blown away by its flourishing arts, food, fashion and nightlife scenes. You can spend your morning browsing Fifth Avenue's designer racks and your afternoon catching stunning city views from the Top of the Rock Observation Deck. Or, if you're an art lover, you can admire the striking works on display at the Met and the Guggenheim before feasting on ethnic fare in Chinatown or Little Italy. If you still have some energy (and cash) left over, don't miss the chance to snag tickets to an award-winning Broadway show or hop over to one of the low-key rooftop bars and jazz clubs illuminating the Meatpacking District after dark. 

New York City Travel Tips

  • Exercise shopping smarts - If you're a high roller with a thick wallet, Fifth and Madison avenues are your shopping strips. Bargain-hunters should stick to SoHo and Chinatown.

  • Enter the subway with caution - Many subway stations have different platforms for trains going uptown and downtown. Make sure you enter the correct platform before swiping your ticket through the turnstiles. 

  • Skip the train - If you live in a major East Coast city, chances are you'll be able to reach New York City for a relatively affordable price by hopping on the BoltBus or Megabus, two companies that transfer visitors to NYC for cheap.

  • Say no to cabs - A cab here, a cab there … Pretty soon, you'll find that cabs have eaten up all your spending cash. Yes, they're convenient but cost-efficient they are not. Learn the subway system instead, or try Uber or Lyft.

  • Say yes to street vendors - Eat some cheap meals on the street at vendors, especially the ones with "Vendy Awards" posted, and you can put the money you would've spent on an expensive lunch toward your MoMA admission.

  • Say maybe to the TKTS - booth If you're willing to spend an hour of your New York City vacation waiting in the half-price ticket booth in Times Square, you could save some serious money on a Broadway show.