With its ever thrilling blend of culture, history, fine dining, street food, fashion and nightlife, New York is the kind of city that appeals to every kind of traveler. Even before their arrival, most visitors have already prepared to be infected by its joie de vivre. There’s simply so much to see and do that planning an itinerary that allows for the most out of your trip can seem like a daunting task. More so, if you plan to spend only 24 hours.
In fact, just keep it at the back of your mind, that it is almost impossible to witness all the grandeur that this magnificent city has to offer and nothing short of moving here can let you get a full appreciation of New York City. Still, if 24 hours is all the time you’ve got, then here’s your best itinerary.
Before You Begin
Make sure to take advantage of various facilities, such as hotel - airport transfers and pre-booked tickets. Be ready for an action-filled day. There’s lots of places to visit, but the city can be quite busy so be sure to wear good walking shoes before stepping out of your hotel for the day. That said, let’s begin:
7:30 AM - Breakfast and Sightseeing at Broadway & 80th
First things first, you’ve got an exciting day ahead so you need to get started with some good food. Head on to Zabar’s, one of New York’s finest delicatessen, for some bagels with cream cheese and lox, and a cup of coffee. Take a short walk to Riverside Park to enjoy your breakfast and enjoy watching the Hudson River spread out before you. If you are interested in shopping, there are many luxury fashion stores along Fifth Avenue that are worth checking out.
9:00 AM - 10:00 AM - Grand Metropolitan Museum of Art
Wandering eastward through the park and exiting onto Fifth Ave around 79th Street puts you at the entrance to the Grand Metropolitan Museum of Art, which is home to some of the greatest art collections from all over the world - Egyptian Temple of Dendur, Greek statues, Roman medieval armor and much more.
10:30 AM - 12:00 PM - Grand Central Terminal
From the museum, get to the subway at 86th and Lexington for a train heading to Grand Central Terminal. The glorious constellations painted on the ceiling of the marbled main hall will keep you spellbound. You can grab a quick bite here at the excellent European-style food hall downstairs. The New York Public Library, one of the biggest libraries in the USA and has appeared in a number of movies including Ghostbusters and Spider-man, is just a short walking distance away.
12:30 - 2:00 PM - Rockefeller Center
After the library, the Rockefeller Center makes a nice stop. You can take a ride up to the Top of the Rock Observation Deck where you can get a breathtaking view of the sprawling city below. There’s also street vendors selling ice creams, coffee and the like nearby to keep you recharged.
3:00 PM - 6:00 PM - Visit Liberty Island
Make sure to pre-book your tickets for Liberty Island so you can avoid the majority of queues. Here you can take in the famous New York city skyline. There’s lots of great photo opportunities so get your camera ready and snap away.
7:00 PM - 8:00 PM -- Dinner and Sightseeing at the Lower East Side
The dining options here are staggering -- from tapas and wine to hearty sandwiches and cocktails, you can eat and drink to your heart's content. You can spend the next few minutes exploring the scene as the nightlife starts to creep in.
8:00 PM - 8:30 PM - See the Bustling Time Square
You can't have a New York tour without a stopover, albeit a few minutes, at Times Square. This is one of those places that hardly requires any introduction. If you have the time, you could stay longer for a Broadway show.
9:00 PM - 10:00 PM - Walk the Brooklyn Bridge
Still got it in you for another adventure? Walk off your dinner with a walk across the Brooklyn Bridge which allows you to see the city in an entirely different perspective.
11:00 PM - Enjoy the Nightlife or Head to Bed
Treat yourself to an espresso and join the party people at bars and clubs around town. The city never sleeps so you can always find several places to hang out and mingle until the early hours of the next day. If not, then head on back to your hotel, proud of your achievement of conquering New York City in one day!
If you still have some time the next day, here are some other places you could visit