What To Do In NYC If You’ve Been There Before

Posted June 4, 2024 by Prairie Wife - 2 comments

This post, “What To Do In NYC If You’ve Been There Before,” was inspired by my recent trip to the Big Apple.

It’s safe to say that when you’re traveling to any iconic city for the first time, there are things you MUST do. For example, when traveling to Rome, you must visit the Colosseum and The Vatican. On your first trip to Washington, D.C., you need to see Arlington Cemetary, walk The National Mall, and see the White House. On your first trip to NYC, I recommend visiting the Statue of Liberty, riding the Subway, and checking out Central Park.

But when you visit an iconic city for the second time, it’s a bit harder to decide what to do!

Personally, I had no desire to ride the subway in NYC on this trip, and seeing the Statue of Liberty once was enough for me.

So when I planned my recent trip to NYC (a Christmas present from The Cowboy that included two tickets to Hamilton on Broadway), I reached out to a few friends who used to live in the area and several friends who go there often and created an itinerary based on their recommendations.

I had SO many readers message me and request our itinerary from our recent trip that I thought it would be easier if I made it into a post with links to everything we did.

Before we get into the details and links, I want to share a few things with you.

  1. Not everyone likes to travel the same way, so feel free to adjust this itinerary to fit your personal preferences. Consider your physical ability to walk long distances and your sensitivity to weather. Are you an early riser, or do you prefer to stay up late?
  2. I never plan anything on the first day. It causes too much stress if there are plane delays or other issues during travel.
  3. I plan 2 or 3 things daily with a set time/schedule and then have more things we can/cannot do based on how we feel or the weather. Don’t be afraid to sit and relax in your hotel room or wander the area and soak up the atmosphere around you instead of seeing and doing “all the things.”
  4. I am not a big drinker or into clubbing/partying, so you won’t find any recommendations related to those activities.
  5. Make reservations for restaurants you want to make sure you eat at. Allow yourself 30 minutes later than you think for your time so you aren’t worried if there is traffic or any other unforeseen delays.
  6. Pay attention to location. I stack activities based on where they are, so we aren’t wasting time traveling back and forth.
  7. While I travel with a budget in mind, I also take the time to save up enough money so that I don’t need to stress. For me, it’s worth delaying my trip months or even a year to ensure that I can stay in a hotel in a safe neighborhood with a good location and afford to Uber wherever I may want to go.
  8. Take some time to download these apps onto your phone. I’ve found them incredibly helpful!

NYC Itinerary (5 Days, 4 Nights)

Day 1
Arrive in NYC Uber to Hotel
For this trip, we stayed at the Hotel Riu Plaza New York Times Square (305 W 46th St). The location was superb, the rooms and hotel were clean, and the staff was friendly.
Walk around Times Square and eat at Joe’s Pizza (1435 Broadway, NYC) No Reservation

Day 2
9:00 am Breakfast at La Grande Boucherie (145 W 53rd St) Reservation
Walk through Central Park (See Conservatory Garden and Swedish Cottage)
American Museum of National History
The New York Public Library
Joe’s Home of Soup Dumplings (7 E 48th Street) No Reservation
Maybe Shop 5th Ave
7:00 pm Harry Potter and the Cursed Child (The Lyric 214 W 43 St)

Day 3
10 am Breakfast Serendipity 3 (225 E 60th St) Reservation
Walk High Line (34th St Entry) NOTE: Seasonal Closings
Maybe Chelsea Market, Shopping, Bergdorfs
Juniors Restaurant and Bakery 1515 Broadway W 45th St (No Reservation can eat before or after the show)
7:00 pm Hamilton Richard Rogers Theatre (226 W 46th St)

Day 4
Walking and Shopping on 5th Ave
3:00 pm & Juliet Steven Sondheim Theater (124 W 43rd St)
6:45 pm Bryant Park Grill (25 W 40th Street) Reservation

Day 5
Leave for Wyoming

Possible Extra Activities: Another Broadway show, the Met, create custom perfume at Olfactory NYC.

FAQ about NYC

What should I wear? This is obviously seasonal, but here are my must-haves for NYC: two pairs of fashion sneakers, black pants, an athletic coat, a long cardigan, chunky heels, a comfortable loose dress, solid-colored tops (no graphic t-shirts), a blazer to use as a coat or to dress up an outfit.

What do you wear to a Broadway Show? Error on the side of business casual if you can…but you will see the audience wearing everything from glam cocktail dresses to athleisure wear.

Are there public restrooms? No. We planned our bathroom breaks around where we ate and museums where we knew we would have access to facilities as paying customers.

Is it safe? We never felt unsafe the entire trip, even walking after 11 p.m. We were careful to stay in well-lit neighborhoods where there were lots of people, and we paid attention to our surroundings. There was a reasonable amount of police presence wherever we went, and while you will see homeless people (and street vendors) and likely have them approach you, a firm “no” is all that is needed to discourage them. Carry a small crossbody bag worn tight to your body for your money and phone, and plan to visit the hotel soon after your shopping is done to help prevent someone from trying to take your items from you.

Here is the post from my “Facebook Ask” that has more suggestions for what to do in NYC if you’ve been there before!

Questions or suggestions of your own? Drop them in the comments!

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2 thoughts on "What To Do In NYC If You’ve Been There Before"

  1. Bennie says:

    What a great trip review and tips for those who want to travel to New York city. Sounds like you had an action packed trip and a tons of fun. Now rest up in Wyoming and let us know what your next trip will be.

    1. Prairie Wife says:

      I am so glad you approve, and thanks for your suggestions!

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