10 days in New York is the perfect time to become acclimatized with the city and its people. It also allows you to take your time while visiting the attractions around central and greater New York, including Lady Liberty and the Empire State Building, as well as Brooklyn and Coney Island.
While we all have our individual tastes and preferences, below is a guide on how to spend 10 days in the Big Apple. You may choose to pack more in during the day, or perhaps take less out, but it is simply a general guide to follow whilst on holidays in New York City. One tip, though, do as the locals do, and you will have a blast of a time!
10 Day 1 - Take it easy
You may be saying ‘well, hang on…I want to explore all that New York has to offer’ and yes, you would be right. BUT, if you have 10 days, take the first day to ease yourself in to the city. If you have just jumped off a big flight, you will likely be jetlagged so just take a relaxing stroll through Midtown, Times Square and Central Park, grab a famous New York bagel… life is not so hard. It does not just have to be a stroll, you can suss activities out that catch your eye and perhaps jot them down on a list and go back to them throughout your 10 days in the Big Apple. And sort out a weekly subway/public transport pass, it’ll save you stopping at the station every time you take the subway.
9 Day 2 – Head Downtown
After your morning bagel and coffee, catch the subway to Battery Park where you will hop on the ferry to Liberty and Ellis Island. If you’re on a budget, not to worry, the Staten Island is a free service for you to enjoy. Make sure you capture the New York skyline from the water, as well as the obligatory selfie with Lady Liberty. Explore Ellis island, walk about and take it all in, and then head back to Battery Park to check out the Wolf of Wall Street and the 9/11 memorial.
8 Day 3 – Madison Square & Union Square
Head down to Madison Square where you can easily spend the whole day. Shop ‘till you drop in the morning and then head down to the world-renowned ‘Shake Shack’ for some lunch. After this delicious meal, walking around in the park is what you’ll want to do to, and make sure to keep a close eye out for the squirrels roaming around!
For those basketball fans, go and check out the home of the New York Knicks, Madison Square Garden. Then, explore Union Square for some even more shopping… it just never stops in the Big Apple!
7 Day 4 – Brooklyn
It is near impossible to discover Brooklyn in one day, and once you are there, you’ll agree. First off, head to the Brooklyn Botanic Garden and enter an experience of tranquillity within the busy city around you, and because there are gardens for all ages, everyone will be happy! If you have kids, then your next stop could well be the Brooklyn Children’s Museum, perhaps one of the most interactive children’s museums going around, and for the adults, the Brooklyn Museum (different museum) offers a more in-depth look at the history of New York and the United States.
6 Day 5 – More museums and tours
If you’re into finding out the history behind places you visit, the American Museum of Natural History is for you. The museum is so good, in fact, that you will not regret dragging the kids along. Next, it is time for a tour of the famous Lincoln Center, and see where some of the world’s top performances are held.
To cap off a great day, and no doubt a big day of eating, hire a bike and take a relaxing ride through Central Park…you may also want to consider hopping on a guided tour to find out a bit more history to the Park!
5 Day 6 – Fun Parks and Ferries
Take the subway to Coney Island, on New York City’s Southern Coast and hang out at Luna Park. Let the kids run free and take a timeout for a few hours, kid-free. Be careful, though, as you slowly zone back in and realize the kids are free in a fun park, you might just see them on Deno’s Wonder Wheel. Afterwards, jump on a Circle Line ferry which will take you to past all the attractions to see around Coney Island as well as down the Hudson River.
4 Day 7 – Empire State Building and more museums
As avid travelers, there is no doubt that there is a little feeling inside of us that gets excited when we see a plane. Immerse yourself and let your aviation geek come to life in the Air and Space Museum. Here, you will learn the history behind the US aviation programs, both military and commercial. Even if you aren’t a fan of aviation, the history behind the ships and aircraft the US used during the World Wars is something to behold. From the museum, head to the Empire State Building, jump in the elevator and hop-off on the 86th floor. This floor is the observation deck and boy, what a view. Words cannot describe the experience, you simply have to see for yourself, and who would have thought it only gets better at night?!
3 Day 8 – Times Square and ‘The Ride’
Experience the old-school New York theatre whilst being taken around to the city’s many attractions! ‘The Ride’ combines one of New York City’s greatest pastimes and its many attractions so you can kill two birds with one stone!
Afterwards, you’ll want to head to Madame Tussauds Wax Museum in Times Square, it’s so good you will have to remember the people aren’t real! The exploring doesn’t stop here, though. Discover one of New York’s most interesting Borough’s, with a Greenwich Village walking tour.
2 Day 9 – Hop-on Hop-off Bus
It would be a wise decision to purchase hop-on hop-off bus tickets for your first or last day in New York, however it is recommended on one of the last so that you can see the city for one last time, perhaps learn a thing or two from the audio-commentary on board, but most importantly, visit some attractions you may have missed. Some will say it is a lazy way to get around the city, others will say it is a smart way… and kudos to these people! Hop off the bus when something catches your eye, and hop back on when you are ready to head to your next point of interest. Even if you have seen everything you want to see, just sit back and take in the hustle and bustle of the Big Apple.
1 Day 10 – Coming to an end
Your last day in New York does not have to be a sad one by any means. You have seen all that you want to see, and now that you know what the locals do during their day, why not be a New Yorker for a few hours. Start your day like the first; with a bagel and coffee, then proceed to pushing your way through the thousands of people on your way to do some last minute shopping at Brookfield Place before finally taking a stroll along the shores of the Hudson, finishing your, and indeed your New York experience, with a traditional high tea at Bluebird London, just next to Central Park.