New York is simply one of those places that I consider home. Not the type of home your mother lives in and where you are being served hot chicken soup and hugs but more the type of home when you first live by yourself and the world is big and exciting and a little bit lonely and frightening too. that kind of home.

That said, I’ve been coming back for many years and I love seeing it change, meeting interesting people and finding my place in the madness.

Speaking of my place, I find that New York is a really good place to be your own best company. So, if you plan on coming to New York by yourself, whether it is to live here or to visit, don’t sweat if your on your own, I have some great things for you to do which you’ll probably enjoy even more if you do them on your own!

1. Take a bike tour through Harlem.

In a place where everything has been did and done and nothing feels like an insider tip anymore, i can 100% vouch for the joy of booking a bike tour through Harlem. This part of Manhattan has a rich history worth exploring from someone who grew up here, someone like Maxine from I bike Harlem. Get ready to dive in deep, discovering the beauty and the incredible stories beneath the surface and enjoy a lovely, guided bike tour in the process.

2. Explore cute shops in the East Village and the Lower East Side.

One of my favorite things to do on a lazy day in New York is heading to Manhattan from Brooklyn, where I usually stay and getting off at 1Ave on the L train. From there I simply stroll down 1 Avenue towards the Lower East Side and on the way I’ll head into all the vintage shops, grab a novelty coffee, check out some plants and eventually marvel at the cute (though pricey) boutiques around the Lower East Side. If I’m meeting a friend in the neighborhood I will almost always stop by at Welcome to the Johnsons, an awesome little dive bar with great prices, a pool table and a genuine low-brow vibe which is not a given when in Manhattan.

3. Take in Williamsburg

Speaking of shopping and strolling – doing so in Williamsburg is another favorite activity of mine when visiting the big apple. Each year I come here there is more to see and discover and putting it all into one paragraph is completely impossible.

4. Go for a run (or a stroll) through Prospect or Central Park.

Did I say run? I meant grab a coffee to go from Starbucks and find a nice-looking spot on the lawn to read a book. But all jokes aside, both Prospect Park in Brooklyn and Central Park are great places to lounge away for a few hours, whether you go to do sports, relax, or people watch. I’ve also been known to come here with my camera and keep an eye open for interesting photo opportunities – squirrels count!

5. Visit Museums.

Even if you identify as someone who doesn’t go to Museums, chances are you’ll enjoy the ones New York has to offer. I love the exhibition at the MOMA (Metropolitan Museum of Art) but also hugely enjoyed the Whitney Museum. It’s so easy to get lost in these incredible art pieces and before you know it 3 hours are gone.

 

6. Set up office at a rooftop bar.

If you read this chances are you are a digital native and love your laptop so much you wouldn’t dream of traveling without it. If this is you and you know you’ll need a day or two to go over some work related things you will be pleased to know that the options for a cute office for a day (or an hour) are endless. One of my favorite places to go and work while sipping on some delicious hot drinks is the Indigo Hotel. There is a large rooftop terrace here too which you can easily set up your little work station on and be inspired by the view overlooking central Manhattan.

7. Walk the highline.

Before I first went top walk the highline I was always struggling to understand just what it is. An elevated pathway that doubles as a garden seemed like a pretty funky idea, even for New York standards. And yet, that is exactly what it is. I highly recommend bringing some time, maybe a book, take in the many stunning views, take photos and finish your stroll at Chelsea Market where you’ll find some rather delicious pastries and more.

8. Watch a movie.

I love going to the movies and I actually prefer doing it by myself! Watching a film with a friend is fun but also slightly distracting. I like to immerse myself fully in the movie experience and what better way to do so, then by doing it all alone! If you’re new to this you may feel awkward, but I got in on this living in Paris where going to the movies alone is definitely a thing. I like the Nighthawk Cinema in Williamsburg but will also be happy to visit one of the bigger ones in Manhattan such as Metrograph or Regal Essex in the East Village.

9. Learn a new skill.

Another experience I booked through Airbnb was a pottery class at someone’s workshop in Bushwick. It was so authentic and fun and affordable, too! I got to take home the bowl I made here which naturally was a wonderful souvenir in a world where you can buy anything and anywhere.

10. Join a walking tour.

Walking tours have long made a name for themselves in pretty much every major city around the world. In New York there naturally are a wealth of tours you can join which are not only a great way to discover the city through the eyes of a local, there are also a golden opportunity to make friends, if you happen to travel alone. Airbnb has some great tours checking out neighborhoods, street art or foodie experiences – just pick something that spiked your interest! Low on cash? Look into joining a free walking tour which allows you to pay what you can afford (you’re mostly just tipping your guide).

 

 

 

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