By Emily Hein
Yes, you read that title correctly – and no, we’re not crazy! Sometimes, being a tourist can actually be a good thing. We’re not asking you to wear matching t-shirts with your friends and take one of those crazy bus tours, but sometimes it’s easy to forget that the “touristy” elements of a city are what that city is actually famous for. Travelle has mastered the art of being a tourist without going anywhere near the incredibly cheesy attractions. We’re using New York as an example in this article, but the information within it can be applied to practically any city. This is your ultimate guide to New York, and we promise it’s not too corny.
Hit up All of the Touristy Dessert Places
We promise, they’re definitely all worth it. First of all, you’ve probably heard from any and every New Yorker (and several visitors) that Levain Bakery is home to the greatest cookies you will ever have. This hole-in-the-wall bakery is sure to have lines out the door every day, but we promise it’s 100% worth it, especially for the chocolate chip walnut cookie. If you’re not full after that, you’ll have to check out Momofuku Milk Bar. Momofuku is home to the craziest desserts – from cereal milk ice cream, to birthday cake truffles, to a pie that is so addicting that it is literally called crack pie. If that’s not enough dessert for you, you’ll have to check out Baked by Melissa. These iconic mini cupcakes are shipped nationwide, but there’s nothing like picking up those fresh cupcakes from a number of NYC locations.
See a Broadway Show
This is probably our most “touristy” suggestion on the list, but it’s also an extremely important one. There’s a reason why Broadway is arguably the most famous element to New York. There’s shows appropriate to people of all ages, and everyone on those stages is immensely talented. Even though you probably won’t get tickets to Hamilton any time soon, there’s plenty of shows out there that are worth the touristy trip. Check out TodayTix for discounted tickets that you can purchase day of, or hit up the giant TKTS steps right in the middle of Times Square. Be sure to hang out by the stage door after if you want to meet the cast! You won’t want to miss out on this experience.
Brunch, and Then Brunch Again
Here at Travelle, we are huge believers in the fact that brunch is the greatest meal of the day. The Big Apple is loaded with fun brunch places – providing you with bottomless mimosas or the greatest avocado toast you’ll ever have. If you’re feeling basic (but it’s worth it for the taste factor), hit up Two Hands Cafe for an amazing acai bowl or avocado toast. If you’re into American-Mediterranean (and honestly, even if you’re not), you’ll have to check out Jack’s Wife Freda. From their Green Shakshuka to their Rosewater Waffle, there’s something here to please everyone. You’ll also have to check out Sarabeth’s – which might be NYC’s most famous brunch spot. From Lemon and Ricotta Pancakes to Apple Cinnamon French Toast, Sarabeth’s twists on your classic favorites are sure to please.
Go to Central Park
You may be wondering why a giant, touristy, green field in the middle of the city is high on our list. Well, it’s because Central Park is so much more than a giant, touristy, green field. Central Park is the best place to just hang out with a friend, people watch from the giant rocks, or take a nice walk to escape the hustle and bustle of city life. No matter where you end up in Central Park, you’re bound to have a gorgeous view. If you’re lucky, you’ll even get to witness a proposal or two – this is the most popular NYC spot for them! This is definitely the best place to wind down, especially after eating all that brunch and dessert!
Shop on 5th Avenue
If you’re into shopping, you’ll have the time of your life. It is literally impossible to be bored on 5th Avenue, considering there’s a new store to go into everywhere you look. Whether you’re actually shopping, or giving your wallet a break and window shopping, you’re sure to be totally intrigued. Plus, amidst all of those designers, there are still some stores for a younger audience and a smaller price range. So if you’re travelling with kids on travelling on a budget, you can still explore this famous avenue without feeling too guilty. The windows are extra fun around the holidays, but shopping on 5th Avenue is seriously entertaining any of time year.
So, the next time you’re heading out on a semi-touristy trip, we hope your tourist activities come with an embrace instead of embarrassment. We hope you enjoy these locations as much as we do, and be sure to check out our Instagram for more tips and tricks!