A Guide to Exploring New York City

September 20, 2016

Share on FacebookTweet about this on TwitterGoogle+Email to someone

Confession – I’m officially in denial that summer is over. If my next round of travel is any indication – I refuse to say goodbye to warm sunny weather.


But if you’ve ever experienced fall in New York City it’s one of the best times of the year. The city gets its bustle back, the weather is perfect for boots and cozy sweaters and there’s something about the season that makes you want to get out and explore.

If you’ve been following me on Instagram, I’ve been looking at New York through a different lens lately. All too often it’s easy to get lost in the street shuffle of local craft coffee shops, favorite bookstores and the mastery of NYC subways. Don’t get me wrong it’s a life I fully subscribe to, but sometimes it’s worth seeing the sights and reminding yourself of the storybook so many that live here and those who visit, fell in love with.


I’ve spent the past several weekends playing tourist with CityPASS in New York City thanks to my friends at Reserve Direct, a great resource for destination planning and booking, created by those that also also love to travel. From the Statue of Liberty to the Top of the Rock, Empire State Building and Natural History Museum, my CityPASS has been the ultimate passport allowing me to take in multiple sites with priority entry (and for nearly ½ the price!).

So to share the wealth and knowledge I’m breaking down the best of New York’s top attractions and sharing a few tips and tricks so whether a local or a visitor you can see the best of NYC with your own CityPASS – (pst! Read through to win your own!)


Step 1 Purchase your tickets: Log on to Reserve New York City and locate CityPASS. Purchasing tickets is easy and cost effective. If you’re visiting you can even couple your sightseeing with a place to stay. Print and present your voucher at your first site (just look for the CityPASS logo as you approach the ticket counter) and receive your CityPASS booklet. It’s  good for 9 days after redemption and includes 6 attractions chosen from the list below:

  • Empire State Building Experience
  • American Museum of Natural History
  • The Metropolitan Museum of Art
  • Top of the Rock™ Observation Deck OR Guggenheim Museum
  • Statue of Liberty & Ellis Island OR Circle Line Sightseeing Cruises
  • 9/11 Memorial and Museum OR Intrepid Sea, Air and Space Museum

FIRST STOP: Empire State Building

Known for its downtown views and iconic observation deck, this is a not-to-be missed after hours spot. With amazing views of New York City in lights, plan to take in this view at night for a 360 nearly aerial shot of the city below.

Processed with VSCO with f2 preset

SECOND STOP: American Museum of Natural History

Plan for a weekday and engineer your tour backwards starting from the top and working your way down. By visiting the higher floors first you’ll be able to snag some stranger free photos of the dinosaurs and let the crowds at the premiere levels dissipate. Getting weary?  CityPASS also includes a complimentary planetarium show!

THIRD STOP: The Metropolitan Museum of Art

What I love about The Met is that it doesn’t matter the time of day – nothing says luxe more than a stroll through the halls of more than 20,000 works of art. Should you need to, break this up into 2 days. You’ll need it if you want to see it all and CityPASS allows for re-admission.

FOURTH STOP: Top of the Rock™ Observation Deck

Views from the Top of the Rock are my favorite! With 1 WTC and the Empire State Building to the South and an unobstructed Central Park view to the north, it’s a prime picture spot! Get to this one first thing in the morning – no lines, limited crowds and the perfect morning light!



FIFTH STOP: Circle Line Sightseeing Cruises

I’ve always wanted to see New York from the water with a full tour. The beauty of the Circle Line is you get to see the Statue of Liberty, downtown and the east side all in a matter of hours! Don’t have too much time? Ride “The Beast,” a 30-minute high speed boat tour. Even better the NYC sunset cruise!




SIXTH STOP: 9/11 Memorial and Museum

One of New York’s prized possessions, the 9/11 memorial is one of the most memorable sites in town. CityPASS makes enjoying this landmark possible on your visit to NYC with limited wait time. As one of the most trafficked sites, it’s a not-to-be missed attraction.


Here’s the good news! I’m partnering with Reserve Direct and CityPASS to offer 15 readers a chance to win a $100 credit towards the purchase of your own CityPASS experience. Simply share a photo on Instagram showing how you #DiscoverMore tagging your favorite NYC locations with @ReserveDirect and #DiscoverMoreNYC!

Here’s to a fall dedicated to exploration!

This post was created in partnership with Reserve Direct, all opinions, tips and touristy tricks are my own!


Share on FacebookTweet about this on TwitterGoogle+Email to someone