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Explore New York: Holidays in the Big Apple

The apple does not get any bigger than New York City. This city is full of flavour and is home to the bright lights of Broadway, the majestic gardens of Central Park, and
some of our favourite and memorable movies and TV shows.

A New York City break is sure to be an unforgettable experience! This bustling East Coast metropolis attracts visitors with beautiful sights and contemporary neighbourhoods. You might already feel a connection to this place but the true magic of this city can only be experienced by taking a trip and indulging all that it has to offer.

Complemented by its bright yellow cabs and towering buildings, a New York city break offers a great escape from our accustomed black cabs and grey skies.
When it comes to things to do, there are plenty of iconic New York activities to put on your checklist. We have compiled a list of the best ones to guide you through this
world-renowned city.

New York City is probably one of the most popular cities in the world. Millions of visitors from all over the world flock to the Big Apple every year. Whether you're experiencing Times Square, Broadway shows, gospel music, Rockefeller Center, the Empire State Building, the Statue of Liberty, or simply shopping on 5th Avenue, New York has tons of activities to offer. But New York is much more than a city of grandiose attractions. This melting pot of cultures makes you feel as if you are traveling the world, all in one city. 

We want to make sure that you don’t break the bank, so we've gathered resources to help you find cheap flights to New York and of course the right hotels and accommodation in a central location. The most spontaneous among you will find a last minute offer for New York every now and then, so you can save a lot. 

Check out our latest travel deals to New York City:

How to get there

The UK to New York is a popular route and has flights every day from London, Manchester, and regularly from Birmingham, Edinburgh and Glasgow. Depending
on your departure airport and itinerary, your flight time might be anywhere between 7 to 10 hours with flight prices fluctuating between £500 and £1,500. Your
arrival airport is usually JFK and your adventure already begins once you enter the magnificent airport. Don’t forget, it will take about 30-35 minutes to drive from the
airport to downtown New York.

Where to stay in New York City

The city has exceptional options for accommodation and considering the cosmopolitan nature of the city it is easy to find the perfect place that best suits your needs and comfort. Ideally, you would want to stay in a central location in Manhattan and here you are spoilt for choice with a variety of hotels including the usual Hilton, Marriott and Sheraton. Pirates have estimated that you will need at least 5 days to adequately explore New York City, so get the calendar out and mark some dates.

When should I visit?

While spring and autumn may be the best time to visit in terms of warm weather, Christmas and New Year's Eve in New York are popular travel times to explore the city when it's covered in snow and illuminated by a million lights. It can get very cold in the early months of the year, so if you fancy a winter break, it's probably best to do so in December. 

New York City is considered to be one of the most popular cities in the world and that's perhaps because many of its endless sights can be visited at almost any time of the year. Click here to see our list of what to do in winter in New York.

Nightlife in New York City

New York City is just as majestic at night as it is during the day, the city’s bright lights will guide you through a variety of fun activities that will make use of every minute of your break. Depending on your taste, a night in New York can start any number of ways.

You can take a bite of the big apple by choosing from a selection of over 18,000 restaurants across the city, from fine dining establishments to fast food joints, you will easily be overwhelmed by choice or you can grab a hotdog on the go and jump straight into the night time adventures. This city is well known for its contemporary street food.

  1. Sing and dance along on Broadway: Join in on the magical atmosphere created by various acts of music, dancing and singing on the famous Broadway. Watch famous live shows such as Moulin Rouge, Chicago, and Beetlejuice or check out one of the famous movie theatres to catch a blockbuster or a timeless classic.
  2. Find your favourite music: Madison Square Garden is every musician’s dream venue. Catch your favourite artists at this venue and many others across the city for an unforgettable concert experience with greats such as Elton John and The Eagles.
  3. Get to the top of the Empire State Bulding: For the best view of the city, head up the Empire State Building and either catch the sunset or watch the bright city lights late at night. The building is one of the signature monuments that this city has to offer

4.  Experience a sporting event: Home to the New York Yankees and Brooklyn Nets, the city is a dream come true for sports lovers. If you would like the opportunity to be in the same room as your favourite athlete then the various sports arenas will be sure to make this happen.

5.  Stroll through the city: The city comes alive in the night time and even though it's dark you will still be able to find someone to guide you through and explain the design and cultural highlights of the city.

6.  Enjoy some of the world's best cocktails: Once you are in the city, the options to quench your thirst are limitless. New York bars and nightclubs are a mixture of character, culture and sophistication, there is something for everyone. High-end nightclubs can be found in Chelsea, the Lower East Side, or the Meatpacking District and the atmosphere in most clubs usually picks up around 11.30pm; ask for a Manhattan cocktail and you should fit right in.

Tips for going out in New York

  • 1. Eat in one of the thousands of restaurants, making sure to book ahead for more popular 
  • 2. Go to a play or musical on Broadway
  • 3. Hit up the movie theaters to see what the latest showings are
  • 4. Head out for drinks at one of the clubs in Chelsea, the Lower East Side, or the Meatpacking District

The most beautiful parks in New York

While on a New York City break, a visit to world-famous Central Park is a must. But what other parks should you try to see during your trip? Let's face it, nothing is nicer than escaping the hectic New York streets for a few hours and enjoying the sunshine in the park. Here are our top picks for the most beautiful parks in New York:

  • Central Park: Coming in at 3.4 square kilometers, it is the green heart of the metropolis and a must-see
  • Marine Park: Located in the south of Brooklyn on Jamaica Bay, this park houses a golf course and marina
  • Greenbelt: Located in Staten Island, it's one of the areas of New York with the largest variety of animal species)
  • Bronx Park: This 290-acre park is located (as the name suggests) in the Bronx, by the Bronx River
  • High Line Park: Located in Manhattan on a discontinued elevated railway line

New York in winter

New York's signature flair cannot be dampened even by the icy cold of winter. The metropolis has a lot to offer, even in the coldest months! Especially in the first weeks of the New Year, the city is cheaper than ever and has a unique charm. It's the New York of the movies: steamy streets, children on sleds in Central Park, and couples ice skating in Rockefeller Plaza. You barely have to wait in line anywhere, even popular spots like the Empire State Building or Top of the Rock. You'll almost have the feeling that you have the city all to yourself. 

Activities for a New York City trip in winter

  • Sledding in Central Park
  • Ice-skating in Rockefeller Plaza
  • See sights like the Empire State Building without the usual crowds
  • Go for a new years eve break in New York and celebrate at the Times Square Ball drop

Looking for more city break ideas? Browse through our latest deals to exciting cities: