Twelve Reasons to Visit New York
By Emma Jones
Published Feb 15th, 2006
New York is a city for all seasons. From enjoying the Summer months sipping ice tea in outdoor cafes to wrapping up to see the winter lights, there is never a 'best time' to visit. Whenever you arrive you will be captivated by the city's vibrancy and energy. New York leaves an imprint on your memory that makes you want to keep returning month after month. Here is a rundown of what's going on in the city throughout the year:
One of the most famous events in New York is the ball drop in Times square which signifies the coming of the new year. The event attracts hundreds of thousands of people who spend hours waiting in the cold in anticipation of those ten momentous seconds.
Ice skating in Central park is one New York activity that shouldn't be missed. The best experience is when it has snowed and the park is turned into a little winter wonderland amongst the New York skyline. The rink is open from November to March.
St Patrick's day is an important celebration for the Irish, and with so many of them in New York it's no wonder the festivities are rife in the city. As well as consuming countless pints of Guiness the highlight is the St Patrick's day parade which draws the crowds to fifth avenue.
When people picture New York they see high rise buildings and busy streets packed with yellow cabs. However, there are many places in the city to leave the crowds behind and enjoy a moment of tranquility. Brooklyn botanical gardens is one of them. Its Cherry blossom festival celebrates the coming of the new season with traditional Japanese food and entertainment.
Everything in New York is bigger and better than anywhere else so it is no wonder that the biggest cycling event in the USA takes place here. Bike New York sees over 30,000 riders set off on a 42 mile journey around the five boroughs.
There are so many great places to eat in New York and with its cosmopolitan population every type of food you can think of is on offer. If you can't afford the high prices set by many of the top restaurants then restaurant week is for you. Twice a year in June and January some of the top restaurants in the offer fixed price three course menus. In 2006 these cost $24.07 for lunch and $35 for dinner.
If you like fireworks then there is nowhere better place to be on July 4th than New York city. Every year Macy's department store sponsors barges along the Hudson river and sets off millions of dollars of fireworks. The best place to view them is along the Brooklyn waterfront where you can see them explode over Manhattan and the Statue of Liberty.
Central Park is a haven in New York, especially in the hot summer months. An additional attraction at this time of the year is the Summer stage. From June-August Central park is filled with free music, theatre and dance. All you have to do is bring the picnic.
September sees the opening of the Broadway season when all the new musicals vie for the public's attention. As part of this the city puts on a big free event in Times square called Broadway on Broadway which showcases songs from the upcoming and classic shows.
On October 31st Greenwich village is overrun with ghosts and ghouls. People put a lot of time and effort into making their costumes for the New York Halloween parade producing some outrageous creations. To take part you must be dressed up but it is just as much fun to watch from the sidelines.
The New York marathon is an international institution attracting top runners from across the world. In the chilly month of November people line the streets across the city to cheer them on. The route runs through New York's five boroughs and finishes up at Central Park's Tavern on the Green.
Christmas is a magical time in New York. The crisp cold winters give the city a traditional seasonal feel and the decorations light up the streets. Most famous is the Christmas tree at Rockefeller centre which has been a tradition in new York for over 70 years. People from all over the world flock to New York for the holiday sales and Christmas lights - and it easy to see why.
Twelve months and twelve reasons to visit New York - it's not like you need one though. Whether you are looking for culture, shopping or nightlife, New York is packed to the brim with everything you could ever want. To New Yorkers their city is the best in the world and after you have experienced it, it is difficult to argue with them.