Top 10 Things to Do Outside Morningside Heights

Morningside Heights is a great area, but New York City is a big place and there are so many awesome things to do outside of our little neighborhood. And, being caught up with either a new environment (first-years) or the familiarity of an old one (returning students!), it can be easy to forget all the amazing things throughout the city available. Here’s a list to get you started on exploring or revisiting some of the most iconic parts of the city.

1) Broadway
New York City has some of the best theater in the world so take advantage of it! Many shows offer same day discounted tickets for students. The Barnard Student Life office on the 3rd floor of the Diana and TIC on the main floor of Lerner sell advance discounted tickets.

2) Metropolitan Museum of Art
A first rate art museum that has everything from ancient Egyptian art to the famed Costume Institute to the newly renovated Islamic Art wing. With the current semester’s ID sticker you’ll get in for free! Give yourself plenty of time because you could spend hours here.

3) Central Park
The most famous of the Manhattan parks, Central Park stretches from 110th street all the way down to 59th. From the Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis Reservoir to the Boat Basin to the Central Park Zoo there is easily four years worth of things to see here.

4) The Highline
This old elevated train track used to be a neighborhood eyesore. Now it’s an innovative park high above lower Manhattan. A fairly new addition to the cityscape, it has quickly become a must-see and has transformed the surrounding neighborhood.

5) Union Square
This area is a haven for book lovers, foodies, and shoppers. The massive Barnes & Noble has famous authors cycling through all the time and The Strand has three huge floors full of new and used books, as well as a famous rare book room. Foodies love the delicious restaurants and the huge farmer’s market. Shoppers have nearby 5th Avenue and SoHo, plus the city’s only Nordstrom Rack.

The lion statues in front of the NYPL —
also check out the lectures and discussion of NYPL Live

6) The Brooklyn Bridge
A New York City landmark, you can either walk or bike across the Bridge. The view is unparalleled and the Brooklyn side gives you a whole cool neighborhood to explore.

7) Lincoln Center
Lincoln Center is a hub for the performing arts. The Metropolitan Opera, New York City Ballet, American Ballet, New York Philharmonic, Lincoln Center Theatre, Julliard and others all call this complex home. As of late it has also become the home of New York Fashion Week. Even if you aren’t seeing a performance the grand white structures and message-displaying stairs are worth a visit in and of themselves.

8) Fifth Avenue
The part of Fifth Avenue that stretches from 59th street to roughly 50th is home to some of the world’s most luxurious stores. Pretend to be Audrey Hepburn at Tiffany and Co.’s massive flagship or admire Bergdorf’s beautiful window displays. A stroll down the street, especially around the holidays is the definition of window shopping.

9) The New York Public Library
Go down 5th Avenue to 42nd Street and you’ll find the main branch of the New York Public Library. The façade, guarded by two gigantic lion statues, is iconic. The main reading room is beautiful (and quiet) place to study and adjacent Bryant Park has great outdoor seating in nice weather, and an ice skating rink come winter.

10) Museum of Natural History
Nestled near Central Park on the Upper West Side the Museum of Natural History is a fascinating place to learn about the world around us. Highlights include dinosaur skeletons, the hall on ocean life, the hall of human origins and the Hayden Planetarium.

Images courtesy of and nyc-architecture


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