New York is the city that everyone knows. Yet it’s not just the city that is so well known, its landmarks and sights are ranked as some of the most visited in the world year after year. Here are just a few of the best sights you might not know in Manhattan, Brooklyn, the Bronx and Queens. The best part about them being that they often stay off the lists others always populate.
- Roosevelt Island – The easiest method of arrival onto this isle in the East River is via the city’s only commuter tram, an attraction in and of itself, and some argue it’s not under the radar. It’s certainly less visited than Governors or Staten Island, yet it does bare a similarity to the latter because it is mostly residential. Still, with the ruins of the Smallpox Hospital and a Gothic-style lighthouse as well as fancy new Four Freedoms Park, there are plenty of reasons to make the trek to Roosevelt.
- Socrates Sculpture Park – This 4.5-acre park on the river in the borough of Queens was created in 1986. It is a beautiful outdoor space where free yoga classes occur, a Greenmarket sells fresh produce and large-scale art exhibits are visible year-round.
- Green-Wood Cemetery – It is the final resting place of notable New Yorkers like Leonard Bernstein and William “Boss” Tweed. In the 1860s it actually rivaled Niagara Falls as the most popular tourist attraction in the state of New York. It also includes the highest point in Brooklyn, Battle Hill, from which far-off parts of Brooklyn and Manhattan are visible.
- City Reliquary Museum – Perhaps the quirkiest museum in the five boroughs, this Brooklyn storefront houses a collection of oddities and trinkets that are enough to entertain anyone for a full afternoon.
- 5 Pointz – Rumor has it, its days are numbered but, on the website, it’s still business as usual. 5 Pointz is a former factory complex that is now known the world over for attracting graffiti and street artists to decorate some 200,000-square-feet of colorful walls.
- Queens Museum of Art – Situated on the same grounds where two World’s Fairs took place, this lesser-known art museum is just as worthy of a visit as the Metropolitan Museum of Art and the Brooklyn Museum. While there, don’t miss the Panorama of the City of New York. This scale model of the five boroughs is 9,335-square-feet and was originally created for the 1964 exposition.
- Hall of Fame for Great Americans – It was the first “Hall of Fame” in the United States and from its location at Bronx Community College, it affords panoramic views of The Cloisters in Fort Tryon Park and beyond to the Palisades. Currently 98 bronze busts are on display, representing most of the 102 honorees elected to the Hall of Fame since 1900.
- Prospect Park – The 585 acres which make up the park were designed by the very same landscape architects who created Central Park in Manhattan: Frederick Law Olmsted and Calvert Vaux. Along its border runs another attraction that is most beautiful in the spring and summer, the Brooklyn Botanic Garden.
- Brooklyn Heights Promenade – Occasionally someone will say, tongue-in-cheek, that the best thing about Brooklyn is the view of Manhattan. At the Promenade, it’s easy to understand why. It is a wonderful place to watch the sun set and to capture photographs of the Manhattan skyline, it’s also decidedly less crowded than the Brooklyn Bridge which is where most people go for both of the aforementioned activities.
Where is your favorite place in New York City?