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Prospect Park | © Garry Osgood, Wikipedia Commons
Prospect Park | © Garry Osgood, Wikipedia Commons
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The Best Alternatives To NYC's Most Touristic Attractions

Picture of Dana deLaski
Updated: 9 February 2017
NYC is one of the most touristy cities on Earth, home to some of the world’s most popular attractions – and while they’re famous for good reasons, the city has so much more to offer. Many incredible gems are hidden in the shadows of the mega-monuments, so if you’ve already seen the classics or are looking for an alternative experience, read our list of other options for NYC’s favorite tourist sites.
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If you like Top Of The Rock – Try Northern Territory

Top of The Rock allows for one of the most iconic views of the city. Look in all directions from its observation deck, and no one can deny it’s truly a jaw-dropping sight. But because it’s in the middle of Midtown, Manhattan, you can’t see the whole city at once. For that, you’ve gotta head to Brooklyn, with one of the best views around offered from rooftop bar Northern Territory. Here you can also enjoy a beer with your view – which you definitely can’t get at Top of The Rock.

Northern Territory, 12 Franklin St, Brooklyn, NY, USA


A photo posted by Emiliano Ponzi (@emilianoponzi) on

If you like Broadway Musicals – Try Off or or Off-Off Broadway

There’s nothing like seeing a Broadway Musical, and it should definitely be on your bucket list. But Broadway can be expensive; the shows can be long, and it can be tough to come by a reasonable ticket. Avoid the hassle and see something innovative, experimental, and potentially a bit out-there with NYC’s Off-Broadway and Off-Off Broadway shows, a smaller-scale and more accessible experience for natives and tourists alike.

If you like Lombardi's Pizza - Try Rubirosa

Bar, Italian, $$$
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Mmm... pizza night
Mmm... pizza night | © jeffreyw/Flickr

If you like Lombardi’s Pizza – Try Rubirosa

Lombardi’s Pizza is famous and historic – it’s arguably one of the first pizzerias in NYC – but its popularity means long lines and possible inconsistencies in the pies. While it’s great, it’s certainly not the only place in NYC to eat good pizza. We suggest heading just around the corner to Rubirosa – a true gem of a restaurant that serves a similar thin crust-style pizza.

Rubirosa Pizza, 235 Mulberry St, New York, NY, USA +1 212 965 0500

Ain't no party like a @rubirosa_nyc party cuz a #Rubirosa party has #pizza !!!! 🎉🎊

A photo posted by Rubirosa Pizza & Ristorante (@rubirosa_nyc) on

More Info
Mon - Wed:
11:30 am - 11:00 pm
Thu - Sat:
11:30 am - 12:00 am
11:30 am - 11:00 pm

If you like Central Park – Try Prospect Park

Prospect Park is Brooklyn’s answer to Central Park, and if you’re in Brooklyn or Lower Manhattan, it may even be easier to get to. Though it’s not quite as big as Central Park and doesn’t have all the attractions, it does have Brooklyn Botanic Gardens and The Brooklyn Museum – two sites definitely worth the trek on their own. Plus, of course, the park is beautiful.

Brooklyn Botanic Garden: 990 Washington Ave, Brooklyn, NY, USA

Brooklyn Museum: 200 Eastern Pkwy, Brooklyn, NY, USA

Today is the first day of autumn—what do you love about fall? #autumnalequinox

A photo posted by Brooklyn Botanic Garden (@brooklynbotanic) on

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If you like Cronuts – Try Ice and Vice

The cronut from Dominique Ansel Bakery attracted a ridiculous amount of attention when it first came out, and lines for this hybrid croissant/donut were legendary. Though the wait is now shorter, there are tons of new crazy treats to try elsewhere. So if you’re looking for something sweet try Ice and Vice in Chinatown, a new ice cream shop specializing in unique flavors and epic sundaes – including ones with ice cream sandwiches on top of the cones. Sometimes, these sandwiches use donuts as the ‘bread.’

Ice and Vice, 221 E Broadway, New York, NY, USA +1 646 678 3687

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If you like McSorley’s Ale House – Try Top Hops Craft Beer

McSoreley’s Ale House is famous for being the oldest Irish pub in New York City, and honestly, there’s no substitute for it. The ambiance can’t be found anywhere else and the crowd is eclectic. But for a different sort of one-of-a-kind beer bar, try Top Hops Craft Beer on the Lower East Side. Top Hops is a beer store/bar where you grab a beer from the fridge filled with 600 different beers, have the bartender open it, and enjoy. It’s a cheap way to sample tons of different beers – a rarity in NYC.

Top Hops Craft Beer, 94 Orchard St, New York, NY, USA +1 212 254 4677

Yes I'm at a bar!!! This is dope!!!!

A photo posted by 🇩🇴 #fitness Motivation (@ozfitness23) on

If you like The Whitney Museum of Modern Art - Try the ICP Museum

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If you like The Whitney Museum of Modern Art – Try the ICP Museum

The Whitney Museum is a fantastic museum with modern American art in a unique, relatively small space. Among their exhibits they often show a lot of photography, and if you love photography (but have already been to The Whitney), try the new International Center of Photography (ICP) museum that just opened its new premises in the summer of 2016. It’s completely dedicated to photography (plus video and other forms of new visual media), and the space – like the Whitney – is small and manageable.

ICP, 250 Bowery, New York, NY, USA +1 212 857 0000

More Info
10:00 am - 6:00 pm
10:00 am - 6:00 pm
10:00 am - 6:00 pm
10:00 am - 9:00 pm
10:00 am - 6:00 pm
10:00 am - 6:00 pm