If you are coming to New York to visit the House Beautiful’s Kitchen of the Year in NYC’s Rockefeller Center, the week of July 18th, or anytime this summer (the kitchen will be on display through the fall), here are some great sightseeing ideas from your friends at Belgard. After you’ve had a chance to take part in the coinciding food festival, Tastes of Summer, NYC offers numerous options for the art lover (Metropolitan Museum of Art, the MOMA, Guggenheim, the Whitney), the theater-goer (the ever-popular Wicked, 2011 Tony winners The Book of Morman & War Horse, the classic Anything Goes), and the site see-er (the Statue of Liberty, Times Square and the Empire State Building), yet here are some ideas off the beaten track and budget friendly.The Federal Reserve Bank 333 Liberty Street, Lower Manhattan (212) 720-6130 Visit the website. The Fed’s free tour takes you five stories underground into their gold vaults, demystifies how the Bank functions, and lets you test your new knowledge at Fedworks, an interactive, multimedia center. You’ll even pocket some (shredded) money at the tour’s end. There is also a wonderful museum with scheduled lectures on the history of money. Call to make a tour reservation at least a week in advance and don’t be late, as security procedures are lengthy. Mon-Fri, 9:30 am, 10:30 am, 11:30 am, 1:30 pm and 2:30 pm. No charge. Brooklyn Botanic Garden 900 Washington Ave, Brooklyn, NY (718)623-7200 Visit the website Down the street from the Brooklyn Museum of Art (another great visit) is the most popular botanic garden in the city. This 52-acre sanctuary is well worth seeing. Visit its spectacular Cranford Rose Garden, one of the largest and finest in the country; the Shakespeare Garden, an English garden featuring plants mentioned in his writings; a Children’s Garden; the Osborne Garden, a 3-acre formal garden; the Fragrance Garden, designed for the blind but appreciated by all noses; and the Japanese Hill-and-Pond Garden. The renowned C. V. Starr Bonsai Museum is home to the world’s oldest and largest collection of bonsai, while the impressive $2.5-million Steinhardt Conservatory holds the garden’s extensive indoor plant collection. Admission: $8 adults, $4 seniors/students, free for children 11 and under, free to all on Tues, and Sat 10am-noon year-round. Grant’s Tomb Riverside Drive and W. 122nd Street Visit the website Grant’s Tomb, officially designated as the General Grant National Memorial, stands as a tribute to Ulysses S. Grant, the principal author of Union victory during the Civil War and 18th president of the United States. Located in Riverside Park on the upper West Side of Manhattan, this granite and marble monument is the final resting place of President Grant and his wife, Julia Dent Grant. It is also the second largest mausoleum in the Western Hemisphere. Right next door on Riverside Drive, take a tour of the Riverside Church, a fabulous 80 year old cathedral replicating a 13th Century Gothic Cathedral in Chartres, France. Tours available. Free of charge. Coney Island Visit the web site The city getting too hot? Grab your suit and ride out to Coney Island, a New York City neighborhood that features an amusement area that includes 50 or more separate rides and attractions, plus the home of the hot dog! Don’t miss a ride on the famous, old-style roller coaster, The Cyclone, or taking a dip in the ocean. Coney Island is a great way to see another side of the city. Be warned, it can take up to an hour subway ride from Manhattan. Fireworks every Friday at 9:30pm. Central Park Enter from all sides. Use a map to plan your visit. Visit the website With statues galore, miles of walking and biking trails, boat rentals, and more, this centrally located 843 acre park has something for everyone. Whether you stroll pleasurably through the many gardens, tour the Belvedere castle, ride the carousel, take a horse-drawn carriage ride, watch the model boats sail, or people-watch from the Balcony Bridge, you will not be disappointed with a trip to the Park. Always check the weather before embarking – summer storms develop quickly. Children’s Museum of Manhattan 212 W. 83rd St, New York, NY Visit the website The four floors of this museum provide a wide range of activities. City Splash, an outdoor water activity area in what is essentially the back alley of the museum, is filled with learning stations where plastic boats flow down zigzagging pipes and other things. Another floor has Dora the Explorer activities and there are large Playworks and Little West Side areas, with a play fire truck and New York City bus. Admission: $10 children and adults, $7 seniors
Visiting NYC & HB’s Kitchen of the Year
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These are all great attractions to try and see while on my trip to NYC next month. I have been looking at online guides for weeks now and came across a new site called CityMaps. I am definatley going to use it while in the city to find everything. It is so easy to use and very helpful.