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10 Out-of-the-Box NYC Experiences – #NotATourist

Tuesday, June 9, 2015
10 Out-of-the-Box NYC Experiences – #NotATouristLike0

 

 As part of the #NotATourist Campaign with Visa, we will be sharing stories, articles and tips on destinations across the world.

The NotATourist campaign is designed to inspire travel beyond the regular tourist sites to savour truly local experiences that are the essence of making a destination unique. The campaign is there to help travellers explore destinations as local inhabitants – not as tourists – by providing local knowledge using crowdsourced digital content that is showcased on Visa’s NotATourist website and the Visa Explore mobile app. NotATourist also offers travellers a platform to describe the many facets of a destination by sharing their own images, videos, posts and comments, making them ambassadors or tour guides of their favourite travel spots.

To participate in #NotATourist all you need to do is use the hashtag and tag @visamiddleeast for us to find you and we will share your stories and images.

The campaign invites users to share content on social media using the hashtag ‘#NotATourist’ and will give participants a chance to win a weekly prize of US$500 for submitting pictures, videos or tips on how to find ‘secret’ and little-known spots or experiences in key travel destinations. In August, Visa will announce two Ultimate #NotATourist content contributors who will each be awarded a travel package worth US$5000.

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10 Out-of-the-Box NYC Experiences – Not A Tourist

There seems to be “something for everyone” in this city and each person I speak to seems to have a different idea of what makes the city special to him or her.

As the saying goes, “the sum of a whole is a result of its parts” and this reminds me of New York. The way the city breathes life is what makes it so special to its residents and visitors alike.

Next time you go, visit some of the cities most unique, fun and out of the box destinations. Here are a few of our favourite things to do in The Big Apple!

Love,

Travel Junkie Diary

 

 1. Visit Momofuku Milk Bar

1. Momofuku

This small eatery has some of the best ice cream, cookies and cake I’ve ever experienced. Think cereal milk ice cream, birthday cake truffles and crack pie (yes, it is as addicting as it sounds!). Visit any one of their locations spread across the city.

 2. Experience “Sleep No More”

2. Sleep No More

This interactive play, loosely based on Shakespeare’s Macbeth, takes you through 7 floors of the abandoned McKittrick hotel in Chelsea. Follow the actors and create your own story line as you interpret different scenes in different ways. Downright spooky, but we love it.

 3. Go to “The Top of the Rock”

Top of the rock

Far better than the top of the Empire State Building, the views of Central Park and beyond from 70 floors up the top of 30 Rockefeller Plaza are not to be missed.

 4. Traverse the Highline

4. Highline

The Highline is an elevated park on a disused New York Central Railroad that is home to some of the most beautiful flora, public art, and architecture in the city. Walking on the High Line will allow you to not only catch some great city views, but also, learn about the interaction of art and nature through exhibitions.

 5. Shop at the Union Square Green-market

5 Union Square Market

This fantastic collection of 140 regional farmers, bakers and fishers set up at Union Square on certain days of the week to the delight of 60,000 dedicated shoppers. From fruits and vegetables to pickles, jams, meats and artisanal cheeses, this world famous community market deserves a visit on a sunny afternoon. Think Dubai’s ‘Ripe Market’, on steroids!

 6.Take a photojournalist tour with Jonathan Auch

6. Photo tour

A freelance photographer working the streets of New York, Jonathan Auch brings his version of the city to budding urban photographers through his street photo tours. Bring along your digital camera and walking shoes as you embark on the most unique journey through both the gritty and glitzy faces of the city.

 7. Read a book in Sheep Meadow

7. Sheep Meadow

This wide section in Central Park is the sight of many individuals, from sunbathers to kite enthusiasts, and my personal favourite, those stretched out with a good book. This lawn was originally grazed by sheep until 1934, thus the name stuck. Try this place for a relaxing area with a gorgeous view of the New York skyline. Dining tip: The famous ‘Tavern on the Green’ restaurant was actually created from the old sheep’s home!

 8. Stay at The Nomad Hotel

8. Nomad Hotel

Housed in a turn-of-the-century Beaux-Arts building, the hotel has been fully restored to its original grandeur by renowned French designer Jacques Garcia. In fact, the design of the hotel itself was inspired by the Parisian apartment of Garcia’s youth. With custom designed furnishings and original artwork adorning each room, this unique hotel is one of a kind.

 9. Murder at The Met Scavenger Hunt

9. Murder at the met
Described as a ‘walking tour spiked with caffeine’, this scavenger hunt runs through the famed Metropolitan Museum of Art. What better way to experience culture than a Da Vinci Code-style trail of clues connected with secrets in works of art alongside a sordid tale or greed, lust, revenge and pride? The organizers, Watson Adventures, offer a number of frantic scavenger hunts that provide fun for the whole family

10. Explore the city like a local, on a bike

10. Bike Tour
Get Up and Ride offer wonderful public tours through the dedicated cycle lanes of Brooklyn and Manhattan and also allow you to plan a completely customized tour on two wheels with them as well. Tours include stops at the best pizza place in the world, rooftop farms, underground speakeasies, artisan roasteries and more!

 

Share content on social media using the hashtag ‘#NotATourist’ and will give participants a chance to win a weekly prize of US$500 for submitting pictures, videos or tips on how to find ‘secret’ and little-known spots or experiences in key travel destinations. In August, Visa will announce two Ultimate #NotATourist content contributors who will each be awarded a travel package worth US$5000.

Travel Junkie Diary

A bohemian traveler

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  • Someone told me that I’m still glowing from my recent @travelwithtjd arctic trip. 
It put a huge smile on my face... because It’s true... I still feel it, that happiness and high... but I was also told that I wear my heart on my sleeve so, my ‘glow’ is inevitable. 
We fall in love with the person we become when we travel to places that sets your soul on fire... And you would do anything to hold on to it. 
Heading back to Lebanon for my last dose of winter & snowboarding with family & friends before heading back to the salty waters and flip flops. 
Have a beautiful week everyone and thank you for following along 💫
  • I’m not sure why I love this first picture a lot. It’s one of those things you can’t explain. 
I’ve always looked at rear view mirrors as walking away from something (Not necessarily bad) towards something greater that might or might not work and it’s somewhat comforting. 
I’m someone who loves their own space and comfortable on my own, most of the time at least. 
I’ve had times where things didn’t always go my way instantly but I knew it eventually will fall into place, and, it always does. 
I might have fallen flat on my face sometimes, and have underestimated my own capabilities in some moments... but, I’m more confident of my choices than I was when I first started my journey and what made me even braver, was my willingness to live up to these moments because in the end, it was all worth it. 
#TravelwithTJD @travelwithtjd @hertz.uae
  • We all crave isolation from time to time to get disconnected from whatever it is that keeps us awake at night. 
To just go, and say nothing and think nothing. 
We hope in the end that whatever you love always loves you back. The sami believes that when you are in nature, you are never afraid of being alone. 
Returning from a ‘letting go’ place such as the wilderness in Finland affects me emotionally and sets me off balance a little, because my happiness was always about following my heart, and so, I try to find my way back from a place of reality that is even far better than my dreams. #TravelwithTJD @travelwithtjd
  • What an incredible emotional 10 days this has been! I’ve met the funniest, warmest and the most caring, thoughtful people on this @travelwithtjd and it’s so difficult say goodbye. We have created our own reality - pushed boundaries - fell in love with life - and set ourselves free from all judgments on ourselves. I’ll post more on stories and photos as soon as I land back home 💫
Thank you @hertz.uae for having such great service during our trip!
  • On this @travelwithtjd trip, I’m surrounded with people that makes me forget where my phone is, makes me laugh till my stomach hurts, help each other when you can’t feel your hands from the cold and makes my heart so full and filled with love, and we all know how much I love love ☺️. I’m back in Finland, creating our own realities with some of the most incredible people I have ever met. #travelwithtjd
  • From Tromso, to Dubai for a couple of days and now back to Finland for our next @travelwithtjd - I had few friends over at home yesterday for lunch @theitalianwayuae to say goodbye, leaving for almost 13 days but never thought leaving my little puppy was going to be this difficult!
  • On our last @travelwithtjd to Norway, we left @radissonblutromso to set sail in the Arctic in search of the Northern Lights and to experience sailing and sleeping out in the wilderness. 
4 nights and we were faced with an incredible storm, high winds, lots of rain and clouds but it didn’t stop some of us from dancing, fishing and sailing. That’s the real Arctic weather!
It was a mind blowing adventure and testing each one’s capabilities of being comfortable in uncomfortable situations. 
That’s what an adventure is really all about. Especially in the beautiful arctic. ❤️
  • I honestly didn’t know how to caption this story because there is a thousand words I want to say and a thousand reasons not to. 
This image speaks to me and I’ve imagined it and orchestrated in my head a thousand times and @dennisstever helped me capture it perfectly. 
It’s a liberating feeling to be able to stand at the edge with a cape with extreme wind and rain in your face and feel like a superhero. 
We are our own heroes. Not because we are about to change the world....But to change inside of us who struggle to make one small difference in their lives for themselves every day. 
I’m the type of girl who will have tears of joy or sadness running down my face and still insist that everything is fine. My glory isn’t just in the achievements, but in the sacrifices I have made to save myself. This is what this story image represents to me. 
#TravelwithTJD @travelwithtjd
My beautiful cape is from @costureroreal
  • We are spoon fed with quotes on social media on the fake realm of positivity and sometime too much of it. 
The truth is, why should we avoid difficult situations? Why should we not get heartbroken? 
To be surrounded by ONLY positive people and those who ONLY inspire you is unrealistic and a recipe for not growing or truly finding out who you are. 
Because you will come across people in your life that can suck out the energy out of you and you will only learn to block them and manage your reaction when you have had a share of experiences. 
It takes real courage to stop pretending you have it all together and accept the challenges and grow. 
If we can allow ourselves to face it; we will experience life to its fullest. 
Being human means facing suffering. There is no light without dark, no joy without sadness. 
If we don’t experience all feelings, we have no basis for comparison. So accept the good and the bad without any judgement, know it’s human to feel both. 
Take your time to feel everything, but once you are done, get up, grow, break your own boundaries and not what others expects of you, and motivate yourself by learning to face and appreciating the challenges that comes your way. Too much positivity could also be lethal and not real. It’s how you learn to deal with it. 
At least that’s what I have learned, and I have felt my personal growth during those years. ❤️
  • I’ll always search for those breathless moments where I will no longer be sure if I am dreaming or awake. 
We drove in total 8 hours that day from Tromso to Senja along the coastline. I kept asking @dennisstever to pull over every 2 minutes so I can shoot but luckily he didn’t, otherwise we would have never reached here at sunset. 
Scandinavia is one of the most beautiful places I have ever been to and that’s why I keep coming back and leave with a full heart... until it’s time to come back again. 
Follow our @travelwithtjd Journey and be part of our polar journeys. ❤️
  • One of the most liberating feeling in the world is being able to come back here over and over again and feeling so comfortable and happy. I took this yesterday while flying over tromso and although it was just taken with a phone camera, I think it still looks magical. I woke up at 4am today, excited to start the day, getting ready for the team of @travelwithtjd to start arriving and we set sail tomorrow in the Arctic wilderness. #travelwithtjd
  • The heaviness of the moon this month... so I say this: It’s ok if you lose yourself, I’ll be right here to help you find your way back 💫