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Author: Meghan Palmer
Last updated: 14 March 2019

Oh, New York City - a place that is as overwhelming as it is charming. Whether you’re planning your first or your fiftieth visit, finding the best things to do in NYC is never an easy task. You’ve been doing your fair share of Google searching, you’ve scanned TripAdvisor for insights and reviews, you’ve even resorted to asking your distant cousin for recommendations. But the questions remains - how can you experience New York City like a local, hitting all the must-see spots, without getting sucked into every tourist trap around the corner?

In this ongoing series, we’ll highlight a handful of the best places to play, sip, taste and explore in the city that never sleeps. Because locals do it better.

First up, five of the  coolest things to see + do:

  • NEW YORK PUBLIC LIBRARY - Turn off your phone, grab a latte and head into one of the most iconic, beautiful libraries you’ll ever see
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One of NYC's most ornate public spaces 😍 . . . . . . . . . . . #nypl #thenewyorkpubliclibrary #newyorker #newyork #nyc #manhattan #america #Canadian #torontonian #traveldiaries #travel #traveller #libraries #publiclibrary #interiordesign #architecture

A post shared by Alisha Zuberi (@alisha.zuberi) on Mar 12, 2019 at 7:40am PDT


  •  ZAHA HADID BUILDING - Where architecture meets art, be sure to stop at this stunning new spot during your walk on the High Line
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Stunning Zaha Hadid designed apartments. Sad that this was her last design. #ustrip #instagood #architecture

A post shared by Christo Hall (@christo.j.hall) on Jun 19, 2018 at 8:19am PDT


  • TENEMENT MUSEUM - Often overlooked, this museum gives patrons a deep dive into what life was like for immigrants in NYC back in the 1800’s  
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The kitchen of my (American Girl doll’s) dreams

A post shared by Katharine Ermis (@kshilcutt) on Mar 10, 2019 at 11:32am PDT


  • CENTRAL PARK - From canoeing to street performers to monks trying to sell you bracelets, there’s always something new to see in Central Park
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Central Park, NYC ☀️🌳 📸 @nycityfeed MOD | @enric_torres Follow us on Facebook! [LINK IN BIO]

A post shared by NEW YORK LOVERS ♡ (@newyorkloversnyl) on Mar 12, 2019 at 5:23am PDT


  • DIZZY'S JAZZ CLUB - Live music + incredible views of Central Park = a must see for tourist and locals alike
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@aaronjdiehl's reflection in the window at #Dizzys Club with Broadway down below. Mr. Diehl joined Chuck Israels Nextet on Wednesday night.⁣ ⁣ (Photo by Lawrence Sumulong for JALC)

A post shared by Jazz at Lincoln Center (@jazzdotorg) on Mar 8, 2019 at 3:00pm PST

Stay tuned for more suggestions, by locals, for modern travellers.