10 of New York’s most overrated tourist attractions (and what to see instead)

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With iconic landmarks galore, a melting pot of food and culture, and some of the country’s most revered museums, The City That Never Sleeps is on nine out of ten lists. It’s the most visited city in the United States, hosting nearly 60 million faces each year from near and far, each looking for those slices of pizza at 99c (probably).

As a mainstay of popular culture, the aura of the Big Apple continues to grow – and as a result, obnoxious crowds, inflated prices, and clichéd scams, too. Sure, visit New York, but avoid the tourist traps.


ten Times Square

The point is, Times Square is America’s most visited haunt, with enough 330,000 people passing through the crowded and crowded tourist trap intersection daily. Is this obscene popularity a good or a bad thing? Well, it’s both. With such foot traffic, there is never a shortage of local entertainment – street performers, costumed characters, the infamous Naked Cowboy, to name a few – and the atmosphere is always lively – sometimes too much. The crooks are full and it will take you 20 minutes to switch from one side to the other.

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What to see instead: Ditch it completely and head somewhere off Broadway to catch a show, or move west to the High Line.

9 Liberty Island

Located in New York Harbor, the iconic Statue of Liberty is synonymous with American freedom. It’s a symbol of the nation and for this exact reason every Tom, Dick and Harry wants to glimpse the 93m copper statue. In reality, however, half of that 93 meters is attributed to the massive platform below, which means Lady Liberty herself isn’t as impressive as you might think at first glance. Plus, a visit to Liberty Island is expensive and you’ll find yourself walking through the crowds during peak months.

What to see instead: Board the free Staten Island ferry to admire the statue from afar as well as sublime views of the lower Manhattan skyline.

8 Empire State Building

Much like the Statue of Liberty before it, the Empire State Building has the curse of being a national icon. Thanks to its countless appearances in film and pop culture (Sleepless in Seattle, does that tell you?), The building’s reputation has continued to grow. Of course, immense popularity comes with hordes of obnoxious tourists who weld selfies.

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What to see instead: Head to the top of the rock. Not only are the crowds usually smaller, but you can also insert the iconic Empire State into your photos instead of standing on them.

7 Brooklyn Bridge

Connecting New York’s two vibrant neighborhoods, Manhattan and Brooklyn, the beauty of the revered Brooklyn Bridge cannot be disputed. The bridge itself is as scenic as any other (take this, the Golden Gate), while the views of Lower Manhattan are second to none. The main problem, like the city’s other icons, is over-tourism. Thousands of tourists cross the tails of the bridge, often battling with local cyclists for space.

What to see instead: For an equally awe-inspiring view of the skyline without the irritating tour groups, take a stroll over the adjacent Manhattan Bridge.

6 Chelsea Market

Sitting near the southern entrance to the High Line, the infamous Chelsea Market is smack in the middle of a tourist hotspot. While this gets them both off in one afternoon, it also means literally everyone else is sharing the same idea. The market is aesthetic and the food on offer is generally top notch, however, everything is overshadowed by the crowds – especially at lunchtime.

What to see instead: It’s New York! Flea markets or farmers’ markets are never lacking. Stroll to Union Square Green Market or Annex / Hell’s Kitchen Flea Market, to name a few.

5 Williamsburg

This hip Brooklyn suburb has quickly become the new hip neighborhood. However, as soon as it became popular it became overrated. Many restaurants and cafes in the tourist center are going up in price (that doesn’t mean they aren’t impressive yet though), and it’s a bit further out than most people think.

What to see instead: Walk across the Manhattan Bridge (avoiding the subway entirely) and head a little further south to DUMBO. Here, iconic photos of the bridge and brown stones await you

4 Any visit by Big Bus

No matter what major city in the world you find yourself in, it is almost certain that there will be harassing vendors trying to convince you that the best way to see the city is on board a closed, tourist route. often poorly ventilated. -air-conditioned on two floors. Certainly, there is a time and a place for this type of trip, but this place is not New York.

What to see instead: The Big Apple is a metropolis that thrives for anyone who chooses to explore it on foot – turn any corner and you’ll stumble upon something new and interesting.

3 5th Avenue

Unless you have a bank balance that rivals Jeff Bezos’, 5th Avenue isn’t the place for you. Ultra-luxurious boutiques like Tiffany, Louis Vuitton, Bulgari are dotted around the infamous street, each teasing passers-by with their excessive price tags and posh customers.

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What to see instead: If adding to your wardrobe is the point of the game, there are many less unpleasant alternatives. Head to Columbus Circle at the southwest corner of Central Park or stroll through SoHo – you might even spot famous faces.

2 Madame Tussauds wax museum

In the heart of already crowded Times Square, Madame Tussauds New York sees an incredible amount of foot traffic. Inevitably, a number of tourists are sucked in by the goofy wax version of Morgan Freeman, Zac Efron or whoever it is. Sure, it’s cool in the sense of novelty, but Madame Tussauds is all over the world. Why waste your time on something you could do at home?

What to see instead: Literally any other museum. From MET to MOMA, Natural History Museum and Whitney to name a few, there are plenty of museums on offer that are not out of date, overpriced, and replicated in any other major city. .

1 Believe it or not from Ripley!

In the same vein as Madame Tussauds, Ripley’s Believe It or Not! bills itself as one of the best things to do in NYC. However, it’s also one of the best things to do in LA, Baltimore, Toronto, and Niagara – you get the idea. For around US $ 25, travelers can learn some fun facts that can be found in just about any city in the world, or better yet, online.

What to see instead: If you are looking for quirky and quirky museums, the choice of New York is not limited. Choose between the American Gangster Museum, the Sex Museum, and the Salvaged Urban Space Museum.

NEXT: 10 Reasons To Visit New York In Winter

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