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Best NYC Staycation Ideas

Discover something new, have fun
and treat yourself in your home city

New York City panorama with Central Park in the middle.

When you live in NYC you take so much for granted. But if you choose to spend
your staycation in the city, you will find out how much more there is to NY.

We all like to travel and use our vacation days in the best possible way, but sometimes going far away is just not feasible for various reasons. If you’re living in New York City, exciting staycation adventures can be found much closer than you might think. There is so much to see, do and experience when you venture out of your neighborhood. There’s no real need to travel far from home if you just want to treat yourself, have fun, and discover something new, so let’s uncover some of the best NYC staycation ideas.

Explore Little Italy

If you’re looking for an authentic Italian experience on your staycation, head to the Bronx’s Arthur Avenue. This Italian-American neighborhood has streets lined with bakeries and world-class restaurants where you can try delicious Italian specialties, including the finest meats, the tastiest pasta, and pizza, as well as exquisite sweets. There are various inviting food shops and specialty stores across the neighborhood, offering items you would hardly find elsewhere. Many generations of Italian families gave this area a welcoming and unique character. Through delicious cuisine, you’ll be able to learn more about Italian culture and traditions.

Enjoy surfing at Rockaway Beach

During the warmer months, Rockaway Beach in Queens is a top destination for NYC staycation with various entertainment options. You can swap the city for sand and sea and enjoy sunbathing, swimming and surfing. Rockaway Beach has a few playgrounds and plenty of outdoor activities for all generations. Whether you love skateboarding, volleyball, or basketball, this is an ideal place for you. You’ll find spots for fishing as well.

Explore Staten Island’s attractions

Staten Island is considered NYC’s most underappreciated borough, even though it boasts miles of beautiful sandy beaches and gorgeous woods. There are many reasons to explore this borough, and for the best experience, you can even book a guided tour. So, you won’t have to worry about transportation, and you’ll have detailed information on all you could wish for. The best Staten Island’s attractions to visit on your staycation are:

  • Historic Richmond Town with restored houses dating from the 17th century 
  • Fort Wadsworth - It was protecting NYC from the incursions of enemy ships. 
  • The Jacques Marchais Museum of Tibetan Art - a piece of Himalayas in NYC. You can have a tai-chi class, a guided meditation, and admire art and cultural artifacts. 
  • Snug Harbor Cultural Center and Botanical Garden – one of the underrated places in NYC, which -you can visit for contemplation and Zen. 

There is also Staten Island Zoo, National Lighthouse Museum, Staten Island Museum, and many other attractions worth visiting.

Person touching iPad on a world map near black hat and a camera.

With some planning, your NYC staycation can be a sum of many interesting
experiences and places you haven't noticed before.

Take a scenic horseback trail ride on Long Island

If you want to experience an unforgettable scenic horseback trail ride, head to Hempstead Lake State Park. This 775-acre oasis contains amazing natural wonders such as rolling hills, 5 serene lakes, and sandy beaches. You can book an hour-long ride, and the experienced instructors from the New York Equestrian Center will help you saddle the horse and give all the required information. The terrain is wonderful, and if you’re lucky enough, you’ll be able to spot the turtles, eagles, and bunnies enjoying nature just like you decided to do.

Admire the nature at New York Botanical Garden

Renew your relationship with nature and choose an amazing outdoor adventure. At the New York Botanical Garden, you can have a tropical getaway and enjoy 250 acres of flowers and plants from exotic lands. If you are new in this amazing city, as a newcomer, you’ll love this area where you can always find peace and relaxation. There are also many exhibitions and events available, depending on when you want to visit.

You can also travel through time by taking a stroll in the Thain Family Forest. This old woodland is home to historical Native American hunting trails and native plants. It has a unique beauty and ecological importance.

Take a sailing class on the Hudson River

You can get a magnificent view of the downtown skyline from the water on the Hudson River. The summer staycation is the perfect time to book a sailing class. You’ll learn the basics of maritime education, how to predict weather patterns, how to control the sails, and much more as you cruise the beautiful Hudson River for two hours. This is your unique opportunity for growth and discovery. If you like it, you can take additional classes as well.

A sailboat on the Hudson River.

If you haven't sailed before and would like to try your hand at it,
as part of your NYC staycation, book a sailing class.

Fly above the city on a helicopter tour

If you miss boarding a flight during your staycation, booking a helicopter tour may be the right thing to do. Raise above one of the biggest cities in the world and enjoying a panoramic view of all the highlights. The landmarks you can see are:

  • The Brooklyn Bridge 
  • World Trade Center 
  • Manhattan’s skyscrapers 
  • The Statue of Liberty 
  • Empire State 
  • Central Park, etc. 

The flights usually last from 12 to 40 minutes depending on the package you choose. Those who recently browsed bestmovers.nyc and found a moving crew to help them become NYC residents say that this helicopter tour is one of the most epic experiences they’ve ever had. It’s the ultimate opportunity to get to know the city from a unique perspective, take amazing photos, and make memories that will last a lifetime.

NYC skyscrapers at sunset.

Photos enable us to see much more of a place than being down on the ground.
But if you take a helicopter tour, you'll be able to get a bird-eye view of NYC.

Enjoy a spa day

Once you visit plenty of NYC attractions and indulge in many adventures and experiences, you’ll need some relaxation during your NYC staycation. That’s why you should choose a spa and a special refreshing treatment for yourself. During this staycation time, you should look and feel at your best, and spa and massage will help you in achieving that.

Final thoughts

Everybody deserves some time off. Luckily for those living in NYC, the city provides a ton of ways to escape it all. You can have an unforgettable NYC staycation without booking a presidential suite in one of the luxury hotels - if you have a good plan and enough information. Just get into the vacation mindset and explore your city as a tourist and from a different perspective. You’ll discover many hidden gems and have a great, unforgettable time!

Photos used: by Pexels

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