Skip to Content

23 Best Things to do Alone in NYC

Visiting New York City is on just about everybody’s bucket list, and for good reason. The Big Apple is one of the most vibrant and diverse cities in North America, yet it still maintains an unmistakable culture and personality all its own – making it an ideal spot for solo travel and a place where you can really enjoy some of the very best things to do alone in NYC.

However, it’s your first time visiting NYC alone, you’ll probably feeling a bit overwhelmed as you try and uncover all of the top things to do by yourself in NYC.

Well, never fear because this 30+ year local has got you covered and knows all about some of the best places to go by yourself in NYC.

So, from the Top of the Rock at Rockefeller Center all the way down to the shops at Chelsea Market, here are some of most the quintessential New York locations that absolutely shouldn’t be missed on your next visit to this amazing city.

Therefore, step away from the guide book and get ready to dig into this monumental local’s guide on all of the best best things to do alone in New York City.

This post may contain affiliate links. Please see my disclosure for more information. As an Amazon Associate, I earn a small commission from qualifying purchases.

If you’re booking a trip right now then I IMPLORE you to get travel insurance – even if it’s not from me.

After all, this past year has been a wild ride and I don’t want you to lose money because government regulations have changed. 

Truth be told though, I’ve never traveled without travel insurance and don’t think you should either – especialy since I think we’ve all had plans drastically change because of the pandemic. 

Therefore, find an insurance agency that covers travel changes related to COVID-19, like my two all-time faves World Nomads and Safety Wing. You can also read more about which policy is right for you in my full review here.

Contents show

Where to Stay When Traveling Alone to NYC

Stunning room in one of the best places to stay when backpacking NYC on a budget.

Not sure where to stay while experiencing all of the very best things to do alone in NYC? If so then this section is for you!

Because I’m about to share all of my insider tips on all of the very best hotels for solo travelers to stay in New York City.

You know, safe, well-located, reasonably priced accommodations that you can feel REALLY good about staying in. And these places are:

  • The Leo House (Chelsea) – Operated by the Catholic Sisters of St. Agnes, this hotel itself doesn’t have any religious affiliations and features well-priced rooms (think around $100 per night) with shared showers in Chelsea. It’s nothing fancy but your stay will be comfortable since accommodations include in-room safes, a 24-hour front desk, cable TV, acces to an on-site garden, and a $9 breakfast buffet with amazing fresh baked goods.
  • The Jane (West Village) – Tracing its origins to 1908, this sleek, boutique hotel is within walking distance of the Highline. So, enjoy cozy, well- priced, nautical-inspired rooms that feature WIFI, flat-screen TVs, DVD players, free bike rentals, iPod docks, and shared bathrooms (upgraded rooms have private bathrooms). You can also relax in their Victorian-style bar or try some French-Moroccan cuisine at the on-site restaurant.
  • The Library Hotel (Midtown East) – Perfect for all my fellow book lovers out there, each room at the Library Hotel is designed around the Dewey Decimal system and centrally located in midtown So, enjoy bookish decor and plush amenities before making use of their fabulous rooftop lounge. Complimentary breakfast is also included with your stay, as is wine and cheese in the evenings, and all-day refreshments inside their on-site reading rooms.
  • The Ace Hotel (Nomad) – Easily my favorite hotel on this list, the Ace Hotel is a mere 2-minute walk from the subway and requires keycard access to use the elevator (safety first). Rooms are also vintage in style and feature minibars, Wifi, and flat-screen TVs. They also have Stumptown Coffee in the lobby and features wine on tap in the bar, making it a total no-brainer that you MUST stay here now.

Best Things to do Alone in NYC

1. The Metropolitan Museum of Art (aka the MET)

The exterior of the MET (metropolitan museum of art). One of the many cool museums in NYC.

One of the best things to do alone in NYC is experience the suave sophistication of the Metropolitan Museum of Art.

In fact, this incredible museum occupies a full city block and sits right across the street from Central Park – taking up a solid 1,000 feet or prime real estate along 5th Avenue.

It’s also known for being one of the world’s most well-known and influential art galleries and also plays host the iconic, annual Met Gala.

Yup, this is one of the world’s most infamous fashion events and is so exclusive that guests are handpicked by Anna Wintour herself.

Therefore, no one else is allowed to attend this extravaganza inside the Anna Wintour Costume Center Wing. (Guests are allowed to visit the wing during regular hours though.)

So, stop by to marvel at fine pieces of art from every civilization and every culture imaginable, all of which are regularly on display at the Met.

Pro Tip: Click here to get more tips on how to enjoy the MET like a real local.

Address: 1000 5th Avenue, New York, New York (Between East 80th and East 84th Street).

Hours: Open Sunday through Thursday from 10:00 am to 5:30 pm and Friday and Saturday from 10:00 am to 9:00 pm.

Price: Pay what you wish for NJ, NY, and PA residents with a valid form of ID. Everyone else will have to pay $25 for adults, $17 for seniors, and $12 for students (free children under 12.).

How to Get There: Take the 4,5, or 6 train to the 86th Street station.

2. Take a Stroll Through Central Park

Skyline along Central Park on the Upper East Side and where you'll find some of the best things to do on the Upper East Side NYC.

Central Park really has to be seen to be believed. Plus, it’s widely considered to be a masterpiece of modern landscape architecture since just about every other major park in the United States was based on its design, simply by virtue of it being a huge oasis of greenery within the middle of Manhattan.

Therefore, it was an easy addition to this list of the best things to do alone in NYC since this features some of the most fun things to do in NYC for first time visitors.

For starters, it’s filled to the brim with historical monuments and statues – no less than 70 in total. There’s also a vast number of unique playgrounds, gorgeous scenery, incredible fountains, stunning lakes, ethereal bridges, and a diverse array of events that are held here annually.

Not to mention, it’s just an all around great place to bring someone special, particularly if you happen to be in NYC around Valentine’s Day.

Address: Central Park, New York, New York

Hours: Open daily from 6:00 am to 1:00 am.

Price: Free

How to Get There: Take the R/W train to 59th and 5th or the A/C to Columbus Circle and walk from there.

3. Take the Ferry to See the Statue of Liberty and Liberty Island

View of the Statue of Liberty, one of the best things to do alone in NYC.

If you’re a fan of architecture, New York City has some incredible buildings and monuments for you to check out.

That includes the Statue of Liberty, which for many is the singular most important symbol of freedom in the western world.

It’s hard to deny that the sight of the flame in her hand held high against the sunrise on the New York skyline is powerful.

And when you enjoy one of the best things to do alone in NYC by taking the ferry to Liberty Island you’ll get the chance to see the Statue of Liberty museum and can even go inside the statue, climb up to the top, and see New York city from Lady Liberty’s vantage point.

Pro Tip: If you’re looking for things to do by yourself in NYC but are on a bit of a budget, you can enjoy stellar views of the Statue of Liberty for FREE from the Staten Island Ferry.

Address: Castle Clinton National Monument, Battery Park – Liberty Island, New York, NY 10004

Hours: Open daily from 8:30 am to 3:30 pm.

Price: Tickets start at $23.50 for adults, $18.00 for seniors, and $12.00 for children.

How to Get There: Take the 1 train to South Ferry station or the 4/5 train to Bowling Green station and walk from there.

4. See Van Gogh’s Starry Night at MOMA – The Museum of Modern Art

The entrance to MOMA, the Museum of Modern Art. One of the cool museums in NYC.

Home to Vincent Van Gogh’s “The Starry Night” along with numerous other modern classics, the MoMA is widely regarded as one of the finest contemporary art museums in the world and is easily one of the best things to do alone in NYC.

The museum also isn’t overly pricey, but if you’re on a tight budget, it’s free on Friday evenings from 5:30 pm to 9:00 pm – although you’ll likely have to contend with a larger than normal crowd.

You’ll also want to pay a visit to the gift shop, as it is truly amazing and has some of the best souvenirs from NYC.

Pro Tip: Skip the crowds and stop by MOMA PS1 in Queens or the MOMA design store in lower Manhattan.

Address: 11 W 53rd St, New York, NY 10019

Hours: Open daily from 10:30 am to 5:30 pm.

Price: Tickets are $25 for adults, $18 for seniors (65+) and visitors with disabilities, $14 for students, and free for children 16 and under.

How to Get There: Take the N, R, or W train to 57th Street and 7th Avenue and walk from there.

5. Relive your Favorite scene from King Kong at the Empire State Building

Empire State building at sunset

For almost 40 years, the Empire State Building was the tallest building in the entire world. And while it’s no longer the world’s tallest building, it’s still one of the city’s most popular attractions.

In fact, this iconic structure receives more than 4 million visitors annually and is one of the best things to do alone in NYC since any of its three observatories offer views unlike any you’ve ever seen.

Plus, with recent expansions that include an additional observatory on the 86th floor, an interactive King Kong exhibit illustrating the building’s involvement in one of the classic feature’s most famous sequences, and a fully immersive tour detailing how the building was built and how it’s been renovated and updated throughout the years, now is the perfect time to visit the Empire State Building.

Just do yourself a favor and check the weather before you visit since clouds can obstruct the view from the top.

Pro Tip: This is one of the best things to do by yourself in NYC that is best on Thursdays evenings when your views from the 86th floor are accompanied by live saxophone music.

Address: 20 W 34th St, New York, NY 10001

Hours: Open daily from 12:00 pm to 9:00 pm.

Price: Tickets are typically $45.73 per person.

How to Get There: Take the N, R, or W train to 34th street and Herald Square and walk from there.

6. Try to spot a celebrity in Times Square

The bright lights and marquee signs for Broadway shoes in Times Square.

Times Square is probably one of the most recognizable intersections on the planet if only because for more than a century it’s been home to the New Year’s Eve ball – an immortal, live, televised event that is shown all around the world.

The ads that blare out from the iconic TV screens here are also so bright that it can sometimes be hard to tell whether it’s day or night.

But, if you do decide to try one of the best things to alone in NYC, you’ll find larger-than-life versions of some of your favorite fast-food restaurants and stores, plus all kinds of niche attractions, including a wax museum.

Costumed street performers also here abound, and you might even run into a celebrity or two. Just know that if you do pose for pictures with costumed characters you are expected to pay them.

Also, keep a close eye on your belongings while you’re here since pickpockets are known to frequent this tourist hot spot.

Pro Tip: Go early in the morning to beat the crowds and for the best photo ops. You can also stop by the TKTS booth for discount Broadway tickets, and grab a drink at the R Lounge in the Renaissance Times Square Hotel for one of the best views in NYC.

Address: Manhattan, NY 10036 (just type “Times Square” into your phone)

Hours: Open all day, everyday.

Price: Free

How to Get There: You can pretty much take just about any subway train here.

7. Walk or ride a bike across the Brooklyn Bridge

The Brooklyn Bridge

Looking for some fun, totally free things to do alone in NYC? If so then look no further than the Brooklyn Bridge.

Not only is it one of the best free things to do in NYC but the Brooklyn Bridge is yet another one of NYC’s most recognizable sights, having been featured in dozens of famous movies and television shows over the years (and also getting blown up a lot – good thing they’re only movies!).

If you want truly breathtaking photos to commemorate your trip, the Brooklyn Bridge is one of the best places to visit in NYC.

You can also check out this guide to walking the Brooklyn Bridge for even more insider tips too!

Pro Tip: Go at dawn to avoid the crowds and when the light is perfect for snapping photos. Also, wear comfy shoes, stay out of the bike lane (they show no mercy), and walk from Brooklyn to Manhattan for the best views.

Address: Brooklyn Bridge, New York, NY 10038, United States

Hours: Open all day, everyday.

Price: Free

How to Get There: Take the A or C train to High Street/Brooklyn Bridge station and walk from there.

8. Look up and see the spiral at the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum

An aerial view of the main concourse in the Guggenheim.

Easily one of the coolest museums in NYC, the floors of the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum are designed in such a way that if you look up from the bottom floor, it looks like one continuous swirl trending inward.

It’s also just an all around amazing building that was designed by famed American architect Frank Lloyd Wright.

In fact, construction began in 1943 and wasn’t finished until 6 months after his death in 1959. Therefore, this is yet another one of NYC’s most iconic locations and a definite must-see if you’re looking for one of the best things to do alone in NYC.

Just don’t leave without seeing impressionist, post-impressionist, and modern art pieces from masters like Degas, Picasso, Pollock, Rousseau, Gaugin, Seurat, and more.

Pro Tip: Grab a coffee at Cafe 3 and admire the sweeping views of Central Park. Also visit on Saturdays between 4:00 pm and 6:00 pm for “pay what you wish” prices.

Address: 1071 5th Ave, New York, NY 10128

Hours: Open Thursday through Monday from 11:00 am to 6:00 pm.

Price: Tickets are $25 for adults, $18 for students and seniors 65+ and visitors with disabilities, and free for members/kids 12 and under (avoid lines and get your tickets in advance now).

How to Get There: Take the 4,5,6 or Q train to 86th street and walk from there.

9. Stay in luxury and comfort at The High Line Hotel

New York’s High Line Hotel has won multiple travel awards, many of which are quite recent. It’s also centrally located in the gallery district in Chelsea, making it an ideal home base for anyone looking to explore the quieter, more artsy side of NYC.

However, it’s still centrally located enough to give guests the full, “Big Apple” experience so that they can enjoy all of the best things to do alone in NYC.

And while rooms at this sleek, 4-star boutique hotel are a bit on the pricy side, it’s worth it since the establishment sits inside a historic red-brick building from 1865 and features original pine floors and satined glass windows throughout.

Guests will also love vintage-inspired, high-end rooms that come with modern decor, flat-screen TVs, and wood floors.

You also get access to loaner bikes, can relax in their garden courtyard, and can enjoy a cup of coffee at the trendy shop in the lobby.

Address: 180 10th Ave, New York, NY 10011

Hours: 24-hour front desk.

Price: Around $200 per night.

How to Get There: Take the C/E train to 23rd Street and walk from there.

10. Enjoy incredible dioramas of the American Museum of Natural History

Exterior of the Museum of Natural History, one of the best things to do by yourself in NYC.

If the very thought of dioramas gives you nightmarish flashbacks to your high school years, maybe the American Museum of Natural History isn’t right for you.

However, if you’re a visual learner and someone who’s fascinated by plant and animal life as well as evolution, then it’s one of the best things to do alone in NYC.

After all, within these hallow halls you’ll find life-sized whales, displays full of precious gems, and an amazing planetarium.

They’ve also got some very real and very cool dinosaur skeletons on display, including a mighty tyrannosaurus rex that anyone and everyone will love.

Address: 200 Central Park West, New York, NY 10024-5102

Hours: Open Wednesday through Sunday from 10:00 am to 5:30 pm.

Price: Tickets are $28 for adults, $22.50 for seniors (60+) and students with a valid ID (discount tickets are available for residents of NY, NJ, and CT with valid ID), and $16.50 for children between 3 and 12,

How to Get There: Take the B (weekdays only) or C train to 81st Street station and walk to the museum there. You can also take the 1 train to Broadway and West 79th Street and walk from there.

11. Stand in Awe of Grand Central

Stunning interior of Grand Central Terminal. One of the best things to do alone in NYC.

Grand Central Terminal is full of small eccentricities that are emblematic of New York’s vibrant personality.

For starters, the beautiful mural of the constellations painted across the ceiling is backwards since the original designer misinterpreted the way the architects would be analyzing it during construction.
Then there’s the whisper tunnel, where you can stand in one corner, whisper something, and a person standing in an opposite corner, 30 yards away, will be able to hear you.

And that’s not to mention all of the wonderful shops and restaurants you’ll find within. It’s also the busiest train station in the world, with more than 250,000 visitors daily, and is not to be missed when looking for the best things to do alone in NYC.

Address: 89 E 42nd St, New York, NY 10017

Hours: Open daily from 5:15 am to 2:00 am.

Price: Free

How to Get There: You can take the 4,5,6,7, or S train to Grand Central.

12. Pay Your Respects at the 9/11 Memorial & Museum

The 9/11 Memorial

The September 11th attack was one of the worst things to happen to the United States in recent memory. However, it also showed the world how resilient New Yorkers are.

And since that tragic day, Ground Zero has been cleaned up and transformed into a heartbreaking but beautiful memorial and museum.

So, if you’re looking for some of the best things to do in NYC alone, be sure to stop by, remember all those who lost their lives that tragic day, and learn everything you can about what really happened on 9/11 and the harrowing days and weeks that followed.

Pro Tip: Remember, you do NOT need tickets to see the Memorial but you DO need tickets to see the museum. And these should be purchased in advance.

Address: 180 Greenwich St, New York, NY 10007

Hours: The 9/11 Memorial is currently open daily from 10:00 am to 5:00 pm while the museum is open Thursday through Monday from 10:00 am to 5:00 pm.

Price: Museum tickets are $26 for adults, $20 for young adults (13-17)/seniors (65+)/college students, and $18 for US veterans. Be sure to skip the line and book your tickets now!

How to Get there: Take the 1 to Rector Street, the 2/3 train to Park Place, or the 4/5 to Wall Street station and walk from there.

13. Visit the observatory at One World Trade Center

Sunset around the world trade center

Speaking of resilience, just down the block from where the original twin towers stood, a brand new tower was officially opened in 2014.

It is now called One World Trade Center, althouygh many still refer to it by its unofficial nickname, “Freedom Tower.”

Then, a year later (in 2015), an observatory was opened to the public on the 102nd floor, which includes some highly exclusive and intimate gourmet dining options.

So, if you’re traveling to NYC alone it doesn’t get much more awesome than treating yourself to some fine dining on top of the World Trade Center.

You’ll want to book well in advance though, but the good news is the menu items are relatively affordable.

Address: 285 Fulton St, New York, NY 10006, United States

Hours: Open daily from 8:00 am to 9:00 pm with the last admission at 8:15 pm (hours may change so check their website for more details).

Price: Tickets start at $38 per person,

How to Get There: Take the 1,2, or 3 train to Chambers Street and walk to One World Observatory from there.

14. Tour the General Assembly room at the United Nations Headquarters

If you’ve ever wanted to get a look inside the United Nations General Assembly room, you actually can, albeit not while it’s in session.

Because the United Nations Headquarters in NYC offers tours of its entire complex with highly educated and informative guides from all around the world.

So, if you’re interested in seeing and learning more about this amazing center of international diplomacy, then be sure to check it out.

Pro Tip: Please note they are currently only offering virtual tours at this time.

Address: 46th St & 1st Ave, New York, NY 10017

Hours: Open Monday through Friday from 9:00 am to 5:00 pm.

Price: Tickets are $12.00 for general admission and $10 for children/seniors.

How to Get There: Take the 7, S, or 4/5/6 train to Grand Central and walk from there.

15. Take a walk through the New York Botanical Garden

The beautiful water lily pond you'll find at the New York Botanical Gardens in the Bronx.

At 250 acres, the New York Botanical Garden is the largest city garden in the entire United States.

So, be sure to stop by and enjoy one of the best things to do by yourself in NYC since this oasis of greenery features over a million different types of flowers, ferns, and trees.

Not only is it a serene place to take a walk but it also houses a world-class science and research program that includes specimens collected by some of history’s greatest scientists – including Charles Darwin.

Address: 2900 Southern Blvd, The Bronx, NY 10458

Hours: Open Tuesday through Sunday from 10:00 am to 6:00 pm; Closed on Mondays

Price: $22 per person

How to get there: Take a Metro North Harlem or New Haven line train to Fordham (there’s also a botanical gardens stop too) and walk from there.

16. Catch a Broadway Show

One of the fun things to do in nyc at night is go to Times Square and see a broadway show.

In 1928, NYC’s Broadway Theatre (then known as B.S. Moss’s Colony Theatre) held a premiere for a cartoon film called “Steamboat Willie”.

And if that name doesn’t sound familiar to you, this one might: it was produced by a man named Walt Disney and its main character was none other than Mickie Mouse in his very first film appearance.

Since then, the Broadway Theatre – and Broadway in general- has hosted timeless, iconic musicals and theatrical productions that are easily one of the best things to do in NYC for your birthday.

In fact, this theater’s incredible list of productions includes classics like West Side Story, The Wiz, and Oklahoma, just to name a few.

So, If you’re planning a trip to NYC then be sure to add a Broadway show to your list of the best things to do alone in NYC.

Pro Tip: You should NEVER pay full price for tickets to a Broadway show and can use my article to learn how to get 50%+ off of Broadway tickets you buy.

17. See the Knicks shoot hoops at Madison Square Garden

Exterior of Madison Square Garden where some of the best NYC anthems are performed.

For sports fans, Madison Square Garden is definitely one of the best sports attractions to visit in NYC.

After all, it’s the official home of the New York Rangers (hockey team) and the New York Knicks (basketball team) and is one of the largest sporting arenas in the entire world.

Additionally, Madison Square Garden plays host to a wide variety of concerts, college sporting events, and family events, including a monthly concert from none other than the Piano Man himself, Billy Joel.

Pro Tip: You can also take a 75-minute tour of the facility and see Elton’s John’s autographed setlist and marvel at the liturgy book used during a papal mass held here by Pope Francis.

Address: 4 Pennsylvania Plaza, New York, NY 10001

Hours: Varies by the event.

Price: Varies by the event.

How to Get There: Take the 1/2/3 train to 34th Street/Penn Station and walk from there.

18. Make your way to the Top of The Rock at Rockefeller Plaza

View of the binoculars and the Empire State Building in the background at the Top of the Rock, one of the best things to do by yourself in NYC.

As you might have guessed by now, New York City is full of huge skyscrapers and stunning sky-high observatories.

And guess what? Rockefeller Plaza has its very own. However, what separates the Top of the Rock from the others is the sheer variety of exhibits you’ll pass through on the way up, which include:

  • Joie Chandelier – A huge chandelier designed to look like 30 Rock and that is made entirely out of Swarovski crystals.
  • Mezzanine Exhibit – An interactive, self-guided experience that will take you through the planning, creation, and history of Rockefeller Center and NBC.
  • Beam Walk – An interactive recreation of the classic photo of construction workers sitting and eating lunch high above Manhattan on one of the building’s original beams. Hope you’re not afraid of heights!
  • Radiance Wall – A gorgeous full wall exhibit made by Swarovski consisting of glass panels, crystal clusters, blown glass, fiber-optic lighting, and tiny crystal animal figurines.
  • 70th Floor Open Air Roof Deck – Once you finally reach the top, you’ll be rewarded with the gorgeous view from a roof with absolutely no glass or metal enclosures. Don’t forget to bring a camera, because you’ll want to take photos while you’re up here!

Pro Tip: Remember to always check the weather since views can easily be obstructed by clouds. Many of the top observatories in NYC will also gladly reschedule your tickets at no extra fee. Also, avoid lines and get your tickets now!

Address: 30 Rockefeller Plaza, New York, NY 10112

Hours: Open daily from 10:00 am to 10:00 pm (try to visit around sunset).

Price: General admission ranges in price between $34 and $40 per person.

How to Get There: Take almost any train to Times Square and walk from there.

19. Get up close and personal with exotic wild animals at the Bronx Zoo

The main building inside the Bronx Zoo, one of the top outdoor activities in NYC.

There’s a lot to do at the Bronx Zoo. And that’s probably because it’s the largest metropolitan zoo in the United States by area – and even larger than the New York Botanical Garden.

It is also one of the top things to do alone in New York City that gives you the opportunity to get up and close and personal with a bunch of exotic animals including penguins, cheetahs, porcupines, and sloths.

So, stop by and take a ride on the bug carousel, ride the Wild Asia Monorail, explore the Congo Gorilla Forest, and take in all of the amazing things the Bronx Zoo has to offer.

Pro Tip: Stop by on Wednesdays when the zoo offers “pay what you wish” tickets.

Address: 2300 Southern Boulevard Bronx, New York 10460

Hours: Open 10:00 am to 4:30 pm daily from November 1 through March 26 and then open daily until 5:00 pm between March 27 and October 31st, with extended hours until 5:30 pm on weekends and holidays.

Price: Tickets start at $30.95 for adults, $28.95 for seniors, and $22.95 for children 3 and over.

How to Get There: Take the 2 train to the Pelham Parkway station and then walk to the zoo from there.

20. Visit Radio City Music Hall

Radio City Music Hall sign

Known as the “Showpiece of the Nation”, Radio City Music Hall was the first building ever built in what would become the sprawling Rockefeller Plaza area.

And for a long time, it was actually the largest indoor movie theatre in the world. Sure, it fell on hard times in the early ’70s but it was eventually designated a national landmark and allowed to remain open.

It is also the home of the Rockettes and has played host to dozens of the most important awards shows and gatherings throughout its long history – including the Grammys, the Tony Awards, and the Daytime Emmys.

Today, it continues to be a popular attraction and one of the best things to do alone in NYC, with numerous pieces of art on display and a regular rotation of high-profile performers stopping by to put on a show.

Address: 1260 6th Ave, New York, NY 10020

Hours: Varies by show.

Price: Varies by show.

How to Get There: Take the 1 train to 50th and Broadway or the the B/D/F/M train to Rockefeller Center and walk from there.

21. See why Bryant Park is the busiest park in the world

Bryant Park

In comparison to many other popular spots in NYC, Bryant Park may seem kind of small and insignificant at first glance.

However, don’t skip it because it’s a park you’ll definitely want to visit, especially if it’s your first time in the city and you’re looking for some of the best things to do alone in NYC.

After all, it’s located right in the heart of downtown Manhattan and is the busiest park in the entire world. Plus, for such a small area, it has a zany amount of things to do – most of which are absolutely free.

So, one of the many things to do by yourself in NYC while you’re here is watch juggling and skating performances, enjoy movie screenings on the lawn, play ping pong, ride the carousel, and or do a bit of yoga.

The New York Public Library is also located along the perimeter of Bryant Park, and, just like everything else mentioned, is totally free.

Pro Tip: Stop by the Breads Bakery kiosk and get some delicious chocolate babka for me.

Address: Bryant Park, New York, NY 10018

Hours: All day, everyday.

Price: Free

How to Get There: Take the 4/5/6/S/7 train to Grand Central or the B/D/F/M to Bryant Park and walk from there.

22. Enjoy the Best Food at Chelsea Market

red sign for Chelsea Market, one of the best things to do in Chelsea NYC

One of the best things to do alone in NYC – and in any city, really – is visit a local food market and enjoy the local cuisine.

And Chelsea Market certainly doesn’t fail to deliver. Because, guess what? There are no chain restaurants or big-name stores in this vast indoor shopping complex in the meatpacking district.

Yup, just a one-of-a-kind collection of local vendors and restaurants that are eager to serve you in this busy, marketplace environment.

So, between the fine wines, delicious cheeses, choice meats, and deliciously prepared global cuisine, you’ll have plenty to enjoy one experiencing one of the best things to do in NYC by yourself.

Pro Tip: Some of my fave places include Fat Witch Bakery (get the brownies), Posman Books, Sarabeth’s (great pancakes), Artists and Fleas, Takumi (great Japanese/Mexican fare), and more.

Address: 75 9th Ave, New York, NY 10011

Hours: Open daily from 7:00 am to 2:00 am and on Sundays from 8:00 am to 10:00 pm.

Price: Free to window shop.

How to Get There: Take the A/C/E train to 14th Street and walk from there.

23. Score a sweet deal on Canal Street

View of the subway entrance at canal Street

Canal Street is one of New York City’s best-kept secrets. And while not much of the merchandise you’ll find in the shops here is authentic, that’s not really the point.

Because people come here to haggle. And if you’re a thrifty bargain hunter, you may walk away with a knockoff version of one of your favorite name brands that’s still pretty solid for the price you paid.

So, check out one of the best budget shopping spots in NYC and be sure to visit Wo Hop and Nam Wah Tea Parlour while you’re here since those are two of the best Chinese restaurants in all of Chinatown.

Map of the Best Things to do By Yourself in NYC

Click here for the full map.

Additional New York Resourcees You’ll Love

There you have it! That wraps up this guide to the best things to do by yourself in NYC!

Tell me, did your picks for the best things to do alone in New York City make the list? If not then let me know below!

And if you found this post useful, be sure to join our email before pinning this post now so that you can read it again later!