new york city

FAQ: How do you get to and from the airports in NYC?

As one of the leading NYC travel destinations, we hear a lot of questions from our guests about the city. One question that we’re asked all of the time is about getting to and from the airports in NYC. What’s the best way to get to LaGuardia? JFK? Newark International?

The fun thing about NYC is that the subway does not go to ANY of the major airports in or around the city, and by fun, I mean most inconvenient. So if you cannot take the subway, how do you get to your flight? It’s not like the double deckers have a hop off location in the vicinity.

The answer is actually pretty simple: Go Airlink NYC

Full disclaimer, Airlink is a sister company of Gray Line New York, but they didn’t put me up to writing this. They really are the best. You can take a share ride shuttle to and from the airport at a really low rate (starting at like $14) or you can book a private car for a little more extravagance. They provide door-to-door service, which is incredibly convenient, and you will always make your flight with time to spare. So how do you get to and from the airports in NYC? Go Airlink is the only way to go.

UPDATE: Go Airlink was just named a Viator 5 Star company, so if you don’t want to take our word on it, take the word of one of the biggest international travel websites out there. 

Do you have a question you’d like to see answered in the blog? Let us know on Twitter at @GrayLineNewYork

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5 CAN’T MISS EVENTS THIS WEEK IN NYC

Delicious food, wedding season, and more college basketball highlight this week in NYC

The Village Voice Choice Eats tasting event on Tuesday, March 25

photo via village voice

Live from the New York Public Library: Sarah Lewis, Anna Deavere Smith, and Angela Lee Duckworth on Wednesday, March 26

photo via nypl.com

The New York City Wedding Fair on Thursday, March 27

photo via nymag.com

NCAA East Regionals at Madison Square Garden on Thursday, March 28-30

photo via si.com

Zakir Hussain and the Masters of Percussion take the stage at The Theater at MSG on Saturday, March 29

photo via msg

Where to Watch March Madness in NYC

The best bars in NYC to watch College Basketball

Standings – East Village

photo via yelp

You love your college sports, but hate drinking the watered down beer at sports bars? Well Standings has that problem solved. Standings has one of the best beer selections in NYC, huge TV, sports memorabilia on all of the walls, and a guarantee of sound for the games. There really isn’t anything else needed from a March Madness bar.

Professor Thom’s – East Village

photo via yelp

17 massive TVs and two 10-foot projectors means you will have all of the action, even when four games are on at once. And if you get there early, you can grab one of the six booths with individual TVs so you can put on whatever game you want. This East Village/Gramercy drinking hole is a slam dunk March Madness destination.

The Ainsworth – Chelsea

photo via ainsworthnyc.com

The Ainsworth has a seemingly endless string of TVs, which is obviously the most important part of finding the ideal March Madness bar. It’s also an Alabama bar, and since they didn’t make the cut of 68 teams this year, you don’t have to worry about a team taking it over and ruining the experience for everyone else.

Saloon – Upper East Side

photo via faceboo / saloonnyc

So you don’t care about the quality of the beer or the company you keep, you’re just looking for a great bar to get as much boos as you can for the cheapest price? Well, on March Madness Friday, Saloon is opening up a $20 open bar for any 2 hours throughout the day, and an extra $10 for each additional hour. If you and your frat bros are looking to down some brew and watch some hoops, the open bar starts at noon at Saloon.

Boomer Esiason’s Stadium Grill – Midtown West

photo via yelp

Stadium Grill has stadium style seating in a bar. That probably doesn’t work all too well for your regular night out on the town, but for a major sporting event like March Madness or the Super Bowl, Stadium is one of the top spots in NYC. You’re going to have the Times Square crowd mixed in here, but if that doesn’t bother you, this might be your best choice this weekend.

 

Where are you going to get your March Madness fill the next three weeks? Tweet us your suggestions at @GrayLineNewYork!

FAQ: How do you see all of NYC in one day?

esb; nyc

View from the top of the Empire State Building

How to take advantage of one full day in NYC

One of my favorite questions I get almost every day comes from the traveler who loves to spread themselves thin: I’m only going to be in New York for 24 hours, how do I see all of NYC in one day? There’s actually a pretty easy answer to this question.

You don’t.

If you think you can see all of New York City in one day, you’re out of your mind. Most people who have lived here for years on end are still trying to see the whole city. New York is just too big and there’s too much to do to see everything in one day. But that leads to the next question: How do I take advantage of my one day in NYC to see as much as possible?

Now we’re talking realistically. Allow me to lay out a play to see as much of NYC as possible in one day.

Early Wake Up Call

nyc bagels

You have to wake up early to truly take advantage of the day. Hit a bagel shop near your hotel that’s not named Starbucks or Dunkin Donuts. For less than $5 you can get yourself the best bagel you’ve ever had and a coffee. You probably want to enjoy this breakfast as your stroll through Central Park. This is a true New York City start to the morning.

9 am: Manhattan Experience Tour

top of the rock

Top of the Rock, NYC

You’re going to start out your exploration with the 8-Hour Manhattan Experience tour. Don’t worry, this isn’t 8 hours of sitting on a bus or listening to some guys talk, this is an all-inclusive tour that begins at 9 a.m. and includes a trip to the Statue of Liberty, the Top of the Rock, Lunch in Little Italy, and exploration of some of Manhattan’s coolest places. You will be touring the city on a comfortable motorcoach and a tour guide will take you on walking tours of Wall Street, South Street Seaport, Grant’s Tomb, Rockefeller Center, Little Italy, and the World Trade Center memorial.

5 pm: Grab a Slice

pizza

The Manhattan Experience tour has knocked out a lot of the sightseeing, as well as giving you a sit-down meal in an authentic restaurant in Little Italy. Now it’s 5 p.m. so it’s time to grab a slice of pizza to hold you over, because you’re only getting one sit-down meal today.

5:30 pm: Catch a train to The Met

the met museum

You can’t go to NYC and not visit one of the world class museums we have to offer. If it’s a Friday or Saturday, you need to jump on the Subway and head up to either the 77th Street or 86th Street stop on the 4-5-6 line. The Metropolitain Museum of Art is open until 9 p.m. on these days, so that gives you plenty of time to see some of the museum.  If it’s not Friday or Saturday, check out the schedule of other NYC museums and stop by one that is open late on the day you’re in town. Again, you can’t truly see New York until you take in the art it has to offer.

7:30ish pm: Miscellaneous time

mr. met at citi field

Mr. Met at Citi Field

This one is one you, and time dependent. You need to do something that appeals to you specifically, not just take in the sights, so from this point forward, we’re on you time. Sports fan? Catch a game at Madison Square Garden or Barclays Center in the winter, Yankee Stadium or Citi Field if it’s summer. The early comedy shows typically start around 8 in the city, the same time most of the evening Broadway performances begin. This time is for you to do something catered to your personality.

10:30ish pm: Grab a drink, you’ve earned it

beer nyc

photo: flickr / aslakr

You have been up for a while now, trekking across the whole city. You must be tired, ready to call it a night, huh? Well, New York City has an exceptional night life, so if you’re truly trying to see the whole city in all of its elements, you’re not even close to done with your night. Find a good bar, probably a hole in the wall on the Lower East Side or in Brooklyn. The hole in the wall crowd is one that you haven’t experienced yet in your NYC travels.

1:00 am: Time for some street meat

street meat

Photo: Flickr / Oran Viriyincy

After a few drinks and maybe some karaoke, you just realized that you are starving. It’s time to leave the bar and find some food. NYC is home to some of the best street meat in the world, so keep your eye out for some food trucks. It’s shouldn’t be too hard to find one on the Lower East Side or Brooklyn this time of night, so hopefully you listened to me.

1:30 am: Let’s go Clubbing!

Photo: studentrush.com

Grab a cab to the meatpacking district to end your night partying at one of New York City’s most extravagant clubs. This is one of the last environments you have yet to see on your NYC journey, so even if you’re not much of a dancer, it’s still something to experience. Here’s a quick tip for going to a NYC club: Be a pretty girl, be with a pretty girl, be rich, or be famous, and getting into the club will be exponentially easier.

4 am: You have to catch your flight!

Photo: panynj.gov

You flying out of JFK early in the morning remember? Grab a cab to your hotel, gather your things, then head out to the airport. You’ll get there just in time for your early morning flight to LAX, and you can sleep on the plane.

So, you want to do NYC in one day? Here’s your itinerary.

Note: There are still tons of things that you’re missing out on, but again you only have 24 hours. What would you change about this itinerary? What other things in NYC do you want to see? Tell us on twitter at @GrayLineNewYork.

5 Can’t Miss Events This Week in NYC

Lorde comes to NYC, Brazilians dance and Asians share art. This week’s top 5 events in NYC:

Lorde is coming to the Roseland Ballroom Monday, March 10

The Big East and A-10 Tournaments come to The Garden and Barclays Center Wednesday, March 12-16

The Brazil Dance Festival begins in NYC Wednesday, March 12-16

The Black Fives exhibition opens at the New York Historical Society Friday, March 14

Asia Week: A Celebration of Asian Art in NYC Friday, March 14

What events are you going to this week in NYC? Tweet us at @GrayLineNewYork

What’s in an NYC Street Name: Houston Street

houston street

Way, way back in the olden times, William Houstoun, a delegate from the State of Georgia married a girl named Mary. Mary’s father was a pretty wealthy guy and wanted to honor his daughter’s new husband, so he named a street after him. And so begins the history of Houston Street.

The most interesting thing about this particular road is the pronunciation of its name: Houston. It is spelled just like that city in Texas, which to the average observer would make you think that it also sounds the same when spoken, but that is not the case. Since Houston Street was named after William Houstoun, it is pronounced the way his name was: HOUSE-ton, like the place you live followed by the unit of mass that is equal to 2,000 pounds. It is not HUGH-stun, like the actor whose last name is Jackman followed by the type of gun that uses electric volts to shock its targets. The easiest way for a New Yorker to spot a tourist is by listening to the way they pronounce that street.

houston street nyc

Bowery at Houston Street

Another cool thing about Houston Street is that it is the divider of neighborhoods. Have you ever heard of the NYC neighborhood SoHo? It’s an abbreviation meaning “South of Houston.”

Which NYC street name do you want to learn more about? Make a suggestion on Twitter at @GrayLineNewYork and we might feature it in out What’s in an NYC Street Name series!

5 CAN’T MISS EVENTS THIS WEEK IN NYC

It’s the first week of March 2014 and these are the top 5 events in NYC:

Armory Arts Week begins Tuesday, March 4-10

Novak Djokovic and Andy Murray square off in Madison Square Garden Monday, March 3

The Fusion Film Festival begins at NYU, celebrating women in film Thursday, March 6-8

The New York International Children’s Film Festival begins on Saturday, March 7-30

Chelsea Handler has a pair of shows at The Theater at MSG Saturday, March 8

 

What events are you going to this week in NYC? Tweet us at @GrayLineNewYork