A new perspective on the Big Apple 5

New York is the city that people will know about, and the major sights such as the Statue of Liberty and Times Square are what everyone will see on their first trip to the city. One of the things that changes with the number of visits to the city is that you start to look a little deeper, and it is easy to see that there is a whole lot more to New York than just the major sights. On my most recent trip to the city, I decided to take an alternative look at the city and try a few experiences that I haven’t tried before in NYC.

My base for exploring New York was The Pod Hotel 39, which as the name suggests is in a great position on 39th Street, and is great for transport links just a few minutes walk from Grand Central Station. The rooms are a great example of making the most from a limited amount of space, with a small desk, which is great for those working as they travel like me, and a flat screen TV mounted on the wall. I loved the rooftop terrace which was a nice place to relax, while we were also close to Broadway and the entertainment options offered at Madison Square Garden.

The Pod Hotel 39


One of the first things that I decided to do during my visit was to look to learn a little more about the wonderful art and culture scene in the city, and Brooklyn is one of the most vibrant areas in this respect. I haven’t always had the best relationship with bicycles during my travels, but I joined a cycling tour which mainly explores the Bushwick neighborhood, and the wonderful public art on display is truly impressive. The guides were very knowledgeable about the area, and also gave some really interesting context about the artists too.

There were a couple of stops along the way, with one at the chocolate factory and a second stop for tacos at a Mexican food retailer, but the art was the real star here. The way the art continues to evolve and has developed over the years is really explained well along the route, and the tour varies from the origins of Brooklyn street art through to some of the most recent works completed in the area. This tour was great fun, as well as being an informative look at some of the New York culture that I would never have encountered just going to explore the sights again.

Brooklyn Art & Culture by Bike


However, I wasn’t about to let the sights of the city go completely, and the next day I did get my tour of the sights – but with a pretty big difference! Seeing New York from the air in a helicopter is something that provides a very different perspective on the city, and knowing that our pilot had flown plenty of trips around the city before was reassuring. The Empire State Building and the Statue of Liberty were some of the highlights from the air, while getting to go a little further out to see Ellis Island and Governors Island was also an interesting aspect that I have never encountered before.

Eagle Eye Manhattan - Helicopter Tour


This was a great break in New York, and is definitely one I would recommend to others as a way of getting a different perspective on this remarkable city. If you are interested in following in my footsteps and getting into the art scene in Brooklyn and seeing the city from the sky, my package is available by below:

City Experience Summary

About Michael Hodson

I’m an attorney that took off on my birthday in December of 2008 to circumnavigate the globe without ever getting on an airplane. After 16 months, 6 continents and 44 countries, I made it all the way back home. Right now, I am back on the road writing about it all.

5 thoughts on “A new perspective on the Big Apple

  • Jonathan Look, Jr.

    I love New York, but other than from an airplane high above, I have never seen it from the air. I don’t imagine the authorities would appreciate me trying to see it by drone. Looks like a great trip!

  • Laura Lynch

    Living in Seattle, one of the things I’ve never done but know I should is the seaplane rides over the city because it’s such a beautiful city from above. I haven’t taken a helicopter ride in NYC, but I’m sure it’s the same. The perspective is different from above. The art tour sounds great too!

  • Aaron

    New York is still a city I havn’t been to but is definitely on the cards. Thanks for your insights into this beautiful metropolis.

  • jason

    I read your BBC article. Sounded good so I checked out your website. Disappointed its just another huge advertorial. Yes you must survive as a traveler and yes you get to do cool things but as I blog and a good travel insight its just tarnished with bribes so to speak. Do people not see through this…it was obvious within 2 lines.
    I would follow a travel blog because I like the character of the blogger and the things he/she selects to do.
    Then there are the ones that just travel along the money brick road…

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