I know it’s cliché but I’ll say it for the nth time. New York City is amazingly inspiring that there’s a popular song written about it. “New York, concrete jungle where dreams are made of, there’s nothing you can’t do… Now you’re in New York, these streets will make you feel brand new, big lights will inspire you” sings Alicia Keys in a hit song literally called “New York”. Even Jay-Z did a Minnelli and Sinatra, re-affirming this by adding, “And since I made it here, I can make it anywhere”.
This song was set to re-play all over again in my playlist when I visited New York City by my own some months ago. I recommend that you try at least once to wear your headset and play this song while walking down the city streets or while on a subway. Why? Because the thumping of the bass, the relatable lyrics referring to the scenery just right in front of you, and the vibe and energy of its music just makes you want to feel New York City more, scream while standing at the center of Times Square where no one actually cares, and be inspired by the city that never sleeps and all the hustle and bustle all around you. Why is New York City all that inspiring, anyway? Now I know some locals would argue, but the experience was totally different from a traveler’s point of view.
***Hear what I mean: To make your reading experience more interactive, why not listen to “New York” while reading this and feel instantly inspired? Or better yet and for your own convenience, I’ve taken the initiative to make the music available below for your own listening pleasure.
So what makes New York City so Inspiring?
1. Because of the big lights at Times Square
Just because. Imagine it is your first time in New York City, straight from the airport and stepping out of Times Square subway station. The big lights greet you, along with a crowd of locals and tourists alike – people of different background and culture. Quite intimidating at first, but you’ll get the hang of it any time sooner.
It couldn’t get any busier anywhere else. You’ll also feel that you are connected with the rest of the world, hearing different languages and accents at the same time. The big lights give off a glare that catches your attention and gives you a sense of instant euphoria. One question I have for you – where else in this world can you see something bigger than this?
An even bigger crowd
Plus, you can get seen on a huge screen at the center of Times Square
2. Because of the yellow cabs and the no-nonsense drivers
These iconic bad-asses are all over the place. They are the new heroes of NYC, making sure to get you to your destination on time. Instead of taking the tour bus, why not hire a cab to take you around, and be amazed at how much the cab driver knows about the ins and outs (including scandals) of the city.
3. Because of the Brooklyn Bridge
Just walking across and back this remarkable bridge moves you enough and allows you to see Manhattan island from a different point of view.
These $2 souvenirs along the bridge tho’
Not to mention these love locks.
So captivating. Cross the bridge twice and you’ll gain new friends and lose some weight along the way.
4. Because of the towering skyscrapers
New York City is not the bustling NYC we know of without its massive structures. These buildings are where dreams, fame, and money are made. These buildings, on the other hand, are also where sh*t happens (pardon the language).
They can get quite intimidating at first…
…’til everything starts to sink in as you stare at the man-made wonders before you.
New York City’s skyline just makes you feel small…
So small, actually.
5. Because of the naked people
Seeing naked people, and some eccentric personalities along the way just shows how important freedom of expression and diversity is in this city. The diversity of its population in itself makes this city inspiring, showing that differences in religion, race, gender, and beliefs can actually co-exist. Seeing these naked people just makes you feel that you are in a free city where you can exercise freedom and express yourself the way you want to, without discrimination or objection by others.
Express yourself the way you want to when in NYC
And you’ll blend in just fine. If you don’t mind the tourist-parazzis, that is.
6. Because of the subway
New York City’s subway system looks like it has a culture of its own, and this is where you can get a glimpse of what the reality of local life in New York is. On one end of the car could be a big-time banker fiddling on his smartphone while on the other end could be another homeless man boldly calling on other passengers to spare some change. Yeah, NYC is a dog-eat-dog world. Intimidating, and it’ll make you realize that NYC could either break you, or make you reach for your dreams.
NYC’s subway also shows its history. Opening way back in 1904 as one of the world’s oldest subway system, you can still see the steel panels, platforms and tracks used more than a century ago which makes you feel as if you’re actually travelling back in time.
NYC subway culture is quite laid back
This is where you’ll see the real New York
As well as the pieces of history (rails and beams) still being relied upon today.
I mean, who could pass out on a train station this swell?
7. Because this is where the ‘in’ people are hanging out
Hollywood in sunny California may be the home to the stars, but NYC is where the BIG stars and billionaires are. I’ve been to San Francisco and Los Angeles before, but never did I see one. Here in New York, it is a different story – and don’t be surprised if you see one walking just behind you. In fact, I was able to create my own guide on celebrity spotting in NYC during this trip.
8. Because of Wall Street
Ever watched The Wolf of Wall Street? It’s as if you’re gonna make it big in the financial world when walking through Wall Street, where the New York Stock Exchange is. Feel the vibe and energy of the financial district and walk with big time bankers on a hurry when in Wall Street.
Success is just right around the corner, you can already smell it…
…with the “Bull of Wall Street” signaling an auspicious and bullish trade
It’s so busy, millions are made in Wall Street as you walk through
9. Because of the Trinity Church right next to Wall Street
At the end of bustling Wall Street is the serene and completely still Trinity Church, where you can quickly go to to escape the crowd and steal some quiet time.
Take pleasure and enjoy the fine details of its Gothic architecture
And steal some quiet time away from your packed tour schedule
Take a stroll, relax, and maybe creep yourself out a bit along the graveyard in its backyard
10. Because of Central Park
Central Park is just a massive, incredible patch of grass that dwarfs even the tallest of buildings.
It is is an urban park of massive scale…
…so vast that they had to put letters and numbers on lamp posts to let you know which part of Manhattan you are on…
…and it’s so enormous, it dwarfs the surrounding structures and it grabs your attention from 10,000 feet above
It also has no less than the American Museum of Natural History beside it. Remember watching the “Night at the Museum”?
11. Because of the Chelsea Market
If you are a fan of indie art and #foodgasm, go ahead to Chelsea Market and experience nostalgia with vintage arts as well as fill up with some artisan feast.
Chelsea Market is the city’s best urban food court, located in an old building with a historic charm …
This is where you can find diverse cuisines at a reasonable price…
…and get artisan iced coffee at $4
And if you are a frustrated artist, get inspiration from indie artists selling vintage crafts at Chelsea Market
12. Because of the surrounding Meatpacking District
This is the vibrant location of Chelsea Market, as well as numerous hip shops, chic restaurants, bars and clubs. If the cobblestone streets aren’t enough, the vintage street lights at the pubs and restaurants are sure to captivate you.
This trendy part of NYC is known for its nightlife and party scene…
And great eats, too.
13. Because of Broadway
Even if you’re not a Broadway fan, a trip to the Big Apple will not be complete without experiencing one. Be inspired at their creative genius in this world-class stage.
14. Because of the fact that you can have all the greatness of Times Square to yourself
Go there at around 1 am and see what I mean. If you want to propose and have Times Square all to yourselves, then this is for you.
NYC is a city that still sleeps, after all.
And have the big screen all to yourselves
15. Because NYC allows you to experience the city on a budget
Inspiring NYC is one of the most expensive cities in the states, but if you know where to go and who to ask, and if you really want to save on your trip, you can actually do so. Just don’t be picky and you’ll survive. I myself managed to survive a solo-trip in NYC without breaking the bank as well as tour the rest of the west coast on a budget.
This $2.50 combo is a sure lifesaver
Did you go on a recent trip to NYC? What was it that inspired you the most? Feel free to comment, share your tips, or ask a question. Please feel free to share this with your friends, and also like me on Facebook and Twitter. Thanks!