Offbeat things to do in New York City

Midtown aerial view of New York City
Midtown aerial view of New York City

As one of the embarkation points for many Canada and New England cruises, tourists should plan to spend some extra time in New York City. Even if you've already been to this center of culture and commerce before, there's always something to be seen in the Big Apple.

Some of the points of interest that are most popular with tourists include the Empire State Building and Times Square. There's no doubt that both of these locales are quite impressive, and you should definitely be sure to check them out if you haven't already. But for those who don't want the typical New York tourist experience, there's so much more to do.

For example, head to Greenwich Village to enjoy some of the best restaurants in the city, as well as browse through many eccentric shops and boutiques. Visit Little Italy or Chinatown to continue the culinary adventure. And the SoHo district has some of the best art galleries on the planet.

Sometimes, you just need to dig a little deeper at some of the more famous locales. Nearly everyone has heard of Central Park, but few take the time to explore this massive landmark, which includes the excellent Central Park Zoo. Back in Times Square, you don't need to simply marvel at the billboards and bright lights - set aside some time and catch a Broadway show.

If you want a different perspective on New York, head out on one of the many harbor tours. It's difficult to appreciate the grandeur of this massive city from the back of a taxicab, but boarding a vessel and touring the harbor will allow you to see many of the major landmarks, like the Statue of Liberty, Ellis Island, Empire State Building and the Brooklyn Bridge.