I went to New York back in September of 2016, and so this post is long overdue. I received many of the same reactions regarding my trip along the way. “You are so brave going to NY alone!” “What on earth did you do there by yourself?” “Aren’t you scared?”
My answer is no, nor was I ever during my visit.
First of all, while many find it strange to either eat by yourself, or stroll in a large city by yourself, in New York it is very common! You are not alone being alone. I also do not mean to say that being alone is a bad thing, because it is not at all, it is liberating!
I managed to do a lot during my week there.
I stayed in Pod 51- which was great! It had a rooftop which surrounded you by the tallest of buildings, providing that “city-like vibe” that is New York! The Pod was fairly cheap, perfect for solo travellers. The accommodation was in a great location, central to all the main areas of the city. Furthermore, It felt similar to a hotel and a hostel. The rooms resembled an apartment room, which I really liked. I felt as though I had my own place within the city, as opposed to staying in a large and empty hotel room.
Since I study theatre I thought, what a perfect place to search for opportunities to get involved within the theatre community. I volunteered at the BEAT festival, a festival that promotes individual artists. The talents I was fortunate enough to witness included, poetry, acting, theatre of the absurd, and more! Being included in this festival allowed me to meet new people, as well as appreciate the hard work of the artists in the talented city!
Continuing on with theatre, it would not be a successful New York trip without going to see a Broadway show. I wanted to see Hamilton, but it was sold out and therefore I went to see the Phantom of the Opera instead. I won’t linger too much on the show because it was obviously amazing and worth while. I will however, recommend seeing Hamilton if you ever get the chance to!
Another great festival I got to be part of was the Global Citizen Festival! Global Citizen is a worldwide community filled with people who are willing to speak out and take actions for some of the world’s toughest challenges, such as world poverty and hunger, immigration, education, women’s health and issues, and the environment! The festival consists of key speakers, survivors, and artists such as Coldplay, Rihanna, and Kendrick Lamar! You don’t win tickets to the festival, you earn them by taking action. I did my part, and got to witness an incredible night! It was so uplifting to be surrounded by people who all care about the world! If you don’t believe me, here was the result for the 2016 festival, taken from the site. If you aren’t a Global Citizen, I encourage you to click on my hyperlink and join the community!
Global Citizens took more than 1.3 million actions over three months to:
- Secure 20 new commitments 9 announcements and 14 calls to action to achieve the Global Goals for Sustainable Development.
- Ensure accountability and delivery of 4 commitments made in the past on Global Citizen platforms.
- Push forward 5 campaigns on which further action is needed to ensure that world leaders keep their promises to citizens.
Together, these commitments and announcements are worth $1.9 billion, and are set to reach 199 million people.
New York is very convienient for those who are Vegan. There was a spot located around the corner from my Pod, that included vegan and vegetarian options. (Many too)! You do not have to look far to find them!
If you are like me and enjoy the big city lights, but also have a softspot and need for openspace, Brooklyn Bridge is the place to go! I took a subway there one morning, (New York’s transit system can get you anywhere in the city within 30 minutes!) and I got my fix. I sat on a nearby bench by the water and bridge, where I could see the city in the distance. Brooklyn is busy, but a more quiet area by far. I therefore would reccomend stopping there during your travels.
Last but not least, one of my favourite moments in New York, was simply wandering around Central Park. The park seems endless, and is beautiful! I would make sure to incorporate it into my route walking elsewhere. It is the perfect place to find a spot, lay down, and enjoy the view and some sun and music.
Overall, while it is important to see New York’s most touristy locations and monuments, I feel I got to experience New York on a different level- by simply wandering and taking part in the kinds of activities I would if I lived there.