10 Things to Do in New York to Expand Your Cultural Horizons

Harry Potter and the Cursed Child New York City is probably one of the most popular places to visit in the whole wide world and i...

New York City is probably one of the most popular places to visit in the whole wide world and it's somewhere that's probably on most people's bucket lists. Hubby and I are planning to visit in June (happy birthday/graduation to me)! If you're planning a trip to New York any time this year, it's likely you're planning to visit Times Square, see where Friends was filmed, and spend some time in Central Park… but there’s more to New York than all of this.

New York has the pleasure of being one of the most diverse places in the world because people from all over go there to live and thrive in their careers and lives. It means you can experience a plethora of different cultures and history, as well as eat some of the best foods.

I've never been to New York, so I'm super pumped for my first visit. Here are some of the highly "cultured" spots in New York I plan to add to the itinerary.


One of the most famous choices for a cultural trip in New York has to be Broadway. If you've never been to the theatre before, this will be an experience like no other and it can be something which makes you want to visit again and again. There are always a large range of shows on at Broadway and you can look for cheap Broadway tickets online to get a good deal before you head off on your trip. The major one we're trying to see this summer is obviously The Cursed Child, but geez those tickets are worth a pretty penny.

The Metropolitan Museum Of Art

For anyone who appreciates artwork and the beauty of it, The Metropolitan Museum of Art (the Met - as in, the Met Gala) is the ideal place to visit for the day during a trip to the big city. The museum has a massive collection of artwork from artists all over the world, and it is the ideal place to appreciate the talents we've had throughout history. There's also Ancient Egyptian art and European sculptures which date back hundreds and thousands of years. There are new exhibits on all the time so it's worth checking what will be on when you're there.


If you love art so much that you want to get an extra dose after visiting the Met, the MOMA is a great choice to see a whole different side to art. Rather than being able to see old Roman and Egyptian works from history, at MOMA you will see modern artwork which has been done during the last century. It's a great way to discover new artists who you may not have see before and it can be a really wonderful way to gain a whole new perspective on the art world.

Metropolitan Opera

Honestly, when a lot of us are trying to think of a fun way to spend our evenings, opera might not come at the top of the list. Opera is a beautiful art form and it is something which has been performed for hundreds of years all over the world. Of course, it’s not commonplace today, but opera can still be a wonderful option for a day out with friends or family. Try visiting an opera show this year and you will genuinely be able to experience something you have never seen before. It is unique and fun and honestly a great way to spend the day.

Nuyorican Poets Café

If you have always wanted to listen to people reciting poetry in a comfortable setting, there is no better option than to come to the Nuyorican Café. This small gem in the heart of the city is cozy and homely and it will allow you to sit down and listen to a whole host of different poets reciting their hearts out to their favorite pieces. It is a great way to bond with different people and you can honestly take away a lot of value from this experience.

Little Italy

If you love Italian food and culture then you should definitely take the time to visit Little Italy while you're in New York. Little Italy is a section of the city which is a hub of Italian wonder and awe. There’s no shortage of amazing foods to try and people to meet and you will feel as if you have stepped into Italy itself for a while as you stay. If you visit during September you will be able to witness the streets completely close down as the people celebrate San Gennaro.


We’ve already talked a bit about Broadway (which is obviously the most popular way to watch the theatre), but what about off-Broadway? If you want to see some amazing shows which are less likely to be sold out, you can opt for an off-Broadway option and it will allow you to still see the big shows but without having to wait for a long time to grab a ticket (or without breaking the bank)!

New York Public Library

Of course a library would be on this list. The New York Public Library is a vast building which offers the chance to feel like Belle from Beauty and the Beast when you walk inside its doors. The library is a place which is incredibly grand and beautiful with marble and chandeliers everywhere you turn. It's a veritable palace for books and it's a stunning site to behold each and every time you visit. You’ll be able to find some of the most amazing books in the world on a variety of subjects and it'll probably be one of the biggest collections of works you have ever seen.


When we hear the word "lecture" a lot of us think about school and being bored half to death while listening to someone drone on about science and history (I'm thinking Harry's depictions of a history of magic), but this isn’t the kind of lecture I'm talking about. If you're the kind of person who is genuinely interested in science or learning a specific subject, there are tons of lectures throughout the city for you to take part in. You’ll be able to listen and learn something amazing and it can be a great way to motivate you. I've been to some local lectures in my hometown, where we sipped on wine and ate yummy little hors d'oeuvres while talking about the history vampirism, so I'm thinking it may be something along those lines.

The American Museum of Natural History

One of the places that's highest on my NYC bucket list is the American Museum of Natural History, and it's probably one of the most impressive places you could possibly see in the city. It's a huge and expansive place which houses millions of plant and animal specimens as well as some stunning exhibitions throughout the year and a lot of unique historical artifacts. The exhibits might not come to life at the end of the night (lol, Ben Stiller) however it's still supposed to be a super fun place to go. And we're all just trying to see dinosaurs in real life, right?

What are your favorite places in the Big Apple?

*This is a collaborative post.

You Might Also Like