New York City can be overwhelming whether you’re here for one day, two weeks, or a whole month. The endless choices of where to go and what to do are part of what makes the city so fantastic but, sometimes, it’s nice to know where you can go to enjoy life like a regular New Yorker. Here’s a list of choices that are affordable, fun, and where New Yorkers actually go to relax and enjoy their city.
10. Crif Dogs – America is all about their hot dogs, and if you want to taste the best hot dogs, Crif Dogs is the place to go. Located on Manhattan’s lower east side, you’ll see all walks of New York city life come into this tiny restaurant to indulge in some of the best cheap food in town. You can get a basic hot dog or be experimental and get one of their specialty hot dogs covered in cheese, or sautéed onions, and even wrapped in bacon. 113 Saint Mark’s Place New York 10009
9. Tom and Jerry’s – if you’re looking for a great neighborhood pub Tom and Jerry’s should be your first stop. It’s bigger than most pubs but still maintains an incredible homey and welcoming feeling. The clientele is varied and the staff is friendly and the drink selection has something for everyone. 288 Elizabeth Street New York 10012
8. Ara Wine Bar – there are tons of wine bars to choose from in New York and Ara Wine Bar is one of the best. Located in the Meatpacking District tucked away between restaurants, Ara is a great place to go for a low key evening of small plates and a great wine selection. 24 9th Avenue at 13th Street New York 10014
7. Emporio – New York is full of Italian restaurants and the options are endless, but if you’re looking for authentic Italian cuisine that’s not only delicious but affordable, Emporio is the place to go. The pizzas are great to share with friends and their wine list and cocktails offer some of the best selections in the city for affordable dining. 231 Mott Street New York 10012
6. Peels – if you’re looking for New Yorkers on the weekend it’s pretty certain most of them will be at brunch on Sunday and one of the best brunch places is Peel’s located in downtown Manhattan’s East Village. The menu is southern inspired and the eggs are always amazing. 325 Bowery at East 2nd Street New York 10003
5. Merc Bar – located in New York’s Soho neighborhood this bar is tucked away and close to invisible if you don’t know it’s there. But make your way through their simple looking red door and you’ll find it’s packed with New Yorkers looking to unwind after a hard day of work and play. The cocktails are excellent and they have a great happy hour. 151 Mercer Street New York 10012
4. Hill Country BBQ – if you’re looking for an all American meal and good time then look no further than Hill Country BBQ. The restaurant is every New Yorker’s favorite place to go get real Texas barbeque and the atmosphere is perfect for a good time with your friends or to meet new friendly people. 30 West 26th Street New York 10010
3. Ten Bells – this wine bar is not only one of the best in the city but it’s full of expats to make New York feel a bit more like home. The bartenders are friendly and the wine selection is full of options from small producers in Europe and Morocco. A definite must visit for anyone looking for the friendliness of people who know what it’s like to be in New York as a newcomer. 247 Broome Street New York 10002
2. Employees Only – New York is known for its wonderful selection of speakeasy cocktail bars and one of the best ones by far is Employees Only. Located in New York’s West Village this bar has some of the best cocktails in Manhattan with expert bartenders making sure that every cocktail you drink is an unforgettable experience. 510 Hudson Street New York 10014
1. Brooklyn – if all else fails and you’re looking for where all the New Yorkers go, look no further than Brooklyn. New York’s favorite borough is full of restaurants, bars, boutiques, parks, and cultural activities with options for everyone. Some of New York’s best food can be found in the varying neighborhoods and visiting Brooklyn is a perfect excuse to walk over the Brooklyn Bridge and see the real beauty of New York City.