When it comes to New York City, native New Yorkers are very passionate about the neighborhood they grew up and live in. Heck, even non-native New Yorkers are quick to adopt pride in the borough they live in.
What’s affectionately known as the five boroughs is composed of Manhattan, the Bronx, Brooklyn, Queens and Staten Island. Together they create the unique and vibrant cultural hub that is known throughout the world as New York City. Each borough has their own sense of style and flavor, not one is like the other. While each borough has their own claim to fame, Manhattan might just be the most famous.
Manhattan is the smallest of the five boroughs at roughly 23 square miles. Manhattan itself can be broken down into three or four different districts: Uptown, Downtown, Midtown and in some cases the West Side. Now there is a point of contention where exactly Uptown Manhattan and Upper Manhattan begins.
On one end of the spectrum, the southernmost boundary of Upper Manhattan can be 59th Street. While on the other end of the spectrum, some would say the southern boundary for Upper Manhattan is 125th Street. However, between these two extremes, many people would say 96th Street is the southern boundary.
However, those definitions are what some people would consider Upper Manhattan. If you make the clear distinction between Upper and Uptown Manhattan, Uptown Manhattan is above 59th Street, while Upper Manhattan is above 96th Street.
It’s very common for people to use the phrases “going uptown” or “going downtown,” just to denote whether they are going North or South and not specifically meaning they are going to those districts.
It cannot be said for certain what the boarders of Uptown Manhattan are. However, for this particular article, I will define Uptown Manhattan as the area above 59th Street up to 96th Street. Everything above 96th Street, I will describe as being a part of Upper Manhattan.
For those who are unfamiliar with Manhattan and who don’t have a map handy, 59th Street is most southern part and the start of the famous Central Park. For those people who enjoy carefree lazy afternoon, visiting Central Park is an absolute must. Within Central Park’s 843 acres is a variety of family friendly places to visit. The Central Park Zoo is among the top thing to see. While the zoo itself isn’t a massive place, kids and parent alike will adore the penguins, polar bears, sea lions and more. It’s also connected to the children’s zoo that has a duck pond and petting zoo.
Strawberry Fields, Sheep Meadow, the Pond, Friedsam Carousel and a variety of different statues and fountains can be found in Central Park. You could spend days in Central Park and still not have seen everything it has to offer.
Just by Central Park, there are some of the world’s best museums like the Guggenheim, the American Museum of Natural History and the Metropolitan Museum of Art. Each of those museums are world class and have enough culture to keep one occupied for days. If you’re not entirely into art, it’s best to check what their current exhibits are to see if you’re interested before going.
The famous Lincoln Center, home to the New York City Ballet, the New York Philharmonic and the Metropolitan Opera is another notable attraction for many people. They often have outdoor performances, which can be quite spectacular. Even if you aren’t interested in the events going on there, the building itself can be a wonderful photo opportunity.
When it comes to food, New York City as a whole is home to a variety of tastes and prices. There are plenty of street foods, budget food and high end dining experiences. Of course, there are also the same variety of bars and cafes that cater to all budgets.
The Time Warner Center is one of the iconic locations to visit, however, it can also be one of the most expensive. It houses many specialty and high end stores like Coach and Armani Exchange. The Time Warner Center also has a dining experience to match the shopping, with high end dining like Masa and Per Se.
The beauty of New York is that, while fine dining experiences exist, there are plenty of low to mid-range restaurants, where some of the best and most authentic food experiences can be had. Kefi and Pio Pio are only but two examples of the incredible restaurants you can find.
While it’s a nice idea to have a few different places you’d like to visit in Uptown Manhattan, you need to be open to more exploratory experience. There are plenty of hidden gems throughout Uptown Manhattan, just waiting to be discovered by those willing to take the road less travelled.