Golden Globe nominated actor and New York icon, Chris Noth, is the star of HomeToGo's largest TV commercial to date. We caught up with the star — well known for New York City based dramas like "Law & Order" and "Sex and the City" — to find out what he has to say about the city he spent much of his career in. Watch below to discover why Chris thinks the Big Apple is the best city in the world.
Racing heartbeat? Secret little coffee shops? The greatest park in the world? Only in New York.
We followed Chris's advice and got lost in the magic of NYC. Turns out, he's right—from Central Park Tango to the birthplace of Hare Krishna, New York immerses visitors and locals alike in different cultures from around the world. To celebrate the cultural diversity of New York City, we've rounded up the best NYC attractions to take you on a world tour.
The best part?
You don't need a passport or a plane ticket.
Get ready to embark on a 21-stop journey that starts in Manhattan, zigs zags through Brooklyn, and finishes up in Queens.
21 NY Sights You Almost Need a Passport For
Click on a Passport Stamp to Begin Your Journey
7 Manhattan Must-Sees that Aren't the Empire State Building
With a skyline so distinctive and iconic that billions across the world recognize it in an instant, Manhattan is central to New York's role as a global capital. Enclosed by the Hudson, East, and Harlem rivers, a multitude of remarkable contemporary high rises and art deco masterpieces rise out of Manhattan island with the same verve that pervades every street of New York's most densely populated borough. Often defined by landmarks that rank amongst the most visited worldwide, this neighborhood guide aims to encourage people to take the path less trodden when spending time in Manhattan.
Tompkins Square Park: Located in Alphabet City, Tompkins Square Park was the birthplace of a religion that now has more than 850 temples around the globe: The Hare Krishna movement. 51 years ago, the Indian spiritual leader A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada led his followers to an elm tree in this square-shaped park and began chanting the group's distinctive mantra for the first time. With its strong sense of community, this site of religious significance is well worth checking out and offers outdoor chess and ping pong tables for locals and visitors alike.
Repertorio Español: With a Latin American population of over 1.5 million residing in New York City, the Repertorio Español channels the creative strengths of those communities to produce cutting-edge theatre in Spanish. Each year, art enthusiasts can enjoy more than 15 productions and more than 300 performances hosted by the critically acclaimed Repertorio. The theatre also boasts a simultaneous translation system that opens up all productions to non-Spanish speaking attendees.
Central Park Tango: Every Saturday evening from early June until the end of September, outdoor Argentine tango takes the southern end of Central Park by storm. Taking place under the bronze Shakespeare Statue, you can enjoy the pulsating energy of local and international dancers who create something magical in America's most visited park. It's free to participate, and you don't even need a partner.
Berlin Wall Section: After the fall of the Berlin Wall in 1989, the majority of the 96-mile concrete barrier was immediately dismantled, with only two small stretches retained in Germany's largest city to serve as a memorial. Various pieces of the wall made the 3,965-mile journey from Berlin to the Big Apple, and, nowadays, visitors to New York can find sections of the Cold War relic throughout Manhattan.
Panna II Garden: On the west side of Fifth Avenue, Panna II has been serving up sharp Indian flavors since 1989. With loud Hindi hip-hop, outrageous decorations, and enough Christmas lights to outcompete even the most impressive holiday display, many regulars frequent this compact restaurant for the atmosphere alone. Panna II's small size means that it's smart to make a reservation, and don't forget to bring your own booze if you're in the mood for more than a soft drink.
Pétanque in Bryant Park: If you're curious to try your hand at the much-loved French game of pétanque, head down to Midtown's widest stretch of lawn: Bryant Park. Every day from April to October, there are free games taking place on the boulodrome from 11 a.m. until sunset. There's even an instructor to help newcomers get started, as well as more than 20 tournaments a season for spectators to enjoy or participate in, depending on their skill level.
Yunhong Chopstick Shop: New York's Chinatown is comprised of bustling streets, open-air markets, and a plethora of unique stores selling Chinese products. One of the most remarkable is Yunhong, which is home to Chinatown's most beautiful and extensive chopstick collection. Boasting more than 200 styles that range from just two bucks to over $600, this is the perfect spot to pick up a special pair to evoke memories of this vibrant neighborhood.
Top 7 Must-Sees in the Culinary Wonder World of Brooklyn
Overshadowed by the looming skyscrapers of Manhattan, Brooklyn has played second fiddle to its better-known neighbor for decades. The 21st Century marked a change in Brooklyn's fortunes, with many businesses and families choosing to relocate. On Brooklyn's western fringe, the neighborhood of Williamsburg has become a byword for hipster culture and gentrification, whereas Brighton Beach and Coney Island on Brooklyn's eastern edge retain their urban charm.
BÚÐIN: Meaning "store" in Icelandic, BÚÐIN made a name for itself as a place for great coffee in Greenpoint. Bringing Scandinavian-style coffee to New York for the first time, BÚÐIN also sells craft beer and wine. Check their Twitter to find out about the endless takeovers, art exhibitions, parties, and brand collaborations that take place here. There's also a daily happy "hour" that actually lasts for three; head down between 5-8 p.m. to enjoy some cheeky discounts.
Brighton Ballet Company: The Brooklyn neighborhood of Brighton Beach became known as Little Russia after tens of thousands made the journey across the Atlantic back in the 70's. The Brighton Ballet Company conveys the strength and dynamism of the local community, showcasing the historic traditions of Russian classical ballet and folk dance. Offering year round dance classes, the school warmly encourages newcomers to try it for themselves by participating in a free one-hour beginners session.
Cuba Caliente: Brooklyn's only Afro-Cuban block party, Cuba Caliente brings that Latin heat to The Big Apple. Taking place on a weekly basis in the trending neighborhood of Williamsburg, Cuba Caliente brings together free dance classes, a live band, carnival-inspired costumes, and mind-blowing DJ sets. With different DJs, dance groups, and bands gracing each event, every Cuba Caliente is unique. Prepare for a serious dose of groove, passion, and cha-cha-cha.
High Tea at The Williamsburg Hotel: With a suitably post-industrial aesthetic, The Williamsburg Hotel sits comfortably in this aspiration corner of Brooklyn that has transformed from derelict docklands into prime real estate in the last 20 years. Each weekend from noon 'till 6 p.m., the hotel serves up traditional English high tea with a modern twist. Preaching unfettered indulgence, there are endless cakes and a multitude of savory treats on offer — plus champagne for those who want the afternoon to go out with a bang.
Mukti's Kitchen: On a tree lined, residential street in the Brooklyn neighborhood of Kensington, Mukti Banerjee proudly welcomes visitors into her house that doubles as a compact culinary school. Mukti's Kitchen introduces newcomers to fresh and healthy Indian food, teaching both vegetarian, vegan, and non-vegetarian recipes depending on interest. She is a wealth of knowledge, and her skill in sharing this ensures that you'll leave feeling totally inspired about Indian cuisine.
Tortilleria Mexicana Los Hermanos: By serving up simple, inexpensive, and fresh tasting tacos, Los Hermanos manages to capture the very essence of Mexico's world-renowned street food scene, and then transports it to New York. Located in the ever-evolving neighborhood of Bushwick, which has a growing Mexican population, Los Hermanos is a straightforward and unpretentious place to enjoy delicious, authentic cooking. It's BYOB, nothing costs more than $3, and the seating area is inside an old garage.
Island to Island Brewery: As recently as the sixties, Brooklyn produced 10% of all beer consumed in the United States. After a period of decline, the brewing scene has enjoyed a renaissance since the turn of the century, and Island to Island Brewery is the newest microbrewery in the borough. Proud brewers of WIRA (West Indian Red Ale), Island to Island brings Caribbean vibes and seriously fruity beer to Brooklyn. The microbrewery serves only home brewed produce on six rotating taps, and offers popular tasting tours.
Bienvenido, Willkommen, and Bienvenue to Queens: Top 7 Must-Sees in Queens
With more languages spoken per square mile than anywhere else on the planet, Queens is the most ethnically diverse urban area worldwide. New York as a whole is synonymous with multiculturalism, and it is the borough of Queens that earns the city that reputation. Half its 2.2 million citizens are foreign-born, and Queens' unrivaled diversity generates an extraordinary amount of buzz, color, and vibrancy throughout the borough. Naturally, the sheer number of different communities living in close proximity makes Queens the ideal place for new culinary adventures.
Terraza 7: Much like Manhattan's Repertorio Español is the beating heart of New York's Latin American theatre scene, Terraza 7 is central to New York's Latin American jazz scene. Located in the Queens neighborhood of Elmhurst, this Colombian-owned venue is open every day from 4 p.m. to 4 a.m., with live performances kicking off at 8 p.m. Offering more than just Latin jazz and folk, Terraza 7 exudes friendly vibes and functions as a hub for the community.
The Ganesh Temple of Queens: Built to serve New York's rapidly expanding Hindu population, the Ganesh Temple of Queens was erected in 1970 by specialist craftsmen from India. The first Hindu Temple to be built in the United States, visitors of any faith are welcome here. Those who choose to visit the temple are quickly transported from a quiet corner of Queens to an astonishing, thriving religious center, brought alive by rituals and tradition. Beneath, the temple's canteen has become an attraction in itself, serving up delicious dosas.
Bukharian Broadway: Despite being just 30 minutes from Manhattan Times Square, the Queens neighborhood of Forest Hills reveals how multifaceted New York is. Home to more than 50,000 Bukharian Jews originating primarily from Uzbekistan and Tajikistan, the area is teeming with traditional restaurants serving up noodle soups and baked meat buns that are are ubiquitous throughout Central Asia. The best can be found on 108th Street, nicknamed "Bukharian Broadway" by locals.
Amaru: New York is home to the largest Peruvian population in the United States, and more than half the residents in the Queens neighborhood of Jackson Heights are Hispanic or Latino. Operating out of a converted industrial space, Amaru serves up premium Pisco, the Peruvian brandy that has been taking the U.S. cocktail scene by storm. To accompany the cocktails, Amaru also offers much-loved South American classics, including ceviche and empanadas.
Bohemian Hall: Located in the Queens neighborhood of Astoria, Bohemian Hall boasts one of New York's oldest and most cherished beer gardens. Owned and managed by Bohemian Citizens’ Benevolent Society of Astoria, Bohemian Hall also functions as a meeting point and center of education for local Czech and Slovak communities. Aside from delicious pilsner, there's also Czech goulash, dumplings, and pork on offer, as well as Slovak and Czech language courses.
Spa Castle: Growing rapidly in popularity in U.S. cities with large Korean populations, Korean spas offer intense body scrubs, specialized saunas, plus spa pools complete with targeted aquajets to target pressure points. Located in Flushing, a neighborhood nicknamed Koreatown by locals, Spa Castle is New York's top rated Korean spa. Home to 22 pools, extravagant gold and jade saunas, surrounded by decorative theming that resembles some kind of medieval fort, the truly eclectic Spa Castle is the perfect place to check out the Korean spa hype.
Flushing Meadows-Corona Park: Built in 1939 on the former dumping ground that inspired the "valley of ashes" in F. Scott Fitzgerald's The Great Gatsby, Flushing Meadows illustrates how Queens has reinvented itself at different stages of history. Most of the structures were dismantled after the park hosted the World's Fair in 1964, but a handful of enormous futurist-inspired relics continue to stand proudly above the trees, including a 12-story stainless steel globe. More recently, the park has reinvented itself as a sporting and cultural center, and is home to museums, the New York Mets and the U.S. Open.