How to Survive New York City

by Anevay Darlington / Jan 06, 2014 / 0 comments

New York City is the city of dreams, lights, and busyness. People who live in the city aren’t known to be particularly nice to tourists – it’s just a fact. Here are some ways tips to surviving NYC - and making your trip enjoyable.

How to Survive New York City

Wikimedia Commons: Paulo Barcellos Jr, adapted by Wandering Educators

1. Don’t look up at tall buildings so much. It’s a dead giveaway that you’re a tourist, and people will get annoyed. When people tend to look up, they stop in their tracks - and in the process, cut off other people trying to get places. Everyone looks up, even people who have lived in NYC since the beginning of time, but try to limit it.

2. If you have an exact location that you’re trying to go to but can’t find it, ASK - or else you’ll be walking in circles for hours. After living here for going on 12 years, my mom and I still get asked for directions pretty much all the time. Just make sure to ask the right kind of person - you won’t get great directions from someone who looks like they’re in a hurry.

3. Try not to walk too slowly (if you’re capable) in crowded areas. People will push you and curse under their breath, no joke. 

how to walk in New York City

Photo by zoonabar, Flickr Creative Commons

4. If you don’t know where you’re going, instead of stopping in the middle of the sidewalk (which will make people intentionally hit you), go to either side of the sidewalk, so you’re out harm’s way.

5. Take it easy! Try not to go to every museum, tourist site, famous restaurant, and building. You will NOT have fun. Take plenty of rest stops at parks, cafés, etc. And… yeah, NYC is the city that doesn’t sleep, but that doesn’t mean that YOU shouldn’t, either.

6. If someone does step on your foot, trips you, nudges you, punches you, pushes you, give them a glare… unless you know who the person is.

7. Wear walking shoes!!! A must! Prepare to walk a lot. You can’t take a cab and train everywhere.

New York City

Photo by Jared Narber, Flickr Creative Commons

8. Don’t jaywalk; you’ll get hit by a car. You’ll see all the New Yorkers doing it, but that’s because they’ve gotten a lot of practice. 

9. When you hail a cab (to do this, do a little wave continuously), get straight in, then they can’t kick you out. Trust me on this.


A Native Shares the Three Best Things to Do in New York City


An awesome place to go is the City Reliquary. It is the most unique museum I’ve ever visited. Learn more here.


The Natural History Museum is also a MUST. I have been there countless times (I have a science class there every other Monday). Yeah it’s a total tourist trap, but if you get there NOT on the weekend, it should be fine! Truly, this place is a must. No questions.


Brooklyn Botanical Gardens. Go. It is the most beautiful garden on Earth… most likely not in the winter, though. Check the site out,!!!


Follow these tips and your trip to New York City will be perfect! These tips make the city sound like the worst place ever, but it’s really a special place. The food is #1. There are endless amounts of things to do. The people are actually really nice! NYC has amazing museums, parks, and so much to see. The diversity is also awesome - there are so many different cultures in one place.

Another fact about the city: Weirdness is normal. If you see a man in a woman’s bathing suit dancing with a plastic chicken… nothing new. One of the best ways to really get the uniqueness that people say NYC has (which it does) is to go to the less touristy places. Explore neighborhoods that tourists never go to - you’ll see some great things.

People in NYC are actually very nice (most of the time) – talk with them and see! By the end of your visit, I can guarantee that you’ve had some nice conversations with strangers.

NYC is indescribable. Visit. Explore. You’ll not only survive – but thrive! Have fun!

How to survive New York City

Photo by Katie Killary, NYCphotos, Flickr Creative Commons





Anevay Darlington is a member of the Youth Travel Blogging Mentorship Program