Ask a Local: Things to Do in New York City


William and I are visiting New York for the first time and want to squeeze in as many activities as possible during our trip. I was searching must see attractions, restaurants, you name it. Then I thought why not ask someone who actually lives there?? So, I did just that.

I asked my friend Joyce of JoyofMyLife a few questions about things to do in New York City and thought I’d share her answers with you.




Joyce is a content creator from New York. Her YouTube channel, JoyofMyLife, started as a fun way to make videos but has now become a platform where she ultimately wants to empower  her audience to embrace what makes them unique!

As a Black woman working in the tech industry by day, Joyce strives to show on JoyofMyLife that developers or coders don’t have to fit the typical stereotype and can still be successful while having outside interests like fashion and beauty!

What food spots do you recommend (restaurants, stands, etc.)?

Some places off the top of my head include Il Cortile in Little Italy, Industry Kitchen in South Street Seaport, Tacombi in the Financial District, The Cabin NYC in Alphabet City, and BLVD Bistro in Harlem, but there’s so many different types of food in New York that I don’t think you’ll get bored.

What’s  your favorite side of town or borough?

Hmm, that’s a good question. if I had to pick one, I would say the areas surrounding Union Square – West Village, Chelsea, and Flatiron District..

What’s something tourists think about New York that isn’t true?

Hailing a taxi is not as glamorous as it is in the movies. I can’t remember the last time I was in an actual taxi; I always use the subway or walk if it’s close enough.



Do you have any touristy guilty pleasures? If so, what?

When I was in high school, I went on a class trip to the Top of the Rock (Rockefeller Center). It was such a beautiful view, and I have been meaning to go again. So yeah, basically any type of place with a nice skyline view. The Edge is next on my list of touristy things to do. lol 

Is there a #1 must see attraction that you recommend to visitors?

I always say the High Line since it’s more of a leisurely attraction, and you can visit it on a day where you’re not as jam packed with activities. You can decide if you want to walk the entire length or just part of it, and you are also able to see some nice views of the city and the Hudson River.

The South Street Seaport is nice too, with views of the East River and the Brooklyn Bridge.



Is New York Pizza really that good?

YES! I haven’t found any pizza that is better than New York’s.

What local businesses do you suggest for us to support?

Gooey on the Inside! Such good cookies! 



I want to thank Joyce for her amazing answers. They definitely added more to our “things to do” list! It was very refreshing to get a local’s point of view instead of reading other tourists tell about their trips and experiences.

I plan to get a local’s suggestions whenever we visit somewhere new from now on. Also, be sure to check out Joyce’s social media outlets. She’s the best! Her links are below.