I love New York! In the city that never sleeps, it’s rather easy to find food, entertainment, attractions and activities that speak to all people and budgets.
It can be overwhelming, given all the choices, but if you’re willing to humor yourself with a mere sample of what NYC has to offer, you’ll be just fine.
Lots of transportation choices too for getting around, but my favorite way is to walk. Simply put, I can see more of the town (while I bank more steps to my FitBit).
On a recent March trip to the Big Apple, my travel companion and I challenged ourselves to reach all our city destinations on foot. A bit of a lofty dare, given winter was in no hurry to leave. But one route in particular made our Chelsea District adventures a pleasure: an elevated path known as The High Line.
From our hotel—the perfectly placed Hyatt Regent Square—we headed west along W 30th Street. Picking up an access stairwell at 10th Avenue, we soon found ourselves at one of the most beautiful urban walkways I’ve ever seen.
Repurposing an old elevated railway line, Friends of the High Line and the City of New York created a uniquely clever public park—one that showcases a bit of its history along with some very modern urban art.
The view from the walkway features a few key signature NYC skyline items, such as the Empire State Building and the Hudson River. But this long-and-lean park also grants one-of-a-kind views that highlight artistically painted buildings (and some “unofficial” art) we encountered along the way.
Not to be outdone by objects outside the park, The High Line is home to many cleverly displayed works of art created just for the walkway. Beautiful in their own right, all artwork inside this public space complimented the surroundings perfectly, without being distracting.
Ever heard of the National Biscuit Company? Perhaps if I shortened its name: Nabisco. That’s right—from the 1890s to the 1950s, Oreos, Premium Saltine Crackers and other iconic baked goods were manufactured here at this location.
In the 1990s, this factory site was given a facelift, and Chelsea Market was born. Exiting The High Line at W 17th Street, we entered the old brick building ready to explore.
Similar to The High Line in shape, Chelsea Market stretches the long way between 9th and 10th streets, running parallel between W 15th and 16th. Much of the old brick walls and concrete flooring that once housed flour and giant bakery equipment now hold exciting specialty shops and fun restaurants.
Walking through the market, I loved discovering showcases of local and factory history. But what really caught my eye was how one piece of old plumbing was turned into an indoor urban waterfall. Pretty cool! Also cool: seeing old Nabisco ads—painted onto the brick—as active participants of the market’s décor.
We grabbed matcha green tea lattes (and pastries!) at Chalait, then headed back to The High Line. Finding a bench in the sun, we enjoyed our well earned treats.
Returning to Chelsea Market the following three days via our new favorite walkway, we enjoyed brunching at Friedmans Lunch. And shopping! We visited many stores and stands, making purchases at Artists and Fleas, Pearl River Mart and Chelsea Wine Vault.
Inclement weather can limit access to The High Line—something we discovered one icy morning—but the park’s crew works hard to keep the walkway open, and the stairwells and elevators in good condition, maintaining safety for its patrons.
Now that spring is in the air, walking outside is a little more comfortable. So if you find yourself in NYC this season, and fancy a stroll with a view, head to The High Line. My new favorite urban walk. J 👣