How to spend 8h in New York City

Hi all! Posts keep coming and I am so happy to finally write about this. In April, I went to New York City for the first time. Since then, I’ve been twice and I have another trip to NYC planned for October. I have to say that I have a somewhat love and hate relationship with New York City, but in this first visit I got a very good impression of the city, in the amazingly short visit time of…8h. So, if you have a short stopover by The Big Apple and want to check out some of its main landmarks, worry not! I have the perfect guide for you!

If you come from Boston, the cheapest choice of transportation is by bus. The bus generally takes 4h30min between the two cities. There are a few companies that connect the two cities, namely Megabus, BoltBus and Peter Pan. I already used all three and Peter Pan is more comfortable, but you can get cheaper rates with Megabus and BoltBus. This is true, for my upcoming trip to NYC in October, I got the Boston-NYC ticket for $1 from Megabus! For all the round trips, I spent around $30. The roundtrip I mention in this post was with Megabus and I was supposed to arrive in NYC at 10:30am but with a lot of traffic well, I arrived at 12pm. Our bus back to Boston was scheduled to leave at 8pm so that left us with about 8h to explore. Quite a rush, no? Fortunately, the bus arrives in Manhattan, really close to the Empire State Building and other main attractions.

New York City, NY, UsA

Go up the 5th Avenue

So much to see in this quite long walk! First things first, from the Megabus terminal, you will find the Empire State Building. We didn’t go up, I did that in my second trip to NYC. However, seeing just the entrance is a majestic sight that takes you to all the glamour of the city after The Great Depression.

Empire State Building, New York City, USA

Empire State Building, New York City, USA

A few blocks away we can find the majestic New York Public Library. It should be really inspiring to be able to work in such a wonderful building (like the Boston Public Library also is) but it can be quite hard to do so with so many tourists! I love the map room and the rich paintings on the ceiling. Worth noticing and stopping for a while is the Bryant Park right behind the library.

New York Public Library

Map Room, New York Public Library

Bryant Park, New York City

Get lost in the Times Square screens

Almost anybody knows from popular culture these screens and the ball drop in New Year’s Eve. So, to be able to experience this live, with all the billboards and ads for several Broadway shows, was absolutely awesome. If you’re into M&M’s (I personally am not a huge fan of these little chocolates), or not, go there to check the store, full of color and somehow useless merchandise.

Times Square, New York City

M&M's store, Times Square, NYC

Breathe in the Central Park

I swear I’ve never been to a public park this large in my life. I was really lucky to be there at a time where the trees were bursting with flowers and on a very sunny day. I also like the large lake, the Jacqueline Kennedy Reservoir. It is really worth it to do a picnic here. Needless to say that I couldn’t explore everything, I saw the north side of the park in my third NY visit.

Central Park, NYC

Central Park, NYC

Central Park, NYC

Central Park, NYC

Find yourself in an abandoned train line at the High Line

We went to West Manhattan to be close to the outbound Megabus station to Boston and we chose to do the full High Line. I really loved it! The High Line in an aerial greenway that spans 1.45 miles (2.33 Kms) on a section of an abandoned railroad. I loved the fact that you can walk in a green corridor through brick buildings and the various art manifestations. The one that struck me the most was an old man making poems by demand, pretty much on the style of the lovely movie “Before Sunrise”. How cute!


High Line, NYC

High Line, NYC

So, these are some of the unmissable outdoors sights in Manhattan for a very short trip! I now know pretty well the city (well, let’s say I could know Brooklyn better and won’t mind going back =p) and I will return with impressions from the other areas of the city I visited!

How would you spend such a short time in NYC? What are your favorite sights there? Let me know! In the meantime, don’t forget to follow my journey around my PhD in the US in FacebookTwitterInstagram and Pinterest to keep up to date!


  1. Emma// Curlygirlabroad
    August 10, 2017

    Wow, you managed to see a lot in a small amount of time! I thought NYC was very impressive, but sometimes a bit too crowded, the high line looks particularly interesting!

    1. A Pulgarita
      August 10, 2017

      Thank you! I feel Manhattan is too crowded, hence the love and hate relationship with NYC. I much prefered walking more free in Queens and Brooklyn. However, the High Line is really a unique point!


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