What’s next? NYC with Margherita Ragg

There is always one place you will never tire of seeing no matter where you travel around the globe. We talk to some of top travel influencers and give them expert insight into their favourite parts of the globe. This blog series shines a light on beautiful places through the eyes of some the most traveled people in the world.

Now is the time to get out your travel bucket lists and fill them up!

Margherita Ragg is the owner of The Crowded Planet. This blog is full of adventure and nature inspiration. Margherita and Nick love hiking and adventure travel. But Margherita, a Milan native, can’t stop thinking about The City That Never Sleeps. These are some of the best tips for anyone planning to visit NYC.

What were you doing before you started traveling?

Since I was five years old, traveling has been a dream of mine. A book with flags from around the globe was presented to me. While I wasn’t a great traveler in my teens and childhood, I have been traveling a lot since moving to London in my 20s. My first extended trip was in 2009/2010. I have been traveling full-time since then, until Covid.

Before starting The Crowded Planet, I had worked many jobs. I started out in hospitality and retail while at university in London. I then became a therapist for children with autism and then an ESL teacher.

What is New York’s most beloved thing?

New York City is very special to me. After receiving my first paycheck at 21 years old, New York City was the first place that I traveled to outside of Europe. It is a wonderful place to visit, with so many things to do and sights to explore. Even after many trips, I still find new places to explore, including new neighborhoods, restaurants, bars, and quirky sights.

Do you know the old saying, “When a man gets tired of London he gets tired of life”? I believe the same should be true for New York City. There is so much to do in New York City that it’s hard to get bored!

What do you think more people should know about this place?

Most visitors should realize that NYC has five boroughs and not just Manhattan. Many first-time visitors stick to Manhattan and may visit Brooklyn only after crossing the bridge.

Queens, the Bronx and Staten Island offer many cool activities. I love Astoria and Long Island City in Queens. These neighborhoods are full of cool shops, independent restaurants, craft beers, and much more.

What’s your favorite thing to do?

Although it may sound cliché, I love walking around New York City. Walking around New York City on foot is a great way to observe how the neighborhoods change.

A perfect NYC trip should have both sunny and rainy days. Central Park is the best place in NYC to be when it’s sunny. Walking up the hill, from the reservoir to the Ravine is a great way to see the wild city. It’s a great time to visit NYC’s museums on a rainy day. My favorite section of the Met is the Cloisters. It focuses on Medieval art and includes a rebuilt medieval Cloister!

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What would you do if you had 24 hours?

I would start my day with brunch in Harlem. Then, I would continue walking through Central Park to get to the Vessel. I have yet to see it! For a snack, I would then walk the High Line to Chelsea Market, before heading to Bushwick or Long Island City for craft beer.

Before I return to my accommodation, I’d also like to grab a NY Slice. There is no better place than Williamsburg and Bushwick for this!

Where’s your favorite place for food in this city?

Very Fresh Noodles is my favorite place in Chelsea Market. Every day I dream about their biang biang noodles!

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Chelsea Market

Are there any unusual or off-the-beaten track spots you would recommend people visit?

Two cool spots are located near Downtown: Mmuseumm is a small museum that’s housed in a freight elevator. It has rotating exhibits of seemingly random objects, each one arranged according to different themes. The Elevated Acre is another secret garden between Downtown skyscrapers. It can be accessed via a hidden escalator. It was my first visit and I spent 10 minutes searching for it.

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Atlas Obscura

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