On a budget this spring break? Check out these NYC attractions

Melkorka Tómasdóttir '17 snapped her friend Milo wandering the city.

Melkorka Tómasdóttir '17 snapped her friend Milo wandering the city.

Stuck in the NYC area over spring break? No problem! We've compiled a list of some of best, and most affordable, ways to have fun until class is back in session.

If you're looking for some wild crowds, head to 5th Avenue, where the massive, annual Saint Patrick's Day Parade takes place. The parade was started by a group of homesick Irish military men serving in the American colonies in 1762, making it older than America itself. More than two million people are expected to attend this marvelous spectacle. Not Irish? No worries! New Yorkers who don't have a drop of Irish blood in their veins will still don green, drink Guinness and go insane. The Parade begins on the 17th of March at 11 a.m. on 5th Avenue around 44th Street and ends at 79th street at around 2 or 3 p.m. If you want to avoid the massive crowds of tourists who are sure to show up, stay above 59th street.

Want to get a glimpse of Manhattan skyline? Visit Roosevelt Island, Manhattan's beautiful neighboring island. One of the highlights of Roosevelt Island is most certainly the Four Freedoms Park. Most New Yorkers don't seem to know much about the park, which lies on the southern end of Roosevelt Island and serves as a memorial to Franklin Delano Roosevelt, a native New Yorker himself and the 32nd president of the United States. The park, which is named after Roosevelt’s famous Four Freedoms speech, just celebrated its first birthday last fall. The memorial features a bronze bust of Roosevelt that seems to be floating in midair and plenty of elegant, white marble. Nothing can compare to the view at the tip of the memorial, which includes an enormous bright red Coca-Cola sign, the Manhattan skyline, and the Freedom Tower in the distance. The trip to the memorial is almost as breathtaking as the site itself. Most visitors cram into a scarlet red tram on 59th street and 2nd Avenue that travels above the highway and part of the East River, finally landing at Roosevelt Island.

Located on one of the side streets of Chinatown, Tasty Hand-Pulled Noodles is one of the city's best-kept secrets. It's like many Chinatown restaurants in the sense that it doesn't look like much from the outside (or on the inside for that matter) but it serves delicious food. As the title indicates, Tasty Hand-Pulled Noodles has fantastic hand-pulled noodles that are delightfully chewy and filling. You can order regular, skinny, or thick hand-pulled noodles, as well as knife-pulled noddles in soups or with sauces. They are gigantic, delicious and guaranteed to fill you up. The best part? The most expensive soup is under seven dollars! Go now! Tasty Hand-Pulled Noodles is located at 1 Doyers Street. They are open daily from 10:30am to 10:30pm. Helpful tip: remember bring cash because they don't accept credit cards.  

Take full advantage of your student I.D. and go see a Broadway show! In order to make the theater affordable to students on a budget, many Broadway shows feature student rush, lottery room, and standing room policies. If you are willing to get an early start to your day and spend your morning in line, you will be able to score cheap tickets to some of Broadway's hottest shows. This tradition began in the 90's when Rent sold all of the seats in the first two rows of the theater for $20 to whoever lined up at the box office that morning. Since then, most Broadway shows have taken part in the tradition, usually selling rush tickets on the day of the performance, as soon as the box office opens. While seat location varies with every show, it is possible to score some $30 front row tickets, even though a long wait in line is required. Be sure to bring cash, as many box offices only accept cash for rush tickets. For a full list of the shows that offer student tickets, visit Playbill.com.

Visit the Highline! Built on an abandoned NYC railway track, the Highline is the perfect combination of modern and antiquated, a beautiful collection of reclaimed industrial waste. You can walk through a field of wildflowers or relax on large wooden reclined chairs, eating delicious food from several of the featured food stands. The Highline is one of the city's most popular cites, boasting over four million visitors last year. The Highline begins on 14th street and 10th Avenue. I recommend also checking out Chelsea Market while you are there. Located directly below the park, Chelsea Market, which was the former home of the National Biscuit Company, is now a hot spot for foodies. This market has everything; you can eat anything from a bright red lobster to a cactus taco.

by Natasha Rodriguez '16

 photo courtesy of Melkorka Tómasdóttir '17
@korkimon /  korkimon.com

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