Top Things to Do in Upper Manhattan (Uptown)

THE 10 BEST Things to Do in Upper Manhattan (Uptown), New York City

Top Things to Do in Upper Manhattan (Uptown)

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What travelers are saying

  • TravelingSoccerLoon
    Saint Paul, MN5,385 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    A selection of the Metropolitan Museum of Art's medieval art collection is housed in this beautiful re-creation of a French monastery and sits atop of Fort Tryon Park with scenic views of the adjacent Hudson River. It felt like a hidden gem as it wasn't overly crowded when we visited on a Saturday afternoon and strolling around this beautiful building and grounds is almost as enjoyable as the viewing the art found inside. Make sure to include having a drink in the outdoor cafe located in a lovely courtyard. Although overpriced, it provides a relaxed experience in a beautiful setting. Getting to the Met Cloisters requires some effort as it is located at the extreme northwest end of Upper Manhattan, but the subway stops nearby, and it is a pleasant and only mildly strenuous hike through the park. Closed on Wednesdays. $30 entrance fee but this also provides same day entrance to the main Metropolitan Museum of Art location as well.
    Written July 10, 2024
    This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
  • Brian T
    London, UK8,048 contributions
    4.0 of 5 bubbles
    If you mention you are going to visit Harlem in Manhattan, you are certain to get the raised eyebrows and the head shaking, usually form people who have never been. It’s probably one of the most maligned, poorly-represented and incorrectly-portrayed areas in New York, yet is is a great part of the city to visit. It’s certainly had its rough decades, but the neighbourhood is experiencing a new renaissance. And like in many parts of the world, this area is as safe, if not safer, than any other neighbourhood if you use the same "street smart" mentality and common sense you would use where you come from.

    Harlem was originally a Dutch village, formally organised in 1658; it is named after the city of Haarlem in the Netherlands. Harlem's history has been defined by a series of economic boom-and-bust cycles, with significant population shifts accompanying each cycle. Today Harlem is the centre of African American culture in New York City and a vibrant part of the city; it’s a hotbed of black music, art and culture. But Harlem has been home to many races and ethnic groups including the Dutch, Irish, German, Italian, and Jewish, and as well as being a predominantly black neighbourhood, it present a fabulous diversity and thus offers the the visitor a diverse and eclectic area to explore.

    There is lots to see and experience in this neighbourhood. I spent almost a full day walking its streets, taking in its sights, and visiting a couple of cafes and restaurants. I visited with a New Yorker. It was a successful exploration for sure. One of the keys to our success was carefully planning. We had quite a list of local things to see, so mapped out a walking route so that we could see all we wanted to see, and get the feel for this vibrant community city.

    Here’s our four favourite spots:

    Striver’s Row: It’s a delightful historic district located on both sides of West 138th and West 139th Streets between Adam Clayton Powell Jr. Boulevard and Frederick Douglass Boulevard. The distinct architectural styles with a mix of red brick, yellow brick and brownstone are beautifully maintained, adorned with a tangle of wrought iron. It’s a visual treat.

    The Apollo Theatre: This legendary theatre which opened in 1914, has launched careers and popularised genres through its devotion to showcasing black talent. The likes of James Brown, Ella Fitzgerald, Sammy Davis Jr, Billie Holiday and Lauryn Hill found their starting point here.

    Harlem’s “Walk of Fame”: On W125th Street by the Apollo Theatre, the “Walk of Fame” is an uptown Manhattan take on Hollywood's "Walk of Stars" that commemorates African-American musical icons with plaques embedded into the sidewalk.

    The Cathedral Church of St John the Divine: This massive cathedral has been under construction since 1892, and is not yet finished. One of its chapels contains a bronze three-paneled altar with gold-leaf decoration, designed by Keith Haring just before his death.

    But don’t limit yourself to those. Wander, and take in some wonderful street murals, local markets and businesses, little museums and art galleries, and an abundance of cafes and restaurants. We had coffee at a delightful coffee shop in the Hamilton Grange area, and an excellent lunch at the iconic Harlem restaurant that is Sylvia’s.

    Many streets and avenues in Harlem are co-named for its famous leaders and residents like Lenox Avenue co-named Malcolm X Boulevard., 125th Street co-named Martin Luther King, Jr. Boulevaqrd., and Eighth Avenue co-named Frederick Douglass Boulevard.

    It’s a wonderful place to explore; we learnt a lot, and found the locals informative and welcoming. Stay safe, stay aware, and enjoy your visit.
    Written October 5, 2022
    This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
  • Farwriter
    London, UK134 contributions
    4.0 of 5 bubbles
    Lovely grounds to wander around if you are in the area. Guided tours are available but I didn't do one of those. Worth visiting for the beautiful St Paul's Chapel (NOT the one in lower Manhattan) which has a stunning ceramic tiled domed ceiling.
    Written February 22, 2024
    This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
  • craig1086
    Atlanta, GA1,846 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Was staying down in lower Manhattan, but made a trip up just to be able to see the historic landmark. The area is buzzing. Their's a gift shop in the lobby, but depending on the day, they might not let you in. Love that shows are still happening there all the time. It's right around the corner from the 125th Street station.
    Written May 31, 2024
    This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
  • Taylor B
    Chicago, IL8,417 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Have you ever heard of a 132-year-old building that is one of the largest structures in the world and a historic landmark but still isn't completed? The Cathedral of St. John the Divine, the Cathedral of the Archdiocese of New York, is an unfinished building with only 2/3 of the proposed building completed due to several major stylistic changes, work interruptions and unstable ground on the site. Located at 1047 Amsterdam Avenue, in the Morningside Heights neighborhood of Manhattan, between 110th Street and 113th Street, St. John the Divine is the largest cathedral in the world, a global landmark, despite incomplete construction. It is an exceptional example of Byzantine Revival and Romanesque Revivals architecture and a reflection of the growth of the Episcopal church in the early 20th century. Like the great Medieval cathedrals and churches of the world, St. John will continue to be constructed over centuries. For one thing, the western facade's towers are incomplete. Construction began in 1892. The overall plan was changed to Gothic Revival design in 1909. Completion of the nave was delayed until 1941. After a fire in 2001, the cathedral was renovated and rededicated in 2008. One of the most striking features of the cathedral is the Great Organ, which was built in 1906-1910 and is located above the choir on the north and south sides. It consists of four manual keyboards with several pedals. The complex consists of eight buildings -- Cathedral Church of St. John the Divine, Ithiel Town Building, Biblical Gardens, Cathedral School of St. John the Divine, Pulpit Green, Cathedral House/Ogilvie House, Synod Hall and Diocesan House. In addition to worship services, which are conducted daily from 7:30 to 6, St. John offers self-guided and guided tours of the interior exhibits, the Cathedral close or surrounding buildings and the gardens. It is open for tourism from 9 to 5 Monday through Saturday and from 12:30 to 2:30 on Sunday.
    Written July 21, 2024
    This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
  • PAULETINO
    LONDON34 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    I wanted to go to a Gospel church while in New York. This is in Harlem. We felt that everybody was happy to see us. The service was really really good. The singing was just exceptional. I can see this becoming my church if I move to New York. I took some video with my phone and I have not stopped watching them. I did not feel like a stranger at all.
    Written February 19, 2020
    This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
  • Hemamalini R
    1 contribution
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    It was good except had an nice experience and it was so enjoyed welland there was a river by side the place was awesome took photos
    Written April 26, 2024
    This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
  • Allan S
    New York City, NY7,064 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    I love to come here as a refuge for the busy city and the best time here is spring. The well maintained flower beds,specimen trees and shrubs snd well maintained walks make this a great spot to relax and recharge. Many young families pushing carriages, school children after their hours snd bus loads of visitors flock here. Great spot to picnic or just hang out or stroll with loved ones 0 seconds Molly one of the best spots to visit located at 105 street and fifth avenue with the opening at the Vanderbilt gate.
    Written April 16, 2024
    This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
  • TravelingSoccerLoon
    Saint Paul, MN5,385 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    We strolled through Fort Tryon Park when visiting the Met Cloisters that sits perched high atop of this beautiful park. It really is quite remarkable how this park feels so secluded from the hustle and bustle of the city. You feel like you are far up the Hudson River well away from the city. Scenic views of the Hudson can be found at several spots.
    Written July 10, 2024
    This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
  • Chris N
    Taastrup, Denmark23 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Fantastic service. The congregation was very welcoming to visitors. You could not get a more authentic gospel expericence than this. Also the church in itself is very beautiful.
    Written January 7, 2024
    This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
  • Heidi✈🥂
    Blue Mountains, Australia108 contributions
    4.0 of 5 bubbles
    I think I sat in a daze at this place.

    I have been a Seinfeld fan for 30 years and to finally stand outside and see this place was a bit of a thrill I won’t lie.

    So the inside looks nothing like it did on the show, assuming most of that was filmed in a studio but nonetheless, the outside did and there was loads of Seinfeld memorabilia inside with photos of the gang being at this iconic place.

    We had breakfast there and it was actually really, really good as well!
    Written January 9, 2024
    This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
  • do_the_freddy
    Los Angeles, CA323 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    This review happened in June 2024. My wife and I were in New York on vacation and we always visit any national park in the area if we can. We both love history and we had to stop by Hamilton Grange. First the park rangers and amazing and they really know there history. It didn't hurt that the ranger we had was also a big Hamilton fan/nerd. She really got into her short history lesson about Hamilton and the Grange. You can tell it was genuine love she had for the site. It was amazing to be the house that Hamilton lived in. Every room had history and it just gave you this feeing of amazement to know he was here and walked, eat ,and slept here. The visitors office is down stairs, they also have some t-shirts and other things you can buy. They do offer a guided tour of the house with a ranger. I highly recommend you take it. They have a bathroom on site and there is also a drinking fountain. The Grange also has a small walking trail that's nice for a short walk. Lots of shade on the grounds. If you want you can sit for bit and take a break. I highly recommend you stop by for a visit.
    Written July 1, 2024
    This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
  • SEs
    London, UK25,899 contributions
    3.0 of 5 bubbles
    This is a popular church here lots people. This is part of the tour also.The singing is a bit loud.You have time come here with friends or give it a miss.
    Written June 4, 2018
    This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
  • BrakiWorldTraveler
    Belgrade, Serbia18,666 contributions
    4.0 of 5 bubbles
    This was my third visit to NYC, but the very first time I've visited this memorial.
    We did it after our Harlem tour, as the memorial is at the western Harlem, by the Hudson river.
    It is set in a beautiful park, with a calm atmosphere. The tree arched walkway made a spectacular site while approaching it.
    However, we were disappointed finding it closed due to Covid ??!!
    Written June 23, 2022
    This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
  • CasaHoffa
    Huatulco, Mexico12,398 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Riverside Church is a magnificent structure and an inspiring house of worship, especially when they have the handbell and choir concerts. The Church is situated adjacent to a park along the Hudson River offering a wonderful sunny day outside venue.
    Written October 30, 2020
    This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
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