Great Day Trips to Take Without Ever Leaving New York City

Ever find yourself staring wistfully at the Valencia-tinted #travel photos on Instagram, only to realize you have neither the time nor budget for a week in Santorini? Luckily for New Yorkers, this 8-million person metropolis boasts such a wide array of attractions that it’s possible to satiate that wanderlust without ever leaving the five boroughs. Round up a group of friends, agree to meet at a set starting point, then spend the afternoon cruising between the sights via Uber. You’ll save a bundle by not having to worry about parking—not to mention the price of a plane ticket to a more exotic locale.

Explore the multicultural enclave of Flushing

Waves of Chinese, Taiwanese, and Korean immigrants helped turn this northeastern part of Queens into the fascinating melting pot that it is today. Rising rents and encroaching gentrification have some worrying about how this diverse microcosm can survive—all the more incentive to visit some of its authentic restaurants and family-run businesses while you can. Start your day with a trip to the Flushing Meadows–Corona Park, the site of the 1964 World’s Fair, for a glimpse of the spectacular Unisphere sculpture. Test your skills with a bow and arrow at Queens Archery, then head to Joe’s Shanghai for xiao long bao, soup dumplings stuffed with savory pork-crab filling. Eat with caution; once punctured, these bite-size morsels release a collagen-rich broth. For dessert, pick up the addictive Portuguese egg tarts at New Flushing Bakery (New World Mall, 135-45 Roosevelt Ave., Flushing, +1 718 539 6363).

Estimated Fare: The approximate total cost of traveling by uberX for the day is between $31 and $39.

Delve into Harlem’s layered past

From literary luminaries such as Langston Hughes and Zora Neale Hurston to celebrated jazz musicians including Duke Ellington and Ella Fitzgerald, the movers and shakers of the 1920s and 30s Harlem Renaissance revolutionized African-American culture. Contemporary Harlem may have changed quite a bit, but the neighborhood is still justly proud of rich history. Pay a visit to the Studio Museum in Harlem, which celebrates the works of prominent African-American artists, before swinging by the Graffiti Hall of Fame, a school yard transformed into a concrete gallery in the 1980s, to marvel at street works by local and international guest artists. Round it all off with dinner at Ginny’s Supper Club, which serves rib-sticking soul food favorites such as ultra-creamy mac n’ cheese with lobster. Purists will want to order the fried yard bird, a juicy mess of crisp-skinned dark meat smothered in white mace gravy, while those looking to try something new may want an appetizer of chicken and waffles drizzled with chile-infused maple syrup. The food may be terrific, but the main reason guests come here is the sultry live jazz and funk Thursday through Saturday.

Estimated Fare: The approximate total cost of traveling by uberX for the day is between $18 and $22.

Check out the latest hipster spots in Williamsburg

Everyone knows that this buzzing part of Brooklyn is where the cool kids are. While tattoo sleeves, bushy beards, and other hallmarks of the area’s movement may be heavily imitated elsewhere, few places can match Williamsburg for its sheer ingenuity. With clever boutiques, seriously delicious eateries, and enough third-wave coffee shops to keep you caffeinated for months, it’s no wonder that many are skipping Manhattan in favor of its stylishly scruffy neighbor across the bridge. Shop for handcrafted jewelry at Brooklyn Charm, then peruse the vinyls at Rough Trade. Instead of a sit-down dinner, call an Uber and head to Smorgasburg, a sprawling open-air flea market with vendors selling everything from Colombian arepas to Japanese fusion tacos. Top it all off with a trip to Brooklyn Brewery for a tour and a tasting of some of the borough’s best craft beer.

Estimated Fare: The approximate total cost of traveling by uberX for the day is between $35 and $38.

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