The hustle and bustle of New York City, especially when combined with the pressure of college, can easily be overwhelming. Fortunately, there are many places to take a breather away from the crowds and cabs.
The High Line
The converted railroad track of the High Line is a great spot to catch a view of the city, surround oneself with urban landscaping and find a bench to sit on and think. Check out the new section that just opened, but make sure to avoid it on weekends when it gets most crowded.
The Metropolitan Museum of Art
One of the perks of the Met having a suggested price is an affordable place to instantly be immersed in beauty and stillness. Head to the back rooms of the Met, especially on weekday afternoons, for an unexpected place to get away for a bit.
Close to NYU but not as close or as crowded as Caffe Reggio, Caffe Dante is the perfect place to get some leisure reading done. Laptops are not allowed, so ditch the obligations of email and disconnect while enjoying a great cappuccino.
While the food is slightly overpriced, the friendliness of the waitstaff and the comfort of the food make this diner an ideal setting to feel at home in the big city. It is usually fairly empty, and people-watching in the booths while eating a grilled cheese is about as relaxing as it gets.
The Strand Underground
The Strand can become pretty zoo-like, but head to the cool lower level to experience a reprieve from Bobst Library while enjoying the smell of old books. Explore each tiny corner and slowly slip away from the craziness of Broadway.
Grand Army Plaza (Manhattan)
For a park where you will not run into anyone from NYU, sit in front of The Plaza Hotel at Grand Army Plaza. At the bottom of Central Park, it feels like old-world New York and will help remind you of the reason you came to the city.
A version of this article appeared in the Thursday, Sept. 25 print edition. Email Emily Bell at [email protected]