Top 10 Must Visit Spots in FiDi, Locals Editon
The Financial District, or FiDi as the locals call it, has so many hidden secrets often overlooked by tourists when they visit New York City. Everyone flocks to see the Charging Bull, the New York Stock Exchange and the Freedom Tower, but there's so much more to see and do, if you know where to go. We've rounded up our 'must visit' spots that are lesser-known, but just as worthwhile to visit when you're Downtown.
Sitting at the southern-most tip of the island of Manhattan is this vibrant and beautiful park surrounded by stunning water views of the Hudson River, Lady Liberty and beyond. Take a stroll along the water's edge and watch as cruise ships and boats come and go through the busy waterway.
Ground Zero & National 9/11 Memorial and Museum
FiDi is most known around the globe for the tragic events that took place on September 11, 2001. Today, the memorial site and muesem that stands in the footprint of the Twin Towers is something that every local New Yorker or visiting tourist should see. The somber site features two 30-foot waterfalls with names of the deceased etched into the surrounding railings. Underground, the museum takes visitors through the day's tragic events, making for an incredibly worthwhile experience.
Be warned: you'll need at least an hour to even scratch the surface of this shopper's paradise. You’ll find everything from men's, women's and children's apparel to footwear, handbags, housewares and more at this landmark shopping destination, all marked at least 65% off the retail price. Even the high-end designers are featured prominently through the racks, so prepare to find some seriously good deals.
Nomad's Tip: For those who love denim, find a huge range of Rag & Bone, Frame and Paige jeans at super low prices at Century 21.
westfield world trade center
The most impressive recent architectural addition to FiDi, the Westfield World Trade Center is a must-see for everyone visiting New York, even if it's just to marvel at the spectacle of the building itself. Of course, a little shopping in the 150+ stores located inside doesn't hurt either.
When it comes to dining in FiDi, Augustine is as good as it gets. Think Balthazar, but for bankers, and with somewhat better food. A cool French brasserie in every sense, the menu is large and varied, and the food is excellent.
Another architecturally impressive shopping destination (can you tell we love to shop?), Brookfield Place has become known for its trendy food court and ultra-luxury boutiques. When you're tired of shopping, grab a coffee and enjoy the views of the Statue of Liberty at the river's edge out the back of the complex.
This narrow cobblestone street in the heart of the Financial District is home to some of the best restaurants and bars south of Chambers Street. The area is the present-day backdrop for the popular Stone Street Oyster Festival and home to a variety of restaurants, pubs and pizzerias. Weather permitting, tables are placed in the streets making it one of the few places in New York City that allows for drinking in the streets.
Amidst the bustle and noise of the Financial District hides a secluded garden oasis above the city streets... a one-acre meadow flanked by delightfully designed gardens and plantings elevated above the city streets. Its entrance is fairly anonymous, an escalator at 55 Water Street, set back from the sidewalk. Currently surrounded by construction, passersby will often overlook it. But if you venture up the escalators you will find the marvelous Elevated Acre, a perfect spot to take a breather from the day's adventures.
The Dead Rabbit
Our favourite bar south of Chambers Street. It’s part cocktail bar, part restaurant, located across a few floors in an old building on Water Street. The space feels very old New York (like, 1700s old), and many of the cocktails are served in fancy little teacups. Well worth a visit.
Nomad's Tip: The Dead Rabbit is currently underdoing renovations and will reopen in 2019. Sit tight!
For one of New York's best - and most hidden - coffee expereinces, be sure to stop by Voyager Espresso. Tucked into the tunnels of the Fulton Street subway station, Voyager Coffee makes sure that every last detail has been considered, from the espresso drinks that are served on marble slabs to the USB outlets fitted conveniently throughout the space.
Nomad's Tip: Skip the maze-like route through the office building, and enter the subway station from the street entrance on John Street near William Street. Descend the stairs, pass by the newsstand hawking lotto tickets, and you'll find Voyager on your right.
seaport DISTRICT NYC
Once known as 'South Street Seaport', the newly dubbed 'Seaport District NYC' has recently become a cultural hotspot for locals and tourists alike. Take in the unparalleled views of the Brooklyn Bridge and the city’s iconic skyline while you stoll the hipster pop up boutiques and homewares stores that have recently landed in this newly revistalised part of town.
Nomad's Tip: Later this year, Pier 17 will reopen with a rooftop event space and new ventures by restaurateurs David Chang, Andrew Carmellini, and Jean-Georges Vongerichten.