BEA Part of It: My Personal To-Do List!

In the past for our BEA Part of It series (which is organized by Estelle for the third year in a row!), I've shared food recommendations, my favorite areas for shopping and tips on how to get around NYC. This time I wanted to do something totally different and share my personal NYC to-do list. Even though I'm here every day, I don't get to explore as often as I'd like and truthfully, there's just always something new to see in the city! I'm determined to cross off at least two of these places and for those of you looking for new things to see in NYC, I hope this will give you some great ideas.

The Cloisters

The Cloisters has been on my personal NYC to-do list since college and I still haven't gone! It's a branch of The Metropolitan Museum of Art (which I have been to multiple times!) that has gardens plus art and architecture dedicated to Medieval Europe. It's supposed to be beautiful. And considering how long I've wanted to visit, I still can't believe I haven't made time for it yet. But this is the year you guys. I'm definitely going with my BFFs when it's warmer.

The Original Greenwich Village Food & Culture Walking Tour

When I went to Chicago last year, I went on a food tour and our guide said that if we had the chance, we should sign up for the Greenwich Village one. She raved about it and I've been wanting to go ever since.

I think what's fun about walking food tours is that you're not just eating all this delicious food at local spots. Although that's clearly a highlight! With the right tour guide, they'll also tell you about history, culture, architecture and more.

Walk across the Brooklyn Bridge 

Even though I've seen the bridge from afar, what I'd love to do is walk across it. I had plans to do this last summer and for reasons I can't remember, they fell through. Again, when it's warmer, I'm going to make this happen! I'm already imagining all the amazing pictures I could take.

Chinatown Ice Cream factory 

Last year I created this spreadsheet called Project Ice Cream. It listed a bunch of ice cream places in the city and a handful of them were recommendations from coworkers. Chinatown Ice Cream Factory was one of the recs and the reviews online have been great. They have all the typical flavors you'd expect but they also have really unusual ones! Which are the ones I personally want to try. Flavors like taro, lychee, almond cookie and more. Plus I can never resist ice cream.

Governor’s Ball 

Another one of those things I say I want to go to every year. And every year, I don't go! The Governor's Ball is a three day musical festival held on Randall's Island and to be completely honest, I have no idea where that is. But I am determined to go one day. I haven't been to many music festivals and this one is conveniently close by. I'm just waiting for the right line-up. Preferably one that includes Florence + the Machine, The Black Keys, The Strokes, and Incubus.

City Hall Subway Station

I tend to gravitate towards off the beaten path type of "tourist" spots and this is definitely one of them. It's a subway station underneath city hall that's been inactive for about 70 years or so and the architecture is supposed to be amazing. To reach it you have to take the 6 train to the Brooklyn Bridge/City Hall station (the last stop, if you're heading south) but don't get off. The train will then turn around the City Hall station loop to give you a view of this usually unreachable location.

and now, a personal recommendation from
one of my favorite local authors, 


As a Brooklyn girl, I wanted to think of something that represents my adopted borough. You won't regret checking out
 the Williamsburg Smorgasburg on Saturdays at East River State Park. Not only is it the best view of the city (prime photo opportunity), but here you get to see Brooklyn hipsters at their finest. Beards! Boys in skinny jeans! Girls who look like Lena Dunham!  Imagine loads of food stalls where you can get anything from asian fusion tacos to micro beer, as well as some of Brooklyn's most famous treats, like doughnuts from Dough. When the weather's good, this is the place to be. It's festive and delicious. Foodie heaven!  

Have you guys been to any of these places?
And do you have any recommendations for me?


  1. The Cloisters are beautiful! I went last summer for the first time and I loved it. I cannot wait to go back! There's actually going to be a Harry Potter cosplay day at The Cloisters next Saturday that I'm hoping I can make it to. Chinatown Ice Cream Factory is also on my NYC to do list! I just made a huge list of ice cream places I want to go to yesterday and I'm planning a vegetarian dim sum / chinatown ice cream excursion on my next free weekend<3

  2. Thank you for this!! I absolutely want to do the City Hall Subway station now! So incredible but i've never heard of it. I'm unfortunately only there for 2 and a half days so I really want to make sure i'm doing the best of the best :)

  3. This are such awesome tips Chelly, thank you! Chinatown ice cream looks divine!! I am so very excited to come back to NYC for BEA and to meet all of you lovelies!!
    ❤️Brittany T

  4. I've not been inside them, but I've been up to where the Cloisters are and it's gorgeous over there. I'm definitely going to try to take my sister while she's still in town! Also, walking the Brooklyn Bridge is just so. dang. fun. I've done it during the day, at night, when it was sunny and when it was freezing, and I've enjoyed it every single time. It just feels epic basically. And I definitely want to visit the Chinatown Ice Cream Factory!!!

  5. We should all walk the Brooklyn Bridge during BEA week! I live downtown and as a part of my "BEA part of it" post, I talked all about the food places down here. And then the Promenade on the other side! WAIT. And the City Hall train station too. That's my stop for school.


with love,