How to enjoy the city in just a few hours

New York how to enjoy the city in just a few hours

North America

Those traveling to the main cities of the USA often ends up doing connection in New York. When the waiting time at the airport isn’t too short, it’s worth going out to see the city or see the new things that never stop happening there.

One of my times in the country, I was returning from North Caroline and caught a flight that would connection in New York for 8 hours no Newark Airport, close to the city. I did a lot of research into whether I could easily get out of New Jerseywhere the airport is, and go to the Big Apple to say at least “hi” to the Times Square.


My flight arrived in Newark before 2pm and the other one didn’t leave until 9:55pm. After reading a lot about what would be the best way to get to New York quickly, I decided to take the train at Newark Airport.

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Newark airport is very big. Inside, to get from one place to another and get to the station, you have to take an airtrain. So, just for that, you can spend about 15 minutes. Then, when you arrive at the station, you still have to wait for the next train to pass to New York. There goes another 20 minutes.

Train that takes you from Newark airport to New York (Photo: This World is Ours)

I bought both tickets (round trip) at once. I think it’s important to buy a return ticket on your way out because the risk of getting carried away and being late is high, so guarantee your return ticket.

Train that takes you from Newark Airport to New York City (Photo: This World is Ours)

The train was old, but in about 40 minutes it was very close to Times Squarealready NY Penn Station, near 34th and 7th Avenue. Don’t confuse Newark Penn Station (which is very close to the airport) with New York Penn Station, which is where you will get off.

How I wanted to walk around, I took the subway to station 42, which is the Times Square station. When I arrived it was still just over 3pm!

When it was time to return, even though it was a Sunday and I had already checked my bags, I preferred to go to the train station at 6pm (My flight wasn’t until 9:55 pm). It was the best thing I did because I found it difficult to find the train and had time to get lost. I arrived at the airport early. I could have stayed in New York until 7 or 7:30 p.m., but I preferred to languish at the airport rather than miss my flight.


Before talking about what you can effectively do during a connection in New York, we’ve put together some important tips.

Remember that it is necessary to deduct from the connection hours the time spent getting off the plane, to go through immigration (if it is an international flight), pick up the bags and check them in again (in some cases! Always remember to check this when checking in), plus time to leave the airport and then return to it. In addition to having to arrive at least 1h30 before flight time to board calmly.

In my case, for example, the connection in New York took 8 hours, but I actually had practically 3 hours in the city, since 2h30 was spent leaving the airport and then returning, plus 1h between leaving the plane and getting on the airtrain. Not to mention that I wanted to arrive 1h30 in advance to board calmly, as there is often a queue and X-rays in the United States tend to be more rigorous.

Another important point, If you left Brazil to go to a country other than the United States, but purchased a ticket with a connection in the country, you must have an American visa. Even if you don’t want to leave the airport during the connection, you will only be able to board if you have the document.

Times Square in New York (Photo: This World is Ours)


Another important information. In New York, almost everything is close to the subway. So this will probably be the means of transport you use during the connection. To ride the subway in the city you need to buy the Metro card.


Short on connection time in New York It is possible to stroll through Times Square, take photos of the signs and see the main tourist attractions in the region. You can have fun in M&Ms store and then still pass by the headquarters of Macys or stop at a store and buy souvenirs. Along with Times Square, if you are quick enough, you can go through Fifth Avenue and by Central Park using the subway preferably.

+ See more Times Square tips


Walking aimlessly along Fifth Avenue is already an attraction. You can walk around it, enter the Apple Store and also pass by the Library, which is beautiful. I did exactly that during the 3:30 hours I had in the city. I went to Times Square and from there I walked to Fifth Avenue. Afterwards, I went to a little shop and bought some souvenirs. As I had little time, I didn’t sit down to eat. I bought a sandwich and ate it on the go.

Fifth Avenue in New York (Photo: This World is Ours)

Macys store in New York (Photo: This World is Ours)

Fifth Avenue in New York (Photo: This World is Ours)


Always controlling the time and remembering to take into account the journey back to the airport and the time needed to board, It is possible to walk a little through Central Park during a connection in New York and get to know, among other things, the park area made to honor John Lennon. The area is close to Dakota Buildingthe building where the singer lived and the place where he was murdered.

Connection in New York (Photo: This World is Ours)


If it’s not your first time in New York, you can plan and watch a Broadway musical in the afternoon. If this is your choice, it will probably be the only thing you will be able to do there.


Another possibility is to get off at Times Square, walk around there quickly, take the subway again and go straight to Grand Central, that station that appears in several films. There are some restaurants there too.

Connection in New York (Photo: This World is Ours)


These two postcards of New York are worth visiting. However, they tend to be quite full. To be able to climb one of them during a connection in New York, you need to know that one of them will probably be the only attraction to be visited.

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+ Is it worth going to Empire States?

Connection in New York (Photo: This World is Ours)

Empire State in New York (Photo: This World is Ours)


Just like Top of The Rock and Empire States, the One World Observatory, the new World Trade Center, is another important tourist attraction in the city. It is not usually as crowded as other buildings and is worth the trip.

+ See what it’s like to go to the One World Observatory

Connection in New York (Photo: This World is Ours)


The trip to the Statue of Liberty tends to take longer (about 2 hours or 3 hours). I wouldn’t choose to do it during a connection in New Yorkas you leave the city and run the risk of having a problem with the ferry, for example.

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Connection in New York (Photo: This World is Ours)

It is definitely worth leaving the airport for a connection in New York as long as you have enough time for this and don’t get lost in the hours. Remembering that everyone has their own pace, whether they walk faster or slower. Therefore, pay attention to these details before you decide to leave the airport. Some people would certainly miss their flight because it would take a while to leave the airport, find the train, buy the ticket, find the subway station, get to New York and go the other way. Therefore, do not act on impulse. Plan calmly and make your time count.

+ See all destination tips
+ Renata Ceribelli lists her favorite things to do in the city
+ List: Five unmissable places in NY

Adolfo Nomelini

Journalist graduated from PUC-SP and postgraduate in Communication in Digital Media, he is passionate about music, coxinha, television, his glasses and the internet. He has worked with online content for more than 15 years and spends much of his time “throwing his body out into the world, walking everywhere and, according to the natural law of encounters, leaving and receiving something.”

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