international center photography Weekly Visitors Guide: Midtown
Visiting New York City this weekend? Looking for some fun things to do? Whether you’re a tourist or a tried and true Big Apple resident, our weekly visitors’ guide is here to help — filling you in on the right way to see Manhattan when you’re on a tight schedule. Check out our guide on what to see and do — and what to skip. This weekend, we explore Manhttan’s famous Midtown experience. By Alyson Schwartz.

It’s time for you to put the camera away and look at other people’s photographs instead. The International Center of Photography houses a huge collection of photographs that are available to research by appointment, but there are plenty of other fabulous images on display in their ever-changing exhibits. Moment of Recognition is a newly opened exhibit in their education gallery. A student display, but extremely powerful, it captures people in motion, both psychically and emotionally. Maybe viewing these images will inspire you to actually print out the pictures you take today!

moment of recognition Weekly Visitors Guide: MidtownWhen you are on vacation, make sure to branch out and try new things, especially in your culinary adventures. For lunch, head just a few blocks south to 39th Street between 5th and 6th Avenue for a cheap and delicious lunch at Kati Roll. A kati roll is like a warm Indian wrap sandwich. The wrap is called paratha and is made fresh. There are ten options of fillings which include both meat and vegetarian options, but Chicken Tikka is my favorite. It is more fun if you can taste a variety of fillings, so try to convince your friends to share. 

chicken tikka kati roll flickr Weekly Visitors Guide: Midtown

Chicken Tikka Kati Roll (Flickr Photo)

The main branch of the New York Public Library is housed in a beautiful Beaux-Arts style building on Fifth Avenue at 42nd Street. Opened in 1911, it took almost ten years to build and was visited by over 50,000 people on the first day alone! Besides the enormous collection of books, there are always free exhibits open to the public. Visit the Children’s Center to catch a glimpse of the real Winnie-the-Pooh stuffed animals along with his other friends who are all on permanent display. Free tours are available at 11 and 2 (only 2pm on Sunday) throughout the week, which will truly help you understand and appreciate the history and beauty of the building.

Serving as the backyard to the library is Bryant Park, which turns into a winter wonderland this time of year. Take advantage Citi Pond, an ice skating rink which is free except for the cost of rentals. The line might be long, but it is much shorter than the rink at Rockefeller Center. If you don’t want to wait, you can make reservations for $20 a person. At 5pm on Saturday, view Happy Feet, the kick-off movie of the Winter Film Festival. Watch as you skate, from a sleeping bag in the park, the dedicated viewing area on the Upper Terrace or while eating at Celsius. The glass enclosed restaurant Celsius offers views of the rink, the movie and good food, making it a perfect place for dinner.

International Center of Photography
1133 Avenue of the Americas at 43rd Street
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Kati Roll
49 West 39th St between 5th and 6th Avenue
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New York Public Library

Stephen A. Schwarzman Building
Fifth Avenue at 42nd Street
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The Pond at Bryant Park
Between 40th and 42nd Street and 5th and 6th Avenues
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Alyson Schwartz is the author of the blog Ribbons of Thought, which features musings on topics from fashion to NYC living including fun activities, food and unique finds.

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