Welcome to the Upper West Side
An upper Manhattan neighborhood with numerous historic and cultural sites along with cozy bistros and coffee shops
Framed by 59th Street on the south side and 125th to the north, the Upper West Side is one of the most popular neighborhoods in upper Manhattan. You'll find pop culture references and familiar spots from famous films and television series wherever you go.
The entire area is like a pantheon to New York culture — the Lincoln Center and American Museum of Natural History are located here. Everywhere you turn you’ll see elegant brownstones, coffee shops, cozy bistros and beautiful natural attractions like Central Park and the Hudson River.
What to Love
- Close to Central Park
- Several great bars and fun nightlife
- American Museum of Natural History
- Cultural destination
- Amazing, affordable culinary scene
- Easy access to public transportation
People and Lifestyle
What makes the Upper West Side stand out, apart from its brownstone blocks and cinematic atmosphere, is its more casual way of life in comparison to the Upper East Side. The Upper West Side is a more subdued neighborhood that appeals to those who like being near creative outlets and culture. In recent years, more baby boomers who want to live somewhere happening have flocked to the area, but it's also popular with a diverse younger crowd and with professionals.
Dining, Shopping and Entertainment
Dagon is a fantastic new restaurant located on the Upper West Side. It's got a relaxed vibe and a great bar scene that’s ideal for fans of Mediterranean cuisine with Levantine influences.
Tasca is a multi-level tavern with a mix of eating spaces ranging from a patio to an airy subterranean level. It even has a wine cellar! The menu fuses Spanish and Caribbean cuisines, creating bold flavors and delicious dishes.
If you're planning to take in a show at the Lincoln Center, the best place to eat beforehand is the high-end Chinese restaurant Shun Lee West. Shun Lee West provides a menu brimming with delectable gourmet dishes. If Vietnamese is more your style, Bánh is an excellent choice. Chick Chick is a relatively new Korean restaurant known for its Nashville Hot Chickwich.
What would New York be without some fantastic bagel shops? One of the best on the Upper West Side is Absolute Bagels, where you can get hand-rolled, housemade bagels with any spreads you want. Try Old John's Diner or Mama's TOO! for pizza, burgers, and other casual American classics.
There is no place better than Magnolia or Levain Bakery for all things sweet and confectionary. Magnolia is a New York staple and has two locations, including the one on the Upper West Side. They’re known for their unique cupcakes with decadent flavor combinations. At Levain, you can get one of the best chocolate chip cookies in the world.
Things to Do
The American Museum of Natural History is one of the most popular tourist destinations in the United States. Here you’ll take in awe-inspiring dinosaur fossils, a blue whale, and other fascinating exhibits that include a planetarium, a library, and a collection of over 34 million different species of fossils, minerals, plants, animals, and more.
If you want to take in a show, whether it be dance, opera, jazz, ballet, or theatre, the Upper West Side is the place for you. The world-class Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts features the very best in music, opera, theater, cinema, dance, and more.
The Lincoln Center includes the Metropolitan Opera, home to the Metropolitan Opera Company. With a seating capacity of 3,850, this is the largest repertory opera house in the world. The New York City Ballet is also located on the Upper West Side and is one of the foremost ballet companies in the world.
Get some fresh air and your steps in at Riverside Park, which stretches along the Hudson River and features several historic sites alongside picnic areas, dog-friendly spaces, a public pier, sports fields, and the 79th Street Boat Basin marina.