New York City's Meatpacking District is the neighborhood for everything cool. It runs from West 14th Street to Gansevoort Street and from the Hudson River to Hudson Street. In the early 1900s it was the home to over 200 slaughterhouses and meat packing plants (as well as other industries including cigar making and automobile repair), but now, over 100 years later, it is one of the city's most popular areas to socialize. From shopping at one of the many boutiques to walking the beloved High Line, these are the top things to do in the Meatpacking District.
See Art at the Whitney Museum
The Whitney Museum of Art is one of New York City's most famous art museums and one of the most prestigious in the world. Its permanent collection focuses on 20th and 21st century American art collected by Gertrude Vanderbilt Whitney, a socialite after whom the museum is named. Originally located in Manhattan's Upper East Side, the Whitney moved to the Meatpacking District in May of 2015.
You could easily spend all day browsing the 50,000-square-feet of indoor galleries. The museum also has numerous outdoor balconies that let you enjoy the art and magnificent views of Manhattan. If you're hungry after an art-filled day, head to Untitled, the seasonal restaurant on the museum's ground floor. The food is delicious, and the many windows make it the perfect place to people watch.
Stroll Along the High Line
For decades the Meatpacking District had an abandoned railroad track running directly through it. Now it is one of New York City's best parks. The 1.45 mile long elevated path — called The Highline — goes from Ganesvoort Street, right next to the Whitney Museum, to 34th Street.
The best way to enjoy the High Line is to walk it, end to end. You'll see wild plants blowing in the wind, views of the Hudson River, The Vessel and the Meatpacking District, and lots of public art. There are also vendors that sell art, food, and drinks on the High Line. The park hosts events multiple times a year including concerts and movie series. Check out the schedule on the High Line's website.
Eat Your Way Through Gansevoort Market
The Gansevoort Market, first opened in 1884, was the first open-air produce market in the New York region. Now it has been reborn as a trendy food hall. It's easy to spend hours at the Gansevoort Market trying different snacks and meals from all over the world. You can find everything from gourmet pizza and burgers to exotic snacks from Asia. The market is open 7 a.m. to 9 p.m. daily. For the current list of vendors head to their website.
Brunch at Bubby's
New Yorkers love brunch, and Bubby's is great place for brunch with the whole family. There is a soda fountain bar that serves homemade ice cream, milkshakes, and sodas. Try the pancake flight, which lets you taste their traditional pancakes with an assortment of sweet toppings: think caramelized bananas and nutella.
Shop Local at Artists & Fleas
Fans of indie brands and handcrafted art, indie brands, jewelry, vintage clothes and more will be in heaven at Artists & Fleas, an artisan marketplace. Take your time to browse the many sellers' wares and chat with the sellers to learn more about what their selling and the creative process. While many products are handcrafted just for you, other may be vintage treasures you can't find anywhere else. The market also regularly holds special events including artist talks. Check the website for the schedule before your visit.
Drink German Beer in The Standard Biergarten
The Standard Biergarten is a recreation of a German beer garden tucked underneath the High Line. A part of the Standard Hotel, it offers traditional snacks from sausages to giant pretzels. In the summer you can sit around a giant table, known as a Stammtisch, and pour yourself three types of German beer from a tap. They also recently opened a game room where you can battle your friends at foosball, giant connect four pick up sticks, and more.
Party Outside at Brass Monkey
The Brass Monkey has been the Meatpacking Districts neighborhood bar since 2004 and has maintained its casual, down-to-earth vibe. When the weather is nice, grab a table on the roof where you can enjoy your drinks and enjoy views of the Hudson River. Once you've gotten your fill of the outdoors, head inside to dance the night away.
Discover New Artists at LUMAS
The Lumas Gallery often gets overlooked because of it's proximity to the Whitney, but it's well worth a visit. This gallery specializes in photography and organizes the artwork by theme: people, animals, landscapes, cities, and so on. If you know nothing about wall art the knowledgeable guides will blow your mind with their expertise and maybe even help you find a new favorite artist.