Maps serve no purpose in New York City. First, you just become that tourist holding up the sidewalk as you try to find your bearings. And second. You miss the city swarming, breathing, living around you.

The city offers a wealth of experiences. A lifetime of memories. More bars, restaurants and instantly recognisable sites than any other. New York is a city rich in architectural heritage and constantly changing global culinary experiences. It is a city that caters to your needs whether you’re staying at the opulent Waldorf Astoria, or the modish Standard High Line, or something cheaper.

The luxurious interior of the 47-storey Waldorf Astoria hotel on Park Avenue in Midtown Manhattan, New York. (Image: Michal CC BY-NC-ND 2.0, via Flickr)

The sky shines blue through its skyscraper canyons in spring. The air is crisp in autumn and winters can be magical. It is stylish, relentless and historical.

It’s the city of the Knicks and Rucker Park black-top pick-up basketball, the Amazin’ Mets and softball leagues in Central Park. It is Yankee Stadium and the family atmosphere of minor league baseball on Staten Island.

An aerial view of New York’s 341-hectare Central Park in Manhattan. (Image: Anthony Quintano, CC BY-NC-ND 2.0, via Flickr)

Walk from Manhattan over the Brooklyn Bridge to the coolest “city” on the planet Brooklyn. Explore the hipster craftsmen stores in DUMBO or head to Brooklyn Heights for its views of Manhattan’s skyline.

New York is the Bryant Park Summer Film Festival and the Coney Islands Mermaid Parade. It’s that heart-stopping moment the Coney Island Cyclone rollercoaster crests and all that lies in front of you is the ocean.

The Cyclone rollercoaster on Coney Island, New York. (Image: Zachary Korb, CC BY-NC 2.0, via Flickr)

The city is Broadway and Fourth of July fireworks. It’s Nathan’s World Famous hot dogs and Gray’s Papaya Recession Special and the Madison Square Park Shake Shack.

It’s a city that invites you to walk. Take a subway. Flag down a yellow cab. It’s views of downtown Manhattan and the Statue of Liberty sliding by from the Staten Island Ferry. New York is the shimmering skyline at night and the moving 911 Ground Zero Memorial.

The reflecting pools of the Ground Zero Memorial are set in the bases of the two World Trade Centre skyscrapers destroyed in the September 11 2001 attacks on New York. (Image: Sobekhotep, CC BY-NC-ND 2.0, via Flickr)

The city that never sleeps is a year-round adventure. It’s the Christmas winter wonderland of song at St John the Divine, and festive window displays. The Christmas tree at Rockefeller Centre. It’s walking tours of Sex and the City and Mad Men TV show locations. It’s the ornate beauty of the Surrogates Court building.

The interior of the Cathedral of St John the Divine in Morningside Heights, New York. (Image: Bobby Bradley, CC BY-NC 2.0, via Flickr)

The Big Apple is a city of food. A slice of pizza and a bagel tastes better here. It’s a city of 8-million people and exotic cultures. Of chilaquilles and mofongo de mariscos. Of Katz’s pastrami sandwiches. Caviar toast and cocktails.

It’s the waiter choosing your meal at Dominick’s in the Bronx or the village setting of Vatan Indian Vegetarian. Whether it’s the bow-tied waiters at Peter Luger or the butter-enriched bun of Pearl’s lobster roll, New York offers every culinary experience you can imagine.

Katz’s Deli on the Lower East Side is famous for its hot New York pastrami sandwiches. (Image: Peasap, CC BY 2.0, via Flickr)

New York, New York, a city so nice they named it twice – is safe and welcoming. New Yorkers are quick to start up a conversation and make you part of their own adventure.

Honestly, do you really need a reason to visit New York?

Just don’t dawdle on the sidewalk.

New York City seen from the One World Observatory – a view 382 metres up. (Image: Kolitha de Silva, CC BY 2.0, via Flickr)