- Get a pass for the transit system and use it to explore the city. This is much easier than driving and finding parking, and you really don't get lost this way.
- Skip the tourist areas and get into the neighborhoods. Usually these places have great food and local (interesting) bars.
- Ask the locals. When I am looking for Chinese food, I head to the local Chinatown (most big cities have these) then ask a local where their favorite restaurant is. Another way to find great food it to look into the restaurant windows and find a place that is packed with locals--usually a sign of great food and great prices.
- Before you get to your destination, do a bit of research. Aside from the usual tourist guides (mostly outdated by the time you read them), I usually Google for "things to do in X city" and I also usually post a question about things to do in my destination city on the AskMetafilter site which tends to generate copious responses from the locals.
- Walk. It is hard to find out interesting things about your destination if you are zipping by at 60 miles per hour. Hop off the bus/subway and walk around a bit. It's good exercise and gives you a local eye view on the city.
Wednesday, May 26, 2010
Orient Yourself to a New City in Five Steps
I am out of town at a conference this week. I am also in a new city that I had previously only passed by for airport connections in the past. Here's a few quick ways to orient yourself to a new city: