The Best Neighborhoods for Nightlife in New York City

The City That Never Sleeps

Every neighborhood in New York has its own atmosphere, vibe, and personality. Some are for tourists, some are for locals, some go to sleep early, and some are lively all night. It's that last category that we're talking about here - and if you're looking for somewhere to go to experience New York's famous nightlife and party scene, then these are the neighborhoods you should visit. While almost all of New York has bars and clubs that are open late, these areas mentioned here tend to have a higher concentration of active spots along their streets so that you can hop from place to place and have a great time. Let's get to it!
West Village
Next to Greenwich Village, West Village has a relaxed vibe with many cafes and shops. It's a charming area that's the perfect place to take a walk. There are many classic brownstones that line the street, with a number of great diners and vintage clothing stores that are fun to explore.
Hell's Kitchen
Despite its edgy name, Hell's Kitchen offers a fun setting with a vibrant theater and restaurant scene. They've renamed the neighborhood Clinton, but the old-school name is still well established in local dialect. The neighborhood has many Broadway and off-Broadway theaters, several green spaces, an ice skating rink, and easy accessibility to Times Square.
Planning a trip to New York City? You might also be interested in Educational Places and Activities in New York City and The Best Activities & Things to Do in Manhattan.
Upper West Side
The Upper West Side offers easy access to Central Park and Riverside Park. It's also where you'll find the American Museum of Natural History. This neighborhood comes to life during the day when there are great running trails, awesome restaurants, and unique shopping opportunities, but you may want to look elsewhere for nightlife as the neighborhood quiets down as the evening arrives.
East Village
This artistic neighborhood has a history of welcoming struggling artists and writers. Today it's home to a diverse population of immigrants and blue collar workers as well as students from NYU, Pratt, and The New School. The neighborhood has a number of great ethnic restaurants, coffeeshops, and eclectic stores that are fun to wander through.
Lower East Side
The Lower East Side is where you'll find Chinatown, Little Italy, and tons of great ethnic restaurants. The neighborhood has a long history of bringing immigrant populations together. There are also many museums, galleries, and nightlife in the area.
Greenpoint was historically a Polish neighborhood, but today it offers a diverse mix of independent bookshops, eclectic art galleries, and dive bars. This neighborhood also has the McCarren Park, where you can swim, ice skate, or play a game of ball. This area is a bit trickier to get to from a transportation perspective, but it does have a lot of character.
Bushwick is a very ethnically diverse neighborhood. It has the Memorial Gore Park as well as some great nightlife and delicious restaurants. The transportation is convenient into Manhattan as well.
This hipster neighborhood attracts the artsy and creative types. The are many coffee shops, live music venues, and a lively nightlife scene. For shopping, check out the many boutiques along Bedford Avenue. The neighborhood is accessible by the L train as well as the East River Ferry.
Interested in more travel advice for New York City? Check out The Best Broadway Theatres in New York City and The Best Family-Friendly Activities in Manhattan.
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