The quaint but luxurious cobblestone streets of the far West Village, as well as the historical and cultural cachet of Greenwich Village – located just a bit further east – have been drawing both eager tourists and residents for decades.
In the swinging sixties, Greenwich Village was the epicenter of the hippie movement in New York City, with Beat poets and folk singers making the neighborhood the locus of many a countercultural movement; legends like Bob Dylan, Allen Ginsberg, and Dylan Thomas started their storied careers in the Village.
In recent years, bohemia has given way to prestige real estate, expensive boutiques, and some of the most beautiful blocks in the city. The lucky locals of Greenwich Village and the West Village get to experience cozy bars and restaurants, ready access to the Hudson River, and some of the most desirable housing in Manhattan.
Arguably the best burger in the city can be had right up until 4 a.m. at this classic dive of a joint, which has been serving the West Village since the early 20th century. Mugs of the two house beers - ale or lager - for absurdly low prices, unparalleled people-watching, and adorably surly bartenders make Corner Bistro an ideal local bar, for both actual locals and visitors from all over the world, including the occasional celebrity.The Corner Bistro
At the heart of New York University and one of the city’s favorite gathering spots, this landmark park is easily recognized by its Memorial Arch - modeled upon Paris’ Arc de Triomphe, it sits at the start of lower 5th Avenue - and fountain, which in the summer months is open to waders and splashers. The 9.75 acre park is always full of students, locals, and tourists enjoying colorful street entertainers and musicians.Washington Square Park
The West Village has its share of jazz clubs, but none more celebrated than the dark, subterranean, triangle-shaped Vanguard. Opened in 1935, it has hosted up and comers and legends alike - and has been responsible for making many of the former into the latter. In its early years it was a site for political debate, poetry slams, and folk concerts, but since the 1950’s it’s been simply the most preeminent jazz venue in the city.Village Vanguard
New York has a well-earned reputation as a city where you can get anything you want at any time, but rarely does one find billiards, foosball, shuffleboard, ping pong, beer, and great jazz until 5 a.m. - all at the same place. Fat Cat is a sprawling basement venue constantly hosting a fantastic jazz jam session as a backdrop to any tabletop game imaginable.Fat Cat