City Getaways: Ultimate Bucket List

By Jennifer Chen, Travel + Leisure Staff
2/11/2013 12:43:10 PM

Quick, what's your perfect day in New York City? Does it entail a walk across the Brooklyn Bridge and a romantic dinner at a three-Michelin-star restaurant? Or a shopping spree among SoHo's boutiques followed by orchestra seats for the latest Broadway hit? Maybe a Yankees game-hot dogs and cold beer included-is what tops your list of must-dos.


Hotelier, entrepreneur, and born-and-bred New Yorker Ivanka Trump has her own version, which crisscrosses Manhattan. Because let's face it-you'll never find a consensus on what constitutes the perfect NYC day. That's the beauty of the world's great cities: while they have their strong suits, they also are everything to everyone. Whether it's inspiring art, cool shopping, historical close encounters, or just a fun night out that you're after, you'll find a memorable experience on T+L's bucket list of the best city getaways.

Think you already have London checked off? Bet you haven't hung out with cabbies over bacon-and-egg sandwiches (or sarnies, in the local lingo), as recommended by our insider, designer Anya Hindmarch. Been to New Orleans for Mardi Gras? Next time, spend an evening at Preservation Hall, where the house band plays old-time jazz-a tip from author and native New Orleanian Walter Isaacson.

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Art aficionados, don't expect the usual suspects. Sure, Velázquez's masterpieces make a big first impression in person, but Goya's turbulent Black Paintings, also housed in Madrid's Prado, are equally unforgettable. Great modern art can be found outside of the usual zip codes. Exhibit A: the meditative Rothko Chapel in Houston. And don't miss our tip on how to find your way into the secret passage in Florence's Uffizi Gallery.

For some travelers, slipping into rhythms of the everyday is the best thing about a jaunt to another city. It's a chance to act out life's what ifs. So take up tango in Buenos Aires, learn to salsa in Miami, or go clubbing in Berlin. Read on to discover which urban destinations deserve a place on your own life list. - Jennifer Chen

See T+L's Complete Bucket List

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