Blog February 13, 2012 by

St Giles

Experience the Big Apple with St Giles New York City

If you choose to learn English at an English school in New York, chances are you want not only to learn English in New York, but also to experience all that the famous Big Apple has to offer!

At our English school in New York, we think offering you a fantastic student social programme is just as important as giving you fantastic English classes! We therefore have a dedicated Activities Coordinator, Anastasiya, who is there to make sure that you get the most out of your time abroad if you choose to learn English in New York with us.

She and her colleagues make sure that our students get the most out of their NYC experience by offering customised advice, assistance, and arranging activities that explore the very best of what the city has to offer! Below, she answers some questions for us about the most popular student activities, and the best things to do and see in NYC!

1. What attracts students to New York rather than other US cities?

The diversity of the city attracts students, and the fact that the city never stops, it has energy and a rhythm 24 hours a day!

2. What do your students enjoy most about the city?

I think the accessibility of the city – many students have been pleasantly surprised that they can use the subway system to take them all over New York and that they do not need a car. Also they can find great entertainment, dining and sightseeing in the city, whatever their budget.

3. What social programme activities have St Giles students enjoyed the most?

Our students have really enjoyed taking a boat ride to Ellis Island and the Statue of Liberty. It’s such a famous attraction around the world, so students always want to go and see the Statue as soon a possible once they arrive! Students can buy tickets in advance online or on the day at the Ferry Terminal!

Sony Wonder Lab is a new attraction in New York which has been very popular attraction among our students. It is a free museum where students can discover and enjoy the advantages of our modern technological world. They can explore and learn how the cell-phone works, create their own news show in a studio with real cameras and microphones, find out how cartoons and video games are programmed; try virtual robot heart surgery and much more!

4. What are the top 5 not-to-be-missed attractions in New York City for students?

If we have to narrow it down, then the top 5 list would be as follows:

1) Times Square – the centre and the heart of Manhattan.

2) Go to the top of the Empire State Building (right next to St Giles) or Top of the    Rock Observation Deck for a breathtaking birds-eye view of Manhattan.

3) Visit the MET (Metropolitan Museum of Art). It is one of the largest art museums in the world and it captivates our students with its extensive collections from around the globe.

4) Staten Island Ferry – Students really enjoying taking the large, free-of-charge ferry offering a different perspective of the city with unforgettable views of the Manhattan skyline, Statue of Liberty, Governor’s Island, East and Hudson Rivers and Jersey City.

5) Ground Zero and 9/11 Memorial – they should visit the construction site of the New Towers and the newly opened Memorial.

5. Are there any others attractions you would like to recommend?

Central Park should not be missed – make sure to stroll around it by foot or park, in sunshine or rain. Students should also go to see a Broadway Show – a very New York experience and always unforgettable. Make sure to see a sports game too – the Yankees (baseball) or the Knicks (basketball) both offer a must-see sport experience.

Visits to the Cathedral of Saint John the Divine and Saint Patrick’s Cathedral are also well worth it, providing a chance to step back from busy NYC life. Meanwhile, a free guided tour of Colombia University, the oldest Ivy League school in NYC, gives a sneak peak of US student life and shows some well-known locations used in many movies.

Lastly, take a subway ride to Coney Island and Brighton beach – you can get on the subway in the centre of the city and go right to the ocean!

6. New York is well-known for its museums – which ones should students make sure they go to see?

They should go to the MET (Metropolitan Museum of Art), the Guggenheim, the Natural History Museum, and the MOMA (Museum of Modern Art) – these are museums which are spoken about around the world for their remarkable collections, architecture and national value.

7. If they fancy a break from the city, what excursions would you most recommend for St Giles students to go to on?

They should take a day trip to Boston, which is easily reached by bus for around $40, and a day tour to Washington DC to see the White House, the Mall and countless museums!

Find out More

Phew, there certainly is a lot to experience in the Big Apple! If you want to find out more about how you can learn English in New York with St Giles, and take part in our varied and exciting social programme, do not hesitate to contact us at