What to Do In: Northern Manhattan

A friend was visiting from out of town last weekend, and we spent most of our time together in Harlem and my neighborhood, Washington Heights. First to start the weekend off right, we went to our favorite haunt, the Shrine, to see some great live music and dance to the DJ spinning African beats.

The Shrine
Jazz at the Shrine

The next day, we went to 116th Street. Why 116th Street you might ask? In my humble opinion, it is one of the most diverse streets uptown. On this one street you can cross borders, oceans, and probably eat any kind of food you have a craving for. On the west side, there are more upscale restaurants and  shops. Heading east, you pass through Little Senegal and then make your way to East Harlem or Spanish Harlem, known for its immigrant communities of Mexicans and Puerto Ricans.

We started at 8th Avenue heading east, walking through Le Petit Senegal and browsed the shops, checked out printed African cloths, earrings, and played tourist at the Malcolm Shabazz Marketplace. We made our way under the Metro North train, to La Marqueta, to smell what was baking at Hot Bread Kitchen, and eastwards in a search for tacos, which we found at Hot Jalepeno.

Tacos
Tacos at Hot Jalepeno

We traversed 125th on our way back to the A train, marveling at all the chain stores, and stopped at Baba’s Fashions on Madison, to see about some alterations.

Fabrics
Fabric selection at Baba’s Fabrics on 125th Street

Before heading to my apartment, we had one more place to go in the Heights. We took the A to 191st and mistakenly had to take THE STAIRS up to Fort Washington. I’ve made this mistake before, but somehow I keep forgetting. It was worth it because we made it to our destination… Cafe Buunni for Ethiopian coffee on 187th and Pinehurst. That night we went back to Harlem to get drinks at Les Ambassades on Lenox, and then of course back to the Shrine. Until next time!

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