What the Pope Should Do While Visiting NYC

I admit – I’m no expert on the Pope. However, having lived in New York pretty much my entire life, and having spent three glorious years in New York City, I’d like to make a few suggestions for his NYC visit.

It seems his Holiness is seeing a lot of the city, and is not eating anything extravagant. According to the New York Times, he’s going to be eating rice, fish, bananas and drinking water (hopefully NYC tap water!). If he were interested in trying some real New York cuisine, I have a few suggestions, and also some sights that aren’t included on his tour. I’m trying to keep his interests in mind, and also nothing here is too extravagant. My suggested itinerary will certainly give his Holiness a good idea of the diversity and culture that is here in our big city.

First stop: Da Bronx

First he should stop at the New York Botanical Garden and look at the Frida Kahlo exhibit, before it ends November 1. Not only will he get to see the awesome installation, but he can wander through the greenhouse to see flora from every climate zone. Talk about a world tour!

The greenhouse at the NYBG
Frida Kahlo Exhibit
Frida Kahlo Exhibit at the New York Botanical Garden in the Bronx

Afterwards, he should mosey on over to the Bronx Zoo and see some animals that definitely can’t be found in the Vatican.

What are you!
They may be asleep, but aww!

Second Stop: East Harlem

Heading on down to Manhattan, or while he’s in Spanish Harlem, he should head to First Avenue and 116th to stop at Las Camaradas, a funky Puerto Rican bar that usually has live music, happy hour specials and some good snacks. I had veggie empanadas last time I was there. Pretty delicious, but not great for the diet.

Vegetable empanadas
Vegetable empanadas with a side of yum.

Third Stop: Museum Mile

While we’re uptown, head to the Metropolitan Museum of Art. Art from all over the world, and lots of religious art at that. I’m sure he would definitely love this museum, if he hasn’t been there already. If so, tons of museums are there to choose from. Maybe he’s more into Modern Art.

The Metropolitan Museum of Art
The Temple of Dendur at the Metropolitan Museum of Art

Fourth Stop: West Side High Line

If his Holiness hasn’t had enough of parks following his gathering in Central Park, he should take a stroll along the High Line, one of my favorite places downtown. And a great place to “get away from it all.”

The High Line
The High Line

Fifth Stop: Lower East Side

By then, anyone would have worked up an appetite. Good news, because there some good eats heading east from the High Line. If the Pope would like to try some classic New York deli sandwiches, he should of course head to Katz’s on E Houston Street.

Katz's Deli
Katz’s Deli

A few blocks from there is The Pickle Guys where he can get any type of pickle imaginable.

Small pickles? Large pickles? Pope pickles?
Try a pickle!
Try one!

If he’s still hungry, he should definitely stop for a street pretzel.

Street pretzel
Street pretzels are the best.

Last Stop: Brooklyn Bridge

To round out the day, head to Brooklyn to the Brooklyn Bridge Park to get a look at the bridge before the sun goes down.


Sorry Queens and Staten Island – his Holiness will have to save visits there til next time. Well, Pope Francis you are welcome for the suggestions and I hope you enjoy our lovely city! Come back soon.

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