Fifth Avenue is a major thoroughfare going through the borough of Manhattan in New York City. It stretches from Harlem to Washington Square Park in Greenwich Village. It is considered among the most expensive and best shopping streets in the world – and with good reason!
I always saw pictures of Fifth Avenue in books and on the TV, and was always impressed with what I saw, but when I got the chance to visit for myself it all looked so much better! I would say that there are so many landmarks in New York that many people even forget about Fifth Avenue (Empire State Building, Statue of Liberty, Roosevelt Tramway, Central Park, Times Square etc.), yet possibly this place that is full of art-deco architecture screams “NEW YORK CITY” more than anything else.
By Bus, you can get here on the M1, M2, M3, M4 or M5 buses will all lead to stops along Fifth Avenue, whereas on the famous New York Subway, use trains E or M and exit at Fifth Ave/53rd Street, OR use trains N, Q, or R and exit at Fifth Ave/59th Street.
The section of Fifth Avenue that crosses Midtown Manhattan, especially that between 49th Street and 60th Street, is lined with prestigious shops and is consistently ranked among the most expensive shopping streets in the world, comparing well with the likes of Regent Street in London, the Ginza area of Tokyo, and even Orchard Road in Singapore. For several years, the shopping district between 49th and 57th Streets has been ranked as having the world’s most expensive retail space on a cost per square foot basis.
It would be impossible to chronicle all of the shops I entered, but most of the world’s luxury boutiques are located on Fifth Avenue, and these include Louis Vuitton, Tiffany & Co., Gucci, Prada, Bottega Veneta, Armani, Fendi, Versace, Cartier, Omega, Disney, Nike, Swarovski, Bvlgari, Apple, De Beers, and many, many more. One smaller shop that caught my attention was the Lindt chocolate shop. These smaller speciality shops are prevalent throughout Fifth Avenue, so I thought it was time to treat myself to a few chocolate balls, and it was money well spent! I also found a Turkish bakery called Simit Sarayi, where I enjoyed a nice, warm bread ring called a simit. Ah, good times – it feels like I’m back beside the Bosphorus again!
Although I didn’t do much shopping on this occasion (well apart from some chocolate and a key lime pie), it was still a real joy to experience the hustle and bustle of this part of midtown Manhattan, NYC. There are plenty of tourists here, as you can imagine, so it feels very safe at times. The New Yorkers are usually busy briskly walking from building to building to carry out interviews and meetings as part of their job, so they are easy to spot!
When the shopping becomes too overpowering for you, then you have nearby the Washington Square Park as well as the Guggenheim Museum, which provide other opportunities for you in which to spend some time. Ultimately, though, people come to Fifth Avenue for a touch of retail therapy – or at least do some people-watching as you slowly make your way down this gigantic street (or line of streets)!