Situated in Queens, the most ethnically diverse county in the US, Astoria is home to a dizzying array of cultures. The neighborhood is composed of quiet streets and lively thoroughfares, where cafes spill onto the sidewalk. It also features Astoria Park and New York City's oldest beer garden. Several movies and TV shows, including "Goodfellas," "All in the Family," and "Serpico," were filmed in Astoria.
Bay Ridge, located in the southwest corner of Brooklyn, is a neighborhood rich in immigrant culture. Irish, Arabic, Italian, Chinese and Greek residents make up most of the population. Filled with apartment buildings and multi-family homes, Bay Ridge is an urban neighborhood with a suburban atmosphere. The area is known for its 69th Street Pier, "step streets," and unusual colony of wild monk parakeets.
Bushwick is the bridge between the Brooklyn neighborhoods of Williamsburg and Bedford-Stuyvesant, both geographically and culturally. Its shops and businesses cater to new immigrants and hipster residents.
A walk down Canal Street reveals the amazing food, strange shops and unmistakable hanzi of Chinese immigrants who have settled in this enclave south of Little Italy. Landmarks include the Kimlau Memorial archway in Chatham Square, a statue of Confucius in Confucius Plaza, and countless facades mimicking traditional Chinese architecture. The neighborhood is home to thousands of residents from several East Asian countries.
In the heart of central Brooklyn, Crown Heights typifies the variety of New York City. In the same small neighborhood there are splendid urban mansions and run-down apartment buildings, which house a population of African and Caribbean Americans, Hispanics, and Hasidic Jews.
East Harlem has always been home to the city's newest wave of immigrants. In its current incarnation, it is also known as Spanish Harlem or El Barrio, and is one of the city's most richly Hispanic communities.
A picture of both gentrification and poverty, with million-dollar condos and low-income housing projects, the East Village has been home to one of the city's (and the country's) most vibrant art scenes.
This urban neighborhood in northern Queens is home to the largest ethnic Chinese community in the city. In fact, foreign-born residents make up a majority of the population in this ethnic enclave.
The last stop on the D train opens to the bustling sidewalk of Fordham Road in the northern Bronx. The area has long been home to working-class people who want to live just a short train ride from Manhattan. The brownstones and tenement buildings once settled by Italian immigrants are now predominantly Latino.
Home to the Gowanus Canal and the Gowanus Expressway, this industrial neighborhood in eastern Brooklyn is one of the last communities where residents and manufacturers compete for space.
At the northernmost tip of Brooklyn is Greenpoint, a historic waterfront community. The neighborhood's unique location between three major waterways makes it a gateway to both Queens and Manhattan. Like much of the city, it is home to residents from a wide range of ethnic backgrounds, but it carries a distinctly Polish-American flavor. This is widely recognized as the best place in the city to find borscht and pierogi.
Greenwich Village is situated on the lower west side of Manhattan, with a thriving arts scene and a range of shops and restaurants. What was once the bohemian center of the Beat literary movement is now a charming, but pricey, residential area that's home to many celebrities. The neighborhood includes New York University's main campus and historic Washington Square Park.
Throughout the 20th century Harlem, served as the capital of black America, as well as the center of black culture and business during the Harlem Renaissance. Like other communities in the city, Harlem has recently faced gentrification in the form of luxury housing and national retail chains.
Jackson Heights is one of the most diverse neighborhoods in the world. About half of its residents are immigrants, mainly coming from Latin America, India and Asia.
Jersey City lies just across the Hudson River from Lower Manhattan. With 11 miles of waterfront, the city has enjoyed a renaissance as workers migrate there seeking more reasonable costs of living. This shift, and the development of a "Wall Street West" financial district, vastly improved the area's downtown.
Kings Highway, named after a road that existed before Christopher Columbus ever reached the New World, is the area immediately surrounding the avenue that once ran from Brooklyn's northeastern to southeastern ends. Today it is mostly residential, providing homes to an eclectic middle class and more than 100 stores and shops.
One of the most historic neighborhoods in the country, the LES these days blends Old World cuisines with New World boutiques and a mix of old and new money.
Midtown Manhattan is the largest central business district in the world and is home to iconic landmarks like the Empire State Building, the Chrysler Building, and Times Square. The busy sidewalks of this entertainment enclave are constantly choked with both tourists and New Yorkers hitting the town for the lavish shopping on Fifth Avenue and the world-class theaters on Broadway.
The Manhattan neighborhood of Murray Hill was, until recently, a quiet bastion of older well-heeled residents. But young professionals have slowly taken over, bringing with them restaurants and bars. The area does include its own version of ethnic diversity, however, with dozens of Missions to the UN located within its borders.
Queensbridge is home to the largest public housing development in North America, but also part of the quickly gentrifying area of Long Island City in the northwestern section of Queens. The development is separated into two complexes, the North Houses on 40th Avenue and the South Houses on 41st Avenue. Nearby is Queensbridge Park, which hosts sports and music performances.
Rego Park in central Queens is a predominantly Jewish neighborhood that has seen an influx of Eastern European and Central Asian immigrants since its development began in the 1920s.
The Ridgewood neighborhood of Queens borders Brooklyn and was a historically German area. Like other neighborhoods in the borough, it is now home to a wide variety of ethnic groups, including Polish, Albanian, Italian, Puerto Rican, Dominican, Mexican, Chinese, and Egyptian residents. The hilly area is densely packed with multi-family homes, shopping and dining.
On the Rockaway Peninsula in Queens is an urban beachfront community that's farther from Manhattan than any other neighborhood in New York City. Nonetheless, it is as diverse as the rest: The majority of its population is African American, but it also includes large Orthodox Jewish and Central American populations.
Shorthand for "South of Houston," SoHo is a Manhattan neighborhood loaded with shops, restaurants and bars -- making it a popular destination for tourists. Formerly known as the Cast Iron District, SoHo features the world's greatest collection of cast-iron architecture. SoHo is a prime example of gentrification, evolving from warehouse spaces to artist lofts to expensive up-scale condos.
The South Bronx, the birthplace of hip-hop, was once known nationally for its rampant crime and drug abuse. Today grassroots efforts and a citywide decrease in crime has helped the community rebound.
The historic South Street Seaport in Manhattan is an East River destination adjacent to the Financial District. It includes the largest concentration of restored early 19th-century commercial buildings in the city, and the largest fleet of privately owned ships in the country. The area was revitalized as a tourist destination, with chain stores, restaurants and public performers.
A world-famous landmark, Times Square is known as the point where capitalism and consumerism intersect — a symbol of the city that never sleeps. To New Yorkers, it's where Broadway and Seventh Avenue intersect.
This New Jersey municipality is the most densely populated city in the country. Overlooking the Manhattan skyline, it’s home to a vibrant community of Latin American immigrants. The commercial heart of the city is a bustling 60-block stretch of retail stores and restaurants called the “miracle mile.”
Located at the intersection of Broadway and 14th Street, Union Square is an important commercial and business center, making it valuable residential real estate. Union Square Park and the surrounding area are populated year-round, and feature seasonal outdoor markets. The square is also a hub for several surrounding neighborhoods, including the Flatiron District, Chelsea, Greenwich Village, and Gramercy. A notable feature of Union Square is the kinetic wall sculpture and digital clock titled "Metronome."
This swanky Manhattan neighborhood has some of the most expensive real estate in the United States and is home to many influential New Yorkers. Nestled between Central Park and the East River, Upper East Side residents enjoy numerous museums, expensive restaurants, and fancy boutiques.
The Upper West Side, which occupies the space between Central Park and the Hudson River, has long been known as an upscale enclave of conservative, older Manhattanites, and is home to some of the city's best-known shopping and restaurants.
Wall Street, or the Financial District, is located in the southernmost section of Manhattan. It is the headquarters for many major financial institutions, including the New York Stock Exchange and the American Stock Exchange. Once primarily a business district, Wall Street is becoming increasingly residential -- a haven of expensive condos and lofts. Wall Street is considered by many to be the world's financial capital.
Washington Heights, just off the ever-busy George Washington Bridge, is one of the few neighborhoods left in Manhattan where rents are still relatively affordable. Yet much of the available housing is aging and deteriorated.
A working-class neighborhood in the northeast section of the Bronx, Williamsbridge is a thriving, vibrant community of predominately Latino, African-American and Caribbean immigrants living in one- and two-family homes.
Just across the bridge from Manhattan, Williamsburg is an eclectic community of restaurants, bars and boutiques that attract everyone from young parents and yuppies to artists and hipsters.
A mix of residential and urban, Woodside has a large Irish population and the neighborhood is filled with lively pubs. It's a commuter’s paradise, with the 7 train, three bus companies and the Long Island Rail Road line all heading into Manhattan.