If New York is the capital of the world, then Times Square is the capital of New York. The famous stretch of Midtown Manhattan is bursting with star power, from famous people to famous places. While you can't visit Times Square without hitting up some of the main attractions, it's easy to find amazing, underappreciated places in the heart of Manhattan. Once you've had a one-of-a-kind tour of the town, you ought to skip the big-name bars, restaurants, and attractions and go where the locals go.

01Catch a free walking tour of Times Square

A great shot of lively, energetic Times Square TommL / Getty Images

One great way to start your day in Times Square is with a walking tour, courtesy of Free Tours By Foot. You’ll get a quick, on-the-ground look of the area and doubtlessly find a few extra spots you want to visit. If you’re not a fan of crowds, then you can also ‘book’ an audio tour—a prerecorded tour by one of the companies’ best tour guides that takes you through major stops on your own schedule.