Harlem is a neighborhood in Manhattan which has been portrayed very negatively and infamously in movies, books and documentaries. It has be portrayed as a cesspool of everything bad associated to mankind right from drugs to mafia to crime to murder, etc. Most people are of the view that Harlem is unsafe and shady because that’s what the media at large wants them to believe. Most people who view Harlem with disgust are the ones who have never set foot inside Harlem or have been miles near Harlem.
Well all of movie portrayals and books sure have some semblance of truth about Harlem but there is actually a lot more here than what meets the eye. Over the last couple of years, the general view surrounding Harlem has changed and now Harlem is believed to be much safer and a lot jazzier. The next time you find yourself in New York City, you should plan taking a trip northwards to Harlem and try out the following three things which will surely change your view of Harlem forever.
- The Apollo Theater :- The Apollo Theater is famous all over the world and chances are that you might surely have heard the name even when you might not know a lot about it. The Apollo Theater is over a century old and it is believed to be the birthplace of one of the biggest musicians of all times, right from Michael Jackson to James Brown to Stevie Wonder to Elton John.
- The Apollo Center has a capacity of 1506 people. Even in today’s day and age, this theater holds an amateur night where just about anyone can get up and hit a note. It is one of the hallmarks of Harlem and it is on the itinerary of almost everyone who visits Harlem. All walking tours, paid tours, private tours, personal tours surely have this iconic landmark on their itinerary.
- Comforting Soul Food :- Harlem is popular all around the world for its world-famous soul food which has absolutely no parallel anywhere else on earth. In Harlem, you can get some of the most delicious soul food at very affordable prices and here we are talking about oxtail, macaroni, cheese, beans, smoked turkey neck and the salmon might be the best you might have ever tasted in your entire lifetime. Harlem is home to the most comforting soul foot on earth and there is something to strike just about anyone’s fancy.
- Live Jazz :- Jazz is Harlem. Harlem is Jazz. Jazz is so deeply ingrained in the ethos of Harlem that it would be difficult and near impossible to imagine Harlem without Jazz. Jazz is everywhere in Harlem, you can live jazz Harlem at any time of the day of night, in various bars, clubs and also restaurants. The scene of live jazz Harlem means that there is always room for enthusiasts of jazz to try out their stuff on stage because live jazz Harlem is actually inclusive, fun and open to just about everyone.
The Bottom Line
There you have it, those were the top 3 reasons to visit Harlem for a day, couple of days, week, couple of weeks and even for a month. Chances are that you might end up falling in love with the city so much that you might consider moving to Harlem for a lifetime.
If you are visiting Harlem for the first time then you can consider getting on one of the live jazz Harlem tours so take you can explore and experience the finest experience in New York City’s underground jazz scene. Over and above the soul food and the jazz scene, Harlem has a lot to offer, which will leave you wanting more, more and then some more. It is one of the greatest neighborhoods on earth and once you visit it, you will find it hard to not fall in love with it because the energy of the city is infectiously addictive and almost impossible to resist.