101+ Most Famous New York Quotes: Exclusive Selection

Almost everybody fall in love with New York City. New York is a wellspring of inspiration, action, and romance. It has the world’s major commercial, financial and cultural centers. Its iconic sites include skyscrapers such as the Empire State Building and sprawling Central Park. Broadway theater is staged in neon-lit Times Square. Greatest quotes about New York City will show you different aspect of NYC and explain why everybody loves it.

If you’re searching for inspiring travel quotes that perfectly capture what you’d like to say or just want to feel inspired yourself, browse through an amazing collection of drinking quotes, and home quotes.

Best New York City Quotes

A car is useless in New York, essential everywhere else. The same with good manners. — Mignon McLaughlin

A great many people go after success simply for the shiny prizes it brings. And nowhere is it pursued more ardently than in the city of New York. — Stephen Birmingham

A hundred times have I thought New York is a catastrophe, and fifty times: It is a beautiful catastrophe. — Le Corbusier

A lot of the time when I write about the person that I love, I feel like I’m writing about New York. — Lana Del Rey

As for New York City, it is a place apart. There is not its match in any other country in the world. — Pearl S. Buck

Each man reads his own meaning into New York. — Meyer Berger

For in that city New York there is neurosis in the air which the inhabitants mistake for energy. — Evelyn Waugh

I believe in New Yorkers. Whether they’ve ever questioned the dream in which they live, I wouldn’t know, because I won’t ever dare ask that question. — Dylan Thomas

I fell in love with New York. It was like every human being, like any relationship. When I was a young New Yorker, it was one city. When I was a grown man, it was another city. — Mikhail Baryshnikov

In New York it seems like there’s no Monday or Saturday or Sunday. The town is always moving. The vibe is great. — Thierry Henry

In New York you’ve got to have all the luck. — Charles Bukowski

In New York, they like winners. They don’t like second place. — Eli Manning

It is a miracle that New York works at all. The whole thing is implausible. — E.B. White

Make your mark in New York and you are a made man. — Mark Twain

New York – that unnatural city where everyone is an exile, none more so than the American. — Charlotte Perkins Gilman

New York City is a great apartment hotel in which everyone lives, and no one is at home. — Glenway Wescott

New York has a trip-hammer vitality which drives you insane with restlessness if you have no inner stabilizer. — Henry Miller

New York is a city of geometric heights, a petrified desert of grids and lattices, an inferno of greenish abstraction under a flat sky, a real Metropolis from which man is absent by his very accumulation. — Roland Barthes

New York is a different country. Maybe it ought to have a separate government. Everybody thinks differently, they just don’t know what the hell the rest of the United States is. — Henry Ford

New York is a great city to live in if you can afford to get out of it. — William Cole

New York is a place where the rich walk, the poor drive Cadillacs, and beggars die of malnutrition with thousands of dollars hidden in their mattresses. — Duke Ellington

New York is a wonderful place to be up, an awful place to be down. — Alexander Mccall Smith

New York is an exciting town where something is happening all the time, most of it unsolved. — Johnny Carson

New York is appalling, fantastically charmless and elaborately dire. — Henry James

New York is like a disco, but without the music. — Elaine Sritch

New York is not even a city, it’s a congerie of rotten villages. — James M. Cain

New York is the biggest collection of villages in the world. — Alistair Cooke

New York is the capital, the national headquarters of homelessness…. No one feels he belongs here. — Gerald Stanley Lee

New York is the dirtiest, largest, ugliest, broken-down city in the world-but it’s the only one. — Isaac Stern

New York is the meeting place of the peoples, the only city where you can hardly find a typical American. — Djuna Barnes

New York is the only city in the world where you can get run down on the sidewalk by a pedestrian. — Russell Baker

New York is the only real city-city. — Truman Capote

New York now leads the world’s great cities in the number of people around whom you shouldn’t make a sudden move. — David Letterman

New York was an inexhaustible space, a labyrinth of endless steps, and no matter how far he walked, no matter how well he came to know its neighborhoods and streets, it always left him with the feeling of being lost. — Paul Auster

New York, the nation’s thyroid gland. — Christopher Morley

New Yorkers like to boast that if you can survive in New York, you can survive anywhere. But if you can survive anywhere, why live in New York? — Edward Abbey

Once you have lived in New York and it has become your home, no place else is good enough. — John Steinbeck

One can’t paint New York as it is, but rather as it is felt. — Georgia O’Keeffe

Quite simply, I was in love with New York. I do not mean love in any colloquial way, I mean that I was in love with the city, the way you love the first person who ever touches you and you never love anyone quite that way again. — Joan Didion

The faces in New York remind me of people who played a game and lost. — Murray Kempton

The present in New York is so powerful that the past is lost. — John Chapman

The skyline of New York is a monument of a splendor that no pyramids or palaces will ever equal or approach. — Ayn Rand

There is more sophistication and less sense in New York than anywhere else on the globe. — Don Herold

There is something in the New York air that makes sleep useless. — Simone De Beauvoir

When you leave New York, you are astonished at how clean the rest of the world is. Clean is not enough. — Fran Lebowitz

If London is a watercolor, New York is an oil painting. — Peter Shaffer

New York was a city where you could be frozen to death in the midst of a busy street and nobody would notice. — Bob Dylan

At night… the streets become rhythmical perspectives of glowing dotted lines; reflections hung upon them in the streets as the wistaria hangs its violet racemes on its trellis. The buildings are shimmering verticality, a gossamer veil, a festive scene-prop hanging there against the black sky to dazzle, entertain, amaze. — Frank Lloyd Wright

Back in about 1753 it took a letter three days to go from New York City to Washington, and today you can go from here to China in less time than that… Man’s scientific genius has been amazing. — Martin Luther King, Jr.

Even old New York was once New Amsterdam. Why they changed it? I can’t say, people just liked it better that way. — The Four Lads

Every true New Yorker believes with all his heart that when a New Yorker is tired of New York, he is tired of life. — Robert Moses

Everybody ought to have a lower East Side in their life. — Irving Berlin

From my room, I could lie across my bed and watch the cars rush along Central Park West. In a hurry to get someplace. Everyone in New York is in a hurry. You see businessmen walking fast, their heads bowed, the cuffs of their pants flapping hard against their ankles. They don’t look at anyone. Once I followed this man, walking so close behind him I could have been his daughter—but he never even looked over and noticed me. For two blocks I walked like that beside him. It made me sad for him—that he could walk through this world without looking left or right. — Jacqueline Woodson

Futurist thinkers have rarely been kind to New York City. In fact, writers and artists have spent the better part of two centuries destroying the Big Apple. Whether by flood or fire, nuclear explosion or alien invasion, New York more than any other city bears the brunt of our most apocalyptic futures. — Matt Novak

I go to Paris, I go to London, I go to Rome, and I always say, There’s no place like New York. It’s the most exciting city in the world now. That’s the way it is. That’s it. — Robert De Niro

I had a chance to visit America in August 2014. To be honest, I didn’t love New York City because it was too crowded, hectic, and flamboyant. But I absolutely loved other parts of America I visited. They felt like paradise to me. If I could speak English and if U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services would allow me to immigrate to America, I would live in the U.S. rather than South Korea. I don’t know if it will ever happen. — Yoo-sung Kim

I look out the window and I see the lights and the skyline and the people on the street rushing around looking for action, love, and the world’s greatest chocolate chip cookie, and my heart does a little dance. — Nora Ephron, Heartburn

I love the city in an emotional, irrational way, like loving your mother or your father even though they’re a drunk or a thief. I’ve loved the city my whole life—to me, it’s like a great woman. — Woody Allen

I used to love to call L.A. when I lived in New York. What’re y’all doin’? Talkin’ to TV producers, huh? Bummer. Me? I’m readin’ a book! Yeah, we’re thinkin’ back East! Yeah, we’re evolving. Is that The Big One I hear in the background? Bye, you lizard scum, bye! — Bill Hicks

I wake up every morning and say to myself, ‘Well, I’m still in New York. Thank you, God. — Ed Koch

I went to New York to be born again. — Kurt Vonnegut

I would give the greatest sunset in the world for one sight of New York’s skyline … What other religion do we need? When I see the city from my window—no, I don’t feel how small I am—but I feel that if a war came to threaten this, I would throw myself into space, over the city, and protect these buildings with my body. — Ayn Rand

If I’d lived in Roman times, I’d have lived in Rome. Where else? Today America is the Roman Empire and New York is Rome itself. — John Lennon

If there ever was an aviary overstocked with jays it is that Yaptown-on-the-Hudson, called New York. Cosmopolitan they call it, you bet. So’s a piece of flypaper. You listen close when they’re buzzing and trying to pull their feet out of the sticky stuff. Little old New York’s good enough for us—that’s what they sing. — O. Henry

In dress, habits, manners, provincialism, routine and narrowness, he acquired that charming insolence, that irritating completeness, that sophisticated crassness, that overbalanced poise that makes the Manhattan gentleman so delightfully small in his greatness. — O. Henry

In New York the opportunities for learning and acquiring a culture that shall not come out of the ruins, but belong to life, are probably greater than anywhere else in the world. — Thomas Wolfe

It’ll be a great place if they ever finish it. — O. Henry

Living in California adds ten years to a man’s life. And those extra ten years I’d like to spend in New York. — Harry Ruby

Manhattan. Sometimes from beyond the skyscrapers, across thousands of high walls, the fearful cry of a too-well-known voice finds you in your insomnia in the middle of the night, and you remember that this desert of iron and cement is an island of un-reality. — Albert Camus, American Journals (1978).

My favorite thing about New York is the people, because I think they’re misunderstood. I don’t think people realize how kind New York people are. — Bill Murray

New York blazes like a magnificent jewel in its fit setting of sea, and earth, and stars. — Thomas Wolfe

New York City is the most fatally fascinating thing in America. She sits like a great witch at the gate of the country, showing her alluring white face, and hiding her crooked hands and feet under the folds of her wide garments,–constantly enticing thousands from far within, and tempting those who come from across the seas to go no farther. And all these become the victims of her caprice. Some she at once crushes beneath her cruel feet; others she condemns to a fate like that of galley slaves; a few she favors and fondles, riding them high on the bubbles of fortune; then with a sudden breath she blows the bubbles out and laughs mockingly as she watches them fall. — James Weldon Johnson

New York: A third-rate Babylon. — H. L. Mencken

New York: where everyone mutinies but no one deserts. — Harry Hershfield

Of course, in Los Angeles, everything is based on driving, even the killings. In New York, most people don’t have cars, so if you want to kill a person, you have to take the subway to their house. And sometimes on the way, the train is delayed, and you get impatient, so you have to kill someone on the subway. That’s why there are so many subway murders; no one has a car. — George Carlin

One belongs to New York instantly; one belongs to it as much in five minutes as in five years. — Thomas Wolfe

One of the things I find most surprising is that people in New York eat while they walk. — Ji-woo Park

One thing I love about New York City is its diversity. There are different people from all over the globe sharing their culture and building their communities. For example, New York’s Chinatown is the largest Chinese community in the western hemisphere. — Ji-woo Park

People come to New York to live in small apartments, after living in large homes elsewhere. They think they will never get used to it. How will they live without their stuff (now in storage, or disposed of)? Very soon, they realize they have more than enough stuff in the apartment. — Jay Nordlinger

Silent, grim, colossal, the Big City has ever stood against its revilers. They call it hard as iron; they say that nothing of pity beats in its bosom; they compare its streets with lonely forests and deserts of lava. But beneath the hard crust of the lobster is found a delectable and luscious food. Perhaps a different simile would have been wiser. Still nobody should take offence. We would call nobody a lobster with good and sufficient claws. — O. Henry

Sometimes I get bored riding down the beautiful streets of L.A. I know it sounds crazy, but I just want to go to New York and see people suffer. — Donna Summer

Sometimes, from beyond the skyscrapers, the cry of a tugboat finds you in your insomnia, and you remember that this desert of iron and cement is an island. — Albert Camus

That particular sense of sacred rapture men say they experience in contemplating nature- I’ve never received it from nature, only from. Buildings, Skyscrapers. I would give the greatest sunset in the world for one sight of New York’s skyline. The shapes and the thought that made them. The sky over New York and the will of man-made visible. What other religion do we need? And then people tell me about pilgrimages to some dank pesthole in a jungle where they go to do homage to a crumbling temple, to a leering stone monster with a pot belly, created by some leprous savage. Is it beauty and genius they want to see? Do they seek a sense of the sublime? Let them come to New York, stand on the shore of the Hudson, look and kneel. When I see the city from my window – no, I don’t feel how small I am – but I feel that if a war came to threaten this, I would like to throw myself into space, over the city, and protect these buildings with my body. — Ayn Rand

That’s my favorite place in the world, so far, that I’ve seen. I haven’t travelled much, but I don’t think I’ll find anything to replace Brooklyn. — Marilyn Monroe

The city seen from the Queensboro Bridge is always the city seen for the first time, in its first wild promise of all the mystery and beauty in the world. — F. Scott Fitzgerald

The flag of New York City should be someone with four bags opening a door with their shoulder. — Alex Baze

The last time anybody made a list of the top hundred-character attributes of New Yorkers, common sense snuck in at number 79. — Douglas Adams

The true New Yorker secretly believes that people living anywhere else have to be, in some sense, kidding. — John Updike

There is no place like it, no place with an atom of its glory, pride, and exultancy. It lays its hand upon a man’s bowels; he grows drunk with ecstasy; he grows young and full of glory; he feels that he can never die. — Walt Whitman

They want to see our skyscrapers destroyed because they are envious of them, Mr. Koch said in a phone interview. Asked whom he was referring to, he said, ‘They’ is the rest of the country. — Edward Koch

This is New York. We’ll find a place to dance. — John M. Ford,

Traffic signals in New York are just rough guidelines. — David Letterman

Visitors to places like New York are amazed to see the way in which Serbs and Croatians, Sikhs and Hindus, Irish Catholics and Irish Protestants, Jews and Palestinians, all seem to work and live together in harmony. How is this possible when these same groups are spearing each other and burning each other’s homes in so many places in the world? — Dinesh D’Souza

We are all New Yorkers, just as surely as John F. Kennedy declared himself to be a Berliner in 1962 when he visited Berlin. — Jean-Marie Colombani

Well, little old Noisy Ville-on-the-Subway is good enough for me * * * Me for it from the rathskellers up. Sixth Avenue is the West now to me. — O. Henry

When it’s 100 degrees in New York, it’s 72 in Los Angeles. When it’s 30 degrees in New York, in Los Angeles it’s still 72. However, there are 6 million interesting people in New York, and only 72 in Los Angeles. — Neil Simon

Where I come from, the rules were relatively simple… Don’t look for trouble, because in New York you can always find it. But don’t back off either. — Pete Hamill

Whoever is born in New York is ill-equipped to deal with any other city: all other cities seem, at best, a mistake, and, at worst, a fraud. No other city is so spitefully incoherent. — James Baldwin

You can try to change New York, but it’s like Jay-Z says: ‘Concrete bunghole where dreams are made up. There’s nothing you can do. – Liz Lemon, 30 Rock

You know what’s great about New York? The threshold for citizenship as a New Yorker is actually pretty short. If you come to New York and you still like it two years after you arrived here, and you still think it’s great and you’re having a good time and you haven’t been just totally ground down and go limping back to wherever you came from, you know what? You’re in! — Anthony Bourdain

You’re not from New York, are you? You can’t be from New York. Well, when I broke in, I didn’t know many people by name so I would just say, Say, hey, and the writers picked that up. The writers here in New York can make anything happen, so they made that happen. — Willie Mays

Leave a Comment

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.