Things to do in Chelsea: The best art and activities

Find things to do in Chelsea from gallery-hopping to golf at Chelsea Piers—or a simple stroll along the High Line.

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Contemporary art lovers will be in their element on the neighborhood’s far west side, where galleries are crammed into the side streets, making it easy to hop from one to the next. Combine arty exploration with a walk along the High Line, which is dotted with installations. The neighborhood is also home to a couple of great collections, the Rubin Museum of Art and The Museum at FIT. If you’re looking for more energetic things to do in Chelsea, you can take part in any number of athletic pursuits at Chelsea Piers.

RECOMMENDED: Full guide to Chelsea, New York

Best Chelsea galleries

Find the best art galleries in the Chelsea district of NYC. In Chelsea's converted industrial spaces, you'll find art galleries hosting group shows by up-and-comers, blockbuster exhibitions from art-world celebrities and a slew of provocative work. Here are the best galleries; click through to see what they're showing now. David Zwirner Zwirner mixes museum-quality shows of historical figures with a head-turning array of contemporary artists. Tanya Bonakdar Gallery This elegant

Chelsea Piers

  • Rated as: 4/5
  • Critics choice

Chelsea Piers is a state-of-the-art recreational facility located on the Hudson River. Bowling, golf, ice hockey, wall climbing and BlueStreak—its intensive sports-training program—are just some of the many activities available. Check website for program schedules and prices.

  1. Eleventh Ave, (between 17th and 23rd Sts)
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The High Line

  • Rated as: 4/5
  • Critics choice
  • Free

Opened in 2009, this highly anticipated outdoor park sits on the elevated infrastructure built on Manhattan's West Side in the 1930s. Today, sumptuous gardens and outdoor sculpture adorn this magnificent walkway, which is also an excellent place to enjoy a view of the Hudson River.

  1. Washington St, (at Gansevoort St)
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The Museum at FIT

  • Free

The Fashion Institute of Technology owns one of the largest and most impressive collections of clothing, textiles and accessories in the world, including some 50,000 costumes and fabrics dating from the 5th century to the present. Overseen by fashion historian Valerie Steele, the museum showcases a selection from the permanent collection, as well as temporary exhibitions focusing on individual designers or the role fashion plays in society.

  1. Seventh Ave, (at 27th St)
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Rubin Museum of Art

  • Price band: 1/4
  • Critics choice

Opened in 2004, this six-story museum (once home to Barneys New York) houses Donald and Shelley Rubin’s impressive collection of Himalayan art and artifacts, as well as large-scale temporary exhibitions.

  1. 150 W 17th St, (at Seventh Ave)
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Sleep No More

  • Rated as: 4/5
  • Price band: 2/4
  • Critics choice

To untimely rip and paraphrase a line from Macbeth: Our eyes are made the fools of the other senses, or else worth all the rest. A multitude of searing sights crowd the spectator's gaze at the bedazzling and uncanny theater installation Sleep No More. Your sense of space and depth---already compromised by the half mask that audience members must don---is further blurred as you wend through more than 90 discrete spaces, ranging from a cloistral chapel to a vast ballroom floor.

  1. McKittrick Hotel 530 W 27th St, between Tenth and Eleventh Aves
  2. Sat Apr 19 - Wed Dec 31
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