Before I went to New York, I envisioned shopping from dawn until dusk everyday. In reality, there's so much more that the city has to offer and we spent all day everyday exploring the city. We had a list of things we wanted to do, and once we'd had a look at a map to see which were near to each other we set off aimlessly! I think we averaged around 12 miles a day walking, which is how I managed to come back without putting weight on, despite having waffles and pancakes every day for breakfast.
As a London girl, I honestly thought that Times Square would be like a slightly bigger Piccadilly Circuits. I couldn't have been more wrong if I tried! Piccadilly n is like a green energy-saving billboard compared to the spectacle that is times square. It's huge and you can spend so long looking round at the various ads. We stayed in ROW NYC hotel, which was just off of times square and I would really recommend it. The rooms were on the small side, and very simple, but we were never there apart from to sleep. The rooms were clean and the service was great, so I would not hesitate to recommend this place if you're travelling to NYC.
This is without doubt the most spectacular place we visited whilst in New York City. Set slightly further back from the Empire State building, the views from the top of this building are incredible,,, and panoramic. You go along, buy tickets and then jump in a lift up to the first viewing floor. There are no metal cages blocking the view, and the Perspex walls allow you to see for miles and miles. There are three viewing floors in total, all as equally breath-taking as each other. We spent about an hour to an hour and a half here, and took about 500 photos between the four of us!
Madison Square Gardens.
We visited here to see the New York Knicks play the Brooklyn Mets. I never thought I would enjoy basketball, and despite not having the worlds greatest seats, it was amazing!! I would definitely recommend you watch a basketball game if you have the chance, there's nothing like it... my sister even bought a foam finger! We booked these tickets through our travel agent before we went, but there are ticket touts in Times Square that do some great deals. If the season is over when you visit, lots of people have recommended ice-hockey games too, which is something I'd love to see if I ever went back.
You can't visit NY without going on the Subway right?! It would be like coming to London and not using the tube or red busses. It's so much cheaper than our train systems anyway, if my memory is right it was around $5 for a day ticket. Bargain or what?! We jumped on here to Brooklyn and once you figure out the system, which is far easier than the tube system, it'll help you locate certain places far easier.
It sounds wrong to say, but this was something I couldn't leave America without visiting and again, we took the subway to the nearest station and enjoyed walking round. I've spent a lot of time studying 9/11 and the resulting literature, so it was somewhere I had to experience for myself. The actual memorial is breath-taking and extremely well created. I wasn't sure whether I wanted to do the museum, for various reasons, but we ended up going in and spending hours taking in all that it had to offer. It was a harrowing experience but one I would without doubt suggest you make time for.
If you're looking for presents to buy for friends and family, jump on the subway and head to Canal Street. I can only describe it as a shambled Camden market, but is where you want to head if you're after any of the tacky souvenirs. They're half the price here than the gift shops in the city centre, and a great way to spend your last dollars. Just be prepared for 100 people coming up to you and asking if you'd like to buy a Gucci or Chanel bag... LOL.
Statue of Liberty.
None of my family were particularly bothered about going and climbing the statue, instead we were happy enough to take a boat trip around the little island in which it is situated and get a good look. The tickets we got were around $50, and were a sort of 'hop-on-hop-off' service, that went from Brooklyn to the city again.
We were really lucky to be blessed with a really lovely sunny day, which meant it was off for a quick shop in Bloomingdales and then walk through Central Park. Its huge.... like really huge, so I doubt we even got a quarter of the way through, but it's incredible. We entered where the zoo is and just had a wander until we found somewhere to stop for lunch. The café was far too healthy and "trendy" for me, but it filled a gap and did the job. After we went to Strawberry Fields in Central Park, which is where John Lennon's apartment was located. There's still a very active memorial there and I'd suggest a quick trip if you were a fan.
We loved just walking around the city, as its so simple to navigate your way around... the UK ought to take note. The city streets are fairly straight lined, so diagonally they're avenues and horizontally they're numbered streets. So for example, if your hotel is on 5th Avenue, 52nd Street, you just have to get yourself to the right avenue or street and literally walk in a straight line. Genius!
There's so much we didn't get to do on our little trip, but that just makes for a good excuse to go back one day! Hope you've enjoyed the post. My final one will be a quick one about the amazing food!
Thanks for reading,