Wednesday, 17 October 2018

New York, New York

New York is somewhere I've wanted to visit for a long time, but somewhere that's never really been affordable to us and somewhere we actually dismissed as a honeymoon destination for that reason. However, it turns out that people are rather generous when you get married and despite not asking for gifts, we did receive quite a bit of money. 

So obviously instead of putting it to any sort of good use around the house/garden/savings account, we booked a holiday to New York.

As a first-timer, I wanted to do all the stereotypical New York stuff so we decided to buy New York Passes, which would cover everything we wanted to do. As well as just have a general chit chat about what we did, I'll let you know my thoughts on whether the pass was worth it or not. We actually got ours in a sale, and from keeping an eye on them for a while I can tell you that they do have sales fairly frequently so it's definitely worth waiting for one of those so you get even more money off. 


D A Y  O N E  |  We had very sore feet at the end of day one and when I checked my steps on my phone it turns out that may be because we unknowingly walked 15 miles...

Day one began with an early wake up at 5.30 because our body clocks were obviously still attuned to UK time. It was actually quite nice to wake up so early to the view of the city through our hotel (huge) window and actually feel awake, then be able to get ready at leisure and still be out on the street at 7.30.

The first thing we did was head to The Rockefeller Center, via Times Square just to see it (anti-climatic during the day FYI) and we were some of the first people in the (non-existent) queue to head to the Top of the Rock. It was a bit foggy, but despite the fact that we probably couldn't see as far as you usually can, I thought it added a certain breathtaking atmosphere to the experience.

As the Museum of Modern Art is pretty much next door, we headed there next and we also visited The Met on our first day too. The MoMA is quite quick to wander around, but The Met is similar to The V&A (i.e. absolutely huge and full of so much stuff you could be in there all day). We grabbed a map and decided which sections of it we wanted to see as well as googling any paintings we definitely wanted to see to see where they were.

It's worth mentioning that we didn't pay for anything apart from food on our first day because everything we did was covered by the New York Pass. One thing we did that I don't think we would have if it hadn't been included (simply because we wouldn't have thought of it) was hire bikes to cycle around Central Park. 

Central Park is absolutely huge and a bit of a labyrinth so a cycle ride was an excellent way to take a lot of it in without getting lost or spending a full day in there. I finally learnt how to use my gears properly too (three cheers?).

To finish the day we went to the top of the Empire State Building (via Grand Central Station to have a nosey - can confirm it's as beautiful as everyone says). The queue for the Empire State Building was a bit of a mare, but worth it for the nighttime views. I'd definitely recommend going up one of the tall buildings at nighttime because it's actually more impressive than during the day (I was v happy we did one of each though). 



D A Y  T W O  |  Day Two was a much more sobering day because we decided to do all the 9/11 stuff. It was so so upsetting, but I also feel like it's very important to see if you're in New York because it's such a massive part of everyone's lives there and obviously had an enormous impact.

We began with the 9/11 Ground Zero workshop, which is actually in Chelsea. It was a very small museum set up by the official photographer of the recovery operation, who also captured a photo of 9/11 happening from the top of the very building the workshop is in. A lot of his photographs, plus artefacts recovered from the rubble are displayed there and you're told the story behind each one. You will leave very humbled. 

For some light relief, we walked the High Line back to Midtown then hopped on the water taxi to take us round to the 9/11 memorial and museum. The memorials are an absolutely stunning tribute and the museum in between them tells the story of what happened on that day. Again, it's very upsetting, but important.

We hopped back on the water taxi in time for sunset, which takes you all around Manhattan and also stops off right next to the Statue of Liberty for a photo opportunity. 


D A Y  T H R E E  |  It absolutely chucked it down on this day so we needed to do something inside. Because the hop on/off bus tour was included in our New York Pass we decided to use that to get around and we caught it to Central Park where we visited the Natural History Museum. 

Again, this was huge and you could spend a long time there so we narrowed down what we wanted to see and wandered round that (drying off in the process) because despite catching the bus we got abolutely soaked walking through Central Park to the museum. 

Because there was so much of New York we still hadn't seen (and weren't going to get the chance to) we decided to do almost the full hop on/off bus tour in order to see it. A bus tour isn't something we would usually do, but it was actually a really good way to see the city (despite switching between the top and lower decks every time it started or stopped raining). The tour took about two hours in total and I was glad we'd at least seen some of the parts of New York we wanted even if we hadn't explored them.

Day three was also the last day of our New York pass, as we opted for a three day one. Absolutely everything listed above was covered by the pass so the only expense we had was food. We did tot it all up and if we'd paid for everything it would have been double the price we paid for the pass. That probably means we wouldn't have actually done all of it, so for both of those reasons it's definitely worth it (for first timers at least). We only scratched the surface with what's available on the pass; almost everything you'd want to do in New York is covered.


D A Y  F O U R  |  Our last day we didn't have the pass so we wanted to stick to doing free things and I wanted to get a bit further afield. We got the subway to Brooklyn, where we had coffee and a wander along the river. There's immediately a completely different vibe in Brooklyn and if I go back I think I'd want to stay that side of the river for sure. 

We crossed the Brooklyn Bridge (which I'm actually shocked that people sit on for photos because people were sitting on a ledge directly above the road, soz side note from sensible Amy but seriously). We then walked all the back from the bridge to our hotel in Midtown, stopping along the way in parks and for lunch (luckily it was a beautiful day). 

One of my favourite things to do anywhere is to just walk around because I always find you see so much of a place so despite really not doing much apart from walking and eating on our last day, I think it was my favourite. 


Have you ever been to New York?

Amy x
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20 comments

  1. It sounds like you crammed so much in to such a short time! The New York passes definitely seem worth it if you can get them on sale as you did! I think that one of the best things about city passes is how they introduce you to things you wouldn't have considered without one! Cycling round Central Park sounds amazing!

    Abbey
    http://www.abbeylouisarose.co.uk

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    1. Yeah I definitely wouldn't have hired bikes and we wouldn't have done the bus tour either! Luckily they come up on sale fairly often! xx

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  2. This is making me SO excited for my trip next May! I know you shouldn't wish away time but I just can't wait..! We'll definitely be considering the NYC passes when we go - it sounds like they're great value! xx

    Laura // Middle of Adventure

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    1. Oh you'll have an amazing time and I bet that's such a lovely time of year to go! xx

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  3. You did so much! It all sounds wonderful though, I would definitely be up for seeing the chilled out side of New York as I think I’d find it quite intimidating xxx

    www.natalieleanne.com

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    1. It is a bit intimidating to begin with just because it's so busy and different! Brooklyn was lovely :) xx

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  4. I've never been but really hoping to plan a trip next year! Love your photos and it sounds like you packed so much in!

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    1. I would definitely recommend it! I'm so pleased we got so much done as I've no idea when we'll get the chance to go back! xx

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  5. I'm so happy that you managed to visit New York. It's such a dreamy city. j really want to go there one day and experience all of its beauty. x

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    1. It was amazing, such an experience! xx

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  6. I would love to visit New york one day its on the bucket list for sure xx
    https://www.katescloset.uk/

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  7. That pass sounds like such a good idea! I've never been to New York but it's on my list of places to visit one day! :)

    Hope that you are having a good week :)

    Away From The Blue Blog

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    1. I hope you do get to visit! It's a very long flight for you! xx

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  8. Glad you enjoyed there. I do love the historical places in NY, and Central Park is beautiful!

    Marie
    https://theflowerduet.blogspot.com/

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    1. I absolutely loved it, Central Park is beautiful isn't it! xx

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  9. Sounds like you packed a lot in! Beautiful pictures too!
    Have a lovely weekend :)
    Rosanna x
    Rose's Rooftop

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    1. Thanks Rosanna! Yeah we did absolutely loads! xx

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  10. I didn't know you could get a New York pass, definitely will remember that if I ever go to the city! I went to Copenhagen this summer and they also have a pass but we figured it wasn't actually going to be money saving as a lot of things are free there anyway if you're a student!

    Sarah
    www.sarahaurorax.com

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    1. Copenhagen is high on my wish list! Yeah I've never bought a pass anywhere before, but this one was definitely worth it! xx

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