After boarding an Amtrak train lasting a little over three hours, we arrived in New York around 15:30PM.
We walked the short distance from Penn Station to our hotel, which is literally a stones throw away from the iconic Times Square.
Keeping in touch with family is a priority of both of ours, so as soon as dumped our bags, we FaceTime’d home.
Shortly after, we started exploring and made the very short walk over to the famous red steps of Times Square, where we sat gazing at all of the billboards and bright lights. (It’s an even better view late at night).
We then spent the next two hours walking the streets of New York, trying to familiarise ourselves with the city. By the end of the day, I’d walked close to 25,000 steps…
[Before arriving in New York, we paid for the New York Pass, which gives you access to over 120 different attractions, including some of the most popular (and expensive). For example, The Empire State Building Observatory ($47.91 RRP), Top of the Rock Observation Deck ($43.55), Edge ($43.55), Statue of Liberty Ferry and Ellis Island Cruise $25, 9/11 Memorial & Museum (RRP $28.00), and The Ride ($99) are all included – America is bloody expensive]!
In the evening, we booked ourselves onto The Ride… this isn’t your normal every-day sight-seeing bus! It was very, VERY cheesey – not usually my sort of thing, but we had a laugh – probably helped by the two double vodka and cokes we had beforehand.
It was a ‘dumpy day’ on our first full 24-hours in The Big Apple. I made the call that we should do the cruise around the Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island.
Afterwards, we got a picture with the Charging Bull, visited the National Trade Centre and then ambled around Wall St before hollering a cab down in traditional New York fashion and having a gander around the districts of Little Italy and Soho.
A close friend of mine had recommended we check out Lombardi’s in Little Italy – this was America’s first ever Pizzeria, and it didn’t disappoint. Afterwards, we grabbed an Original Sin Hard cider at The Spring Lounge before sharing a Crepe at Vive la Crepe.
Emily had begged for us to stop off and get a takeaway snack at Levain’s bakery on our way back to the hotel via the Subway, which has been voted as New York’s most famous cookie. Not bad I guess, but I prefer Manchester’s Gooey.
In the evening, we went to see Chicago at the Ambassador Theatre on Broadway. All I can say is, WOW – what a musical! Afterwards, we sipped on a cocktail each at CloudM Rooftop Bar before heading off back to the hotel.
The next day, we were up bright and early ready for another busy day.
Today, we went to The Museum of Natural History – where The Night at The Museum was filmed. It took 90 minutes queuing in order to get in, but we spent at least an hour having a good look around.
It was blue skies and 13 °C today, but it really didn’t feel like it. New York is renown for being a cold city because of all the high-rise buildings and it certainly felt it today.
We made our way back to our hotel, freshened up and then boarded the red route of the Hop-on, Hop-off Big Bus (also included in the New York pass for RRP $59.99) which takes you to the highlights of the city in a loop. This included Times Square, the Empire State Building, Soho, Chinatown, Little Italy, Brooklyn Bridge, Wall Street, and the Statue of Liberty. We chose to stay on the bus from start-to-finish… and got rather wind blown.
In the evening, I grabbed a bite to eat at Chick-fil-A and Em got a sandwich from a nearby shop. We then made our way to The Empire State Building observatory to see New York in all of its glory at night time.
In our final two days in New York, we intend on spending time in Central Park, going to the observatory platform at The Top of the Rock in the day time as well as visiting the 9/11 Memorial Museum.
Follow this link to read about more of our USA adventures.
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