Happy October everyone! Where has this year gone? It only felt like yesterday I was preparing for my trip to New York, and now I have been home over a month.
If you have ever been to NYC you will know how amazing it is. If you have never been to the big apple- you need to book your ticket and go as soon as possible.
Off we go…
On Monday 21st August we set off for Heathrow, to board our flight to Newark. I was so excited to return to this city I once called home, going back to the places I have visited to see how much they had changed and also to explore new areas I had yet to discover.
Being an events manager and a general an over organised person I sat down one night before we were due to fly and made an itinerary for our trip. This, in my opinion, is the best way to see NYC as you will become overwhelmed with places to see and things to do.
Day one- Monday 21st August
- Brooklyn Bridge
- Time Square
Once we had landed in Newark, passed through security (after a gruelling 2 hours!) we finally made it to our hotel, The Roosevelt and quickly freshened up and off we set to explore Brooklyn. The Roosevelt Hotel is located on E45th and Madison Ave, which is a little too far to walk to the bridge, so we decided to purchase our Metro cards for the week (a must have for your trip to NYC) and we were on our way. The New York Metro is very easy to navigate if you plan your trip ahead and know where you are going, but don’t worry there are posters and maps all over the place so it’s unlikely you will become lost.
We arrived in Brooklyn and had a wander around, purchasing some Ice creams from the Brooklyn Ice cream factory, we set up camp in the Brooklyn Bridge Park and watched the world go by. Once we had finished our ice creams we had a dander around Brooklyn Heights Promenade and over the bridge, we headed back to the hotel to change for dinner.
The travel tiredness was kicking in so we decided to grab a quick dinner at the Hard Rock Cafe, Times Square and have an early night. Times Square is one of my most favourite places in the world, the feeling I get when I’m walking around here is unlike any other place I have visited.
Day two- Tuesday 22nd August
- The American Natural History Museum
- Central Park
After a great night’s sleep, we woke up feeling refreshed and ready for the day ahead. We set off early today as we were planning on spending most of the day in the museum, but didn’t want to miss out on exploring Central Park at the same time. It was really hot and humid today, so I was glad we decided to spend it in the NHM, the A/C was most welcomed.
We grabbed some coffee and croissants, boarded the Metro and when arrived at Central Park. Tom decided we would cut through the park to get to the museum… looking back I don’t know why we just didn’t take the metro the whole way.
*if you are planning on visiting the NHM, I would advise pre-booking your tickets, they are cheaper and you can choose to visit one of their pay to view exhibits*
The Natural History Museum was breathtaking, so many exciting exhibits we soaked up the history and headed back into Central Park.
We stopped off at the Boathouse to have some beers and soak up the afternoon sun. We had planned to hire some bicycles and cycle around the park, however, due to the weather we hired some boats instead and spent an hour rowing around the lake.
Day three- Wednesday 23rd August
- Hop on Hop off bus tour
- 9/11 memorial
- One World Observatory
Day three and my poor feet have been walked off me, so we decided to purchase a day pass to for the hop on, hop off bus tour to save our feet. This is a great way to see the sights of New York and if something tickles your fancy, you can just jump off the bus, go explore and catch the next bus on the tour.
We stopped off at NYU and Washington Square Park as we wanted to eat in the Spotted Pig.
Before our trip, I had booked us a guided tour of the 9/11 memorial at 4:30 pm. This was great timing as the bus tour stopped right outside the memorial. Back in 2012, we visited the site when only the pools had been completed and the building work had begun on creating the museum, shopping centre and surrounding buildings. It was lovely to go back here, to see how much had changed and to pay our respects to those who had lost their lives here on that tragic day.
The 9/11 memorial was a lovely tribute to those people who had sadly died here, but it also brought home the extent of the damage caused. When you go into the memorial, you go underground, under the pools where once the Twin Towers stood, the sheer size and scale of this place is breathtaking and a definite must see if you are to visit NYC.
*again, if you are planning on visiting the 9/11 memorial, I would advise pre-booking your tickets, they are cheaper and you skip the queues*
To finish the evening, we went up to the top of the One World Observatory, to watch the sunset over Manhattan. This, in my opinion, is much better than the Empire State as you can see so much more and enjoy a drink at the bar while looking out at the view. A word of warning, it is very expensive to drink here, but it is well worth the cost because of the view.
Day Four- Thursday 24th August
- Coney Island
Thursday was a day to relax as Wednesday really was a long day. We had a lie-in, grabbed some coffee and made our way to Coney Island by Metro. It took around an hour to get here, it was nice just to chill and be out of the hustle and bustle of the city.
Coney Island is home to Nathan’s hotdogs, the place where the 4th July hot dog eating contest takes place. The hot dogs are delicious! covered in ketchup with cheese and bacon fries on the side I was in heaven. While there was also visited the NY Aquarium, this was under construction at the time due to the damage caused by the hurricane Sandy.
We spent most of the day here, wandering around, having a nice chilled day, it was well deserved. Candy floss in hand, we boarded the train back to the city to have some dinner, pack and sleep.
Day Five- Friday 25th August
Our final day
- Shopping on 5th Ave
- Madam Tussaud’s
Our flight home was at 10 pm, so we had most of the day to explore some more, planning on leaving the city at 5 pm to avoid rush hour trying to get into New Jersey. We spent the afternoon looking around Madam Tussaud’s and picking up for final bits before heading to the airport.
New York City holds a special place in my heart and I will always find the time to return. I have also created a vlog about our time here, you can watch it over on my YouTube channel
I hope you have found inspiration in my travel diary and if you would like to ask me more about it I would love to answer. Until next time