WHERE: New York City
WHEN: March 2014
HOW LONG FOR: 3 days
New York has been up there on my list of ‘places I need to visit’ for quite some time, and I was lucky enough to tick it off last year. I’m not usually a city person – give me a little town by the seaside over stifling sky scrapers any day of the week! But New York is different… it’s a special kind of pretty. The classic yellow taxi cabs zooming around the city using their horns at any and every opportunity, huge skyscrapers towering over streets filled with New Yorkers busily weaving between meandering tourists, and the bright lights of Broadway illuminating the showbiz vibe of the city. I genuinely wandered around with eyes wide and a half-open mouth in awe of this magnificent metropolis that absolutely lived up to my expectations. Here are some of my favourite must-sees:
1. TIMES SQUARE
Times Square is just SO COOL. I’m not sure there’s much else to say about it… Lots of bright lights, the Good Morning America studio, the Big Red Steps which I immediately recognised from the most recent Spiderman movie.
2. TOP OF THE ROCK
One of the things I really wanted from my trip to New York City was to get that perfect shot of the Skyline. You can either go up the Rockefeller Center or the Empire State Building, and simply because I wanted the Empire State Building to be the focus of my picture, I ventured to the ‘Top Of the Rock’. The view was incredible- on one side you could see the Empire State Building with the Statue of Liberty in the background, and on the other was the huge Central Park. We spent quite a long time up here, pointing out all the landmarks and taking lots of cool panoramic pictures.
3. CENTRAL PARK
When you wander around Central Park you completely forget you are in one of the busiest cities on the planet. It was MUCH bigger than I ever thought it would be – I didn’t get around all of it. If you want to see all of the park, there are people offering pedicab tours (you get slightly hounded at the entrances about this) or you can rent bikes.
4. ELLIS ISLAND & LIBERTY ISLAND
We went on a tour of both Ellis Island and Liberty Island. Wandering around the museum on Ellis Island learning about the 12 million immigrants chasing the American Dream was extremely touching. And then, of course, no trip to New York is complete without a visit to the Statue of Liberty who welcomed all those immigrants to their new lives. I would thoroughly recommend the audio tours on both of these islands.
5. GROUND ZERO
The memorial of 9/11. As soon as I entered, I was hit with a lot of emotions – heartbroken for the innocent people who lost their lives, reflective about how unpredictable life can be, and touched at how so many come here to remember.
6. OTHER BITS AND BOBS
- Wall Street – seeing the real Wall St. was pretty cool. The Charging Bull of Wall St. is also a great photo op.
- Wall Art around the city
- NBC Studios
- Grand Central Terminal – A great place to people-watch
- China Town – unfortunately I didn’t get a picture of China Town.. I was too busy eating all the food and drinking the coconuts!
- Little Italy