Showing posts with label New York City. Show all posts
Showing posts with label New York City. Show all posts

Let's Hear It For New York

I took thousands of photos in NYC. There are so many different things to see and do in New York and there's always something different and interesting happening around you. Here are some of my photos that from around the city. Above is the New York Public Library. Lots of these pictures were taken on the Hop On Hop Off Bus. I'm sure I've mentioned in previous posts how much I love these tours, you get to see the city from a different perspective, as well as learn a lot about the history of the city you're visiting. The NYC bus is especially great because it's a really convenient way to get around the city and it's much cheaper than taxis! Stops for the Downtown tour include Times Square, the Empire State Building, the United Nations, South Street Seaport, Financial District, Greenwich Village, SoHo, Little Italy, Chinatown, Site of the World Trade Centre, Battery Park and Wall Street. We bought our tickets from someone on the street, who gave us a 6 day pass for the Downtown and Uptown Tour, plus a bonus Brooklyn Tour and Boat tour. Definitely worth it!

The Roosevelt Hotel Review

During our stay in NYC we stayed at The Roosevelt Hotel at 45 East 45th Street in Midtown. Our main aim was to find somewhere within good walking distance from many different attractions, as well as somewhere affordable. As a university student and an apprentice at the time, we weren't exactly making it rain! But this was New York and we did want to stay somewhere nice as well! With both pros and cons, here's what we thought of The Roosevelt Hotel.

5 Things To Do In Times Square

There is so much going on in New York City, it's easy to be overwhelmed by choice! And Times Square is probably  one of the craziest and busiest places in NYC. No matter what time you're here there's always hundreds of people, cars and buses rushing around this time space. If you don't know where to start in Times Square, here are some suggestions! 

Grand Central Station

Grand Central Station was something that photos couldn't capture. It is the atmosphere that defines this iconic location. With thousands of people bustling through it's walls everyday, Grand Central Station has got to be the most famous train station worldwide! Having witnessed everything from marriage proposals, to movies being made, it feels as if anything goes in this grand hall! Grand Central Station is also great for people watching! There are all kinds of people running through the station and it can provide a lot of entertainment! Grand Central Station also has a number of cafes and even an Apple Store, for everything you might need on the run! And with a roof inspired by constellations and legend, there's something wonderfully magical about it.

Where To Stay in NYC?

When visiting New York for the first time, most people can be very confused about where to stay. You hear so much about ever neighbourhood that you don't want to miss out on anything by staying in the wrong place! The good news is that there's not just one "best area" to stay in. Every neighbourhood offers unique and exciting restaurants, attractions and destinations; and the transport system in NYC can take you anywhere you might want to go that's not in walking distance! But if you're looking for some suggestions, here is my guide to NYC neighbourhoods:

Statue Of Liberty From The Water

The day we decided to visit the Statue of Liberty must have been the same day everyone decided to visit her. There was a line that wound from the wharf all around Battery Park and we were told by a security guard that there was a 3-4 hour wait. As much as we wanted to see the Statue of Liberty, we didn't want to waste 4 hours of our time in New York standing in a line. So we decided instead to jump on the Hop On Hop Off Boat (we had a free trip from buying a HOHO Bus pass for the week) and take a look at the iconic statue from the water. 

This was a fantastic alternative! The boat took off from right next to the Brooklyn Bridge and offered a great tour of the East River and the Hudson River. From the boat we had great views of Governors Island, Ellis Island and the Statue of Liberty and also Lower Manhattan including the financial district and the new World Trade Centre, also known as the Freedom Tower. We did a whole lap of the tour and then jumped off at Brookfield Place to continue exploring. Brookfield Place is close to the 9/11 Memorial Museum, the Freedom Tower and only a short walk from Wall Street and the Financial District.

NYC Architecture:The Flat Iron Building

I couldn't get enough of the architecture in New York City. So many of the buildings are just so beautiful and historical looking. The Flat Iron Building is one of the iconic buildings in NYC for it's unique shape. Look at the detail! It's just amazing, I took photos of it every time we drove or walked past it!!

The Brooklyn Bridge

A historic and iconic piece of New York City is the Brooklyn Bridge, connecting Manhattan to Brooklyn over the East River. And it is even more amazing in real life. Matching the beautiful architecture of the NY skyline in Manhattan, the Brooklyn Bridge is stunning to look at and offers beautiful views of the city. Arguably one of the most famous landmarks in New York City, it is definitely worth checking out while in NYC. If you're not up to walking, rent a bike and explore the bridge on wheels!  

Museum of Natural History

There are so many amazing museums in New York City. And none more famous than the Museum of Natural History. Located on the west side of Central Park, The Museum of Natural History offers world class exhibits, with permanent exhibitions such as the Akeley Hall of African Mammals, the Hall of Biodiversity and the Theodore Roosevelt Memorial Hall, as well as travelling exhibitions visiting all the time. The museum was fantastic, so educational and interesting, with so many different displays to explore. It might sound silly but Thom and I loved it so much that we downloaded Night at the Museum to watch on our next flight.

Here are some important things to remember when visiting the Museum of Natural History -

1. Buy your tickets before you get there. The museum is very popular and admission lines can sometimes be over an hour long. Buying tickets online could save you heaps of time waiting in lines! If you don't have access to the web while in NYC make sure you're able to pay with a credit card. The museum offers automated ticket machines that only accept card. Whilst there is still a line to purchase tickets this way, it moves a lot faster than the regular admission lines.
2. Get in early! Despite being located in the city that never sleeps, the museum closes at 5:45pm daily. When most of the city is open so late it's easy to lost track of time, so make sure you arrive early and leave yourself at least 3 hours to explore.
3.If you're planning on visiting several museums or attractions whilst in NYC consider purchasing a multi attraction pass such as the City Pass, the New York Pass or the Explorer Pass. These tickets offer you entry into a number of different attractions of your choice for a discounted price. Definitely worth looking into if you're planning on hitting up a number of NYC's most popular attractions. You can find out more about these passes and admission to the Museum of Natural History on their website here.

Click through to see some more of my pictures from my favourite exhibition - the Akeley Hall of African Mammals and a picture of Thom with T Rex from Night at the Museum.

Where The Wild Things Are

I have found that when you're talking to people about travelling, everyone has a different suggestion about what to do and where to go! And when talking to people about New York City almost every female I spoke to told me that I had to go on the Sex and the City tour. Is this just an Australian thing, or are other countries this excited about the SATC tour? Well.. I have never really watched SATC, so I was reluctant to spend a whole day visiting sites from the show - especially since I had already checked out Magnolia Bakery and isn't that the main one anyway!

I was still exicted to check out some of NYC's most famous places though, so we decided instead to check out the New York City TV and Movie Sites Tour. The roughly 4 hour tour took us all through NYC and our tour guide was fantastic! He pointed out famous places from movies and TV shows, as well as famous historical places around the city and even buildings where celebrities have apartments including Miranda Kerr and Beyonce. We stopped at the Friend's Building in Greenwich Village, the brownstone house from I Am Legend, the Firehouse from Ghostbusters and Soho for lunch just to name a few. It was such a great tour of the city, and it was crazy how a tiny normal street or a building that doesn't really look that special can be such a big part of a film. Worth checking out if you're like me and looking for an alternative to the Sex and the City Tour.

Breakfast at Tiffany's

A New York right of passage - shopping at Tiffany's New York on 5th Avenue. The beautiful multi-story store is just like all the movies and everything I ever imagined. Complete with a rich man, who had his dog in the store, being waited on just like he was! I was so excited to be there, I bought a beautiful pendant without even looking at the price tag - my bank account was not happy with me later for that one!

Ground Zero

Ground Zero. The National September 11 Memorial and Museum are the most significant reminders of the tragedy that was 9/11. It is located at the World Trade Centre site, the former location of the Twin Towers. The memorial is called Reflecting Absence, and was designed by Michael Arad and Peter Walker. It includes two large recessed pools, as seen above and below, in the places where the Twin Towers used to stand. The names of the victims of the attacks, including those from all four of the flights on September 11 and the Pentagon, are inscribed on the edge of the waterfalls. 

It's a surreal moment standing at such a historical and devastating place. It's just a beautiful for place for reflection and gratitude. I was only 10 when it happened, but I can still remember waking up in the morning (on September 12 for Australia) and watching it on TV. Unfortunately we didn't have time to take a tour of the 9/11 memorial while we were there - there was a four hour wait and a line that snaked out of the museum and all the way around the park, but I really wish I had of had the time. It's such as significant part of New York history and definitely a beautiful place to visit. 

The Great American Pastime

During our time in New York we decided to try and attend some sports. America is as big on their sports as Australia, so we thought we would try and experience some of their iconic games. Unfortunately as we were visiting in August, basketball and NFL were out of season, but the Yankees were playing in New York, how exciting! We grabbed some tickets online and were excited to experience the great American past time. We caught the train (not the subway, as the train was cheaper and faster) from Grand Central Station to Yankee Stadium in the Bronx. Interestingly, baseball is not as exciting as American movies lead you to believe. After the first couple of innings I was quite bored to be honest. Looking back now I feel like that shouldn't have surprised me that much, since it's such a similar game to cricket, which is also incredibly slow paced. We did have a good night though and it was fun to experience a different sport culture. It has nothing on AFL though! 

All You Need Is Love

Just a big reminder on the corner of 54th Street and Avenue of the Americas (6th), that all you need is love. Wish we had time to get to the Hope sign on 7th Avenue as well!

The Beauty of Central Park

Central Park was one of my favourite places in NYC. It is absolutely massive and endlessly beautiful. You could easily walk around the park for hours and constantly keep seeing new things. As we were visiting in the summer time everything was beautiful and green. My parents had been in NYC last March and it's amazing to see the difference between their photos and ours. Around March the trees were naked and snow and ice coated the whole park. But in the summertime the park is alive with people and a million different things going on. 

Areas you must check out in Central Park - The Mall (featured in the fourth photo from the top of this post), a stunning long walkway with arching trees proving some shade and the location of countless movies and TV shows; Minton Tile Ceiling at Bethesda Terrace (seen below), the terrace was created in the 1860s - completely unexpected in the middle of a park and absolutely stunning; Loeb Boathouse, grab yourself a row boat and row around the lake for a different perspective. There were still so many parts of Central Park we didn't get to see, you could easily spend days just exploring this area!


Top Of The Rock

I'm just going to admit it, Top Of The Rock was one of my favourite views ever. It was definitely my favourite view in New York City. Top Of The Rock had been at the very top of my NYC list of sights for as long as I can remember. With beautiful views of the Empire State Building, Central Park and the Hudson River, the Rockerfeller Centre really offers you views of the whole city. The Rockerfeller Centre is an important point in NYC as it houses NBC Studios, the Rainbow Room and is the place where the giant Christmas Tree and ice-skating rink are found in the winter time. In summer it hosts a beautiful outdoor cafe.  

The best thing about Top Of The Rock is that they control how many people are allowed up to the top at the one time with a timed entry system. This was so good, as it meant that it wasn't crowded at all at the top and there was plenty of space for everyone to move around and take photos happily. The building has such an interesting history and story. You can find out more about it here. 

New York, New York

My first trip to New York and mainland North America was something I felt like I had been planning for half of my life. And it finally became a reality late last year, after 4 and a half years of university and working as many hours as I could at my casual retails jobs. Our USA trip wasn't something I wanted to rush or do on a major budget, so instead we decided to wait until we had enough time and money and until Thom had finished his apprenticeship, so that we could really enjoy the adventure. Over the next few weeks I would like to share our adventure with you, which was about 4 weeks all together. Feel free to e-mail me if you have any travel questions!
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