On my travel bucket list a few weeks ago I mentioned my eternal love for the city that never sleeps; New York. Now, (perhaps not fitting to be on my bucket list) I have actually been lucky enough to visit New York twice now! Both times I have jetted off with my mum on some last minute trips and the very first time we did, I accompanied her on a trip (she’s an air hostess) in which we were there for literally about 24 hours. Therefore, I saw it only fitting that I did a post on my experience and some of the key must-dos if you ever find yourself in NY for a day…
1. BROADWAY SHOW
As the plane ride was a good 8 hours (+ the 5 hour time difference meaning we arrived 7pm NY time which was midnight UK time!) we found ourselves landing in NY pretty late in the evening, however that didn’t stop us. After the pretty long journey from JFK airport into Manhattan (about half an hour drive minimum but with the crew bus and getting through customs - always a long one in America, never underestimate it, it took us a good 1.5/2hrs to get to the hotel), we dumped our bags at the hotel and headed straight to Broadway to grab some last minute tickets for a show. At the time Sister Act was on and was featuring Raven Symone – needless to say she was pretty epic and absolutely hilarious. Such an amazing atmosphere and fab experience!
2. EMPIRE STATE BUILDING AND TIME SQUARE
Of course, you can’t quite get away with visiting New York without popping through Time Square and letting your inner tourist be revealed as your head tilts back and is overwhelmed by the incredible lights, bustling atmosphere and just pure amazement. We tottled along, knackered and hungry, but ecstatic after the show and wandered through and headed to the Empire State Building (luckily as it was late evening the queue wasn’t as bad as I expect it probably is during the day). As you can imagine the view from up there – and at night too – is simply spectacular. I was hypnotised by the beauty of it all! Some may say the view from The Top of the Rock is better (which it might well be – I still haven’t been there - that’s next on my list!) but I feel they must be pretty similar.
3. HELICOPTER RIDE
Perhaps a bit more on the pricey side (was a birthday present – and was also 4 years ago - so I’m afraid I can’t quite say how much it was), but if you’re only there for 24 hours, definitely worth it! I shotgunned the front seat (not the drivers obvs) of a helicopter and the lovely New Yorker whisked us off around the concrete jungle and took us around to see the Statue of Liberty and everything – pretty awesome if I do say so! Definitely a great chance to get a snapshot of the city and just spend half an hour- an hour just in awe! (Can you tell that NY is probably one of my favourite places on this planet?)
4. CENTRAL PARK
Absolutely stunning – in summer and winter – Central Park is so tranquil and pretty that I could walk through it for hours (1. Because it’s gorgeous, 2. Because it’s bloody huge!). In winter there’s a lovely ice rink (although expect a long queue) and in summer the trees and sun are just lovely to bask in. Due to lack of time me and mum took a nice walk and then called upon a lovely horse and carriage to take us on a quick trip and gave our feet a little, well needed rest!
Little pic of when my brother joined us just the second time we visited - just after Christmas, so it was extremely cold! If you ever go at that time (which I suggest that you do, NY at Christmas is even more magical) I suggest seriously wrapping up - like I'm talking even Northern England cold!
America are notorious for their overindulgence on food, but I feel a good way to embrace the New York experience is to of course grab yourself a good burger (hence the name) or hot dog and indulge! However I must point out that when we were there for our 24 hours, we trekked a good while looking for somewhere to grab dinner that evening and were fooled by the term 'city that never sleeps' when in fact it was more like 'the city that sleeps at around 11pm' - just to warn you!
Of course, I’ve only picked out a few of the many must-dos in NY and the bits that really stood out to me! – little bits you can probably also fit into your 24 hours are taking a yellow cab (obviously) and pop down to 5th Avenue! There are also so many more things I want to do next time I’m there (Top of the Rock, visit Greenwich Village, the zoo etc) but I could probably write forever about my love and lust for NY and that may bore you a little (though I don’t understand how!)
I wanted to do this post after seeing Amy's post over on Salt and Chic, on 24hrs in Amsterdam and hearing about the AccorHotels competition to win a stay in Paris/Amsterdam/Berlin which you can find out about here, and also to share my love and experience in this magical city!
If anyone’s ever been to NY – any more tips? Any good local places that are great to visit?