Three maps and five mobile apps later… we eventually found our way around New York City. Here I am returning for Day 2 of exploring, getting lost, getting sunburn and being an extreme tourist.
Still not used to the time difference we woke up at around 5:30/6:00am and headed down to breakfast for delicious maple sausages and omelettes😍 starting the day off perfectly!
We then got the subway to Battery Park in Lower Manhattan for the ferry terminal that takes you across to see Lady Liberty herself. We used our Explorer passes on this ferry but you can purchase these tickets individually from Statue Cruises (I’d advise getting there early otherwise you’ll be in huge queues!) this allowed access to visit the Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island Immigration Museum. The boat tip tickets includes audio tour equipment that we found entertaining since we were all walking round looking antisocial on ‘phones’. The walk around the whole of this island had stunning views of Manhattan, especially as the sun came out and lit up the gorgeous skyline. This is another location I could have easily spent all day sat looking at the skyline, it’s honestly breathtaking views from afar. Heading back onto the ferry taking us across to Ellis Island for more breathtaking views and a bit of historical knowledge with the immigration museum, with more complimentary audio tours.
Once we were back on the land of Lower Manhattan we were surrounded by street hot dogs that we couldn’t resist, so we snapped up a dollar hot dog each while we sat soaking up the sun and figuring out the route to the World Trade Centre (which was actually easy enough!).
While in New York it’s a given that you should go and pay your respects to the 9/11 victims should you have time. We visited the two memorial pools and were completely shocked by the number of names surrounding the pools, it easily puts into perspective the mass amount of people that were affected by this event. A bitter sweet moment remembering those who lost their lives but also realising how amazing humanity is to create such beautiful, tranquil memorials as a result of such events like this. Unfortunately, we didn’t pre-book the memorial museum and the next availability wasn’t until the evening so we had to give it a miss this time.
Prior to coming to New York my sister and I came across one of those viral videos on Facebook that have insane dreamy food places that we all wish we could take a visit to. Well… we saw a place selling scoops of pure cookie dough which happened to be in New York so of course we planned it into our visit. Dō Confections… you were incredible😍. The aesthetics of the store were amazing and the cookie dough itself was even more amazing, with taster scoops available before you chose which dough you wanted.
We walked back from Dō Confections through the Greenwich Village park… Washington Square, home to the Washington Square Arch. Leading you onto 5th Avenue, the thoroughfare of Manhattan where you expect to bump into Sarah Jessica Parker walking her pooch. We gave up part way down 5th Avenue, got lost and walked miles looking for the subway station because the NYC heat had got the better of us.
Tip: Weekly subway tickets are worth the purchase for $33 – the city is much bigger than it looks on the map!
Getting back to our hotel we had a rest and refresh before heading back out for the evening. Being one of the best days weather wise we decided to make the most and head up the Empire State Building for some absolutely stunning views. We managed to catch the beautiful sunset made even better since it was one of the two days in the year that the New York Manhattanhenge occurs whereby the sun aligns with the West streets of Manhattan. Although we were above the streets of Manhattan we still saw the strength of the sun aligning with the streets. Seeing across miles of the city was honestly amazing, this was definitely a highlight of the holiday for me.
A perfect evening then topped off with an even more perfect dining experience at Ellen’s Startdust Diner. I’ll say this now, this is a must do if you’re heading to the city. This is much more than just an American diner, the waiters and waitresses put on a performance for you and interacted with the customers singing broadway classics and popular songs for the entertainment of all ages. This is such an interactive entertaining dining experience we all absolutely loved it. It’s equally as amazing to hear that many performers have gone on to join broadway shows having had the opportunity to practice and gain skill performing at Ellen’s.
Of course now, we were shattered so back to the hotel it was for a rest!
Make sure you’re caught up on the rest of the week too!