When Kat and I had planned for our 1st day in New York City we had decided to keep it wide open incase our plane arrived later in the day, or if we were to tired from our red eye flight. But we arrived at the designated time and we were both wide awake. So we set out to find stuff to do. Right outside of the motel across the street we found a small park patio with a waterfall. As we continued our walk down the street we enjoyed the various architecture. We stopped at the GE building and picked up our Top of the Rock and MOMA pass. Since we had the tickets we went and visited the MOMA. I LOVED the MOMA. I advise you to research the art displayed, it will only help you appreciate it more. But if you don’t, you will see many famous paintings that are familiar-Starry Night by Van Gogh, Jackson Pollock, Picasso, Campbell Soup Cans by Andy Warhol, that you will enjoy your visit no matter what. After we left the MOMA it was such a beautiful day that we decided to head up to Central Park. As we walked up 6th Ave we stumbled upon the famous LOVE sign at W. 55th street. It was crowded so to get your picture taken with no one else in the photo has to have careful timing. Since it was the beginning of October and the trees had just a touch of color on them, the walk thru Central Park was very beautiful. We visited the Dairy Visitor Center, Wollman Rink, the Mall (the famous walk that you usually see in movies which is always filled with artists and showmen), Bethesda Terrace and fountain, the Loeb Boathouse, Alice in Wonderland Statue, Belvedere Castle, obelisk, the Ramble and Columbus Circle. By this time we were starving. We had eaten at 7 in the morning during our planes layover and by now it was 4 pm. As we walked down Central Park West Street we looked for places to eat. Nothing. Unless you wanted food carts which we didn’t. We figured we would find something but as we got closer and closer to Times Square we couldn’t find any restaurants. So we gave up and ate at Subway. That night we went and saw Phantom of the Opera on Broadway. I was so excited to see it but tried to temper my feelings because I didn’t want to be hugely disappointed. But I loved it! The movie of Andy Lloyd Webbers Phantom of the Opera is a basic copy. There was some differences, but nothing major. To sit and watch the play, and see them change the ugly theater to beautiful decor, to feel the fire on your face, and see the fog as they descend into the dark cannot be compared to a movie. But I still love the movie! After the Phantom of the Opera we headed to the Top of the Rock. I love the Top of the Rock, the views are just awesome. I love seeing it at night. The next day we had to wake up early to make it to our scheduled private bible tour at the Met. We walked from 51st street all the way to 82nd. It was a two mile walk. Kat wanted to kill me. After the bible tour we headed up to the great secret of the Met, the roof garden. Afterward we headed back to our motel, taking a different street so we could see different stuff. Kat had wanted to see Serendipity 3 if we could fit it in so we stopped at this food landmark for their famous frozen hot chocolates. I ordered the original and Kat ordered the peanut butter one. When they arrived I eagerly took a bite, expecting it to be the best thing on earth I have ever tasted. Crunch. Crunch. Crunch. I was literally eating frozen chocolate milk. Want this “divine” treat? Go to the store, get that premade chocolate milk, go home and freeze it and there you go. It was so sweet that I couldn’t even finish mine and had to wash it down with a plate of fries. The peanut butter one tasted better. But it was still a fun experience, and if I ever go again I know to just share the frozen hot chocolate drink with someone. Near Serendipity 3 was the Roosevelt Island Tram. I had heard that the views from the Tram were breathtaking so using our Metrocards we went for a ride. Its mostly a view of the Queensboro Bridge. By this time we were exhausted so we returned back to our motel and settled in for the night….till I woke Kat up and asked her if she wanted to go see Grand Central Terminal since it was so close. You have no idea how many times Kat said she wanted to kill me on this trip. We walked to Grand Central Terminal, which was only a 15 minute walk…or .7 of a mile. We checked out a bookstore, went and did the Whisper Gallery while laughing at other tourists doing the same thing, and then walked back to our motel via Vanderbilt Ave. I had wanted to go into the Chrysler building too but as we entered the lobby the doormen asked if we tourists. When we said yes he told us the building was closed and to come back in the morning. The next morning we woke up early to get to Battery Park to make our Statue of Liberty appointment. After two days of New York we were exhausted so getting ready took longer. And it was raining. Did either Kat and I pack waterproof shoes or jackets? No. And we didn’t pack a umbrella either. But we figured we would be fine and I put on a sweater underneath my coat. We made it to Battery Park and walked around trying to find the ticket booth. As we walked around, getting more and more soaked, we were hounded by salesmen trying to sell us umbrellas. I’m sure they thought we were extremely stupid because we kept walking past them every five minutes trying to find the ticket booth and looking extremely miserable without a umbrella. As we walked around the waterfront it was mesmerizing to see the Statue of the Liberty so close. And even though it was rainy and overcast, it was still a beautiful day and picturesque. We finally found the ticket booth, which was located at Castle Clinton, but we were to early so back out in the rain we went. We found the Sphere-which is a monument that used to be located in the plaza of the Twin Towers, the Smithsonian Native American Indian Museum (to bad we didn’t have enough time to go inside!), a sculpture of a water rescue, and a beautiful view of the Freedom Tower. When the Liberty Cruise ship finally opened and we boarded, it was crowded with school aged kids. They made a beeline for the open top of the ship but Kat and I ran to the cafe. We were starving and we had been up for a few hours already. We grabbed a handhold and ate our muffins while the boat headed to the Statue of Liberty. We departed at the Statue of Liberty and started the hike up to the Pedestal. We were so glad we did not buy the crown tickets because we were hardly able to do the walk to the Pedestal. And the Pedestal tickets are not worth it by the way. You are to close to the statue to get a good shot of the statue and the skyline view is the same as the ground view. And in my opinion the Statue of Liberty museum sucked. We hopped back onto the cruise ship and headed to Ellis Island. I loved all the history of Ellis Island and wished we could have stayed longer. But we had timed tickets to the 9/11 museum and so had to leave early. As we walked to the 9/11 site we came across the famous wall street bull. The 9/11 memorial museum was a heartbreaking museum to visit. It was of course sobering, and will bring back many painful memories. We spent a few hours there and we both cried. We went to O’Hara’s restaurant after the museum and looked at the walls filled with badges from different divisions. The last full day in New York we spent mostly in Brooklyn visiting friends. Before we arrived I convinced Kat that walking across Brooklyn Bridge would be the thing to do. And it was only a mile long! A little rain wouldn’t hurt us. We arrived at 25 Columbia Height, Brooklyn Bethel, rain soaked and wearing dresses. But it was fun. We even walked around Brooklyn a little bit and found some street art. We spent our last night in Times Square where we watched Cinderella and rode the Ferris wheel at Toys R US. The next day, sleeping in for the first time since our arrival, we headed back home.
Hi! My name is Tana Buckminster and I am a travel writer for my travel blog, Road Trips With My Mom. I like to go on adventures, visit museums, and see new places. Come follow me on my adventures!