First Stop: New York

New York, you have another notch on your belt. Never before has a snap decision felt so good! The plane landed, security was a breeze and it was late but I felt so self-assured that I hopped on the subway. Each neighbourhood flashed passed my eyes as the heat washed over me, it felt so strange to be foreign in an English speaking country and the jet lag was slowly hitting me but I couldn’t wait to explore.

Thanks to our knowledgeable and New York passionate friends, our days were crammed with as many city ‘musts’ that we had the energy for – these included most of the iconic buildings, walking the high line, some eat out first experiences like Shake Shack, two shows (Miss Saigon and Spamilton) and some more memorable moments like watching the incredibly talented waiters at Ellen’s Stardust Diner perform above and around our table whilst showering us with straws and singing the Elephant Medley. Mesmerising. On top of that, the weather was beautiful, I can’t imagine it layered in snow, I guess I’ll have to go back…
This part of the trip wouldn’t have been possible without the incredible generosity of two really awesome hosts and their idyllic apartments. It opened NYC up to us in the way only free accommodation can in an expensive city. Everyone was amazing, I was buzzing from being asked about my day and even an unsuccessful three hour wait for Hamilton felt like a triumph. Staying with friends meant like I already felt like a local, and in case that wasn’t enough, I also managed brunch in Brooklyn with a friend from uni who was there on business, I really didn’t want to leave.

But leave I must! A rather hungover Saturday saw me attempt the ginormous Central Park and Met museum alone and on an empty stomach (so naive). Perhaps my least successful cultural trip but after Googling how to best ‘complete the Met in an hour’, I ticked my boxes and took myself home, I know my limits.

It was going to be an early start at 5am the next day. Thinking one step at a time, I started to get my head round catching a one-way flight to Colombia and called it a day, still buzzing from a whirlwind American experience!

Seconds to make count:

1. The list of everything everyone suggested to us if you’re wanting NYC things to do is at the bottom of this post.

2. Make friends in queues!

3. Once in the subway, you can’t necessarily access both sides of the platform, not ideal for those in a rush and much more confusing than the Northern line.

4. Twenty minutes before an off-Broadway show, if you say ’20 at 20′ at the box office, you can get $20 tickets.

5. Statue of Liberty tickets can be bought cheaper online with statue cruises. If you want to get up to the crown…book it four months in advance.

NY to do:

  1. Cryff dogs – speakeasy
  2. Pouring ribbons
  3. Los Tacos No 1
  4. Five Leaves
  5. Black seed bagel – soho
  6. Cheesecake
  7. Dollar pizza slices
  8. Anchorman restaurant
  9. Top of the rock
  10. Central Park
  11. Skyline
  12. Statue of Liberty
  13. Secret burger joint – inside Le Parker Meridien hotel behind a massive red velvet curtain
  14. Empire State Building
  15. Times Square
  16. Flat Iron Room
  17. Cafe Wha – funk!
  18. Brooklyn bridge park – Grimaldis
  19. Pizza in Brooklyn
  20. Grand central station
  21. Ellen’s stardust diner – singing waiters
  22. MOMA
  23. World Trade Center
  24. Faicco ‘s pork store – deli 260 Bleeker St
  25. Pisillo Italian paninia 97 Nassau street – sub sandwiches
  26. Benelmans bar – Madison Ave piano bar
  27. Neue Galerie, on 5th Ave, which has German and Austrian art.
  28. Chelsea Market
  29. renting a bike near Central Park
  30. Greenwich Village
  31. The place where the external footage of the building where Rachel and Monica lived was in Bedford with Grove St. Nearby there is a cheesy and wine place that is sensational, called Buvette Gastrothèque. Worth seeing if you have any basketball games and go watch at Madison Square Garden
  32. A very pleasant walk is to walk around the seaport and still have a boat trip at the end of the day which is very tasty, seeing the city starting to light up, in the background the statue of liberty.
  33. A park that is really cool, but few know (go if you have time), is in Brooklyn, called Prospect Park.
  34. Pappardella
  35. Island burgers
  36. Sugar & plumm sweets

#esc

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