NEW YORK CITY
When : 20 – 27 April (7 nights and 6 days)
How : By plane from Belgium, 8 hours.
How much : 540€ round trip with Air France from Brussels.
NYC, the city that never sleeps. Such a vibrant, dynamic, powerful and magical city. The entire world knows it but you truly get it once you have experienced it yourself. NYC, you have stollen my heart and I just can’t wait to see you again already!
Be aware that this guide is really tiny compare to the lot of incredible things that this city has to offers. 6 days is definitely too short to discover this outstanding city. Well I mean, you can have a very good peak of it, but in my opinion NYC is a city that is really worth knowing and not just only the tourist side. You will have to come back quite a few times to be able to wander down the neighborhoods properly and to find some wonderful hidden gems!
There are no food/drink/shopping recommendations in this guide (there are two actually), because, as we travelled on a budget we didn’t eat out that much but this guide will be for sure continued…
Plan your trip to NYC : http://bit.ly/1NOeuKz
WHERE TO STAY
The location of your accommodation is an important thing to think about prior booking!
It all depends on what you plan to do and visit. As NYC is huge it is better to stay in or near the neighborhood where you will want to explore the most, so everything would be within walking distances and you would not have to take the transportations that much and you will save some precious time!
This what not the case for us as we stayed outside the city in the New Jersey. As I told you above, we travelled on a budget so we had to save money on a few things, and the first one was the accommodation. We found this brand new hostel in Union City, which is located just 20min away by bus from Times Square (if it’s not busy), that offers bed in dormitories or private room. We had our own private room, small but really clean and brand-new, with an ensuite bathroom and we only paid 20€/night each. It was funny because we had a bunk bed so it felt like we were in summer camp all over again! The thing that wasn’t funny at all was the cold shower (for most of the time). Anyway, it was quite nice to stay there but for my next trip to the big apple, I will definitely book something in the city to make the most of my it.
EXPLORE HOTEL AND HOSTEL (website)
415 38th Street, Union City, New Jersey
Note : the buses to get to Union city are not included in the MTA pass. It is $3 per trip (price is discounted to $2.70 if you buy more than 10 tickets).
There is absolutely no questions that every trip to NYC should start by visiting Manhattan and especially from Times Square. The craziest and busiest street of the world puts on quite a show when you arrive and it should definitely be seen by night! Then wandered down the iconic Broadway, and if you feel like it go see a fantastic musical. The famous 5th avenue, is just a short walk away, not to mention the beautiful Central Park where you should definitely have a pic-nic.
My absolute crush was the High Line in Chelsea, an elevated park built on an old railroad. It’s so nice to wander down the park from the beginning to the end, and I really advice you to do it at the end of the day so you can watch the sunset while sipping on a beer! Check out their (website) for events.
My favorite neighborhoods were by far Greenwich Village and Soho, where you have a lot of very cool cafes, restaurants, bars, clubs and a lot of boutiques (mostly in soho). Little Italy and Chinatown are just opposite to Soho and are worth paying a visit to eat authentic Italian and Chinese cuisine.
It is such a shame that we didn’t have enough time to discover Brooklyn and Williamsburg that well, because I know that I would have love them so much, it is definitely a must seen while in NYC ! The only place that I can recommend you in Williamsburg is this vegan cafe Little Choc Apothecary (details bellow) where we had the most delicious coffee and smoothie. Also, I highly recommend you to walk along the Williamsburg bridge to get back to the city rather than to take the train. You will have an awesome view over the city all long the way!
Food recommendations in Chinatown & Williamsburg :
XO KITCHEN (website)
148 Hester St, New York, NY 10013
You kind of feel lost in the middle, as this restaurant is mostly full of Asian people, but you can really immerse into the Chinatown’s neighborhood! We had the most delicious meal and it was really cheap. We only paid $10 each (see on left picture).
LITTLE CHOC APOTHECARY (website)
141 Havemeyer St, Brooklyn, NY 11211
If you want to have a break from all that Manhattan madness, then this vegan creperie is the perfect place to chill and relax in the trendy neighborhood of Williamsburg. They do great coffee and tea, delicious smoothies not to mention the gluten-free food menu which looks super yummy!
BEST THINGS TO DO
If you plan to visit at least 4 museums/attractions while in New York, I really advice you to buy the NYC PASS (here) or the New York Pass (here), so you would save some money! But only buy it if you are sure that you we will visit them allWe bought the NYC pass and it was way too much. We saw a lot of great things but we basically just spent our week in museums and we missed quite a lot of amazing thing in the city.
Useful tips: Book your tickets online to avoid the queue!
My favorite attraction of all was the empire state building, which we visited by night so we had a spectacular view over the city. I also liked the top of the rock very much, from where you can see the Empire State Building and everything else in the city. The statue of the liberty and Ellis island should definitely be on top of your list as well as the American Museum of Natural History and the MOMA which are the most popular attractions in NYC.
I quite enjoyed the Radio City Musical Hall and its Art deco scenery and we had so much fun doing a cruise with New York Water Taxi where you can hop on and hop off as you please. This a great way to visit the city while chilling and relaxing!
Pictures taken by Suzy Wolf & Me
Location : NYC, New York.