Well hello Upper East Siders,
It has been a while since our last blogpost. Kayleigh and I were busy lately because we both went on a holiday. Kayleigh discovered the beautiful Costa Rica and I was city tripping trough Manhattan and Brooklyn. You girls definitely followed us on Instagram the last few days to see the beautiful photos, but now I am going to tell you something, in words, about the city that never sleeps! You know what I mean right… New York City!
New York: concrete jungle where dreams are made, the city that never sleeps, the Big Apple. Traversing New York City is like finding over 100 different countries fit into one small island, 20 kilometers long and three kilometers wide. Including all five boroughs, this city of 8.2 million people has such a wealth of diversity and opportunity that whatever you’re in the mood for you can find it 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
If you are willing to go to New York City or you are going in the next few months, you definitely should read this blogpost.
For tourists like us (guilty), it is highly recommendable to buy a New York City Explorer Pass. From 70 euros and up, you’ll save up to 45% on top New York attractions. Buying an Explorer Pass enables a customized experience; enjoy only the venues, activities and enclaves that are of your personal interest. It works like this: choose from a set of three, five, seven or ten options – out of a menu of 54 top attractions in and around New York – and then see and do them for one flat fee. From a movie tour of Central Park to a full day bike rental to a trip to the Museum of Modern Art, there’s no shortage of selections.
In March we’ve booked our city trip to New York at Dutch traveling agency D-Reizen. We were pretty late with booking, so make sure you’ll book on time; that’s a lot cheaper. We choose for the Hudson hotel, located in midtown. Just steps from Central park. The Hudson hotel is an energetic social hub filled with urban adventure and daredevil design, Hudson takes convention and turns it on its head. Best places to hang were: Hudson Common, a modern-day beer hall and burger joint with nightly entertainment; Hudson Bar, a quintessential New York cocktail bar and lounge; and Sky Terrace (open seasonally), an English garden with breathtaking views of New York City. Just steps from Columbus Circle, Carnegie Hall, Lincoln Center, Time Warner Center and the theater district.
We really enjoyed our stay at the Hudson Hotel. The rooms were really small, but that’s normal for staying the night in the big apple! For the Gossip Girl fans, the sky terrace of the Hudson Hotel was filmed during the second season went Blair Waldorf kept her ‘welcome back’ party! Must visit right?
358 W 58th St, New York, NY 10019, United States
230th Fifth Avenue
When the sun sinks slowly beyond the Hudson and luminous skyscrapers light up the night, New York transforms into one grand stage. Well-known actors take to the legendary theaters of Broadway as world-class soloists, dancers and musicians perform at venues large and small across town. Whether high culture or low, New York embraces it all.
On a Friday night we visited rooftop bar 230th, located next to fifth avenue. This roof terrace looks like a roof garden with stunning views over Manhattan by night, especially the enlightened Empire State Building. We really enjoyed our time with delicious gin & tonics over there.
Access is aloud from 21 and over.
230 5th Ave, New York, NY 10001, Unites States
New York City Explorer Pass
For the sightseeing part, we’ve booked the New York City Explorer Pass as I told you guys previously. We choose out of three options and one of them was the Grey Line Sightseeing Bus Tour. It is really touristic, but if you want to see all the places of interest what New York has to offer in a short notice of time, this is the best way to explore the city.
Bicycle riding in Central Park
Central Park is a great place to explore on a bicycle, offering breathtaking views from flat, hilly and scenic terrain. We’ve rented a bike (also an included option in the New York City Explorer Pass) to discover the many popular places in Central Park. By bicycle you will see a lot of the park in a short amount of time.
Walking across the Brooklyn Bridge
A walk across the Brooklyn Bridge is one of the best things to do in New York City. Access to the Brooklyn Bridge is 24 hours per day and it is beautiful at any time of day, but sunset is particularly nice! This way, you can take in the views of both Brooklyn, Manhattan and the Statue of Liberty!
Top of the Rock
Top of the Rock Observation Deck (30 Rockefeller Plaza) offers two distinct advantages over the Empire State Building. It’s a timed ticketing system to avoid long wait times and a view of the Empire State Building itself. Thanks to this – and its spacious 360-degree indoor and outdoor decks – Top of the Rock Observation Deck features what many consider to be the finest panoramic vistas of New York City.
We choose for the Top of the Rock Observation Deck because of the beautiful breathtaking views it has to offer. In contrast to the Empire State Building, Top of the Rock has plenty of space at the three-tiered deck and the wait times are far from being slow.
30 Rockefeller Plaza, New York, NY 10020, United States
When it comes to shopping in NYC, your options are all but limitless. In New York, you’ll find many of the best department stores in the world, including Bloomingdale’s and Macy’s NYC, and countless Fifth Avenue boutique shops.
By far one of the best shopping neighborhoods in New York City, SoHo has a unique vibe that no other part of Manhattan can compare to. The neighborhood specializes in big name stores like J. Crew, Bloomingdale’s Pottery Barn, H&M, Prada (etc). You can find all these stores and more from Broadway to Sixth Avenue, so many visitors end up here whether they set out to shop or not.
Psstt.. I’d bought myself a new Levi’s jeans and I was shocked at the price. Levi’s is in the United States less expensive than in the Netherlands. You will save more than 40 euros!
Well, about food, you know what they say about American food. But good news, I found some places where you get eat delicious food which is comparable to the food you’re used to.
Le Pain Quotidien
This Belgian breakfast and lunch diner can be find at several places around the world and of course also in New York City. Any suggestions for the menu are the avocado toast, the quinoa taboulé salad and the Belgian breakfast (hearth-baked rustic bread with Belgian chocolate pasta).
922 7th Ave, New York, NY 10019, United States
When we were walking through the streets of the Upper West Side (nearby Lincoln Center), we suddenly came across this modern and cozy Mexican restaurant. The place was really crowded and you’ll know what they say about crowded restaurants: the food is good! So the next day we’ve made a reservation to enjoy the famous Mexican tortillas and wraps. I must say; one the best Mexican food I ever tasted. Highly recommendable!
61 Columbus Ave, New York, NY 10023, United States
We’ve enjoyed six days (five nights) in New York City. That’s the perfect time for a city trip in the Big Apple! One last point I don’t want to forget, bring enough money because the American tips got me broke at the end of the holiday!
If you have any questions or recommendations, feel free to comment down below.
Have you been to the Big Apple? What are your favorite hotspots?