I’ll admit, it’s not just love – it’s an obsession!
Last year I promised I’d try somewhere different in the US and went to San Fran and Boston (click on links to read blogs of both cities) – and while I loved San Fran I wasn’t feeling Boston and just wished I’d gone back to New York again.
I’ve been to NYC a few times now and I just can’t get enough of it. Each time I go I see and do more new things, yet always come home having not done everything on my list. On my first 2 visits I did all the usual tourist stuff, Statue of Liberty, Empire State Building, shopping in Macy’s, Central Park etc etc. But on my last visit I went alone and decided that I wanted to see other parts of Manhattan that I hadn’t got to on previous visits.
Holidaying alone is something that I’d be nervous of in a country I didn’t speak the language but I wasn’t in any way nervous about going to NYC alone… contrary to what you may hear about all the crazies I felt really safe there!
For me there is no feeling that compares to when I arrive in Manhattan, the excitement and buzz – I adore it!
I stayed in the Affinia Manhattan – a really central location so I wasn’t off the beaten track and didn’t have to walk down any side streets alone at night or anything. It had been recently refurbished and was perfect.
And was also just across from Madison Square Garden.
The first thing most people think of when they imagine NYC is Times Square. While it’s exciting to see the first time it’s certainly not one of the nicer parts of the city. Good to see yes, but not somewhere I’d choose to spend much time while there.
The buildings in Manhattan are just spectacular. Of course there’s the Empire State Building
And the Flat Iron Building
But my favourite is the Chrysler Building – I love how the top of it catches the sunlight on a good day (this wasn’t a great sunny day!).
Although the city is crazy busy, it is possible to escape from the madness – Central Park has some lovely areas to hide away.
I personally love the smaller parks that are dotted throughout the city. My absolute favourite is Bryant Park – a gorgeous smaller park close to the Public Library. With a little cafe and restaurant it’s the perfect place to pass a couple of hours reading a book and watching the New Yorkers rush by.
If you are exploring by foot you will come across lots of these little parks – they are beautiful!
Not too far from Bryant Park is the famous Grand Central Station – looking exactly like it does in the movies! The part I was most excited about is the unbelievable food hall 🙂
I literally walked the feet off myself on my last trip. It was the first holiday I’ve been on that I ate rings around myself but didn’t put on weight! It’s so nice to just wander through all the neighbourhoods, Greenwich, Chelsea etc.
There are some fab houses that I can only imagine the price tag – I loved this one!
At this stage my feet were in bits! Flip flops not advised for trekking around Manhattan 🙂
A full day can be spent downtown. On my last visit, Ground Zero had undergone a complete transformation since my first. The new towers and memorial flows were built – a total change from the eerie scene I’d come to on previous trips.
From there I went down to Pier 17 – one of my favourite spots.
I love being close to the water and the Pier has great views across to Brooklyn and of the bridge. It’s also a fantastic place to do some shopping out of the crowds of 5th Avenue or the outlets.
It would be a sin not to stop off here for some food – delicious crab cakes!
I decided to walk from the Pier to Battery Park for sunset. The views along the way were incredible.
I got to Battery Park just in time to see the sun going down behind the Statue of Liberty. This was honestly the most special time of my trip – and I didn’t even mind being alone for it 🙂
My last day was a Sunday and I took advantage of the quiet morning and had a walk along the highline, an old railway line that runs along the west side. This is a great way to see the city from a height without the crowds and was a lovely way to spend the morning.
There is some great wall art along the way.
I hopped off at the Chelsea Markets for a mosey around. This place is great, heaps of little food shops and other small shops.
I ate in some lovely restaurants while there, the likes of Balthazar and the Spice Market. It’s really accepted to dine alone in Manhattan so I didn’t feel out of place at all (I did stick to early dinners though). My last meal was Brunch before the airport. Only in America do you choose the omelette to be healthy and end up with a huge omelette, a muffin, home fries, a mimosa and a glass of wine! I love it 🙂
Manhattan is one place that has my heart. I feel amazing every time I’m there and long to go back. It can be an expensive trip but is worth every penny!