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NYC baby! (Part 1)

Remember that road-trip I was supposed to take with my sister earlier last year? Yeah we finally went back in December! It’s a little while ago and I forgot about getting these posts up, but prepping for my next trip (Rome in October) reminded me that I never told you guys about NYC.

The main reason we decided to go on this roaptrip was to attend the conclusion of Jason Mraz’s tour at Madison Square Garden so around suppertime on December 9th we picked up our rental car (freeeeee courtesy of Airmiles) and set off for NYC. We crossed the border to the US at Houlton after midnight and with another few stops in between (primarily to refuel our bodies with caffeine and sugar) we arrived in a somewhat foggy Jersey early in the afternoon on December 10th. My first experience driving through NYC was actually not bad at all!

Warning: this is an image heavy long post!

We had booked an appartment with airbnb in Jersey from where we were able to hop on the bus for a 5-10 minute ride to the Port Authority Bus Terminal in Manhattan. It was an awesome location, inexpensive and allowed us easy access to Manhattan. I don’t have pics of the apartment but I’m sure I can find the link for you if you’re interested.  If you’re ever planning on travelling anywhere, after trying to get your accommodations for free using frequent flyer miles or other programs I HIGHLY recommend using something like airbnb. Because we were staying in an apartment that was below where the owner lived we were able to get help anytime we needed, got tips from somebody who’s obviously familiar with surrounding neighbourhoods and were even given buspasses for our first day and instructions on how to get to Manhattan.

The Jason Mraz concert was on the day that we arrived and being exhausted from the drive we almost didn’t make it but did decide to go, we arrived about half an hour late and had a great time.

Jason Mraz @ Madison Square Garden

Jason Mraz @ Madison Square Garden

The whole roadtrip to NYC was EPIC. If you ever get the chance to go to NYC, take it! We had such a great time.  We left home on Sunday evening, arrived Monday afternoon and left NYC again on Saturday to arrive back home somewhere on Sunday. It was a 13 hour for us, one way. We alternated driving so we didn’t stop anywhere other than gasstations. All in all we spent 5 nights and roughly 6 days primarily hopping through Manhattan and still didn’t have time to see all NYC has to offer despite having things planned out pretty firmly. Also don’t worry about driving or flying, do whatever is cheaper. We didn’t use the rental car at all after we checked in and just used the bus and the subway for getting around, both of which, after you’ve familiarized yourself a bit, are great for getting around. We also did a lot of walking.

the street in front of Madison Square Garden

the street in front of Madison Square Garden

We visited quite a few places, the most disappointing being the Empire State building. It’s a tourist trap. We were there on a quiet evening on a Tuesday and while and it was nice to see the lights at night the whole thing was just rather meh. From the annoying sales guys out front for some other skycrap attraction to actually getting to the top through a maze of rooms set-up for peak-tourist season lines to the actual disappointing top that’s completely gated in. Really? Skip it.


The view from Empire State building

Instead go here, then come back at night for a better view:

30 Rock! Where magic happens!

30 Rock! Where magic happens!

One of THE BEST experiences in NYC was 30 Rockefeller. We were there just before Christmas so we got to see the outdoor rink, there’s a Legostore, there’s an icecream place and the view from the top is just amazing.

You can see all of Manhattan, Central Park… and it’s not gated in. There are multiple levels and bright indoor spaces where you can chill. I didn’t get enough pics here but to give you an idea but google is your friend. ;)

A sunny day on top of 30 Rock

A sunny day on top of 30 Rock

Close to 30 Rock we visited FAO Schwartz, that store with the big piano! We spent a lot of time goofing off with the toys before making it out with a few christmas gifts

@ FAO Schwartz with my sister

@ FAO Schwartz with my sister

Maybe the legoversion is even cooler than the real deal yo

Maybe the legoversion is even cooler than the real deal yo

There’s is so much in this city to explore. Just off the top of my head we visited Frank Sinatra’s birthplace, Carlo’s bakery in Hoboken, Empire State Building, 30 Rock, the Museum of Modern Art, the Museum of Natural History, we made sure to do a route through Grand Central Station. We had five guys deliciousness, checked out 5th avenue, went to Times Square, had Chinese in Jersey. Went to St. Steven’s IT to check the lookout point, we went to Macy’s, Canal St, Little Italy, ate at AOA in Tribeca…. I could go on for a while. But… before I make this post too long, here’s another couple of pics and I’ll save the rest for another post. :) Seriously, visit NYC!



the pond at Bryant Park

the pond at Bryant Park

Have you ever been to NYC, what was your favourite spot?



5 Responses to “NYC baby! (Part 1)”

  1. I grew up in New York City and I always stayed away fro the tourist traps. Funny, the first time I went to Empire State Building was when my mother had business there. I remember the great museums, the UN, Broadway shows and the great food.

    Posted by krantcents | May 20, 2013, 17:23
  2. Hi there, if you could provide the link for the airbnb you stayed at that would be awesome. I really would like to get to NYC one of these days and don't have a huge budget to spend. Thanks in advance.

    Posted by A Dash of This and That | May 20, 2013, 20:59
    • Hmmmm, I looked at Airbnb and tried to search for it but it seems to have been unlisted? Anyway, we stayed in Union City, NJ. The busline to the NYC Port Authority was about a stonesthrow from the appartment and off-peak usually took about 10Minutes… then you can either start walking through manhattan or take the subway wherever you want to go! We paid $619.71 for 5 nights, the AirBNB service fee was $66.00. We had two actual beds and one pullout futon so after we split the cost in three it wasn't bad at all! There are lots of listings and tons of reviews, it's a great way to go! :)

      Posted by Renée | June 1, 2013, 08:49
  3. The building is topped by an enormous spire. It was designed as a mooring mast and would enable dirigibles such as zeppelins to anchor at the top of the building so that passengers could embark or disembark. This proved to be very unpractical however due to the instability of zeppelins and after the Hindenburg disaster in 1937 the idea was shelved.

    Posted by Candy L. Terrell | May 30, 2013, 22:21

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