NEW YORK CITY

Our first stop on our world trip was N.Y.C! A city that never sleeps with just too much to fit into our short adventure there. Here we’ve noted down our likes/dislikes and top tips from our trip.

As we are aiming to be away for a whole year we tried to keep things on a small budget. Below I’ve outlined our main adventures and categorized them into free or at least cheap attractions or ones on the more expensive side.  

FREE

Staten Island Ferry & Statue of Liberty

A free ferry ride with great views over the city and the statue of liberty. Not much to do on Staten Island itself but it’s free with some beautiful views. 

9/11 Memorial

A thoughtful and moving tribute to all those lost and affected by the tragic day. Roses are placed on the peoples name plaque on their birthday which is such a loving touch.


Brooklyn Bridge

Busy (as expected!) but definitely take a walk over here. 

The High Line

Mentioned below as our favourite thing to do in New York – an absolute must see!


Wall Street

Less busy and a great place to walk through if you’re exploring downtown.

Timesquare

Best to see at nighttime! Busy, vibrant and full of things to do. 


Grand Central + New York Public Library

Those typical famous attractions featured in more movies than I can mention. Grand central feels like you’re stepping back in time. 

Central Park

A hidden tranquility in the city. A place to escape and be more with nature.


EXPENSIVE

Top of the Rock - Rockefeller

Slightly more expensive at around $40 per adult but totally worth it! We researched a little beforehand to make sure we chose the best city observation pack and it definitely lived up to that for us. Another contender was the Empire State building however we feel you wouldn’t have got those typical New York style photos as well from there.

When ordering online you pick an allocated time slot however they’re very accommodating if you’re late or there’s bad weather. The views are absolutely incredible over Central Park, and you can even see the Statue of Liberty. What appealed to us was that the viewing was outside to get those better shots. The placewasn’t too crowded and there were so many different viewing spots. Make sure you don’t just settle for the first views you get! Go find the escalators that take you another two floors for even better photo and viewing opportunities. 


WHAT WE LIKED MOST

The High Line

This was by far one of our favourite places in New York. We love the history behind the highline (an abandoned railway line due for demolition bought back to life by Friends of The Highline in partnership with the New York City Department of Parks and Recreation.)

They have created a beautiful, nature enticing little gem in the heart of the city. You can walk through the blocks of the city on an elevated walkway full of greenery, culture, street food, beautiful views and still parts of the old railway lines. A must see if you’re in New York. 

New York Feeling

Also we loved just being around the city itself. The feeling of being in big old ‘New York New York’!

WHAT WE DIDN'T LIKE

New York Public Library

Don’t get us wrong.. the building is absolutely beautiful and it’s free to visit, however we felt a little strange once in there. We wanted to see the famous reading room however (maybe us being oblivious) didn’t realise this wasn’t a tourist attract us much as it was a working used library. We walked over to have a look into the room and soon realized we were cordoned off to just peep through the doorway as the room was full to the brim of people studying away. We felt a little like we were in a zoo! However, I think it was also very distracting for the people trying to study having hundreds of people watching them throughout the day. A beautiful building but more of a working library than a place for tourists we feel.

TIPS & TRICKS

Use the Public Transport!

It’s cheap and New York is far too big to walk everywhere! Taxis are also pretty impossible in that standstill New York traffic; you’ll rack up a hell of a bill!
On first impressions we were a little confused by the subway as we weren’t sure exactly where they were going, however overtime it seems to be pretty simple as long as you make sure your train is either headed uptown or downtown. Just take your time and don’t hesitate to ask the station workers – they’re here to help after all!
We bought metro cards for $1 and you then simply top them up throughout for trip. They work on subways and PATH trains and cost $2.75 per ride. 
We stayed over in New Jersey so it was a MUST to get the hang of the public transport in order to keep on budget.

Be wary of the Food Trucks on the Road Side!

Everyone mentions how great and convenient they are however we felt unlucky using these on our first day.
Our advice would be to check both location and ask for prices beforehand! We decided to buy 2 sandwiches and two drinks right outside central Park without checking the prices. The total came to over $30! We could have had much more for that money elsewhere! This really threw out our budget for the day for something we hadn’t even thought would be a problem. Over the rest of the week we found either home cooking is always best or go to those smaller restaurants and cafes and check for any meal deals! You will get a lot more for your money.