This weekend I ventured into New York to meet up with my parents and explore the city! We packed a lot into our little trip and it made me so ridiculously excited to go back again now that I have a feel for where things are and what I want to do. We stayed in a hotel just off Central Park in the Upper Westside which I probably wouldn't recommend to anyone but was fit for the purpose of the trip! It was a bit of a trek to anywhere other than Central Park but it didn't really matter because we saw a lot of the city just by walking through it! My favourite street was 9th Avenue which I wouldn't have seen otherwise as it doesn't have anything typically "touristy" on it. I just love all the fire escape stairs on all the apartments! It's a beautiful city. The weather was pretty much perfect all weekend, with just a few cooler hours on the Sunday morning, I couldn't have asked for a better weekend!
First thing on Saturday morning we walked to the Empire State Building to avoid the queues, and despite what the conniving "official merchants" told us as we approached, it was really quick to get tickets and get up to the top! It was hazy because it was still relatively early, but the views were incredible! New York is absolutely huge! I knew that before I went, but it really struck me how far the city sprawled in all directions!
From reading New York blogs and watching Friends (great research), I sort of thought that Central Park would be similar to Hyde Park or St James' Park in London, that it would be a large expanse of green grass with a few paths and ponds, but it was so much more than that! There are so many different areas to explore, and its all so beautiful!
When I go to New York over the Christmas break with Adam, I am definitely making him take me out in one of those boats if its not too cold!
Another thing that I loved about New York were the little square parks dotted around Manhattan, I found them much more impressive than Times Square! They have a very European feel to them and I loved the contrast of greenery against the high rise buildings.
We felt we had to see the Statue of Liberty, but didn't want to fork out for a trip to the lady herself, so we got the ferry to Staten Island instead. The view of the statue herself wasn't overly impressive, but I loved the ferry! On the way back it was so blue and the wind was so perfect and I was just so happy. I was grinning from ear to ear like a little child!
An old man turned to me and insisted that I get a photo of myself and not just Manhattan, he was absolutely determined and went and found some boys to take my picture! They couldn't for the life of them work out how to use my camera and it was so, so windy that my hair just kept going everywhere and I couldn't stop laughing. They got this picture and I kind of love it, even though I have a double chin and there is no way to fix the exposure so you can actually see the city behind me! It was a good moment, I was very happy.
After we got back to Manhattan, we walked around to the Brooklyn bridge, which was actually more impressive than I thought it would be! When I go back next time, I want to explore Brooklyn properly, but as my parents were only here for a weekend and weren't that bothered, we walked most of the bridge before turning around and walking back.