I visited New York City for the first time in my life this past summer. And of course, we did all of the touristy things. I’ve got a Top Ten list below, but first, a bit of advice: if you decide to visit New York City, please take my #1 piece of advice and treat yourself to Mister Softie a minimum once per day. I was in NY during the humid hell of summer, but even if it’s cold and snowing, I recommend a Mister Softie.After a Mister Softie ice cream, I also recommend the following Top Ten Touristy Things To Do:
- Empire State Building
- Broadway and Times Square
- The Subway and Grand Central Station
- Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island
- Central Park
- Guggenheim Museum
- Coney Island
- 5th Avenue
- West Village and/or Brooklyn
- The 9/11 Memorial
And today I will start with the first two, the Empire State Building and a Broadway Show and Times Square. But first, how will you get there? The Subway.The first thing you should do when you get to New York City is purchase a Metro Card. You can purchase a 7-day Metro Card for $30. Best deal. Just do it. And if you’re trying to get around town and not get lost, I recommend the Google Maps app. You can choose directions by car, train, biking, or walking. Simply pick the train icon and Googs will (maybe) tell you the nearest, next train and how to get there.We flew into Newark Airport, and my first view of NYC was … disappointing. From my angle, it looked small. But that perspective changed when I saw the city from the top of the Empire State Building.You can catch a great view of the city from the Top of the Rock, but I wanted my Sleepless in Seattle moment (and the Mister loves King Kong), so the Empire State Building it was! Plus, you can’t beat the Art Deco style! I didn’t like the scammy vibe from all the hawkers on the street trying to sell Observation Deck tickets on their iPads, so the Mister and I simply went inside and purchased our tickets at the counter. There was hardly any line and maybe we paid more, but I like to think we saved ourselves from some credit card fraud. Next up, try to catch a Broadway Show when visiting NYC. You can always pre-purchase tickets, or you can wait until the day of and get tickets for up to 50% off. I didn’t have time for that shit, plus I’ve already seen half of the shows in LA and I was being picky, so I decided to pre-purchase tickets. We got tickets to Roald Dahl’s Matilda, and aside from the bad opening number, it was great! But can you go wrong with a Dahl book? I totally recommend it, especially for those traveling with kids. And, don’t worry if you’re not totally dressed up. I didn’t dress up for the show, it was too hot.After the show, we walked around Times Square and took in the circus of people and lights.After a trip around the block, we stepped into Sardi’s for dinner.Sardi’s was a great choice. Iconic, not crowded, and good food. Plus, super fun to look at all of the caricatures. The Don Bevan caricatures were my favorites.
Planning a trip to New York City? Stay tuned for the rest of my NYC City Guides this week.