New York City Break

Hi Everyone,

Well I am just back from our 5 day break to Manhattan, New York City and I have been getting a lot of message regarding what to do and where to stay etc. so I decided to write my first ever Travel Blog Post to give you all an insight as to how I planned my trip and filled my days. This is my 4th visit to the city and I can honestly say, I never tire of it. I brought my 12 year old daughter with us this time and it was her very first visit so I planned the holiday around the famous sites and landmarks for her to experience.

We flew out on Thursday 13th April on the 11am Aerlingus flight to JFK Airport. Its a 7 hour flight over but the 5 hour time difference meant we arrived into New York City at 1pm (6pm Irish time). So it was perfect to squeeze some sites in on the first day and the jet lag doesn’t really effect you but by 8pm (1am Irish time) you do get pretty tired so don’t plan too much the first day.

We stayed in the Fitzpatricks Hotel, Grand Central off Lexington Avenue. Its approx 45mins from the airport by taxi. Its a small enough hotel with a great little Irish bar attached with good food and the majority of the staff there are Irish. Rooms were basic enough and wifi is an additional cost of $14.99 per night but the amount of time you actually spend in the room, It didn’t really bother us too much.

New York In Spring

So After a quick freshen up in the hotel we walked to The Rockefeller Centre to The Top Of The Rock. It was only about 15 mins walk from the hotel. We had purchased the “New York Pass” online before we came over to New York which I would highly recommend if you are doing a lot of site seeing. It saves time and money and the more sites you visit, the more you save. All the big sites are included including The Top Of The Rock so all we had to do was show our passes at the ticket desk and the girl gave us our printout ticket and a time for admission. Very easy and straight forward.

The Top Of The Rock is one if my favourite sites. The views are particularly spectacular because you look out on the famous Empire State Building!

After our visit to the Rockefeller centre we headed straight to Time Square! It was only about a 6 mins walk. I adore the madness of Time Square! Its just spectacular sitting on the Time Square Stair Case soaking in all the atmosphere! Its one of the coolest places in the world!

New York In Spring
New York In Spring
New York In Spring

Day 2 was dedicated to shopping at Woodbury Common. It was a bus ride out of the city that cost $40 per person return. The bus left at 8am and it took approx 1 hour to get there. Its a fantastic place and I prefer it to Jersey Gardens. The weather was stunning and about 25 degrees. Spring is a beautiful time to visit New York as is Autumn, because the temperatures are so pleasant not to hot or cold.

After a long successful day of shopping we headed to The Hard Rock Cafe, in Time Square for Dinner. This is such a cool place and the grub is fab but seriously huge portions! Starters are the size of mains! Really great spot of music and entertainment. The place was alive.

Day 3 was an early start to the Empire State Building. We were concerned about crowds and cues because it was Easter Saturday so we thought it wise to get there early. From there we got a cab to Pier 83 for our cruise on the Hudson. This was my highlight of the holiday. We did the full 2.5 hour Best of New York cruise with Cruiseline. Its a must! And best way to see New York city and the statue of Liberty. Sitting up on deck sipping wine! Heaven!

new york getaway
New York Getaway
New York Getaway

Day 4 We got a cab downtown to The 911 Memorial and The One World Observatory. I won’t give away anything here for any of you who haven’t seen it, but it is a must if you are traveling to New York. My advice would be to do the Memorial 911 Museum first then walk across to the One World Observatory.

We then popped over to the Westfield Shopping Centre across the street. Fab place for lunch sitting out on the water front where there is plenty of umbrella shaded areas. Its really a gorgeous setting.

After lunch we hopped into a cab back to the hotel to freshen up. (PS. cab drivers are lunatics over there so hold on tight and buckle up!!) We then walked up 5th Avenue and got to see some of the Easter Parade. Crazy hat creations. Very Impressive! We walked on up to Central Park and my horse crazy little lady wanted to do a horse and carriage around the park. And boy was it worth it! It was a magnificent sunny warm day, the park was packed and people sunbathing and music playing. It was an amazing way to see one of the most famous parks in the world. It cost $120 for 1 hour for 3 of us, but worth every penny!

New York Getaway
New York Getaway
New York Getaway

Day 5 – We had a bit of a lie on and packed our bags. We strolled back up to Time Square for a bit of last minute shopping in the Polo t-shirt shop and lunch in Planet Hollywood. We got a Taxi from the hotel at 2pm and our flight was a 5.30pm home.

A brilliant jam packed 5 days of fun, laughter and memory making!

So my advice is, if you are planning a trip to New York City

1- Plan you days before you go, so you get as much packed into your days as possible.

2- To avoid crazy cab drivers and costs, choose all sites and restaurants you want to visit in a day around the same area. I suggest printing out your maps and plan the route from A to B. Google maps is brill for this!

3- If you are planning a lot of site seeing, I would highly recommend you purchase the New York Pass. You will save money. They often have sales on their website, so keep a close eye.

4- We always stay Mid town around Park Avenue, Madison and Lexington. It a great place to stay as its so close to most main attractions – We’ve stayed in Fitzpatricks hotel Grand Central €€€  and The Woldorf Astoria Hotel Park Avenue €€€€

5- Top 3 sites I would highly recommend is:

(a) The Hudson River Cruise – The Liberty Cruise is the best in my opinion, 1.5 hours long and you see they most important sites.

(b) The One World Observatory- Not included on the New York Pass – It cost $38 each extra. But worth every penny.

(c) Woodbury Common – Super shopping spot.

Hope this helps anyone heading out the the Big Apple and I wish you all a happy safe journey, you will love every second of it!!



All imagery in this Blog Post are my own and are the property of gailsrails,ie