The first place we headed to when we arrived in New York was Times Square. It really lived up to our expectations, we literally just stood there for more than half an hour looking around, it was even better when we came back that night and all the lights were lit up, it really is pretty spectacular. The photos just donâ€™t do it any justice compared to the real thing.
We then thought we might do some shopping and we knew that Madison Avenue and 5th Avenue were big shopping streets. They definitely are the places to shop if you have lots of cash to spend! The shops along 5th Avenue included Chanel, Tiffany & Co, DKNY, Louis Vuitton, Gucci etc you name it, it was there! We walked around for quite awhile but realised that it wasnâ€™t really our kind of shops and we needed to find another shopping area quick! We ended up finding some streets on our third day that were more catered to our price range in Soho and Greenwich Village, we wished we had found them sooner. Everything was so much cheaper compared to London, we shopped for a few hours each day but it would have been great to have spent a few more days in New York so we could have done lots more shopping!
On our second day we headed to the World trade centre site, I didnâ€™t really know what to expect, whether they had started to rebuild etc. It was quite sad to be standing there knowing that so many people lost their lives. There were plaques with all the names of people that died and photos that were taken soon after the collapse. We then headed across the road to the World Financial Centre. In the foyer they had the plans for what is going to be built on the trade centre site, the Freedom Tower. I thought the World Financial Centre would have been a bit fancier than it was!
Each morning we ate breakfast at this diner down the road from our hotel called Metro Diner. It was exactly the same as you see in movies and TV shows like Seinfeld. Every morning we would fill up on a huge breakfast so we werenâ€™t hungry for pretty much the rest of the day.
We were hoping to get to the Empire state building just before dusk on our third day but unfortunately by the time we lined up to go though security, lined up for our tickets and lined up for the lift it was almost dark. We paid an extra US$14 to go to the 102nd floor (the normal US$12 ticket only took you to the 86th floor) but it was pretty much a waste of money because you were stuck behind glass that had grubby finger marks all over it! The 86th floor was much better because you were able to go outside and get much better views and photos. Adrian and I were reading last night that the Empire State Building took less than a year to build in 1930. We were both so amazed cause buildings that size now take years to build.
On Sunday night after we had been to the Hersheyâ€™s store in Times Square I saw a payphone out the front so I thought I should give my Mum a call. Adrian went to sit across the road and wait for me. As I walked over I saw he was talking to 2 cops and 3 blacks guys I got closer and Iâ€™m thinking to myself geeze that looks like Usher! Then when I was standing next to him Adrian said “Usher this is my girlfriend Rachel”! I was so surprised, we chatted to him for awhile and told him we went to his concert in Canberra 4 years ago. I used to be a big fan so it was pretty exciting!
We had put off going to the Statue of Liberty on our other days because it had been quite cloudy which doesnâ€™t make for very good photos! So we were happy when we woke up on our last day and it was slightly sunny. So, we boarded the ferry to Liberty Island and I was hoping I wouldnâ€™t get sea sick! It was so surreal standing there looking at the big statue that weâ€™ve seen so many times in movies and pictures, it is up there on the best monument weâ€™ve seen so far. Standing high at 33 stories tall, it really is an amazing statue
We didnâ€™t have much time to spend in Central Park, it was the last place we went to before we had to go to the airport to catch our flight home. Of what we did see of it, it is really nice with lots of different areas. To walk through the whole of the park would take a long time it is absolutely huge.
One thing that we both noticed was how friendly people are in New York. Within our first half an hour of being there 2 people offered to help us with directions and best ways to get around. We didnâ€™t come across people so nice in Europe and definitely not the UK!
For the photos of our trip to New York, click on the link below: