New York City is known to be “The cultural and financial capital of the world”. I am glad to have the opportunity to visit it time and again. With its grungy and edgy streets, shiny skyscrapers and brick buildings, smooth street music and so many options for food trips, It is a bustling city with so much diversity.
Growing up I saw pieces of New York thru movies: Breakfast at Tiffany’s, Ghostbusters, Sleepless in Seattle, to name a few. And sometimes I imagined it to be the real life Gotham City. Although NYC wasn’t at the top 10 of my bucket list, it sure was something I wanted to see.
The first time I visited New York was a year ago for a long layover. But when I got to have an actual road trip to discover it, I was very much excited! Summertime I think was just the perfect time to explore it for the first time. For Day 1, we started off in Lower Manhattan’s South Street Seaport. It is where you ride off into a fairy to take a closer look at the Statue of Liberty. If you’re hungry, don’t skip the food stalls. Avoid the food trucks that sell all the same stuff. Walk further to check out foodies nearby across the street itself. There are varieties for you to choose from. I picked the filipino stall since hunger struck me really hard and I wanted something more familiar at the moment and decided I try the others next time. It turned out really good 🙂
Having a well filled stomach, we were ready to explore more of this side of New York. We were eyeing to see the famous Statue of Liberty. We were told that if you want to climb up inside the statue itself, tickets had to be booked months in advance. Although we did not go, there were other options for us. Some of our friends headed to take a free ride to Staten Island while we stayed behind to walk along the pier and head into Lower Manhattan later on. A big ship was parked nearby and also a view deck with grass for sunbathers was adjacent the Seaport and Skyscrapers side to side where people could have a relaxing soak in the sun. It is clean and a nice place for meetups too. In the view deck we got a nice picture of the Brooklyn Bridge.
After the obligatory and touristy snaps, we headed to into Lower Manhattan. We were surrounded by beautifully kept old brick buildings and skyscrapers side by side. Just a few blocks away (10min walk) from the pier, we were already in Broadway and Wall Street. Here we saw the New York Stock Exchange Building, the Trump building, the Trinity Church… A few paces down, we took a free tour of the Native American Museum.
Next stop is the 911 memorial. When we got there, we saw the new One Trade Center Building. Beside it is two Memorial Pools, the North pool and the South pool. This was where the Twin towers once stood. The square pool has carved names of the people who died. Within the premises of the Memorial, you should not miss the “Survivor Tree”. The only tree remaining post 9-11. This peach tree was nursed back to health and replanted. The memorial is free of charge to visit. But if you opt to enter the 911 Museum close to it, it costs $25.
To end the first day, we passed through Teardrop Park then towards Battery Park City strolling around and enjoying the breathtaking sunset.
Everything was perfect in Day 1. What we wanted to see was all in walking distance. For Day 2, we were headed to the “new chinatown” Flushing in Queens.
Everything about it made you feel you are home in Asia. From the buildings, to the scent of the street food, to the people walking around, to the shops selling beauty products and clothes in the mall. I also made a cute new furry friend along the way
New York has its own character, its own identity built from the rich cultures it holds. I love, love and love hearing New Yorkers speak. It’s unique. I love their towering skyscrapers, how food is so much everywhere.
Overall, 2 days wasn’t enough to explore New York. Definitely going to come back again soon!
Do you want to suggest any part of NYC that I should visit next time? Or have you visited as well? Do share 🙂