Our first day in New York started with an express trip to the Empire State Building – absolutely freezing, but the view was incredible. They were banning selfie sticks (imagine the velocity they call fall from the top down onto some unsuspecting pedestrian?!) and I awkwardly took one out of G’s backpack (which he didn’t know I had packed – cue a lecture on what I am, and am NOT to pack in HIS bag 😉 ). I think the tickets start from around $49 per adult – we would have been up the top before 9am and there was already a pretty big line!We could only be out on the platform for maybe a maximum 2 minutes, I thought my ears were going to freeze right off! I am always completely amazed at how quickly those elevators get to the top.
A dream of mine since I was as young as I can remember, was to see the Radio City Rockette’s, in particular the Christmas Spectacular – I think I had first seen it on tv when I was around 8 or 9 years old. The show itself has been running since around 1933 and has developed many times over the years. It is a NYC Christmas tradition, but I didn’t want to miss out on the show just because Christmas had passed, so we saw one of the last shows. Tickets start from around $60 and it is so worth it – you will not see form like this anywhere else, the Rockette’s were not so much as a nano-second out of time with one another!
Each year, over five million people visit St Patrick’s Cathedral in New York City, with more than one million prayer candles lit each year. The doors of this absolutely breathtaking cathedral opened in 1879 and breathtaking is truly, the most apt description for it. G is Catholic, I am Anglican and I never went through communion, so whenever I have gone into a church, I have just walked straight in. G on the other hand has a little more class (and training thanks to Catholic Schooling and Faith) so he knows to bless himself, it was new to me and I apologised to him. Is it technically blasphemy to stroll on into a church taking photos if you don’t know the rules?!
The Grand Central Terminal had managed to evade me on my previous few trips to NYC (that seems ridiculous I know that I could not find it) – this time however, G managed to hunt it down and we were absolutely blown away. We even caught a train from the lower concourse. It is at 42nd Street and Park Avenue and is one of the world’s most visited tourist attractions with close to 22 million visitors alone in 2013. Grand Central has 44 platforms, however the number of tracks along the platforms is over 100, not all still in use. Built in 1903, this AMAZING landmark designed in the Beaux-Arts style is a must-see when you are in New York! It is beautiful and absolutely easy to get swept up in the romance of it all!
Being late December/early January the hours of daylight were very short, so we really did not have too much time out and about before it was dark in the afternoons/evenings pretty quickly and freezing!
We woke up on one of our mornings and decided it was the perfect day to go on an adventure to the American Museum of Natural History, so woke up and went and found a coffee shop, ate our eggs and toast and black coffee (my poor boyfriend aka ‘now Husband’) was really struggling with black coffee – saturating each steaming hot mug with creamer and sugar any chance he got it. I am convinced he does not actually like the taste of coffee itself.
Two tickets to the Museum would typically cost around $50USD for the both of us, luckily we had purchased the New York Pass and the museum was included in on this. We caught the subway to 81st Street as this has a direct subway entrance to the museum – which is a saving grace when the temperature is sitting around -7 °C – 1 °C! We spent a few hours at the Museum, let’s be honest – how can anyone spend less than an hour in the dinosaur hall? When you are up close and personal with the T-Rex – it is breathtaking! I can only think of one dinosaur found in Australia (only because the name is amazing) – the Muttaburrasaurus – and it hardly invokes fear like the T-Rex does!
The AMNH was founded in 1869 and is renowned for its exhibitions and scientific collections (Night at the Museum, anyone?). There are so many different wonderful exhibitions with the birds and reptiles, amphibians, earth and planetary sciences, fossil, human origins and cultural and mammal halls all permanent fixtures.
Thanks for reading – to be continued!