So much fun to be had in such a short time for this little vaca, but every second was amazing! It would be impossible to tell you every detail of our trip, but I’ll give you the SparkNotes version and share some of my favorite spots so you can try them out if you’re heading to the East Coast.
We were taken to New Jersey for a cousin’s wedding so we thought it was the perfect opportunity to stay a couple of extra days to check out the city. I had never been to New York, so this was definitely something I had been waiting for.
First off, the wedding was beautiful and such a great time. I met all of CJ’s extended family for the first time and I immediately felt right at home. We danced and ate and drank the night away- loved every second!
We also got to check out the Jersey Shore, which was great to get some beach time and just relax after a long night before. We found a great little lunch spot on the boardwalk, and spent the rest of the day relaxing.
We were lucky enough to spend Sunday at CJ’s Aunt and Uncle’s shore house where we got to relax outside, go on the boat, and paddle board before taking the train into NYC!
We stayed at the Marriott Marquis Times Square hotel, which was perfect for us. It was right in the middle of Times Square so it was a great central location. First stop in NYC? Pizza, obviously. We found John’s Pizza in Times Square which was only a few blocks from our hotel so we went for it. Ugh, so good. I wouldn’t hate eating that every day forever.
The next two days were packed with tourist activities. There’s so much to see! The 9/11 memorial was first, and I’m glad we did it that way. It was great and I highly recommend it, but it is emotionally draining so we knew we didn’t want to end on it. After the memorial and the museum, we went to the top of the World Trade Center. So cool! You can see the entire city from the top, so it’s a good alternative to the Empire State Building if you only have time to do one of the two.
Next activity was the Brooklyn Bridge, so we found a place for lunch nearby in the South Street Seaport. The Hideaway was super cute with a view of the bridge and an awesome atmosphere. The food was great and service was good too. I would definitely recommend it if you’re looking for a laid back place for drinks or a light meal.
Despite the heat and humidity, we walked across the entire bridge into Brooklyn! The views were amazing so it was definitely worth it. Incredibly bummed that we forgot to bring a lock, but we’ll get it next time.
That walk earned us a cold beer, so we found Brooklyn Heights Wine Bar to cool down for a bit. Really cute with good prices, and really close to the end of the bridge. Planning to explore Brooklyn a little more next time we’re around. I loved it!
CJ’s cousin lives in NYC, so she was nice enough to have us over to her apartment (with a rooftop!) then took us to dinner at Tao Downtown. All of it – AMAZING. We definitely over indulged, but the food and atmosphere was so great. Pretty sure we decided that we’re moving in.
It was a long night, so we needed a late night snack. We ran around Times Square and found Ray’s Pizza. By the way, Times Square at night is so bright that it feels like day time. It was pretty dead so it was like we had the whole place to ourselves and we ran the streets of New York! haha
We started the next day with Central Park. Gorgeous! Once you make it past the vendors hounding you to rent bikes, it’s really peaceful.
We had lunch at McGee’s pub, which we found out was the inspiration for the bar in How I Met Your Mother. Caused some confusion for the hardcore tourists that kept coming in and taking pictures in the booths, because they have actually never filmed there. You can, however, by HIMYM t-shirts there. The food was decent, nothing to rave about, but it was a good place to get off our feet and relax for a bit before heading to the High Line.
I had actually never heard of the High Line before, but it was recommended to us by a couple of people so we decided to check it out. It’s an old train track that has since been turned in to a park and walkway filled with trees and plants. It was really cool! They also have food and drink stands with tables and benches to relax. Definitely something really unique that I wouldn’t have expected in the city.
After our Iced Coffees from a local stand at the High Line and a quick bench nap, we headed to The Tippler for a few cocktails. Such a fun underground bar that had a really classy speakeasy vibe with an awesome cocktail menu. It was right near Chelsea Market in the meat packing district which I loved.
We ended the day with a Sunset Sail Cruise through Classic Harbor Lines. This was probably my favorite activity of the trip. It had been pretty overcast the whole day, but as soon as our cruise left the sky cleared up and we had a perfect sunset. It’s a two hour cruise that takes you on the Hudson River where you get an amazing view of the skyline as well as the Statue of Liberty. It also included three rounds of drinks which was pretty perfect too. I highly recommend doing this! Such a cool way to see the city.
After the cruise, we had dinner at the Mermaid Oyster Bar in Greenwich Village. Phenomenal. Maybe one of my favorite meals I’ve had, EVER. Amazing atmosphere with a super quaint Cape Cod beach vibe, incredibly fresh and delicious food- unreal. Make the effort to go here. An amazing, non-tourist spot. Try one of everything. We had two rounds of oysters, Buffalo Shrimp, Lobster Knuckles, Flat Iron Steak and they give you a small mug of chocolate mousse for dessert. Oh, and wine. We had wine. Note my purple teeth.
We couldn’t leave NY without having a piece of New York Cheesecake, so we went to Junior’s in Times Square to get a couple pieces for a night cap. Definitely a great way to end our trip. I seriously cannot wait to head back to the city. There’s still so much I haven’t seen!
What are some hidden gems in New York that I should keep in mind for our next trip?
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Thanks for reading ❤