sebolino From France, joined May 2001, 3672 posts, RR: 5 Posted (9 months 2 weeks 6 days 2 hours ago) and read 1039 times:
I will visit NYC, Secaucus, New haven, Rhode Island, Cape code and Boston in a small car trip next April with my family.
Is there something I should really see ? I will stay 6 days in Brooklyn, and then start the tour, and finish by 3 days in Boston. I will stay 2 weeks in the US.
I'll try to make a trip report (FRA - JFK , BOS - FRA).
varigb707 From United States of America, joined May 2006, 1288 posts, RR: 1 Reply 1, posted (9 months 2 weeks 5 days 22 hours ago) and read 997 times:
Take 1 day and spend it walking in Manhattan. Best way to visit. From donwtown (Battery Park, Soho, The Village) to mid and uptown. The East and West sides (Hell's Kitchen, Washington Heights), then go to Central Park.
YOu could hop on a double decker bus and drive around, stopping here and there, walk around and jumping back on again. You're going to love it.
One thing though : don't waste any of your time on a Circle Line cruise. It gets boring after you pass the Manhattan Bridge.
foppishbum From Taiwan, joined Mar 2006, 765 posts, RR: 0 Reply 3, posted (9 months 2 weeks 5 days 19 hours ago) and read 963 times:
Hell's Kitchen is alright. I don't think you need to spend time there. It's just a lot of restaurants. Here are a few activities I think is fun:
- Intrepid Sea, Air, and Space Museum (LINK) at 12th Ave and 46 Street
- walk the Brooklyn Bridge
- walk along Battery Park and get a slight view of Statue of Liberty. I don't know if Liberty Island and the Statue are reopened (closed due to Hurricane Sandy).
- Wall Street Bull (put 26 Broadway as the street address to find it) then meander to Wall Street and NYSE.
- Museum of Modern Art
- Chelsea Market
- The High Line (park)
- walk in SoHo along Broadway between Canal and Houston and do some shopping maybe.
- Top of the Rock (I personally think that the view on top of Rockefeller Center is better than that of Empire State Building)
- 9/11 Memorial Park (but the museum is not completed yet)
I live in Manhattan so feel free to send me private message (or e-mail) to ask anything. I'll do my best to answer your questions.
aloges From Germany, joined Jan 2006, 8522 posts, RR: 46 Reply 5, posted (9 months 2 weeks 5 days 17 hours ago) and read 942 times:
I recommend that you take a look at an attractions pass (I used a 3-day New York Pass several years ago). If it includes things that you want to see and do, it may save you money and time.
Quoting foppishbum (Reply 3): I personally think that the view on top of Rockefeller Center is better than that of Empire State Building
I agree completely.
By pure coincidence, I'll have one day in the city in early March. Does anyone have recommendations off the beaten track? I feel like I've visited most of the "musts" in NYC and would like to get to know a "should" or two. As an example: I loved Broad Channel in Jamaica Bay.
Walk together, talk together all ye peoples of the earth. Then, and only then, shall ye have peace.
Well, besides tourist attraction, it's mostly food! Haha!
In my opinion...
Best Pizza: Di Fara Pizza at Avenue J in Brooklyn just a block from Avenue J station on the Q (yellow) line.
Best Breakfast/Brunch: Good Enough to Eat, Upper West Side on Amsterdam Blvd at 83rd Street. You can take the 1 (red) train or B (orange) train or C (blue) train locals.
Best Born Bread: Red Rooster Harlem on 125th Street and Lenox Blvd.
foppishbum From Taiwan, joined Mar 2006, 765 posts, RR: 0 Reply 8, posted (9 months 2 weeks 5 days 17 hours ago) and read 920 times:
Quoting MadameConcorde (Reply 7): He can take the Staten Island Ferry. That makes for a cheap scenic ride (both ways).
Correct. I've never taken the Staten Island Ferry. Haha. I think it's free. And, adding on to that, you can take the water taxi to IKEA in Brooklyn free on weekends but $5 during weekdays. If you buy something at IKEA ($10 or more IIRC), IKEA will give the $5 back during the weekdays.
Ken777 From United States of America, joined Mar 2004, 7841 posts, RR: 8 Reply 13, posted (9 months 2 weeks 5 days 15 hours ago) and read 867 times:
Went to NYC with my better half last year and had a great visit.
Top of our list was some shows. Fortunately "Anything Goes" was on (a re-do from the '30's) and it was outstanding. Then Rock of Ages", which was insane and IMO better than the movie. There are others with bigger names, but you don't have to cross the Atlantic to see them.
Check out the shows for something that can interest you.
Central Park's Strawberry Fields was nice, as was taking some time to walk through the park. The Metropolitan Museum was more than I could take in at one time - and worth taking another trip.
The Intrepid Sea, Air, and Space Museum was closed when we were there, but is on the list for our next trip.
Rockefeller Plaza was worth the trek to it, as was the Empire State Building. The 9/11 Memorial was also an important part of a NYC trip.
Depending on when you go there might also be some major sales going on in the stores.
Boston is also a grand city. I've only spent brief times there on business, but was really impressed.
cargolex From United States of America, joined Apr 2010, 1238 posts, RR: 8 Reply 15, posted (9 months 2 weeks 5 days 14 hours ago) and read 858 times:
Quoting sebolino (Thread starter): I will visit NYC, Secaucus, New haven, Rhode Island, Cape code and Boston in a small car trip next April with my family.
I'm not sure how much time I'd want to spend in Secaucus, having worked near there at a point in the distant past. There's not much happening out there.
But hop on a train at the Secaucus train station and take the fifteen minute ride into manhattan, and there you've got an entire world to explore. I lived in New York city for almost thirty years, so here's my recommendation for a tourist:
From Penn Station take the #1 train down to South Ferry. This will deposit you at the very southern tip of Manhattan - Battery park and the Staten Island Ferry terminal. Down here you can see the remnants of colonial New York. If you're hungry, take a walk over to Stone street or Fraunces' Tavern - nothing's cheap down here but much of what's down in this area is quite good. Just want a coffee and a pastry? Financier. Scandanavian? Smorgas. Old world? Fraunces. You can even get Empenadas down there, which you might not be able to get in France.
Take a walk over to Castle Clinton (sometimes also called Castle Garden) in Battery park - for decades this was how immigrants entered the city, before Ellis Island was built into an immigration facility. In the 19th century, it once hosted concerts and before that, soldiers. You can see, and travel to, the statue of Liberty or Ellis from this park, but those are kind of long tours. From Battery park, walk north on Broadway past the customs house (a pretty early 20th century building designed by architect Cass Gilbert) and up past Trinity Church to City hall.
Although skyscrapers dominate this part of town, there are many hidden alleys and lanes, and you can see many remnants of older eras of New York, including original buildings that date back to the mid-19th century. Trinity Church is where Alexander Hamilton is buried, among other early American notables. This isn't the original Trinity Church, which burned down in the 18th century, it's the third (the second was severely damaged by the winter of 1838). When built, it was the tallest structure in Manhattan. Across the street, you can see down Wall Street, and you can go visit the stock exchange if that's your thing. Federal Hall is just one block down across from the exchange. It isn't the original building, but this location played a key role in the events that led up to the Revolutionary war, served as the first capitol (before Washington DC was built), and is the location where the bill of rights was drafted.
The area around city hall is from a later era. On the south end of the Broadway/Park row intersection you can see the Woolworth building - the most opulent skyscraper ever built. Inside and out, it's modeled on gothic cathedrals, which earned it the nickname "the Cathedral of Commerce." It is truly a sight to behold and more interesting than most later, larger skyscrapers. Inside, the Burj Khalifa or Petronas towers are plain by comparison. The building isn't open to the public, but you can take a quick look into the lobby, which will reveal a glittering ceiling of gold inlay and gothic detail - a permanent memorial to the gilded age. Like the Customs house the Woolworth building was also designed by Cass Gilbert.
At night, the southern part of City hall park is lit by gaslight, just as it would have been 120 years ago. There's also a secret, not-used-since-1945 subway station under city hall, but you can't see that without permission (there's a way to see it, but not explore it, from the subway). You can't tour much of city hall, sadly, and can't even get that close since 9/11. But the park is nice, and the old buildings on park row - which once housed America's media industry in the 19th century, are also nice to look at and walk through.
Behind city hall, go east on Chambers street over to Centre street, and walk north through foley square. There's not much that's interesting in Foley square, but you have to go there to get to the next destination. On your right, there's the old Federal courthouse and the new NY State supreme court - follow worth street east for a block after you pass that second courthouse (a hexagonal shaped modern building).
One block over and you're at the five points - it's a park today, but at one time, this was the most notorious and dangerous slum in America - a time depicted with a certain amount of artistic liberty in the movie Gangs of New York. You're on the edge of Chinatown now, so turn up Mulberry street and go north,
Two blocks up and you're in another world. Chinatown has changed alot in the last thirty years, but it's just as vibrant as ever - and one of the finest Vietnamese restaurants in the city is on this street, Pho Viet Huong. The best part about this restaurant? It's super cheap for Manhattan, particularly the lunch specials. Not much to look at but the food is amazing. Feeling like Chinese instead? Walk east on Bayard street to Nice Green Bo. Not much to look at, but quite a nice place. Save room though, there's more to come. There's alot to see in Chinatown, though it is constantly changing. 20 years ago, it looked more like Kowloon than it does now, though it always has an unmistakable New York-ness to it.
Keep walking north on Mulberry, across canal street, and you're into little Italy. Don't be fooled into any of the main drag restaurants, they're okay but not that special and they're very overpriced - but keep walking up to Ferrara's on Grand Street. The pastries are worth it. Not the best, but a New York experience. Across the street, on the northeast corner (Grand and Mott), is DiPalos, which looks like an ordinary grocery store, but it ain't. It might be one of the finest gourmet markets in the country. I know the owner, so I'm biased. Worth a peek, but only for a minute, you're not buying groceries.
Head east on Grand Street over to the Bowery and turn north again. The Bowery has changed a great deal in the last thirty years - it was once the domain of punks and flophouses, but now it's full of high end restaurants and such, like so much of New York, it's been sanitized for profit. But there's still interesting things to be seen there as you walk north. If you're interested in the indie music scene, head east on Stanton St. at night over to Arlene's Grocery or Pianos. There are many little venues like this over there but these are late night destinations.
If you keep heading north on the Bowery, you'll pass the former location of CBGBs, and ultimately end up at Astor place/Cooper Union/St. Marks. Plenty of interesting places left on St. Marks although it's not quite what it used to be. Didn't eat yet? Hit up Klong for excellent Thai. It's on a level below the street but it's always busy, and worth it. Great mixed drinks, too. Or if you want something light, go over to 3rd avenue and 9th st. to Saint's Alp for bubble tea. If it's night time, head up to the Angels' share, a quiet bar where you can talk with your friends/companions. It's located inside the Yokocho Village restaurant. No more than four people can be with you to get in, and there might be a wait.
On experience everybody likes is the Strand Bookstore - which is just north of where you are at Broadway & 12th. It's the last bookstore of it's kind in New York and they don't come much bigger. Anything you could want, really. There's plenty to shop for in this area, and lots to see, and union square is just two blocks to your north.
You're now in the heart of NYU country, and you've walked about three miles. Time for the subway. Hop on the 4/5 train going north at Union Square and ride up to 96th street. This is a busy train, so don't be surprised if you can't find a seat.
At 96th, head west towards central park. You'll pass park avenue, which you can explore if you like, it's certainly worth walking up and down it for a bit. And fifth avenue is right along the park. You can go inside the park to the east meadow, or you can head a little bit north on fifth avenue to the Museum of the City of New York. This low-key museum is off the beaten path, but if you're interested in New York, it's a very interesting place. On a nice day though, the park will be calling. You can walk north towards the English, French, and Italian conservatory gardens, or south towards the reservoir. The Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Guggenheim, the Frick, they're all right there to the south on fifth ave.
A little walk over to 83rd & Lexington will take you to the Lexington Candy store. You'll recognize it right away, because it's a 1940's soda fountain/luncheonette. Somehow, it has been perfectly preserved for all this time, and a little piece of 1940s America remains just for you. Have an egg creme or a milkshake, made on the stuff they made it with when it was invented.
Yeah, that's enough nostalgia for now. And that is but a small fraction of the things you can do, it's just nice that you can walk most of that.
Other places to eat with things that you generally cannot get in France:
Katz's Deli on Houston & Ridge St. Made famous in the movie When Harry Met Sally, some of us remember it from before that. This is an authentic 20th century Kosher deli with good food if you're into big pastrami sandwiches (Personally recommended), but much of the local culture that once surrounded it is gone now. Still, Katz's is a thing you can only get in New York.
El Malecon at 97th & Amsterdam. This is a Dominican restaurant, and if you want to eat at a simple place that's cheap and has something you can't get anywhere else, it's a good choice. Eat like a local. El Malecon also has other restaurants much farther afield (up by 175th street, and one in the bronx), this one is more accessible if you're a tourist.
Pio Pio. This is a Peruvian restaurant and WOW, grease. It's a local chain though and it's ALWAYS packed no matter which one you go to (there are several around Manhattan). One taste of the tomatillo sauce and you'll know why.
Edgar's. This is a dessert place at 92nd & Amsterdam. Nearby Cafe Lallo gets alot of attention for it's flashy but inept wait staff and celebrity clients, but the desserts and ambiance here are vastly superior. Cake not to be missed.
Indus Valley at 100th & Broadway, arguably one of the finest Indian restaurants in the city, maybe the country.
If you're downtown, the sublime nature of Indus Valley is contrasted by the craziness of "Panna II Indian Garden", or as my friends call it, "Panna II, electric boogaloo." Panna II, at 1st avenue & 6th street, is festooned with every kind of christmas light you could ever want to see, and the food is quite good. A memorable experience.
Toloache. This is a Mexican place at 50th street and 9th avenue in the theater district. Ordinarily like a good New Yorker, I hate this area and Times Square, but this is a seriously good place with excellent food that isn't quite like Americanized "Texican" food. If you're in the theater district or even at the Intrepid, which is not that far away, this is a good place to go. Likely a wait for a table though.
Mir From United States of America, joined Jan 2004, 20466 posts, RR: 56 Reply 16, posted (9 months 2 weeks 5 days 13 hours ago) and read 846 times:
Quoting cargolex (Reply 15): From Penn Station take the #1 train down to South Ferry.
Just a note: you can't do this anymore due to the South Ferry station being ruined by Sandy. #1 trains terminate at Rector Street. It's just a short walk from there to South Ferry, or you can take the R to Whitehall Street.
Since you included a bunch of Upper West Side restaurant recommendations, I'll include Sal & Carmines at 102nd Street and Broadway, which has very little in the way of ambience or service (though it does have, surprisingly, a few McDonnell Douglas posters on the wall), but does have the best slice pizza you can get in Manhattan.
7 billion, one nation, imagination...it's a beautiful day
sebolino From France, joined May 2001, 3672 posts, RR: 5 Reply 17, posted (9 months 2 weeks 5 days 13 hours ago) and read 841 times:
Quoting cargolex (Reply 15): I'm not sure how much time I'd want to spend in Secaucus, having worked near there at a point in the distant past. There's not much happening out there.
Thank you so much for your long post. Actually, Secaucus was a kind of "accident". I wanted to spend one more day around NYC and I found an hotel there for one night. Well, it will be a perhaps unique occasion to visit New Jersey
By the way, I'm curious of how to actually pronounce "Secaucus", but it's hard to write I guess ...
I enjoyed writing that, because eventually, some of those places, like so many I know, will exist only memory. New York changes quickly.
Quoting sebolino (Reply 17): By the way, I'm curious of how to actually pronounce "Secaucus", but it's hard to write I guess .
Technically, it's "Seh-caw-cuss" but some locals sometimes refer to it as "See-caw-cus."
Not much out there other than cheap lodging, really. That's not to say there's nothing in New Jersey, but not much there.
Quoting Mir (Reply 16): or you can take the R to Whitehall Street.
Thanks. This is what I'd recommend, since the northern entrance/exit at Whitehall Street station is on the eastern side of the Customs house, only about 200 yards from Battery par, and the southern exit is within eyesight of south ferry, IIRC (I never used to use the southern exit/entrance). If you're lucky on some mornings, I think it's still Tuesdays and Thursdays, there's a farmers market right by the entrance to the Bowling green 4/5 station, so you can sometimes buy fresh home made goods there or apple cider.
Not being in NYC anymore, the aftermath of Sandy has been a painful thing to see when I am there.
blink182 From Azerbaijan, joined Oct 1999, 5454 posts, RR: 18 Reply 20, posted (9 months 2 weeks 4 days 5 hours ago) and read 717 times:
Quoting cargolex (Reply 15): On experience everybody likes is the Strand Bookstore - which is just north of where you are at Broadway & 12th. It's the last bookstore of it's kind in New York and they don't come much bigger. Anything you could want, really. There's plenty to shop for in this area, and lots to see, and union square is just two blocks to your north.
Agree on Strand; if you're in that area, that's the best way to make three hours fly by. Don't forget Washington Square/Greenwich Village is a few more blocks to the south west too. Lot of great nightlife and food in that area. In particular I recommend Westville on Hudson--its tiny and you'll probably have to wait, but its seriously good food that might be farm to table. A lot of great nightlife around that doesn't feel overtly clubby.
Quoting cargolex (Reply 15): If you keep heading north on the Bowery, you'll pass the former location of CBGBs, and ultimately end up at Astor place/Cooper Union/St. Marks. Plenty of interesting places left on St. Marks although it's not quite what it used to be. Didn't eat yet? Hit up Klong for excellent Thai. It's on a level below the street but it's always busy, and worth it. Great mixed drinks, too. Or if you want something light, go over to 3rd avenue and 9th st. to Saint's Alp for bubble tea. If it's night time, head up to the Angels' share, a quiet bar where you can talk with your friends/companions. It's located inside the Yokocho Village restaurant. No more than four people can be with you to get in, and there might be a wait.
St. Mark's Place is full of charm and an aberration from most of Manhattan. Well worth a walk down there.
Saint's Alp is good. When it first opened a few years ago I thought it wouldn't last due to the number of similar places in that area, but Saint's Alp has held its own. I'm a huge fan of East Village, particularly Alphabet City(arguably they're separate areas). You'll have to walk a little bit, but go get lost on Avenues A,B,and C, just north of Houston St. and you'll find some great hole-in-the-wall restaurants, bars, and boutiques that attract a young albeit intellectually inclined crowd--think NYU kids and Wall Street i-bankers who have ditched their suits for the night, mixed with local shop owners. There's not an immediate subway stop over there, so Alphabet City/Thompkins Square Park it feels much more neighborhoody and homely compared with SoHo to the south.
Note that Artichoke Pizza on 14th and either 1st or 2nd is my favorite pizza spot in NY. There's one in Chelsea/Meatpacking too, just along the Highline. KGB Bar on E.4th and 2nd Ave is a great spot for a nightcap with a friend or two.
Central Park is a must, but I recommend you use it for a breather rather than trying to use it as a quick way to cut from East to West or vice versa for two reasons: the paths are all windy, so it will take a little bit of time, and you'll see a great cross-section of NYC life. A bit of a detour, but walk(or jog if you're up for a workout) up to the top of the Jackie-O reservoir and look to the south, where you'll get as great a view of Manhattan from inside Manhattan as you'll get. When I lived in NY I always ran the loop and more often than not had to stop at the northern most part in order to take in the view. Never gets old. Be aware that CP has several types of transport--dog walkers, cyclists, joggers, walkers, tourists, cars etc.
I noticed that you'll be in Brooklyn for six days. I'm not as familiar with Brooklyn as I am with Manhattan, but beware of falling into the trap of thinking that Brooklyn is always less expensive than its brother across the East River. There are gold mines on every corner though and the borough, with all of its brownstones around Park Slope/Prospect Park feels a lot more human scale than Manhattan does. I recommend you pay a visit to Greenpoint, to the north of Williamsburg. Think Williamsburg trends, but more grown up.
Give me a break, I created this username when I was a kid...
daviation From United States of America, joined Sep 2008, 497 posts, RR: 2 Reply 21, posted (9 months 2 weeks 3 days 11 hours ago) and read 667 times:
These are great itineraries above, but I have to add a few caveats. I recently took one of this board's airline pilots on a walking tour and we had a very nice time.
Caveat 1: it's cold in NYC during this time. You don't want to hike all over the city just to freeze your ass off. (I just re-read your post, you're coming in April. April is much nicer.)
Caveat 2: one of the itineraries above is very heavy on lower Manhattan. If you're not a native, it's not an easy place to navigate. Midtown Manhattan is MUCH easier.
There is so much to do in a very small area: my own suggestion would be to stay in Midtown. Yes, go to see the Empire State Building. Grand Central Station is close by, definitely worth a visit. See Times Square. Take in a Broadway Show. Stroll Fifth Avenue, pop into some of the famous stores. These are all within blocks of each other.
The Intrepid Museum is worth a visit. So is Lincoln Center, where you can see the symphony, ballet, or opera.
You will see more than you expected without walking too far.
For the poster who wanted something off the beaten path: The Bronx Zoo and Bronx Botanical Gardens. Despite everything you've heard about The Bronx, these are great places, although the weather isn't good now. You can also take a bus from Port Authority to visit West Point, truly an incredible place. Again, weather is a concern.
stlgph From United States of America, joined Oct 2004, 9155 posts, RR: 27 Reply 22, posted (9 months 2 weeks 2 days 21 hours ago) and read 636 times:
You know, if you feel like you're seeing a lot here in 6 days, you could easily add another city very easily into the trip. You could take the bus or train down to Philadelphia for the day and see some of the historical sights there.
Another side trip in Connecticut -- the Mystic Acquarium.
Eternal darkness we all should dread. It's hard to party when you're dead.