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First day in NYC and Sunday

Madrid, Spain
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First day in NYC and Sunday

I would like our first day in NYC to be as good as possible. My party is two adults and two kids (13 and 9 year old) staying at the Upper West for a week. We'll be arriving to JFK around 10 pm Saturday night. This is August.

First thing, a full American breakfast. Then getting the Metrocard and ride a bus towards a street market in Chelsea or Hell's Kitchen (are they worth it?, where exactly?). Then go back uptown and spend hours just walking around and relaxing in Central Park. We could do some groceries (we have a kitchenette). Is Fairway open on Sundays? Go back to the hotel with our shopping and take a bus again towards Times Square to see the area in the evening. For dinner we would go somewhere in the UPW or probably a little thing in the hotel. How does it sound? Any suggestions?

Memphis, TN
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1. Re: First day in NYC and Sunday

First of all, yes, Fairway is open on Sundays. The street markets are at 39th Street between 9th and 10th Avenues (Hells Kitchen) and 25th Street between Broadway and 6th Avenue. Not sure if its worth it as these markets are not my kind of thing. Your plan seems pretty good, although I would always personally opt for the subway over the bus. Only other suggestion would be to make a backup plan in the event of rain. Museum of Natural History, perhaps? The kids would love it.

NY NY
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2. Re: First day in NYC and Sunday

Fairway is open every day, but I would avoid Sunday if possible. It's very very crowded. You're much better off going to Fairway first thing on Monday. There are many more markets along Broadway -- Citarella, Westside Market, Zabar's and more.

Unless you're a collector, I would think the flea markets would be boring for the kids. Central Park is a great idea. And definitely the subway is better than the bus.

One of the first things I would suggest is a morning trip up to the Top of the Rock. It will help everyone get oriented to where things are, and the view lets you see how big Central Park is.

New York City, New...
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3. Re: First day in NYC and Sunday

Also - besides having indoor plans in case of rain you will want them in case of extreme heat. It can get very hot and humid in August and very uncomfortable. I'm not familiar with the weather in Madrid so I don't know if it is similar - if it is, then you all may be used to it. But, I've lived here for decades and I'm still not used to it. Up near the park, you could duck into the Museum of Natural History in case of very hot weather - I think the kids would really like that.

Madrid, Spain
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4. Re: First day in NYC and Sunday

Thank you all. Madrid is really hot in the summer, specially in July, but it is a very dry heat so I guess that makes a BIG difference.

We'll skip the flea markets part. I thought that we could use buses instead of the subway on a Sunday because the traffic wouldn't be so bad. Is this wrong?

New York City, New...
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5. Re: First day in NYC and Sunday

The traffic on a Sun. in August is much lighter than usual. I don't understand the point of your going up and down, up and down. For a first day on Sunday in August starting on the upper west side, I'd have a quick bite first near your hotel (cereal or coffee and bagel) rather than a full breakfast and save your appetite for brunch, a popular meal in NYC on Sunday. Take the #7 bus all the way down Broadway til it ends on 14th st. Get out and head to Union Square where there's always a lot of activity. Your ultimate destination is the Staten island ferry (free) for a view of the Statue of Liberty. You can continue walking south through Greenwich Village and Soho or just hop on a bus again to the south end of Manhattan for the ferry. When you get back, perhaps head to Battery Park for brunch. There are several restaurants in/around the World Financial Center with outdoor tables and nice views. Or head to the South STreet Seaport where there are a lot of other restaurants.

Do whatever shopping you want for your fridge toward the end of the day. Trader Joe's near Union Square is a popular market.

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6. Re: First day in NYC and Sunday

New York will be more humid than Madrid in August. But like Madrid, you'll probably find that many New Yorkers will be out of town on an August weekend, so I wouldn't be frightened off of Fairway or even Zabar's on a Sunday morning. You'll be on Madrid time and will probably wake up at dawn, so head off to Fairway when they open. Staying on the Upper West side is a great way to get a sense of how it feels to live in NYC. As for the bus, I'm not such a fan. It's not about traffic, but buses usually stop every two blocks to pick up and drop off. A better, but pricier option might be a hop on/hop off tour bus that will give a bit of flexibility. If you want to head over to the Upper East side for the museums, you will take the city bus across the park. '

I like to take my out of town guests to some of the smaller museums too: Museum of the CIty of NY, Tenement Museum, the Skyscraper museum in Battery Park. Check out Chowhound.com for recommendations on UWS restaurants. You'll probably want to eat on the early side (compared to Madrid) because you'll find that your kids may want to head to bed by 9pm that first day.

Don't worry about safety on the subway. It's a great way to save time and money and zip from one end of the city to the other--just check for notices in the stations on those west side lines because construction usually takes place on weekends and there might be service interruptions. For later in the week, take the family down Greenwich Village and Soho, especially during the week when there will be fewer tourists. My favorite restaurant for a nice evening is at the very tip of the island in Battery Park: Giginos in Wagner Park--there's a lawn out front for the kids to blow off steam (bring a frisbee or a ball to kick), and lots of outdoor seating and a great view of the Statue of Liberty. The new "Highline" park on the lower west side is very cool--its a converted railway that's been turned into a elevated garden. Stop at Chelsea Market on 15th street to pick up sandwiches and head up the stairs at the corner of 16th and 10th Avenue. There are sunbeds and chairs and nice breezes. During the week you wont find crowds (the A, C, and E, subways will get you close).

Madrid, Spain
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7. Re: First day in NYC and Sunday

Thanks for all your suggestions for the day and for the week!!

8. Re: First day in NYC and Sunday

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