First, let me start by thanking all the regulars here for all the help I’ve got on all questions I’ve had - and all questions you’ve answered to others as well. I’ve been picking up lots of great advice on these boards.
I haven’t had a rigid, timed, detailed itinerary for this trip. What I have done in advance though is some rough plotting and planning of areas I wanted to visit a bit more. As you can see, I like walking. I like exploring various areas, stop for coffee here and there and have some nice meals. That’s a perfect trip for me and this one to NYC surely fulfilled those desires. If you think that my evenings seem ‘blank’ it might be because I’m a morning bird. Pretty much always up early so I’ve hit the streets as the city’s coming to life (not that it really ever sleeps which all of you know already ;) ) in the mornings. By late evening, I’ve been too tired to do much at all. But I’ve had a perfect trip. NYC is a lovely city to visit on your own, which I did this time around.
Saturday 22 December
Arrived at Newark airport approx 1.30 pm. Immigration was a breeze, it took me less than ten minutes to go through immigration.
Took NJ Transit to NYC Penn Station and grabbed a cab there to get to my hotel, The Cosmopolitan in Tribeca. Much cheaper than taking a cab from Newark. It could’ve been even cheaper if I had taken the subway or a bus but I felt that I was too tired to deal with my big piece of luggage in the public transport system. The hotel is exactly as described. Small rooms but that doesn’t matter - my room is very neat and clean with a comfy bed. All I need! And the location is terrific, lovely neighborhood with superb connections with several subway lines close to the hotel.
Called and confirmed with the Big Apple Greeter I had been assigned (yay! And thanks for the tip - I heard about Big Apple Greeters here on TA!) for the following day.
Headed out, bought a metrocard and since I was in the mood for some Italian food, I went to Grano Trattoria on Greenwich Avenue at W 10th Street - a recommendation I know I’ve also found on these forums. Too bad I haven’t kept tab on who’s been mentioning what on here so I can say proper thanks individually for all the great tips I’ve picked up here. Anyhow, nice place with lovely food - this is the kind of Italian restaurant that appeals to me. And being on my own in town is a good thing, it meant I got to talk to a very nice lady from the area who were there on her own too. Nice.
Sunday 23 December
Breakfast at Gee Whiz diner. Perfect start to the day.
Met with my Big Apple Greeter who took me to Brooklyn Heights and Dumbo. Lovely areas, Brooklyn Heights in particular was truly enjoyable. Loved the fruit streets and the promenade. And the greeter was such a nice, warm and lovely person. A very good day indeed!
Since the weather became sunny and nice, I decided to hit High Line in the afternoon and I had a nice walk there. Afterwards, it was time for a very late lunch at the Chelsea Square Restaurant.
After having returned to the hotel to freshen up and rest for a bit, it was time to beat the crowds at Rockefeller Center to have a look at the Christmas tree. Then I spent some time with the other tourists, walking around the streets in midtown for some time.
Finished the evening by hanging out in one of my favourite areas in Manhattan - Union Square.
After a heavy breakfast and a heavy lunch, I actually was too tired and too full so I never went for ‘proper’ dinner anywhere but ended up having a snack in the hotel room before going to bed.