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Travelling with a husband who hates to plan!

Gilwern, United...
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Travelling with a husband who hates to plan!

Hi there,

Can I start by thanking you all. I've been trawling theses forums for six months planning our New York trip and here we are, four weeks away and super excited after stealing all your tips and collecting them together for our trip.

As the title suggested, I'm travelling with a husband who hates to plan anything about our holidays and really likes just to stumble across things. This usually works quite well, although we often return home wishing we'd "seen that" and adding it to a future trip.

We're in New York for 5 days from the 23rd January. I've purchased the crumpled City NYC map (which I must say is flipping brilliant) and have written on there the things I think we'd like to see and do. This way, I think that as we strole around.....at least I'll have some tips to strole towards!

So far on the map, I have the obvious NYC tourist type destinations, the high line, Empire State Building, ground zero etc.

Restaurants such as "little owl" and "the view", following reviews on here.

Areas such as china town, little Italy and Hell's Kitchen

The major shopping department stores.

We've both been to NYC before but not together. We'll be staying in the Metro hotel, which is in the shadow of the Empire State Building.

So my question..... I know it's a very open ended question with a million possible answers, but, are there any amazing restaurants, amazing wine bars, amazing cafés or amazing anything really that you think is worthy of a mention and a "star" on my map?

We are a couple in our thirties, money isn't really a big issue, we just want the trip of a lifetime.

Again, thank you for your help so far, and thank you in advance for any further tips that make The Map!

Kelly x x

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1. Re: Travelling with a husband who hates to plan!

Yes there are and the September 11th memorial isn't an obvious tourist attraction. It is a memorial to those who lost their lives on that day.

You haven't even touched the surface and without knowing anything about you two except your age it is extremely difficult to make suggestions. The two obvious places to me are the Metropolitan Museum of Art and Central Park

thestarryeye.typepad.com/explorenyc

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Syracuse, New York
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2. Re: Travelling with a husband who hates to plan!

Rather than pick an attraction, pick an area & just wander.

Greenwich Village

Central Park

The Highline

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Gilwern, United...
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3. Re: Travelling with a husband who hates to plan!

Thanks cyblume, these areas have now been shaded in on the map. I'll look forward to wandering through them and exploring.

Ztaks, I didn't mean any offence in listing the 911 memorial in my tourist activities. Although you are indeed completely right in this not being a tourist attraction, I'm sure you'll agree that it is one of the highlights of visiting NYC for those who are from around the world whether they have a direct link to 911 or not. Again I apologise if I offended you. We have a memorial in our town to a massive mining disaster, the place is always full of tourists. We don't take offence to this, we take pride in the knowledge that they are interested in our history and take time to quietly pay respect to those who died. I'll be visiting the 911 memorial to do the same.

If knowing a little more about us as a couple would help in your suggestions I'm happy to expand. I'm 32, a nursing sister, the other half is 47 and a funeral director. We are not into socialising much, we enjoy each other's company mainly. We drink socially, enjoy wine and good food. We have no children, 2 cats, 2 dogs and 2 cockatiels. We enjoy visiting new places, exploring cities close to home and around the world. We like to relax as we both work hard and holidays tend to be short and often rather than long and annually. We are neither particularly religious, we enjoy museums as much as the average person but wouldn't choose to spend a whole day in one. We like to shop, explore and see things that we know we are privileged to have. We have a particular interest in motor racing, adore our animals and love nothing more than to relax and unwind in a special place with good food and a drink or two.

I hope that helps in the suggestions x

Edited: 30 December 2013, 18:14
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4. Re: Travelling with a husband who hates to plan!

Do you have a good guidebook? There are so many things that may really jump out at you that are suited to your personal interests be it music, dance, photography, art, cooking, etc - To me it is an essential tool so you actually have, in your hand, the history and background of the sites you choose to visit.

I never have an itinerary when I travel - I have a list of places I would like to see (I look at info on official websites for opening/closing dates/times so I know when I might be able to drop in) - and I book only what I absolutely have to - i.e., best to book the Statue of Liberty/Ellis Island and any restaurants you hope to go to.

Then, I just decide day by day but this city has some of the most interesting neighborhoods - each having incredible history which makes visiting those neighborhoods that much more interesting to explore - Lower East Side, East Village, lower Manhattan, etc - and then, there are the boroughs of NYC. Guidebooks offer info on the many neighborhoods and boroughs - a map is fine but not substantive.

You can look at a site like http://www.timeout.com/newyork - to see what current exhibits are on; what music/theater/dance is on when you are here, etc.

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Olney, Maryland
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5. Re: Travelling with a husband who hates to plan!

I would start with a guide book, like the Lonely Planet Guide, and see all the possibilities about New York.

Everyone has their ideosyncratic favorites. I think walking or bicycling over the Brooklyn Bridge or even the Queensboro Bridge is great. Others would prefer going to the Top of the Rock for a drink. I don't like bars, but others do. There are way too many neighborhoods and attractions to think about, without a guidebook of some kind.

You might like any of the five Zoos, one in each borough (the biggest is in the Bronx); you might like Broadway theaters; you might like seeing the Financial District, which is very lively on weekdays and more interesting than, for example, the one in London.

You might want to see Columbia University, or a baseball game, or a 3-hour cruise around the island of Manhattan, or Union Square's Farmer's market on weekends, or Macy's or Hermes, or a Dollar Store (like Poundland).

There's Grand Central Terminal's architecture, or every single street in Greenwich Village, each one more interesting than the last; there's the Promenade in Brooklyn in Brooklyn Heights; there is Williamsburg and Greenpoint (a hipster Polish neigborhood) in Brooklyn.

There's 125th St in Harlem, Riverside Park, South Street Seaport, the various parts of Central Park (like Hyde Park, Regent;'s Park, Green Park, and the London Zoo all rolled into one). There Soho, Noho, Nolita, Tribeca, the East Village, Chelsea, the Upper West Side, the Upper East Side, Battery Park, the UN, streets with mostly musical instruments, or mostly flowers, or mostly furriers, or mostly dishes, or mostly Italian bakeries, etc., etc.

A guidebook really would be a good start: Some of us like to list the tourist attractions; some of us like to list the more subtle places.

You never get bored in NYC.

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6. Re: Travelling with a husband who hates to plan!

Yes I know - it's the ground zero short cut that grates - It does help - am tempted to send you on a stroll to Green-wood Cemetery in Brooklyn -- The brooklyn folks will give you great places to eat shop and relax.

If you love your animals. Get up early in the morning and visit Central Park before 9AM - dogs are off leash until then -- Check out the great lawn behind the Met for this. and do a little exploring at Metmuseum.org -- you will find areas that interest you -- Go in at opening time and focus on them while enjoying anything else that catches your eye along the way -- Leave or have lunch when you've had enough.

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7. Re: Travelling with a husband who hates to plan!

Oh, yes, Greenwood Cemetery is amazing - there really are none in Manhattan (very old, very small ones) because it is the ultimate concrete jungle but Greenwood is stunning - it has some of the nicest views of Manhattan as it is on a bit of a hill and indigenous plants so you can get a feel for what bucolic Brooklyn looked like before it became urban - and, there are some well known people buried there - Leonard Bernstein, Tiffany and many other - there are lakes with lilly ponds and the most beautiful small chapel:

http://www.green-wood.com

I live in Brooklyn and for some crazy reason it took me quite a few years before I finally got there and boy, was I surprised at how beautiful it is.

I think it is a great idea - anyone visiting here that has more than just a few days would probably find it of interest - again, the history is fascinating.

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8. Re: Travelling with a husband who hates to plan!

September 11th memorial. I went last September on the advise of the hotel concierge and found it was an amazing tribute. Do take the time to visit. Look at some of the names. It will stay long in my memory. Going back to NY next September. Great place & people.

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9. Re: Travelling with a husband who hates to plan!

September 11th memorial. I went last September on the advise of the hotel concierge and found it was an amazing tribute. Do take the time to visit. Look at some of the names. It will stay long in my memory. Going back to NY next September. Great place & people.

New York City
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10. Re: Travelling with a husband who hates to plan!

Don't waste any time in Little Italy, and if you want to see true and vibrant Chinatown, go to Flushing, Queens or Sunset Park, Broooklyn. Personally, I think your husband has the right idea - choose some neighborhoods and explore. My top recommendations - Greenwich Village, Nolita, Lower East Side, Greenpoint, Williamsburg, Flushing. Explore Central Park. Why would you want to go to department stores? Don't you have any bland shops where you live?

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