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Fifth time visitor...first time guide

Leeds, United...
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Fifth time visitor...first time guide

In mid-September I'll be making my fifth visit in nine years, which ought to mean I don't require assistance with an itinerary; however, this occasions stands apart as I won't be by myself. Given this, I'm interested in factoring in some of the things my partner wants to do, which will doubtless include visiting new attractions. Your advice would be most appreciated.

We'll be spending five nights in Manhattan from Thursday September 11. I normally stay at the Westin Grand Central but on this occasion couldn't find a room at a price I was happy with. We cast the net a little wider and managed to find a good deal for the New York Palace. My partner liked the look of the hotel, and it ticked one of my main boxes in that it's in mid-town and close to the Subway. I must admit to a couple of reservations, though the price we secured felt to be very good based on the pictures of the room. If anyone can recommend any worthwhile eateries in the vicinity, or the best nearby shopping for clothes and cosmetics, that would be appreciated.

My recent itineraries in NYC have been based around baseball and old favourites, such as the observatories and museums; however, my partner is keen to visit the zoos and botanical gardens. Here's my first draft...

Thursday:

Arrive early afternoon, purchase 7-day Metrocards, reach hotel by mid-afternoon.

Evening: If fine, go to TOTR. If not, consider some shopping. Consider visiting 9/11 Memorial Museum, though I understand it will close at 1800hrs given the date. I find this the hardest day to schedule given it's difficult to know how tired we'll be from the flight.

Friday:

Day: Visit Bronx Zoo (would it be too much to then head to the NY Botanical Gardens?).

Evening: Nationals @ Mets. I became hooked on baseball on my 2011 visit, and have followed every Mets game since. Fortunately my partner was open to the idea of two games on this visit...wonder if I could fit in a third?

Saturday

Day: Visit Brooklyn Botanical Gardens and, if time allows, the MTA museum.

Evening: Walk Brooklyn Bridge. Can anyone recommend an eatery nearby?

Sunday

Day: Visit MMOA. Every previous visit has felt a little rushed, so I am planning a full day this time: is that excessive?

Evening: currently free.

Monday:

Day: Head south and take the SOL/Ellis Island tour; if time allows visit the 9/11 Memorial Museum. I am interested in visiting the latter but every first-time visitor to NYC has to see the SOL.

Evening: Marlins @ Mets

Tuesday:

Check out of hotel then (if fine) visit TOTR or ESB observatory. Consider visiting MOMA or The Cloisters if time allows. Our flight is late evening, so we won't set off for JFK until circa 1800hrs, so a full-day itinerary is possible.

...and if I've completed my collection of State Quarters by this point (11 required), it'll have been a triumph.

Thank you most kindly in advance.

Dallas, Texas...
Destination Expert
for New York City
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22,751 posts
25 reviews
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1. Re: Fifth time visitor...first time guide

Plan the 911 memorial for another day. September 11 is a day for those directly affected by the tragedy, not for visitors on holiday. In fact, tickets to the museum are unavailable to visitors that day.

For your arrival day, I would plan more general exploration vs scheduling. Explore Times Square at night. During the afternoon, you could tour Grand Central Terminal, The New York Public Library & Bryant Park. Maybe even see a bit of Central Park and do some 5th Avenue shopping.

For Monday: Have you booked your time slot for Statue of Liberty? Statuecruises.com You should also book 911 memorial museum tickets in advance.

Missing from your itinerary: exploring interesting neighborhoods on foot. Greenwich Village, Soho, etc. No Central Park? Highline?

In general, you are spending a lot of time traveling outside of Manhattan, which isn't necessarily a bad thing except that you're doing very little exploring of Manhattan itself.

You might consider doing a Broadway Show one night instead of another baseball game. :-)

2. Re: Fifth time visitor...first time guide

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