It was finally time for New York – one of my dream destinations and somewhere I have always wanted to visit!! New York is probably the most recognised city in the world through the countless movies and TV shows filmed there and it has always been a dream of mine to walk down Times Square with a coffee in my hand just like in the films!
The flight from Milan over to John F. Kennedy International Airport was about 9 hours and we arrived at 7 in the evening. The coach ride from the airport to the hotel was so magical as we drove the whole way down Fifth Avenue and I saw endless yellow taxis! I dumped my case and got changed in about 2 minutes and headed straight to Times Square.
Luckily our hotel was only a short walk away from Times Square so I was there within 10 minutes! It was absolutely freezing but I didn’t care as I was in the heart of New York City!
My flatmate Michelle recommended a pizza place called ‘Joe’s Pizza’ for dinner which I later found out is really famous and all the celebrities go to! I walked there and ordered myself a slice of pepperoni and the white pizza. The queue was quite long but it went quickly. I can see why it is so popular, the pizza was soooo nice.
I then decided to head back to the hotel so that I could wake up early the next morning and try to fit in as much as possible before the flight back. I saw so many characters around Times Square, it really was fascinating. I loved the buzz and atmosphere and could have stayed there all night people watching! I stopped off on the way back and bought myself a New York Yankees hat! Don’t know if I can pull it off but who cares!
The next morning, I woke up before my alarm so decided to get ready and head out early. I left the hotel around 7am and went to a deli opposite the hotel for breakfast. I got a typical New York bagel with salmon and cream cheese and a coffee (or, as the New Yorker’s say “Cawfee”).
I walked towards the Rockefeller Centre and saw a huge group of people waiting outside with posters and banners – I later found out they were waiting outside The Today Show studios as it is filmed there. Apparently the hosts come out every morning at 08:30 and talk to all their fans. I caught them just in time and thought I’d join in, even though I didn’t have a clue who they were!!
I was debating between the Empire State or Top of The Rock and after reading a few reviews on each, I decided I would go to the Top of The Rock observation deck. I was so glad I did as the views were amazing and as it was still early, there were no queues and not many crowds at the top.
The views were incredible and I was so lucky with the weather as it was such a clear day with blue sunny skies. I met a lovely girl at the top who worked as a flight attendant for another airline in the Middle East. We spoke for ages, compared stories and then took lots of pictures.
I then decided to walk the length of Fifth Avenue so that I ended up at the Flatiron building. I loved it so much walking around and taking in all the sights. I couldn’t stop smiling as I was so happy to be there. I stopped off along the way into a CVS, a Sephora and then I had a quick look in the New York Public Library.
The Flatiron building really is something special and so unique. After this I took the subway as I wanted to visit Ground Zero. I got the Subway to Cortlandt Street Station and then walked to Ground Zero. The New York subway is the most confusing thing ever – there is no logic at all! And if you are on the wrong side of the platform, you have to walk back up onto the street and cross the road to switch platforms – very inconvenient!
I saw on Google Maps that Wall Street was only a short walk away so I headed in that direction. I was expecting to see a load of business men in suits talking stock exchange, but in reality it was just full of tourists!
By this time I was flagging a little bit as I had done so much walking around! I just had one last thing on my list to see before I made my way back to the hotel – Central Park. Luckily, our hotel wasn’t too far from Central Park so I thought I would end my day there. I got the subway back to 5 Avenue Station and then walked to Central Park.
It was now only a couple of hours before the pick up so I walked back to the hotel, stopping off for a quick snack along the way. Our flight back to Milan was another 9 hour flight so I made sure I had a bit of rest before.
I had the MOST incredible layover in New York. It was everything I had dreamed of and more. There is such a good atmosphere in the city and I loved wandering around and seeing all of the sights. The city is massive and I barely covered half of it but I hope to come back again as there is still so much to see and do. This has been by far, one of the best layovers yet! Loved every second.
Thanks for reading.
Kerry May xo