I’ve been back from my three day birthday weekend in New York City a few days. It is such a great place to visit. Like Vegas, the city never sleeps and there is something for everyone. NYC has done a lot to polish it’s image over the years. We never felt unsafe and were always treated nicely. Although I am not a frequent traveler to NYC, I though I would share my top 5 travel tips for your next jaunt to the Big Apple.
- Getting Around – Immediately after deplaning, buy yourself a pocket NYC map for $7. Mine had a large foldout of Manhattan with detailed maps of subway lines, Central Park, Times Square and Lower Manhattan. It was indispensable for our weekend trip.
When you get to the subway station, buy a MetroCard. This bus and subway pass is available for a single day ($7.50) or a week ($25). The subway lines will take you to all major attractions. They are clean, safe and convenient. (I can’t verify this, but I have read on multiple forums that Hudson News locations at LGA sell the 1 day cards.)
- $2 airport transportation – Airport cab fare can be close to $40 and shuttle fares around $25. For only $2 take the M60 bus from LGA to the Astoria Station. Transfer to the Yellow Line into Manhattan. I was at my Times Square hotel within an hour of landing. I would not do it will a lot of luggage. It’s a breeze with a roller suitcase or carry-on. It’s just as easy on the return trip.
- Statue of Liberty – Go on-line to the US Park Service web site 2-4 weeks before your visit. Purchase and print timed monument entry tickets. You will save yourself hours in the ferry waiting queue. Plus, this is the only way to buy monument access tickets. If you don’t have “Monument Access” printed on your ferry ticket, you can only walk around Liberty Island.
- Lunch in Central Park – The Whole Foods Market on Columbus Circle at the south end of Central Park and near the 59Th Street Station has a wonderful deli, soup and salad bars, sushi bars, as wall as, a hot and cold foods area that is much bigger than other Whole Foods. Pick-up a reasonable healthy lunch and head over to the park for lunch.
- Times Square Dining – Skip the chain restaurants in and around Times Square and head down Restaurant Row, 46th Street between 8th and 9th Avenues. There must be 30 or so family run restaurants of many cuisines and varying price ranges. The competition is tough and the restaurants respond. Many offer price-fixed dinners with appetizer, salad, entrée and desert for $15 – $35, a bargain for NYC.