NYC: The One Where We Had No Plan

So I’ve written about NYC twice before (here and here), but always left the details for a “later post”. This is that. As it’s the most recent trip to NYC and thus the most memorable, it will be quite lengthier than my other two posts.

In October 2015, I went to NYC for the fourth time in my life (that I can remember). Originally, I had planned on going by myself — since it was a city I’d been to a few times before, and I had friends who were working in NYC that I could see. But as the date got closer, the idea of going to one of the largest and busiest cities by myself was a little daunting. The closest I’d ever come to traveling alone was on a tour bus from Vegas to Grand Canyon (while my friends stayed in Vegas).

NYC is great, but it’s definitely not a city I can roam around unaccompanied. Like Vegas, it’s… too much. In a different way, though. Vegas is too much as in it’s too hot and everyone is too colourful and all the buildings are too shiny. NYC is too much in a.. there are way too many fucking people, and they walk either too slow or too fast. It also smells everywhere, and the subway trains are dirty. So…

Tip: bring someone with you. Make sure this person is not one of those friends who sometimes irritate you when you are tired/hungry (we all have those friends, no matter how much we actually love them). This person has to be someone you can be around all day, and definitely not someone that is high maintenance.

Tip: do not travel in a group unless it is clearly “splittable” into smaller groups/pairs. It will get hectic.

Tip: just a recommendation for any trip — you should probably go with someone who is going for the same reason as you are, or someone who is the same type of traveler as you are. For example, I am a planner. Planning each day and how I’m getting where is my thing — especially if the city is new and there are a lot of things I really want to see (and therefore I must manage my time to see them all).

On this trip, I was not a planner. We did not plan anything. We literally had bus tickets and a place to stay and nothing else. Strangely, it was totally fine (perhaps because this was my fourth time NYC) and probably one of my better trips.

We had a goal (for fun): to recreate the photographs that we found of NYC on this website.

I used Google Image to find the locations of these photos. Hover over each photo if you want the location for your trip!

We didn’t actually get to recreate the birds-eye view one because we had no way of knowing where that was taken… but we did find the other four places! The port across the Brooklyn Bridge and the Atlas Statue:

^ My friend took these. Doesn’t the water look so smooth?!

^ I took these. I was mainly screwing around with my camera haha (still in the process of learning how to actually use it).

He didn’t upload photos of the other photo-spots, but here are photos of him taking photos at the spots 😛 :

My favourite part was sitting on the rocks at the port across the Brooklyn Bridge. We took photos before, during, and after sunset. It was so great. Definitely go there. It’s so peaceful on the other side of that bridge!

Food we ate (see caption for location):

Notes:

  • Sukhumvit 51: That pad thai was the best I’ve ever had. 
  • The Jane Hotel – a little fancy. I got this weird-ass cucumber drink. Tasted like shit, but I’m not really a drinker :P.
  • Tavern on Jane – I didn’t really eat there, but the food seemed amazing.
  • Joe’s pizza – simple, yet so delicious. It was the place my friend remembered the most from his first trip to NYC! It’s a hole in the wall that’s been around for ages and has been visited by many celebrities.
  • Pineapple bun – yummy! Chinatown definitely worth exploring.
  • Indikitch – food was good, but service was meh.
  • Shake Shack – I’ve been there on my previous trips to NYC. WORTH. Try their custard ice cream. There are multiple Shake Shacks throughout the city.
  • Black Seed Bagels – best bagel I’ve ever had in my entire life.
  • Street food – first thing we had upon arrival. It was overpriced but soooo good (maybe because we were starving after 12 hour bus ride).

Other photos taken around NYC:

Photos he took:

We walked so much. We walked through all of Central Park and all the way to SOHO. By the end of each day, we were so exhausted.

By far, this was the best of all my trips to NYC. Everything was perfect – free from the stress of planning, great company, all the friends we saw there, and beautiful weather.

My recommendation to you when planning your next trip (whether it’s to a big city or another place) is to check the weather, and have a general idea of things you would like to do there. Are you going for the touristy spots, or would you like to find the hidden gems?

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