Morning (start at 9am)
Today we start at the famous Flatiron Building (175 5th Avenue) near Madison Square Park. Did you know this was one of the tallest buildings in the city in 1902? Imagine how fast NYC has grown to what it is now in just one century! Next you take a walk on 5th Avenue direction Central Park. 5th Avenue is home to many fancy department stores such has Neiman Marcus, Saks Fifth Avenue, Bergdorf Goodman, Henri Bendel,… You’ll also pass the Public Library (5th Avenue – 42nd Street), which is free to enter and has a magnificent interior. Behind the library you can find Bryant Park where you can take a short rest. When you take East 42nd Street you’ll have a great view of the Chrysler Building and you can visit Grand Central Station. If you like shopping, you should go to Bloomingdale’s (1000 3rd Avenue). While wandering you can buy lunch at one of the many lunch places near Park Avenue or you can have lunch later at Central Park. Don’t forget to visit FAO Schwarz (767 5th Avenue), a very cool toy store that offers a huge 24-key piano, on which you have to jump to play it!
Time to visit Central Park. Enter the park at the southeast entrance. A few of my personal highlights:
– Gapstow Bridge
– The Mall
– Bethesda Fountain
– Loeb Boathouse (where you can have a yummie lunch)
– Alice in Wonderland Statue
– Belvedere Castle
It’s not hard to get lost in the park, with its many paths, because it’s enormous! When wandering through the park you forget you’re in a big busy city. You can sit in the grass and picknick, or sit by the water. If you don’t like walking in the park, you can also rent a bike, but take into account that you will miss a lot of the monuments, because you are not allowed to bike on all paths.
When you exit the park at the southwest entrance at Columbus Circle you can choose depending on how your feet are feeling; or you walk down 7th Avenue passing Times Square (M&M’s store!) and Fashion Avenue until you reach Macy’s (151 West 34th Street) or you can take the subway. Get lost at Macy’s where you can find amazing discounts, promotions, special packages, … they even offer a visitor savings pass (Bloomingdale’s too) with 10% discount! When you’re done shopping at Macy’s you can visit the Victoria’s Secret store (1328 Broadway) at Herald Square which is the biggest VS store in NYC. If you don’t like shopping you can have drinks or just wander some more before going back to the hotel and freshen up.
Take the subway to Brooklyn (if you’ve read my previous post you know how) and go back to Brooklyn Bridge Park to enjoy the sunset. When the sun is down you’re probably very hungry. So it’s pizza time! Take the subway back to Manhattan (High St A-C until the next stop at Fulton St, then change to green line 6 and take off at 33 St) and enjoy a huge thin crust pizza at Vezzo (178 Lexington Avenue) amongst the locals (a local NY friend recommended this place).