I was originally planning to do one big post from our quick New York City weekend trip but we ended up doing so much that I have to do a few to fit it all in! We left on an early flight on Friday and according to our Uber driver arrived at the perfect time to go into the city. He said from 10:30-2:30 is the ideal time to be traveling from the airport into the city because there is so much less traffic at that time.
We decided to stay in the Upper West Side so we could be closer to Central Park and not amidst the chaos of Times Square and I loved NYLO so much that we are staying there again for our trip in December! The rooms are huge by NYC standards especially the Junior Suite which fit our family of 4 very comfortably and it’s just a short walk to Central Park and the American Museum of Natural History which is another must do especially if you have kids. It’s perfect if you have a rainy day and need to do something indoors for a while and there are a ton of other amazing museums in the city too. There is a fire station across the street from NYLO so you can really feel safe there and I also loved that there was a CVS right across the street too because I forgot so much stuff and I was able to just run over and grab it there or if I wanted a drink or a quick snack. And speaking of snacks….I am honestly thinking I need to move to NYC just for the chocolate chip walnut cookies from Levain Bakery which just happened to be right around the corner from our hotel (the dark chocolate chip and dark chocolate chip peanut butter are to die for too). I actually ate cookies for breakfast 2 days in a row because they were just THAT good. There are also several coffee shops (including Starbucks) and a Shake Shack nearby (warning though the Shake Shack gets REALLY crowded around lunch time so plan on taking your food to go). And if you like Italian food (and seriously who doesn’t like Italian food?!?) you have to go to Carmine’s which is just another short walk away. They give you these HUGE family style portions and it is all SO good. The only bad thing was that we didn’t have a fridge back at our room so we couldn’t bring our leftovers back with us.
The first thing we did after we checked in to our hotel is walk around and explore on our way to Black Tap for dinner. They have some really amazing burgers and I got a salad that was equally as amazing and their milkshakes are just incredibly delicious works of art! Do not leave the city without at least getting a milkshake there. They are definitely big enough to share! We got the Cotton Candy and the Birthday cake (because it was almost my birthday).
We walked around Central Park after dinner and the boys had a blast climbing on all of the rocks, playing at some of the parks, riding the carousel, and squirrel watching. I think I have as many pictures of squirrels as I do of us! We keep joking that I need to make a “Squirrels of Central Park” calendar with all of my squirrel pictures. They are just so cute I couldn’t resist. I loved seeing all of the horse drawn carriages but we didn’t have time to go for a ride this trip. That is something I have always wanted to do but I knew we were coming back in December so I am saving it for next time and I can’t wait to see the city all decorated for the holidays. Fall wasn’t really in full effect yet since it was the weekend after Labor Day but my Florida boys were so intrigued by the huge maple leaves on the ground since we just don’t see that at home.
We walked everywhere except to the Statue of Liberty and to Brooklyn (more on those places in my posts for Days 2, 3, and 4) on this trip but it is a bit of a far walk from the Upper West Side to a lot of the touristy places so just keep that in mind if you have small children or kids that don’t like to walk. It’s a really nice walk though through a cute little neighborhood and you can cut through Central Park for a lot of it and let the kids run around and play at some of the parks on your way if you have time. We really like to explore and see what’s around us so we usually prefer to walk everywhere that we can. Definitely pack comfortable shoes because you will be walking A LOT. I always pack these Adidas when I go on trips that I know I will be walking a lot because they never let me down in the comfort department and they go with just about anything! The good thing is that you will burn off all of the cookies and milkshakes! Thanks for reading!