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Non-knife-related New York City thread?

Discussion in 'Travel' started by kirbysdl, Oct 6, 2016.

  1. kikaida

    kikaida Loaded Pockets

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    Good thread. I'm planning to visit relatives in NJ and Queens, and be at Times Square for New Years.
     
  2. kikaida

    kikaida Loaded Pockets

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    I'll be ordering a couple, since one was lost and another was given away as a gift. One for me and one for the wife. I told my wife to bring our small point and shoot camera, but she declined saying she would just use her phone. She came home with very few pictures because using your phone as a camera a lot drains your battery fast. This is why there is still a place for point and shoots and DSLRs when sight seeing. I'll be bringing my Nikon D3100 with me this trip.
     
  3. kirbysdl
    • In Omnia Paratus

    kirbysdl Loaded Pockets

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    Hey folks, just figured I'd post a follow-up. Thanks for all the tips and suggestions. This is me trying to give back.

    In four days we went to the American Museum of Natural History, the Intrepid Museum, the Statue of Liberty, a nighttime bus tour, nighttime cityscape views at Rockefeller Center, a broadway show (Kinky Boots), and a taping of (The Late Show with) Steven Colbert. We were happy with everything we did.

    The museums were great. You can easily spend days in each, but we didn't have too much time. As a science geek I had to go to the Hayden Planetarium. For a big touristy place, the AMNH had a surprisingly decent cafeteria (compared to a lot of other museums we've been to). I was expecting less out of the Intrepid but it really delivered. I think the SR-71 has to be the coolest plane ever built, and its close relative the A12 was there, not to mention the first sub to carry nuclear missiles, the space shuttle, the Concorde, and of course the Intrepid itself. ProTip: At the Intrepid, everyone's knowledgable and friendly. I struck up some conversations with the security guards who actually know a lot, and are probably glad to have a conversation that goes beyond, "Don't touch that!"

    Re: The Statue of Liberty, ask the ticket booth for pedestal tickets even if the signs say they're sold out. We were still able to get some, and the views are nice from the various levels of the pedestal. We'd have liked to have tried the crown, but those sell out over a month in advance: plan ahead if you want to go to the top! (If you're visiting in the summer, there's not much A/C in the statue, the ferry boats, etc., which may or may not be an issue for your party.)

    I'd definitely recommend the subway if you're ok at navigating public transportation and it fits your itinerary. Street traffic was pretty nightmarish during the day, but the subways are generally predictable. We saw our requisite rat-in-the-subway (not in a train), had our train-with-broken-AC and train-that-smells-like-poop, but I'd still recommend it. We also used Lyft for when we were far from a station, and that worked fine too. There's something to be said for door-to-door when you're tired from a full day.

    TKTS booth for Broadway tickets worked out quite well. The line is long but moves quickly. The skeptic in me wonders if it's all a racket (compare to department stores where no one actually ever pays full price) but we got "half off" and loved our show.

    The food was a bit of a mixed bag. We tried a few places that were merely decent, perhaps because they were tourist traps in Manhattan. More research could have helped out there. Yelp is no guarantee of quality, nor is being a busy place packed to the gills with a wait time. On the other hand, we found some food courts that are apparently getting popular, and that we enjoyed. Look on websites to see what places have the sort of food you'd like to try, but we enjoyed City Kitchen and UrbanSpace Vanderbilt. Kuro-Obi ramen is at both of those, and is totally worth a try if you think ramen is just powdered soup and instant noodles. Lastly, lobster tails from Carlo's Bakery are pretty awesome.

    Oh, and the terrorists have won. Security theater all over the place. Also, New York is like a big theme park in that you get in line to wait for the line that goes to the line that actually gets you where you want to go. I understand the challenge of handling crowds, but some of their logistics and crowd control were pretty baffling. That said, New Yorkers aren't the total poop heads that some media portray them as. It's a city filled with city mice with places to go and things to do, much like other cities. I'm posting all of this to try to help manage expectations: it's a mixed bag of good and bad like anywhere else you might visit.

    Overall we'd be happy to revisit, but our travel wish list is so long we'll likely not get back within the next 5 years. If we were to do it again, we'd likely stay outside of Manhattan to see if we can get a less hectic experience. Our whirlwind tour was a blast, but less whirl and more tour would be fun too.

    Please keep the discussion going to help out fellow travelers!

    EDIT:


    Since you mention it, if you have a wide angle lens (10mm on crop, 17 or less on FF), it will be awesome for street photography but also for museums. Museums tend to have big things that are hard to capture easily with standard focal length lenses (say 35mm crop, 50mm FF). My Canon 10-18mm EF-S IS is cheap but a godsend for museums and the like.
     
    Last edited by kirbysdl, Nov 7, 2016
  4. acropolis5

    acropolis5 Loaded Pockets

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    Moshe, seems to me u r a little msughe re the Big Apple. I’ve lived in or very near same, all my long life. Still go on long walks there thru Inwood , Harlem, Midtown, Central Park, Greenich Village , South Street Seaport , the High Line, ,etc.

    Today, NYC is one of the safest walking cities among all the world’s great cities. That wasn’t true 50 years ago when I was a teen. But , it is now.

    The Metrpolitan, Modern, Guggenheim, Natural History, Jewish, The Fricke & the American Indian Museums etc. ec. are among the finest museums of their type in the entire world. Say on a par with anything in London, Paris Rome, Florence, or anywhere else.

    Let’s not forget Cental Park & the High Line, River Bank Park & the Battery, especially on a nice Sunday morning, with the speakers, performers, buskers and the most amazing, diverse, interesting and yes, friendly folks anywhere.

    Then there’s Broadway/ The Theatre Distict, Lincoln Center, Carnegie Hall , the Main Library, Wall Street, The Freedom Tower/ 911 Memorial, the Chrysler Building, Grand Central Terminal and Woolworth buildings,

    Walk Fifth Avenue’s stores, experience Times Square at night, visit the jewelry district , Wall Street, Trinity Church, Go a bit north to the Cloisters, Bronx Zoo and the Bontanical Gardens and a thousand other sights and sounds I cannot even begin to mention.

    Eat anything from dirty water hot dogs from street carts to Three Star Michelein rated fine restaurants. Hear the best Jazz bands this side of New Oreans at the Blue Note and Dizzy’s , to name just two of 50 or more venues. There’s also the NYC Opera, Ballet, & dozens of rock, folk and even Country music venues. Remember Coyote Ugly is in Manhattan.

    Oh, there’s vice too, as in any city. You can find any type of sex or drug you want and the price is negotiable. But if you don’t go looking for it, it won’t seek you out.

    I’ve visited most of the great cities of Europe. Only Paris and London rival in beauty and diversity. But none match the verve and variety of Gotham!

    Finally, in moments of extremis, on 911, thru many blackouts, blizzards, hurricanes, fire , flood,, & terrotist threats, New Yorkers and their close-in neighboring communities, keep an unswervable calm, unite, help each other, behave well and carry-on. Did u know that on 911, a spontaneous , mostly private “Little Ship” armada formed and took more people off Manhattan island , in one day, than the famous WW II, Little Ship armada evacuated from Dunkirk in a week! Google the documentary.
     
    #24 acropolis5, Mar 17, 2019
    Last edited: Mar 17, 2019
    variable likes this.
  5. suburbDad

    suburbDad Loaded Pockets

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    Want to throw in some more tips for others who may visit:
    - Bring a water bottle. We have the tastiest tap water and no need to spend $3 for a Poland Spring.
    - have many single dollar bills. there are a lot of places that have tipping as a custom.
    - avoid Uber’s and taxis during rush hour
    - enable your Apple Pay/ google pay/ Samsung pay or whatever you’ve got in your phone. the Chance for losing your phone and wallet is rare.
    - be ready for crazies. After awhile, they blend in with the crowds
    - use the restroom before you go anywhere. It’s hard to find readily accessible places. If you are suave enough, hotel lobbies usually have a restroom. Have confidence enough to walk in there as if you were staying there and ask the front desk where it is
    - hand and baby wipes are your friend, especially if you have kids
    - buy yourself a uv flashlight if you’re staying in a hotel in NYC. Bed bugs are a serious issue. Inspect thoroughly