Tuesday, August 10, 2010

How to Spend a Weekend in New York City

It was exciting, fun, and somewhat overwhelming to get lost in one of the most interesting cities in the world. Mostly, I want to know when can I go again.

How I did it: In April, I visited New York City with my sister and completely fell in love with the city. I was so bummed out when we had to leave, so I made plans to go back a few months later. I read articles on Wikipedia and also read a few travel books about the area, so I would know the different boroughs of the city and know how things functioned. I researched a lot of information on the internet (especially to find a hotel) and even created a Google Map Layer for my phone that had everything that I thought looked interesting. Other than lots of research, reading, and reservations, the trip was easy to plan and very, very exciting once I was there.

Most people probably wouldn’t think it, but it was a great city to travel to alone because it was so easy to blend in without drawing too much attention to myself. I also met a lot of really interesting people while I was there and was able to overcome some of my fears (like riding the subway alone).

Lessons & tips:
  • Bring good walking shoes. Both times in the city I ended up with blisters and sore feet.
  • Bring an umbrella. When it rains in New York, it’s kind of crazy on the streets. My shoes got completely soaked, and walking 20 blocks in drenched shoes isn’t that fun. 
  • Bring a phone with a GPS map. I can’t tell you how many places that I went into and then ended up having to exit on different streets. It’s easier to get lost than you think. The buildings are so tall and non-descript from street level. 
  • Learn the layout of the city before you get there. it will save you a lot of time trying to figure out where everything is when you get there. 
  • Go with an open mind. New York is one of the most exciting and diverse cities in the United States, so be prepared to try something new.
  • Google and Wikipedia 
  • The Library Hotel (a great place to stay, everyone was so helpful, and it was in a perfect location) 
  • Eyewitness Travel Guide's New York City (it was a fantastic, quick reference) 
  • My Droid (I was so thankful for the interactive maps and constant internet) 

See more progress on: Spend a weekend exploring New York City.

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