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New York City

When my kids turn 11, they get to pick a place to visit with just mom.  This year, Sabrina picked New York City.  At first, I told her no as it was a little out of our price range.  But….  I met a friend from NY on my trip Greece that offered her extra bedroom to us.  And that made it more affordable!  So I watched for airfare deals and found one from Austin to Newark for only $119 each way.  We used United airline miles for the way there and paid for the way back.  We did our research and came up with a list of places we wanted to visit on our trip.  And we managed to squeeze pretty much everything we wanted to do in our 4 days there!

Central Park Zoo.  The perfect size for a fun afternoon!  It was cloudy and actually started to rain a little but we enjoyed our visit!  The best part was the feeding of the sea lions!  They do this a couple times a day so be sure to check out the times before you go.


Staten Island Ferry.  The best way to see the Statue of Liberty for free!  You just hop on and it takes about 25 minutes to get to Staten Island from Manhattan.  Once you get off in Staten Island, you have enough time to grab a snack and it’s back in line to head back to Manhattan.  We got some great pictures while on the ferry!


911 Memorial and Museum.  A must see while in New York.  My daughter wasn’t born at the time of the 911 attacks and I thought it was important that she learns more about this time in our history.  We started off with the movie that the museum recommends that you see first.  It was really informative and it gave my daughter the chance to ask me some questions about that day.


Eataly.  Eataly is located on the third floor of 4 World Trade Center.  We stopped at Eataly to eat dinner after the 911 Memorial and Museum visit.  They have 5 restaurants to choose from!  We opted for a piadina to share and gelato for dessert.   So much good food to choose from!


The Highline.  After dinner, we went walking along The Highline.  The Highline is a public park built on a historic freight rail elevated above the streets on Manhattan’s West Side.  It’s a great place to stroll and check out New York.

Hillsong Church.  Sunday morning we hopped on the subway and headed to Hillsong NYC for the 10 am service.  The music is amazing and the sermon that day was fantastic!

Broadway.  After church, we headed to Times Square to check out a Broadway show.  Sabrina and I researched which shows we wanted to see and had a few in mind that were family friendly.  We ended up seeing Paramour which was a Cirque Du Soleil musical.  After the show, Sabrina got to take a picture with two of the actors!  Check out TKTS for discount tickets for many of the Broadway shows!


Times Square.  Iconic!  Times Square is a great place to people watch and shop!  You must go there at night and during the day if you have time.


The Bronx Zoo.  This was on Sabrina’s list of places we had to visit.  She was watching the Animal Planet series “The Zoo” and wanted to check it out.  We devoted an entire day to the Bronx Zoo.  We took the subway out to the Bronx and got off at Pelham Parkway.  The signs were easy to follow to the zoo.

I highly recommend making a list of all the places you want to visit before you go.  Then group them into locations.  We didn’t plan each day out until we arrived in New York.  We went in April and the weather was cold and rainy when we arrived and hot when we left.  So we saved the Bronx Zoo for our last day since the weather was nicer.

Take the subway!  Much cheaper than a cab and easy to navigate.  Download one of the subway apps on your phone and it tells you exactly which train to take and when to get off and switch.  The subway employees are helpful as well so ask when you purchase your pass.

Have fun shopping!  Go to Bloomingdale’s!  Macys!  Dylan’s Candy Bar!

New York City is a great place to visit!  So much to do!  And eat!  And experience!