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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I am going to be in New York City for 3 full days - I have never been before (which is lame cuz I am only 8 hours away).<br><br>
I would love advice/critiques, etc<br><br>
We are staying in Secaucus, NJ.<br><br>
Day one: Morning:<br><br>
Statue of Liberty in morning. Non negotiable - kids want to climb to top. I have heard you can do this but you have to be able to climb the 3oo plus stairs. Ack! I am thinking of skipping ellis island (even though the ferry stops there (unless it amazing). None of my ancestors disembarked there, yk?<br><br>
Evening: we have tickets to Ovo (cirque de soleil) It is on some island. My only decision is whether to drive or take public transit<br><br>
Day 2: American Natural History Museum and Central park. I am thinking of hitting the park near ther museum - less crisscrossing of city.<br><br>
Day 3: This one is nutty. I want to go to a beach in the morning In NJ and see the Atlantic. I have seen it before but the kids have not. Any good beaches? In the late afternoon I want to hit Grand central station, the library and Times Square. I intend to follow up with supper and then Broadway. I want to get cheap tickets to Broadway but standing in line at TKS is not in the plans! Not sure what to do. As per Broadway - I am thinking "Wicked". Any thoughts? Is it goood for a 7, 11 and 14 yr old? I am also considerring the Blue Man Group - those tickets are more reasonable and do not involve standing in line at TKS<br><br>
What do you think???<br><br>
Kathy
 

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Hi Kathy!<br>
You might want to post your itinerary in the New York tribe section, also - lots of other NYC-moms will see it there.<br><br>
Your trip sounds really fun! I have a few thoughts and suggestions.<br><br>
For the Statue of Liberty visit: The crown is open now, but you have to make reservations in advance to go up there. If you go to the Statue of Liberty website you'll see a link for making reservations. I've never been to Ellis Island, but I've heard that their museum is really fantastic. Visiting the museum might be a cool way to put everything else into perspective, give it some historical context, all that good stuff.<br><br>
Cirque de Soleil: I've seen their tents up on Randall's Island - I'll bet the show's going to be a lot of fun for your family!!! Now, getting there will be a little bit of a pain in the neck, though. Even though it's pricey, I totally recommend that you take the New York Water Taxi there. The water taxi leaves from South Street Seaport, which isn't far from the Ellis Island/Statue of Liberty ferry landings on the southern tip of Manhattan. This would be such a FUN way for your kids to see the city, because the water taxi will take you up the entire length of Manhattan! There are some really awesome views from there.<br><br>
Also, if you have time between the statue of liberty and the show, South Street Seaport is another cool place to visit.<br><br><br>
Day 2: The Natural History Museum is one of my favorite places ever - you'll have such a great time there. A couple of nice (and kid friendly) food options nearby are the Shake Shack and Patsy's Pizzeria. There are a few really nice things to see in that area of Central Park, also. You might see what's showing at the marionette theater. Belvedere Castle is fun, and I love walking around the lake that's just south of all those things.<br><br>
Day 3 seems really packed! I don't have as much input on those activities, except to say that it sounds like a lot!
 

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I just got back three weeks ago. One thing was, I was overwhelmed by the amount of time it took to see things and by the amount of time to get to things. Traffic is really insane, we did cover a lot of ground, but we would have done more had traffic not been so congested. We did a lot of walking, we just stuck to Manhattan.<br><br>
Day 2 sounds doable, but the museum is huge, so you might want to pick out which exhibits you want to see most, because it could easily take us a couple of days to thoroughly explore it. Good thing is, it's close to the park.<br><br>
Day 3 kinda sounds nutty. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="smile"> You asked. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/orngtongue.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Stick Out Tongue"> I think I would prioritize and cut out a few things.<br><br>
Loved NYC, the food was great, the attractions were great, the people were great. I'd go back in a heartbeat.
 

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I live in NYC.<br><br>
Personally, I think your day 3 sounds miserable. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/wink1.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="wink1"> NYC is fun when you can be relaxed and enjoy your surroundings-- it is NOT fun to jam pack your day/night so tight that you constantly worry about how fast to get somewhere.<br><br>
If you want to go to the beach, then skip NYC that day, or just go to one place at night. IMO you're missing the best parts of the city-- Greenwich Village, Soho, Park Slope Brooklyn, etc. in favor of the pretty lame commercial/corporate parts. Plus good food costs a LOT more in the touristy areas and is no where near as good (though I second the Shake Shack recommendation!).<br><br>
Day 1 if it's non-negotiable then do that... Ovo should be fun! Plan out though where you are taking a BREAK and changing clothing and such mid-day. NYC gets you tired and dirty quickly when you try to over-do it.<br><br>
Day 2-- Yes, take it easy at those 2 places!<br><br>
Day 3-- I don't see the Grand Central station as being something to see at the expense of other great places. Times Square can be interesting in a "look what corporations can do" kind of way... As for Broadway you're right that you'll find better tickets and usually better shows off-Broadway.<br><br>
I'd say if there's any room to change things around--- add in some time downtown! And not Chinatown. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/wink1.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="wink1">
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Yeah - day 3 is kind of nutty. I am not sure what to cut though - perhaps the beach which makes me a little <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/greensad.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="greensad"><br><br>
I might play it by ear - but I will streamline day 3. I would like to hit soho and Greenwich village<br><br>
Thanks for the input!<br><br>
kathy
 

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Are you driving or flying? Are you driving on Day 0 and Day 4 or trying to do it overnight?<br>
If you are driving home on Day 4 I would maybe hit the beach on the way home rather than driving there and then heading back into the city. I know beaches (even not swimming, just the sun & air) make me pretty tired. I don't think it would be easy for the kids to transition pack into a hectic itinerary in NYC right afterwards. Even the more northern beaches (Asbury Park, Point Pleasant) will be an hour's drive each way.<br><br>
How are you planning to get in and out of the city from Secaucus?<br>
What days of the week are we talking about? This will definitely affect commuting time. Driving in and finding a place to park can be really nuts. You might want to figure out if you can take NJ Transit and then a PATH train or Ferry. This page might help <a href="http://www.secaucus.org/transportation.html" target="_blank">http://www.secaucus.org/transportation.html</a><br><br>
With a 7yo you might do better on a matinée performance for the Broadway show- these are on Sat. & Wed. Also, this does not seem to be the case so much anymore, but some feel that one should "dress" for an evening show.<br><br>
Unless someone in the family is really into them I wouldn't worry too much about seeing the Library or Grand Central. Times Square I would not "visit", maybe get off on the subway stop near and walk through on your way to a Broadway show.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
I am driving down from the Montreal area. MapQuest says the drive is about 7 hours - straight through the Adirondacks and then the Hudson River Valley.<br><br>
I am worried about landing in the NYC/NJ area around supper rush hour - suffeciently so that i am telling everyone we might take a leisurely hike somewhere on route so we arrive around 7:00 instead of 5:30.<br><br>
I am driving on Monday and Friday - with Tuess, Wed, and Thurs in between being the touring days.<br><br>
I do intend to pak the car at the hotel and take public transit almost everywhere - certainly to and from NYC. The idea of driving there scares me a bit (and I drive in Montreal regularly- which is not driver friendly!)<br><br>
I could skip Grand central - but I do want to see the library if possible. I work in a library and love to visit other libraries. Times square i could give little time to on my way to a night show.
 

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Going to see the Statue of Liberty was my kids' favorite part of our last NYC trip, but you will have to wait in a long line and go through metal detectors, etc. Definitely check online to find out if/how you will be able to get tickets to go inside. I thought Ellis Island was interesting - it was especially interesting to see the ways in which the immigration debate hasn't changed for the last hundred years (my ancestors didn't come through either, but I still found it interesting).<br><br>
Wicked is pretty dark. It is not recommended for under eights, but you know your 7 year old best. I haven't seen the musical, but do love the CD. I would like to see it. :)<br><br>
We also enjoyed going to Top of the Rock to see the city from up high.<br><br>
Natural History Museum is great. Is is ginorous!!! We walked and walked and walked, and then realized our guide-map was folded and we still had another two floors to cover.<br><br>
If your kids have read "From the Mixed of Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler," the Met has a brochure based on the novel suggesting displays of interest. The Met's food court is not bad either.<br><br>
Have a great time! I tend to go,go,go on trips like yours - I can rest at home, but if I am somewhere new, I want to see as much as possible.
 

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If you are going to the beach just to look at the ocean, why no go to Coney Island. Even though the Jersey Shores are nicer, it is a lot closer and you can still do what you want to do in Manhattan. If you post in the NY/NJ tribe they may be able to give you more information about picking up tickets without having to wait in line. If you can't make Wicked, the Addams family got good reviews.
 

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I was told that you need to get tickets in advance to go <b>into</b> the Statue of Liberty. <a href="http://www.nps.gov/stli/planyourvisit/frequently-asked-questions-about-reserving-tickets-to-visit-the-crown.htm" target="_blank">Here</a> is the link that I just found.<br><br>
You can take the boat to the island without advance reservations but the line gets VERY LONG as the day goes on. Try to get their early to get on the first boat of the day.
 

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Hi Kathy! I live right next to Secaucus. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="smile"><br><br>
You are going to have to drive at least an hour to get to a reasonable beach in NJ. I would recommend it over going to a beach in NYC (because it's a HUUUUUGE pain to get through the city and out to the Island) but it's still going to be quite a long trip and may make Day 3 just a wee bit insane. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="smile"><br><br><br>
There are buses from the hotels in Secaucus that will take you right into Port Authority on 42nd street. Can I suggest a tweak to Day 2?<br><br>
- bus to Port Authority, walk directly across on 42nd St, it's about five blocks and you'll smack right into Grand Central<br><br>
- honestly, it's not a place you'll need to spend a TON of time at... see your fill and then walk back on 42nd to 5th Avenue, and head down two blocks to the NYPL. Stay there until lunchtime-ish.<br><br>
- walk back on 42nd to Times Square, hang out, find a pizza joint for lunch, then hop on the A or C train up to the Museum of Natural History (the 81st st exit)<br><br>
- check out the park or museum, your call, I'd do the park before dark... <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/wink1.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="wink1"> until you're ready for dinner. That should give you a good 5-6 hours to get your sightseeing in. You can eat in that neighborhood, take the A or C back down to Times Square and walk west on 42nd to your bus at the Port Authority.<br><br><br>
Then Day 3 you can do your beach jaunt in the early part of the day, come back for a rest and then hit the town again for a show in the evening.<br><br>
I would probably recommend going down the Parkway till you get to Route 36, and then follow that around to the ocean, stopping somewhere like Keansburg. That's probably your closest 'real beach', and it couldn't be easier to get to. Of course, Pt. Pleasant is a great beach too, that's where my family lives, but it'd be another 45m-1h on your trip each way.<br><br><br>
You just can't overestimate how exhausted you can get from walking around in the city. Relying on public transportation and consolidating as much as possible is the key when you've got little guys (I'm imagining your 7 yr old -- our oldest is 6).<br><br><br>
As for driving in our area around rush hour - yes it can get kind of crazy! We live right off route 3 and sometimes it can take my husband 40 minutes to get home (he works 15 minutes away, west of us). Are you driving on Rt. 3 into Secaucus? We actually did the drive to/from Quebec a couple of years ago and I definitely recommend working in a few 'mental health' breaks along the way -- it's a straight shot but there's a long section of NY that can be sooooo boooooooring. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="smile"> We stopped around Lake George on one of the ways, I remember.
 

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There is a little used, virtually no lines, TKTS outlet at South Side Seaport. The best thing about it is that it sells tickets for the following days matinees. So instead of the traditional anxiety and uncertainty of TKTS, you go to SSS and take in the sights, wooden ship, etc... and get tickets to a show the next day. A lot less stress.<br><br>
A lot of people skip going to the Statue of Liberty (because of the wait and the expensive ferry ticket) and take a one hour, free, round trip on the Staten Island ferry, which goes right past it. Tickets to climb inside the statue are, I am pretty sure, booked months in advance.<br><br>
I would, if not inconvenient, include Grand Central. Most kids, heck most people, haven't seen a grand space like that. If you go you have to go to the Whispering Gallery outside the Oyster Bar. Everyone loves it. Also, if you go, when you are in the main terminal looking at the zodiac on the ceiling, look in the area that the crabs claw is pointing to, right at the edge of the mosaic. There are two tiles of the mosaic that they didn't clean when they did the renovation, so you can see what it looked like. It's astounding.
 

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<table border="0" cellpadding="6" cellspacing="0" width="99%"><tr><td class="alt2" style="border:1px inset;">If your kids have read "From the Mixed of Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler," the Met has a brochure based on the novel suggesting displays of interest. The Met's food court is not bad either.</td>
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blast from the past- an awesome book for the kids to read before they go <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="smile">
 
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