New York, New York (Part 2)
The final stage to our American experience was New York - and if you'd missed my first post which talks about our accommodation and such, I'd suggest catching up on that first!
So this post is definitely going to have more of a touristy feel to it as it was our first time in New York so the tourism was very necessary! With a great love for museums, The Metropolitan Museum of Art was high on our list and due to the immense size, it was very much an all day affair. So let's start there.
The Metropolitan Museum of Art
Known for the Met Gala and countless films and Gossip Girl moments, this is probably one of New York's most famous museums. And with our limited time, it was definitely a toss up between the Natural History Museum and The Met - but we were pleased with the Met! Despite being an Art museum, many of the exhibits including the Egyptian wing was hardly full of framed pictures and definitely felt like a History museum hybrid. The museum is quite pricey but you can pay as you wish if you can't afford the admission fee. Due to the sheer size of the museum, I'd suggest getting ahold of an audioguide and following the Highlights tour to get a flavour - this will still take a good few hours! Being high on TripAdvisor's top ten, it's heaving with tourists so it's worth going early. It is honestly so beautiful. Personal favourites included the American Wing, the French part and the Egyptian Wing.
When we were there, it was the Rei Kawakubo Exhibition and it was stunning. This is changing exhibition and changes with the Met Gala theme - but it's worth checking out whatever designer exhibition they have on.
This was really high on my list of things to do (no pun intended), as it meant we would get to see a part of the city that we hadn't been to yet. We walked from our hotel and if I recall, started on the entrance near the Zaha Hadid building (near Chelsea Park) and walked along it till we reached the Meatpacking district. It was beautiful and amazing to see not only a different part of the skyline but the array of sculptures littered across the walkway. The buildings facing onto the Highline were also fascinating as they often featured amazing displays or graffiti (that was really Art!).
Chelsea & Gansevoort Market
We walked along the HighLine till 21st street which is in the Meatpacking District, housing the famous Chelsea market. The area has a similar vibe to Camden in that it's definitely trendy. We had a wander round the area and dipped into Chelsea Market for an explore. Annoyingly, we were there on a Saturday and the whole place was ram-packed full of people so we had a brief explore before heading across the road to the much quieter Gansevoort Market. Both markets are buildings housing a range of little eateries (almost like a posh Hawker centre). We ate at the Gansevoort market and it was brilliant! My mum and brother had food from the Korean BBQ stand, my Dad opted for Pizza and I had a yum Poke Bowl. The Gansevoort market was far quieter than the Chelsea one and it also had seats which was ideal for tired legs!
Our next stop was the Guggenheim, which I must admit, I didn't go in myself - by this point I was very much done with museums! But I'd suggest going simply for the building! If you do fancy a bit more modern art, again, get there early as security closes off the queue if the building gets too busy. It's a bit pricey so it may be worth deciding between the Guggenheim and MoMA.
The Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island
Since our flight back to Manchester was in the evening, we decided to venture out to Ellis Island in the morning. We went with Statue Cruises which is a ferry that will take you to the Statue and then Ellis Island - but it's not really a cruise. It gets unbelievably busy so book online or you're not guaranteed a place! Get there early or again, you're not guaranteed entry. The Statue of Liberty in honest opinion doesn't require much longer than half an hour - and that's sure to allow plenty of time to take enough pictures! Ellis Island, famous as a key stop for Immigration, has a museum attached which focuses on American immigration as a whole. We spent about an hour here as it's quite large but unless you're massively interested in American immigration, there isn't really much to see.
Have you been to New York? What were your essential things to do there?