Still riding high from our memorable day with Zac and his family, we embarked on our fourth and final (full) day in New York City. It was yet another attraction-packed day filled sights almost too breathtaking to describe. Despite my having been to New York more times than I can count, many of the adventures on this particular trip, I had never before experienced. It was so meaningful to experience them for the first time through the eyes of my children.
We hope you'll join us for this very special day of our trip.
We started out our final morning with our favorite bagels from Ess-a-Bagel, down the street from our hotel. We bought some extra to take with us since we knew we would be experiencing New York bagel withdrawal, in short order.
With our tummies filled with delicious bagels, we began our walk across town. Despite being on a rather tight schedule for the day, we couldn't resist a quick stop in St. Patrick's Cathedral to take in it's awe-inspiring beauty, as we passed by.
Next we headed off to get on our Big Bus tour of the city, which was the perfect way to spend out last day. Two separate bus lines allowed us to canvas much of the island of Manhattan and get off at some key stops to explore some areas we had not already seen. The weather was sublime, perfect for riding in a "convertible."
One of our stops was in Soho where we explored the shops a bit and had lunch at Ruby's, which had one of the hundreds (if not thousands) of outdoor dining areas created in New York for pandemic. Each space we saw was unique and beautifully designed. It was inspiring to see the ingenuity the had city used to make it through the pandemic. Despite the tighter restrictions having been lifted, all the outdoor dining spaces remained, as they have in many cities, due to their popularity. The burgers and fries at Ruby's were to-die-for, as you can see by the expression on the boys' faces.
The Brooklyn Bridge, Empire State Building and The Plaza Hotel were just a few of the highlights on the tour.
We hopped off the bus and hopped on the Staten Island Ferry, which was free. The cool breeze and panoramic views were just what we needed as the day wore on. We had the chance to see Lady Liberty one more time as well. You can never see her up close too many times.
Our Big Bus tour ended at Times Square just in time to see all the billboards illuminating.
Our next, and last stop for the day, was the Empire State Building. It takes less than a minute to ascend to the 80th floor, where you make a quick stop before changing elevators, taking you to the 86th floor, where you are suddenly on top of the world.
The binoculars were a big hit with the kids as we tried to find various landmarks throughout the city.
We arranged to be there at sunset (not an easy reservation to secure). The lighting and views were absolutely stunning, and ones that I will never forget.
It was magnificent to see the sun setting from the different views around the building and quite cold as the evening winds started to whip. I could imagine that skydiving would feel quite like we did up there that night.
We stayed atop the building as the city grew darker and the lights grew brighter. As a seasoned world-traveller, this had to rank in the top five experiences I have ever had. No photographs (and certainly not mine) could do the magnificence of these views justice.
The cherry on the top was the firework show that started around 9, near One World Trade Center. It was planned to coincide and celebrate the end of the final Covid restrictions in New York City. It's not everyone that gets to see a firework show from atop the Empire State Building. To have our this first leg of our trip and our time in the city end on this note was purely magical.