I Heart NY (part two)
Part one uncovered some of my fondest memories of my favourite city so lets take a few more bites out of the big apple.
New York is not all shopping and sightseeing, in fact there is a lot of play to be had for the child at heart visitor. FAO Schwartz is one of my favourite stores, full of giant stuffed animals and expensive movie memorabilia as well as the giant floor piano made famous by Tom Hanks in the film BIG and its definitely not just the kids that play on that!!!! This is probably the store the Beckhams would shop in for their kids as you can pick up a childs motorised 4×4 for the same price you would pay for a full size one!!!
My favourite fun store has got to be Toys R Us in Times Square. This store is the largest Toys r Us store in the world and when you enter your greeted by a full size working ferris wheel! 3 floors of fun but beware you may just hear the roar of a life-size T Rex!!!!
If you’re not quite ready to grow up after visits to the Disney store, FAO Schwartz & Toys r Us then why not head to Central Park where a ride in a horse & carriage is just the done thing or maybe head to the Central Park Zoo – maybe not the biggest zoo in the world and you’re not going to see all your favourite characters from Madagascar but its good for the money and you may even see a polar bear! If you go during the colder months you can always grab a pair of skates and whizz round the ice but unlike the zoo this is not cheap here, it’s probably cheaper to head over to Rockefeller albeit not as picturesque.
If you ever find yourself in NY during the summer months then Central Park is an absolute must. It’s an exciting hive of activity with holidaymakers and locals both heading into the vast greenery within the concrete jungle. You’ll find little league teams playing baseball and extremely talented break dancers strutting their stuff for a few dollars. You can have your portrait painted, sketched or cartoonised or maybe you’d prefer to have your name put on a grain of rice – you can find it all in the park.
One year we stumbled across a gay roller disco and what an eye opener that was – easily took an hour of our visit watching guys in tutu’s and girls in leather spinning to gay anthems.
On another visit we went down to 5th Ave to visit the museum of sex (as you do) and came across New Yorks Gay Pride Parade – if we thought the roller disco was an eye opener then this took the biscuit!!!! first came the bikers (about 500 of them) then the police, fire and paramedics, politicians and dancers hand in hand (literally) and then just an endless show of colour and costume to show their pride for being gay.
First comes colour
Then comes costume
and finally …
Hmmm well moving on let’s get back on track and something to even out the testosterone. How about an aircraft carrier fully laden with all manner of awesome steel birds – of course I’m talking about the majestic Intrepid, now a museum showcasing some of America’s flighted heroes of the past including the blackbird! I have to admit for a film buff I thought it was kinda cool re-enacting the scene where Will Smith smashed golf balls into an overgrown and derelict Manhattan in I am Legend. You can also find one of the old Concords here which you can board and see how the fortunate used to fly cross atlantic (have to admit I was shocked at how cramped everything looked, not my idea of luxury).
If you want to grab a sea view of the Intrepid I would definitely recommend the Duck Tour – the amphibian vehicle that takes you through Times, down 5th Ave and then into the Hudson for a sea view of the Manhattan skyline and for just $25 it’s great value.
Now all this frolicking and fun running around the city that never sleeps may just make you hungry and if you’re in a fun mood maybe Mars 2112 will be right up your street. Now don’t get me wrong the food is not brilliant but I haven’t been in too many restaurants where you have to step into a ‘spaceship’ and take a journey to another planet before you eat! Once there you find yourself immersed in a giant red crater surrounded by red mountain ranges and aliens delivering food & entertainment – great if you have kids. No kids? then why not try Hooters … a whole different kind of mountain ranges entirely.
It saddens me to hear that one of my favourite drinking holes has closed its doors (hopefully not for the last time) … The Tavern on the Green was beautiful, ok a bit pricey and definitely a tourist trap but to eat outside in Central Park surrounded by lanterns throughout the tree’s was something special. I sincerely hope someone buys this place and re-opens it just the way it was, rumour has it that Donald Trump is trying to purchase it – lets hope so.
Still one thing that will never close in New York are the theatres and boy does NYC have some theatre houses. Second only to London’s West End (ok so I’m biased) the big apple boasts some of the best theatres and shows anywhere – the last time I was there I went to see Wicked at the Gershwin theatre and for any Wizard of Oz fans this is a must.
So this would certainly be a day that would wipe you out, a day playing in the toy shops, a trip to the zoo, watching a parade, visiting an aircraft carrier, an hour or two in Central Park, something to eat and a show … now all that’s left to do is choose a hotel!!!!! now that’s a whole new blog ha ha.
Til the next time have a good day.
Latino777 – It’s our time down here
Posted on June 23, 2011, in Travel and tagged 5th ave, America, central park, gay, gay pride, Holiday, Intrepid, New York City, NYC, planes, The Big Apple, Times Square, toys, Travelling, USA, zoo. Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.