Our plane was delayed two hours from Houston Hobby to Newark Liberty Airport due to the weather up north so we didn’t leave until 7:20pm. Needless to say this gave us a very late night but everything went smoothly, just two hours later!
We took the AirTrain to the NJ Transit station and waited about 40 minutes (remember it was later at night now and less trains were running) to catch the train to Penn Station in NYC (the rats were out eating!). Then we took an A-Train connection to the Station at 42nd/8th Ave and walked the two blocks over to our hotel, The Yotel, located at 10th Ave and 42nd St. We checked in at 2:35 am after grabbing some food from the Halal Stand at the corner. It is open from 7 pm-5 am. I got a falafel sandwich and my son got a gyro. I fell asleep at 3:15 am!
We woke around 8:30, checked out of the hotel after storing our luggage with the Yobot at the hotel. This is a new concept hotel which we enjoyed the short time we were there. It is not for all, but we liked it. It was very cold out and windy. We took the A-train to 125th St in Harlem and walked down to tour Grant’s Tomb and then walked down past the Riverside Church. We were hungry so we found Havanna Central where we had a delicious Cuban meal. I had vegetarian food on a puffed yucca, black beans, and maduros. My son ate chicken and rice, pinto beans, and maduros.
We walked around Columbia University campus, then inside St John the Devine (we ran out of time for a tour), and then caught the subway train(s) down and across town to Grand Central Station, then walked east to 1st Ave for a tour at the United Nations (we checked out the Daily News lobby on the way and saw protestors for Tibet across from the UN). We enjoyed the informative tour.
After the tour we walked back across 42nd St and stopped at Battery Park to watch the ice skaters. Then we walked through Times Sq back to the Yotel to pick up our luggage. We met up with my niece, JV, there and we took a taxi to the Saravanaa Bhavan Indian Vegetarian Restaurant at the corner of Lexington and 26th St. where we met up with PJ, her husband. We shared 2 Masala Dosa, one Poori, a South Indian Thali, and Bisibelabath. After dinner we took a taxi back to the WTC PATH station, on to NJ, and we picked up the car and drove to their townhouse in Jersey City.
We ate half of a fried egg sandwich and drank some coffee, then drove the car and parked in Tribeca before walking across to Chinatown to eat dim sum at Nom Wah Tea Parlor at 13 Doyers St. We then had coconut ice cream at the Chinatown Ice Cream Factory. After eating we walked to the LES to check into taking a tour at the Tenement Museum and signed up for one at 4:15. We had time in the afternoon to walk around so we walked to Jennifer’s office in downtown which is located right next to the World Trade Center area. After admiring the views from her building and stopping in for a quick shopping trip to Century 21, we walked back to the LES for the Tenement Museum tour- Irish Outsiders (we all really enjoyed it). We walked around before eating dinner at The Garage in Greenwich Village, a restaurant where Jazz music was playing. I had mixed a green salad with pears, gorgonzola cheese, and nuts, and a lentil soup. JV and PJ shared oysters, Chilean sea bass, beet salad; my son got roasted garlic crusted chicken . We then took a taxi up to the play at the Longacre Theater. We saw Chinglish. It was a nice, small theater, but there was very little leg room! What a funny play! We enjoyed ourselves! We then took a taxi to where we had parked the car in Tribeca and drove back to Jersey City for the night.
We drove back into the city and parked the car in Nolita. We were right near a bakery so we bought croissants at the Ceci Cela Patisserie before walking to the New Museum. Since we were so early and the temperature was around 16 degrees we decided to find a place to eat breakfast and warm up! We ate at a Whole Foods and then we stood in line at the museum until it opened. We rode the slide first before the line got too long. We also rode the carousel and enjoyed the exhibits. Afterwards we drove the car up along the FDR Dr to 59th and Lexington where PJ’s office is located. We visited his office and admired the great view from the windows of the city and Central Park.
We then drove to Flushing Meadows Park in Queens. We walked around the park, enjoying the freezing temperatures and clear day! We saw the USTA National Tennis Center, the City Field Stadium, the skate park, and the globe. We then drove to Astoria and ate a delicious Greek meal at Taverna Kyclades. We ate grilled octopus, Greek salad, tzatziki, and stuffed grape leaves for appetizers. JV and I had broiled scallops and roasted lemon potatoes, My son had a swordfish kabob with lemon potatoes, and PJ had red snapper and fried rice. We all had the complimentary custard for dessert. Delicious! We had a fun day!
We drove past La Guardia Airport, Yankee Stadium, and through Edgewater, NJ and saw great views of NYC. We spent a nice evening watching the Golden Globe awards.
Monday, Martin Luther King Day-
We stopped at a Dunkin Doughnuts on the way into the city and we each got a couple doughnuts to eat. We drove into the city and parked the car in the Tribeca area. We walked up to the Union Sq area, around the Flat Iron District, and then walked a part of the High Line. It was another beautiful, cold day. We ate lunch at Patsy’s Pizza. On the way back to the car we got some cupcakes from Billy’s Bakery to take home. JV and PJ then drove us to Newark Airport to make our flight home.
Our return flight was uneventful and we arrived early into Hobby.
We had a wonderful trip! It was our third time to NYC and we enjoyed just walking the city, seeing the different sections of the city, going to a couple of museums, seeing the play, and as my son says “eating our way across New York City!”
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