6 days in New York with Kids (12 and 10)

Aug 5th, 2009, 01:51 AM
Original Poster
Join Date: Aug 2009
Posts: 2
6 days in New York with Kids (12 and 10)

It is my first time in this forum.
I am Spanish and we are planning a family trip to New York from Sept 1 to Sept 6, 2009.
We have already got accomodation (close to Central Park) and we are now trying to figure out a trip plan. I have been several times in NYC for business but my wife and kids have not.
Any suggestions about what to see, when to see, where to eat, musicals, etc. wil be very usufull.

Thanks in advance and best regards,
ixos2009 is offline  
Aug 5th, 2009, 07:56 AM
Join Date: Mar 2003
Posts: 10,199
Can you tell us a bit more about your family? Do your kids have any special likes or dislikes? (love museums, hate museums . . . love sports, shopping, science, and so forth)

FYI, The end of your stay is on an big holiday weekend in the U.S.--September 7 is Labor Day, a holiday that signals the end of the summer season.
ellenem is offline  
Aug 5th, 2009, 08:33 AM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 8,305
Yes, it is Labor Day weekend (September 5-7), but don't be misled. It's actually fairly quiet in the city that weekend. So, that's good news if you want to see a Broadway show, as it will be easier to get tickets to most shows. As for which show to see, there are several that are suitable for your children. One key question: How fluent are they in English?
The American Museum of Natural History should probably be at the top of the museum list for your children.
HowardR is offline  
Aug 5th, 2009, 08:34 AM
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 7,561
Unfortunately for you the Yankees won't be in town, which means you can only see second-tier baseball at Citi Field.

Take them to the Natural History Museum and the Planetarium (they're connected together). That should keep the kids out of trouble for awhile.

The US Open starts August 31, so you should check the draw and try to get tickets. Day sessions and night sessions are sold separately. The night sessions are the liveliest tennis crowds in the game. And I think Nadal will play. If he does, he'll probably get one of the night slots.
BigRuss is offline  
Aug 5th, 2009, 11:11 AM
Join Date: Sep 2003
Posts: 8
I was in NYC over July 4th....you are near Central Park...and much to see and do in the park ...Time Sq is interesting...specially with a gigantic Toys R Us...that has a giant ferris wheel within the store....plus you are in theatre district and can check our show availabity and prices....TKS in in Time Sq where you can get same day discount tickets....and a ride on the subway is always an overlooked tourist treat....look into discount train pass..Staten Island ferry is a great no cost ride from lower Manhattan...especial at night.....this should give you some ideas....
stealanhour is offline  
Aug 5th, 2009, 12:23 PM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 1,736
Good one Big Russ... ;-)
michelleNYC is offline  
Aug 5th, 2009, 05:16 PM
Join Date: Oct 2003
Posts: 57,890
Central Park has a small but interesting zoo (the real one is in the Bronx), a Carousel and you can rent bikes to ride or a boat for the lake.

Definitely do the Museum of Natural History- and check out the IMAX movies there. Also visit the Met - there is something for everyone from Arms & Armor to the costume Institute to the Temple of Dendur (check out the web site).

Definitely do at least one boat ride. The staten island ferry is free and has great views of the city skyline on the way back. Also consider the Shark speed boat ride and the 2 hours Circle line tour.

Definitely do the Top of the Rock - preferably at sunset - so you can get a veiw of the city both in daylight and lit up at night.

For dinner I reco you visit some of the residential areas - upper west side, Village, lower east side - where there are lots of modest places with good food of every type - many with sidewalk cafes good for people watching.

You might also consider touring the Intrepid - a decommissioned aircraft carrier - with a ton of interactive exhibits.

For shows I would look at In the Heights, perhaps West Side Story (an NYC Romeo and Juliet) for kids that age. suggest you got o broadwaybox.com - the best way to get discounted tickets - esp if you want more than 2 together (TKTS booth sometimes has only pairs of seats).
nytraveler is offline  
Aug 5th, 2009, 05:37 PM
Join Date: May 2007
Posts: 26,710
What part of Spain are you from?

And how well does your wife and children speak English? If not will they get bored at a musical?

Our cousin, who is from Galicia, will visit us In September. We plan on showing her the Met and Modern museums, taking a ferry past the Statue of Liberty. We will walk through Times Square at night and show her the Lower East Side on a Sunday morning.

What type of food do you like? If the kids miss something Spanish, try Xunta, tapas and the owners are Gallegos.

As others have asked, please be more specific.
Aduchamp1 is offline  
Aug 5th, 2009, 05:40 PM
Join Date: May 2007
Posts: 26,710
They should be happy the Yanks are out of town since it will safer without the drunk drivers and druggies.
Aduchamp1 is offline  
Aug 6th, 2009, 09:03 AM
Original Poster
Join Date: Aug 2009
Posts: 2
Thanks to all for your help.
Some of you ask for more details. We are from Madrid. I would say my kids are fluent in English. As you can imagine the girl loves shopping (Abercrombie) and the boy prefers sports, science,... We have already seen the "King Lion" in London. I was wondering if Billy Elliot could be an option.
Is it worthy to climb up to the Statue of Liberty?
Talking about boats what company, trip, would you recommend to see manhattan from the sea?

Sorry for so many questions and thanks for your help.
ixos2009 is offline  
Aug 6th, 2009, 09:18 AM
Join Date: Jun 2004
Posts: 10,192
You've completely missed your chance to climb the Statue of Liberty; it's sold out until late Fall or early winter (though I suppose cancellations are possible). You could still visit, but if you're only in town for a few days I don't think it's worth the time and hassle unless it's something you really want to see (the Ellis Island Immigration Museum is definitely worth the hassle, however).

I would go to the Top of the Rock. It's expensive but has a great view and not nearly as long a soul-crushing line as the Empire State Building. It's nice to go at dusk, but you need to book your timed tickets in advance. Aim for about 8pm.

Billy Elliot is a great show and probably suitable for kids your kids' ages, but there is a little profanity and a couple of scary scenes. Still, I loved it. Mary Poppins might be more your daughter's style. All kids seems to like Wicked, but it's probably sold out. Many of these shows may still have tickets because this is a holiday weekend, but I'd consider buying them soon if you care about which show you see. Otherwise, buy cheap tickets on arrival at the TKTS booth if you just want to see a show and don't care which one. Kids (and many adults) also seem to love Stomp and Blue Man, and you can almost always get tickets for them.

If you son likes science, he might like Liberty Science Center, a science museum aimed at kids. You can take a ferry from downtown to get there (it's in New Jersey). They have a great IMAX movie theater as well.

There are some good shorter cruises on Circle Line, or you can take the Staten Island Ferry for free. Just take it and turn right back and get on the same ship after you disembark. The entire round-trip takes about 45 minutes. This is especially nice to do at dusk.

Or if you are more adventurous, we have a new city park on Governor's Island. It's just a hanging out place, but the ferry is free and it's open every weekend. They have food now and some activities, even a "beach" where you can lay out in the sun. It's an old Coast Guard station where the families once lived and has some history. You can rent bikes to ride around the island. It's more of a locals thing, but if you want to kill some time and get some views of downtown, you wouldn't have to stay long. Though I bet it will be busy on Labor Day weekend.
doug_stallings is offline  
Aug 6th, 2009, 11:06 AM
Join Date: May 2007
Posts: 26,710
The Metroplitan Museum is in the same category as the Prado. (I just miissed seeing the new wing however, on my last trip.)

Central Park is very similar to El Retiro and may have even a greater variety of activities.

Museum of Modern Art (MoMA) is a combination of the Thyseen and Reina Sofia but without any emphasis on a specifc genre or country.

The best way to see New York is to walk and enjoy the various stores, residences, different buildings.

If you are in Greenwich Village, you can get El Pais or ABC at the newsstand on 6th Aveneue (Avenue of the Americas) and 8th Street.

For your son I would recommend Forbidden Planet (Broadway and 13th Street) it is filled with books, comics, and toys that are science fiction and fantasy based.

For both kids I would recommend a store called Maxilla and Mandible. It is a truly an unusual store.


Buen Viaje
Aduchamp1 is offline  
Aug 6th, 2009, 11:56 AM
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 7,561
No way. The Met is superior to the Prado.


The next block south from Forbidden Planet is The Strand -- the largest used bookstore in the city. Considering the prices of books in the EU, you can bargain shop for a long time there.

Adu, what does "drunk drivers and druggies" mean -- are you referring to Chamberlain and ARod? Seriously? Is that the best you got? Given the Mets' history with Strawberry, Gooden, Coleman, Dykstra, Saberhagen and the thugocracy of that team in the 90s? In New York City, there's major league baseball, and there's New York Mets baseball. They're two different things.

If that's the best you Mets fans can do, no wonder you're bitter. Ixos: Aduchamp is like an Atletico fan, and I'm like a Real fan. Get it?
BigRuss is offline  
Aug 6th, 2009, 01:12 PM
Join Date: Nov 2003
Posts: 4,874
Billy Elliot is a whole lot of fun. You just have to be willing for your kids to hear the F word over and over again, even by the child actors. Don't believe all the scalpers claims that a lot of shows are sold out. Most aren't - although Billy Elliot may be. I'm pretty sure you could get discounted tickets to In the Heights (go to broadwaybox.com and get them in advance.) There's a liberal use of Spanish in the show, although the characters come from Cuba, the DR and Puerto Rico. It's a great show.

Try to find a detailed map of Central Park - I think the web site is pretty good. There are several play areas with water features, which would be nice on a hot day.
missypie is offline  
Aug 6th, 2009, 01:28 PM
Join Date: Nov 2003
Posts: 4,874
Regarding Ellis Island: I don't know how meaningful it would be to your family - you may want to go to their web site and think about it. Much of the interest comes in pondering ones own immigrant family who came to the US either through Ellis Island or someplace similar.

You might want to think about seeing Shrek...read some reviews...it doesn't look fanastic but could be enjoyable for your kids.
missypie is offline  
Aug 6th, 2009, 02:44 PM
Join Date: Nov 2004
Posts: 1,183
Billy Elliot was a huge hit with the young (10, 11, 13-year-old) girls in my family who saw it in London. Yes, there's profanity but spoken with thick British working-class accents so the kids missed much of it, I think.

Your children would love a visit to Dylan's candy store. It's also right next to a subway stop so easy to get to and from there.
bakerstreet is offline  
Aug 6th, 2009, 02:51 PM
Join Date: Jun 2004
Posts: 10,192
If you want a good, cheap candy store (with more varieties of traditional American candy), try Economy Candy on the Lower East Side at 108 Rivington Street and also take in the nearby Essex Street Market. This is a fun thing to do on a Saturday morning, when it's still quiet or on a weekday. It's much cheaper than Dylan's, and it's more of an old-fashioned candy store experience. If you want to visit the Lower East Side Tenement Museum, it's not so far from that, too. Nor from China Town.
doug_stallings is offline  
Aug 6th, 2009, 03:17 PM
Join Date: May 2007
Posts: 26,710
The Prado does not have the diversity of media, genres, and exhibits that is housed in the Met. And while the Met has extraordinary exemplars and seminal works, the oils and drawings of the Prado are the strength of the collection which the Met, in sheer number, cannot match.

They are both in the top five general collections museums in the world.

Big Russ-

The fact that you mention Met players (New York Mets, not the opera or the museum) who have not played in 20 years gives me an excellent indication of your baseabll knowledge. Who do you think is starting for the Yanks tonight? Waite Hoyt.?

And the most rabid Real fan knows that an Athletico fan is a loyal, no mattter how much the Real spends in transfer fees.
Aduchamp1 is offline  
Aug 6th, 2009, 05:03 PM
Join Date: Aug 2005
Posts: 454
We just saw Billy Elliot, and my 12-year-old daughter loved it. As previous posters said, be prepared for the F-word to be dropped many, many times and for a few other rather naughty references. However, it is a great show, and I recommend it, if you are okay with the language.
kansasmom is offline  
Aug 6th, 2009, 06:18 PM
Join Date: Jul 2007
Posts: 521
Your kids would probably enjoy Mama Mia! The play is MUCH better than the movie, my daughter loved it. We bought the CD before we saw the play so she was familiar with the music.

Your daughter would probably love just walking on 5th Ave and seeing all the expensive stores, Tiffany's etc.

As the mother of a 13 year old daughter I have given this advice before: some museums allow photographs in some of their galleries. Let your kids take digital pictures, it will keep them busy if they aren't into museums.

My daughter also loves walking around Soho and Greenwich Village.

Make sure you get real NY pizza.

Staten Island ferry is the way to go to see the Statue of Liberty up close without going onto the island.
debsnj is offline  

Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy -


All times are GMT -8. The time now is 12:51 PM.