TRAVEL: 3 Days in New York City

It happened - I finally made a return trip to New York City! It was a short and sweet, but a nice bite-sized portion of Big Apple was taken. I'm officially hooked. Drake may have struggled adapting to the busy, fast-paced city life, but it was like hitting the refresh button for me! I'm not saying I could live there...but I definitely love visiting.

Here's the thing with NYC - it can very easily become overwhelming. From the amount of cool things to go see, eat at, and just experience, there are TOO MANY OPTIONS.

So here's a life-saving hack for next time you travel to any large city: Bookmark every cafe, landmark, and cool spot you know you want to visit in your Maps app! That way it doesn't matter what part of town you end up in - just open up your map and see what's close by.

Last tip before we dive into this blog post. Not sure how to navigate the public transportation system? Download CityMapper! This app was a game changer for figuring out the subway system!

Day 1: World Trade Center, Chinatown, & Little Italy

What a day! We discovered we walked over 10 miles every single day while we were here, and this helped break our legs in...

We stopped for a delicious coffee and breakfast at Hole in the Wall Cafe & Cocktail Bar. This adorable Australian-themed brekky spot was worth every penny. Not to mention our waitress was nothing but a ball of sunshine on this gloomy day! I highly recommend getting the Brekky Roll (and add avocado!) for something savory. But if you're in the mood for something sweet, get their Belgian Waffles! I'm drooling just thinking about this meal.

Our plan for the day was to just walk around and see what we discovered. It was already well into the afternoon when we came across the Brooklyn Bridge, so it was CROWDED. While cool to see, we planned to come back at an earlier time when there would be less people. Trust me, I can be fearless, but know when to pick your battles. I decided I'd rather fight for a shot at a different time.
McNally Jackson Books

After a quick stroll through Chinatown, we found ourselves in Little Italy. Tucked away on the streets is an adorable bookstore called McNally Jackson Books. There's a cool cafe section that has books hanging from the ceiling and pages of books papering the walls! Definitely worth the stop to browse both their impressive book selection and snag a potential photo op.
Seamore's Happy Hour

By now our feet were exhausted, so we grabbed a quick drink at a nearby bar called Seamore's. It helped that it also happened to be happy hour! Cheers to that, am I right?

Finally, for dinner we took the subway and hopped up to the MidTown to try Quality Eats. Highly recommend this spot, the fun neon lights, overall atmosphere, and delicious food was worth every bit! Also, their dessert? DELICIOUS.
New York Public Library

Day 2: Midtown, Hudson Yards, & Chelsea Market

Today started by getting on the wrong subway and ending up in the wrong part of town. But you know what? That tip for bookmarking spots for wherever you end up worked out! We decided to just go with the flow and hit up one of the places we had been wanting to check out anyway. Not to mention, check out that Apple Watch reading...we ended up walking over 10 miles EVERY. SINGLE. DAY. we were there. They don't call it the Concrete Jungle for nothing...
If you haven't stopped at the New York Public Library, add it to your list! It's absolutely dreamy and what every Hogwarts daydreamer imagines when it comes to libraries. Just LOOK at this place! I can't begin to properly describe how impressive it is. If you want, I recommend just going to my NYC story highlight on Instagram to see the video snaps from this place! For a free place to check out in New York City, it's at the top of the list.
New York Public Library

Next up, The Vessel! This cool landmark has only been up for about a year now, and it's symmetrical design and beautiful copper coloring has made it the perfect spot for a cool Instagram shot #doitforthegram. Something I didn't know however is that you need to reserve your time slot for when you visit. Makes sense, since it can only hold so many people at a time. You can sign up for it on the spot, and we had to wait a couple hours before we could check it out. Luckily there's a nice mall right there to explore! But save yourself the hassle, and sign up HERE to reserve your time slot for when you're ready to go.

Hudson Yards is right by the famous Highline, and Drake and I took it all the way to Chelsea Market. This area is really nice, and Drake highly recommends it as a spot for anybody who feels anxious in big cities. It is cleaner and less stressful for just walking around as opposed to MidTown.
The Highline
Chelsea Market

Day 3: Brooklyn and TWA Hotel

Our last and final day was split between spending the morning in Brooklyn and the rest of the day at one of the most amazing luxurious hotels I've stayed at (which isn't saying a lot since I never stay at luxury hotels, but still).
On the left: Brooklyn Bridge and on the right: The Manhattan Bridge

As with most places in New York City, if you want to experience something without the crowds, get there EARLY. We arrived in Dumbo, Brooklyn and snagged this famous one-way street that perfectly frames the Manhattan Bridge all to ourselves!
DUMBO, Brooklyn

We were able to easily get some photos, take a walk in the nearby park, then headed straight back to our AirBnb to check out.

Next up, the TWA Hotel!

Did you know this used to be an actual terminal in JFK? That's why it's so close to the airport. However, it has now been restored and reimagined into a first class-hotel that happens to overlook the JFK ramp from it's rooftop (but more on that later).

Here are some quick highlights on this incredible place:

-They are home to the world's biggest gym! It's a 10,000 square-foot fitness center with an entire room filled with Pelotons!

- Retro-inspired bar and cafe that I am dying to go back and shoot at...I cannot get over the pink chairs and booths!

- An actual plane sitting outside that you can walk out on the runway to, go inside, and grab drinks in! Say hello to "Connie", your new favorite cocktail lounge

- The famous rooftop infinity pool that gives you runway views of JFK!

 If you ever fly in or out of JFK, budget for a night here - it is so worth the stay. And yes, if you're looking to create some unique content, this is a prime spot for photos!

 That sums up our NYC weekend for the most part. Go watch my Story Highlight on Instagram for a more interactive view of everything we did!

Did you learn something new for your next trip? What did I miss? I know there's a lot, so you could help me compile spots for our visit back!

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