Hey, and happy Sunday!
Well, this was a break I was not intending to take, but first things first – I will try to update you on what happened in the past two weeks (and a bit, since I posted on 7th of November last time, oops!).
We (aka my husband and I) had a trip to New York city – and it was a much needed break! It probably looks that it’s all we do most of the time, because I love to share our travel moments on Instagram, but it’s not (yet 😀 – just throwing it out there, Universe – to travel and work as a photographer full time is my goal). So we had a week of an intense “go, go, go” style vacation, with lots of sightseeing and active days, and once we got home we got sick. Both of us! A nasty cold + bad cough (I haven’t coughed like this before in my life) all the way. “Keep calm, and take it slow” kind of week, which, I can see now, we needed. We are getting better – finally – and I can sit and prepare a blog post for you!
So… New York! The Big Apple. A city, that never sleeps! Should I go on? It is as exciting as it sounds! This wasn’t our first time there, but it was a very special one. Because, I always wanted to visit it in autumn and… I have won this trip! How crazy is that???
So here’s a little backstory for you: I decided to participate in a summer contest on Instagram, for Instax Norge, showing off my best summer moment, and well, they decided that the picture is worth it! I got the news a week before my 30 th birthday (which was in August), and to say that I was happy probably would be an understatement. I was ecstatic – I read the email several times, checked their page, asked G. to read the email for me – I simply couldn’t believe it, haha. But it was true! What I got was a gift card for flights and a hotel (everything else was on us), and even though we travel a lot and you think this is normal for me, I appreciated this more than you can imagine. So after doing all the official stuff, I had to choose a travel company to take care of my trip. I decided to go with TravelBird, because they had a few nice deals for New York trips, but little did I know that this will cause a lot of headache for me and the company (Instax Norge) that I got the gift from. Our first trip was cancelled, because TravelBird claimed they have issues with partners, and we had to choose something else with them. After organising the second trip (while stressing at work on how to plan travel days), I hoped everything will be ok, but then they went broke. A week and a half before our initial travel date. Not so fun, right? But in all this mess I got the help and support from Instax Norge, and I can’t stress enough how grateful I am for all their help and amazing customer service! They went above and beyond to make sure that my trip would happen (even though they probably did not have to), and I say the biggest THANK YOU! to their team.I should add, that our ”adventures” and luck on getting to New York weren’t the best this time – we had some flight changes that added time to our travel day, and some other issues that occurred. Talk about a flight from Bergen to Amsterdam arriving late, where we had to catch our connecting flight to Minneapolis with only a couple of minutes to spare. We were running through the airport like two working horses, gasping for air – and reaching the gates just moments before they were closed. Then the flight to Minneapolis (yup, our connection before going to New York), was one of the most turbulent ones I have ever experienced. And finally, the customs in the US took really long, keeping us worried if we will make our connecting flight (again!). We did make it, thankfully, and I just wanted to share this with you, because it’s not all fluffs and flowers most of the time. As everyone, we experience good and bad days, but it just teaches us something new every time, and makes appreciate things as they are.
I feel you know all the details now, so we can continue to our New York trip!
We arrived to the city very late, somewhat after midnight, collected our bags and called an Uber to get to our hotel. In other circumstances we would have used the subway as it is a pretty convenient (and cheap!) way to commute, but it was late, we were tired and I did not want to worry about our safety at night. After one of the most expensive taxi/Uber rides in my life (can you hear that ca-ching sound of 75$ going out of your account?), we were in our hotel! I was longing for a comfy bed and hotel pillows (I love to stack them!), a good shower and just some rest. I think I was out the minute I put my head on the pillow 😀
Because of the jet lag, we woke up pretty early and decided to go out and explore New York without a plan. Just do some walking, while enjoying the sunshine and experiencing overall feeling of the city. We were staying in downtown Manhattan, very close to Wall street, so the first thing we visited was 9/11 memorial with One World Trade center right beside it. One of the most powerful monuments out there(IMHO), and one that still gives you mixed feelings – but definitely worth a visit!
After that we went for a stroll along the Hudson river – to the Battery Park. This is one of my favourite places in the city! Clean and beautiful area, with views to New Jersey and a Statue of Liberty in sight. As we were really early – around 9 AM on a Saturday morning, there weren’t that many people around, and I liked it a lot!
The old and the new. This church and skyscrapers around it – what a view!
As we walked in “our” area a bit, we decided to go further – so we continued along the Broadway street and decided to visit neighbourhoods as we go. A snap from SoHo – I think it was an opening of a store, or something similar, and they had this balloon display outside, so of course I had to take a picture there! SoHo itself is very beautiful, and all those upscale boutiques attract lots of people. For us, it was only window shopping, but it was enough 😀
Ah, Washington Square Park – another one of my favorites! Those who saw the movie “August Rush”, will know what I am talking about. Lots of street artists like to perform there (and it is nice if you support them!), and it has a very good vibe after all. Nice to sit there with a cup of coffee, relax after some walking, and enjoy the atmosphere.
The picture below shows you one of the most Instagrammed streets in NYC- Stuyvesant St. We also noticed it while looking for places to visit – and were pleasantly surprised. It is also one of the oldest streets in New York, and I have to add that one of the hardest to spell and remember 😀
This townhouse in West Village was definitely my kind of townhouse. Can I please live here? Thank you very much. I also love how they put thought and effort in decorating their entrances! (I scrolled through images on Instagram for Halloween decorations – so this pumpkin display is nothing!)
Right about here, we had already made about 20 000 steps (or even a bit more), but we were still going strong. We decided we will go to Central Park at this point, because we were full of energy and wanted to see as much as possible! So here are some snippets of Bryant Park, 5th Avenue, and the beautiful St. Patrick’s Cathedral! On 5th Avenue we finally experienced the crowds of people you expect to see in New York. You just have to be sure keep up with the pace! After some time we started doing as the locals – while waiting for traffic lights to turn green, we weren’t looking at the one that was in front of us, but rather the one that was on for ongoing traffic.
St. Patrick’s Cathedral – I really like this kind of contrast! I think this is what makes the city special. One of the days we went inside – and it is as stunning inside as it is outside.
Finally, we made it to Central Park. What a beauty it is! With such a big area, there’s a lot to see – and one of the days we spent most of our time there – but it was so nice to visit it on our first day as well. At the end of the day, we had 42 930 steps in our pockets – that is quite a number even for us! But we were very happy and full of good emotions!
Until next time, hope you enjoyed this little recap!