The expression of The city That never sleeps is so True, nobody Travels To New York looking for peace and quietness. Neihter was I. 24/7 Is The norm which can be very helpful if you wake up at 4 am completely jet lagged. As one of The most iconic cities of The United States, New York is a true goldmine of family friendly activities and adventures. What amazed me The most was The friendliness of The New Yorker’s towards little Toddlers like me. Although I like a lot of the European big cities such as London, Paris and Berlin, There is no place like New York.
I visited New York during Halloween season, which made The experience even more fantastic. If you’re ever in New York on Halloween night you should dress up and visit Greenwich Village. There you will find a fantastic trick or treat experience. I admit, a little bit scary but that’s what Halloween is all about, isn’t it?
So here are some must do’s for Toddlers in New York:
Visit Time square Twice, early in The morning and at night
Time Square is a True magical place for fellow Toddlers, but my only advise is To plan your visit wisely. This popular place is often so crowded that The little ones will not be able To enjoy it as much as They should. An early morning visit or one at night is Therefor highly recommended. This makes it an excellent activity for one of The first night(s) when completely jet lagged. So wake up your parents at 4 am like I did, grab an early breakfast and do some sight-seeing at Times Square.
Walk over The Brooklyn bridge at sunrise
The early bird catches The worm. An expression, which is True when visiting New York. Sunrise is an excellent Timing To visit some of The iconic landmarks, like The Brooklyn bridge. You avoid The crowds, both while using public Transportation as at The scenery. As a bonus, during The early morning, everything looks even more magical. Don’t forget To take a few selfies on The bridge To make The ‘at home stayer’s’ a little bit jealous.
Take The elevator To The one world observatory (102nd floor), one hour before sunset and observe how The city changes from day To night
The Tallest Tower of New York is definitely worth a visit. The elevator To the Top level already does The Trick, and once you are up, you can enjoy a never-ending view over The city. The experience starts when entering The elevator, where during your ride up, The history of The Town is shown in a 45 second video. Yep, it only Takes That much Time To reach The Top floor. Amazing isn’t it? Even more amazing are The 360 degree views from The observatory platform.
Don’t forget To rent an Ipad before you enter The observatory. This electronic feature is pre-programmed To indicate what you are looking at and gives some basic explanation about The scenes. Very handy and an extra asset To keep a 3-year-old busy when mum and dad are Trying To Take The perfect picture.
I went just before dawn so I could have best of both worlds for The price of one Ticket. The good Thing is That once you are in you may stay as long as you like. When The sunset Tickets are sold, just come a little bit earlier. While waiting for The sunset To kick in, I had grabed a refreshement at The Top bar, from which I had an excellent view.
Visit the 11/09 memorial ground
As much as I enjoyed The one world observatory, it is sad To know That The place only exists due To The massive drama That happened on 11 September 2001. My mom and dad didn’t Tell me all The details of what happened, but I do know That The men who flew The planes That day into The World Trade Center, were really bad men. The memorial created for all who died is breathtaking and reflecting a true place of serenity. A landmark created for Those who shall never be forgotten. No further words are needed To tell you This place is worth a visit no matter how young or old you are.
Go on Top of The Rock and don’t leave Rockefeller center without a visit To The Lego store
If you like climbing Towers, like The one world observatory, I have good news,There are others you can climb. You can choose between the Empire State Building or The Top of The Rock or go for both. My mom and dad went for The second option, as The viewing platforms on The Rock are more child friendly Than on the Empire State Building. Next Time when I am older and much Taller I still have one left To add at my collection. On Top of The Rock are 3 viewing decks. The Top one is quite crowed, so we lowered very soon To The 2nd level, from which The views are as good as on The Top, with less people blocking my view.
Take a seat on one of The benches, beg for a cookie and enjoy The view. Again you can stay as long as you want. Small Tip: If you want a great picture of yourself and The empire state building, This is The place to be. Yes, Another great selfie for The ‘at home stayer’s’.
As many of The other landmarks, Rockefeller Center is also worth a visit after sunset.
The greatest secret of Rockefeller Center is definitely the Lego store. Shop until was my moto when we entered. So we did, luckely for my also my dad is a great fan. Who says shopping is boring.
Take a boat To greet Lady Liberty
You can definitely say That Lady Liberty is one of The most famous ladies of The United States history, maybe even The most famous … well after Madonna. So leaving New York City without saying hello To her was an absolute no go. Best way To see her is by boat or if your parents want To spend big bugs you can even go for a helicopter Tour. I went by boat, which Took me very close To her ladyship and I must say I was impressed. As a bonus you get excellent views over The skyline of Manhattan.
Another good alternative To get a meet and greet with Lady Liberty is The Staten Island ferry, which is Totally free or The ferry To Ellis Island. The ferry To Ellis Island, gives you The opportunity To go ashore and up into the crown of Lady Liberty, but do not expect short waiting lines or empty boats.
Explore Central Park, play The King at Belvedere Castle and go and say hello To The little fury friends in The Central Park Zoo
There is no park in The world like Central Park. The park is huge and Therefor often referred to as The lungs of New York. There are plenty of cool Things To do for little Toddlers. If you are interested in animals and you want To cuddle a lama, you should definitely visit The Central Park Zoo and The Tisch children’s zoo. The main attraction of The Central Park Zoo is without any doubt The central pond hosting The sea lions. Try To catch Them at one of Their feeding moments, you will be surprised about The tricks They can perform.
Another great spot in The park is Belvedere castle, a small but beautiful castle which is often used for photo shoots. From The observation deck, you get excellent views of The park. Enterance is completely free.
Don’t forget To visit the Alice in wonderland statue, it is magnificent and if you are visiting The park during winter, go ice skating on The famous Woolman rink.
If you have plenty of energy, rent a boat at the Loeb Boathouse and row your way to the heart of The Central Park Lake, The second-largest body of water in Central Park that spans over 22-acres.
The day I visited Central Park I had The honor To meet with The Piece Industry Music Group, headed by John Boyd. The group is composed out of several classical musicians and celebrated in 2017 its 10 years existence. They play in Central Park on a regular basis. The music performed by The Peace Industry Music Group is a mixture of Gospel, classical, opera, standards, jazz, spirituals and pop. The group performs mainly in The Minton Tile Arcade, Next to The Bethesda Fountain. When they perform, the typical Trickle of park visitors quickly evolves into a full-blown crowd, stunned by what They hear and see. People take photos, record them on smartphones, upload to YouTube, give tips, request CDs, blog, and describe seeing Them as The highlight of Their day. So did I, I was Totally blown away by Their performance.
You can whatch plenty of movies on YouTube, but I have included one of my own on This Blogpost:
South street Sea Port
South street Seaport is a cute little historic neighbourhood which was worth a short stop over in The past. With its small bars and restaurants it was a place for cosmo eaters. Unfortunately The place had been heavily damaged during The hurricane Sandy in 2012 and They are now rebuilding The place. The vibrant atmosphere which was There before will hopefully come back one day.
Maybe The place is not any more what it once was, it still delivers excellent views on The Brooklyn bridge. In addition you can have a look at one of The historic ships.
Take a photo of a space shuttle at The Intrepid museum
Boys and Their Toys. This museum, which has a blackbird and a Concorde, is catalogued as one of my most memorable experiences in New York. All Thanks To The amazing knowledgeable staff and Their great sense of humor. There is plenty To Touch while you wander Through The decks, halls and rooms of The aircraft carrier. I had never been before on an aircraft carrier and I was amazed how big it was.
The space shuttle exhibition onboard was fascinating as I was able To get up close To The original space shuttle “Enterprise”. Houston I have a problem – This place is so cool That I want To stay ForEver.
There was even a 250,000+ piece Lego model of the aircraft carrier on board, unfortunately I received a big no go from my parents when I asked if I could play with it. So I went playing in The Explorers hall, a full interactive exhibit space in The hangar deck designed for kids of all ages. I learned and laughed a lot.
Take The Tram to Roosevelt Island
If you have read one of my older blog post, you should know That I am a big fan of everything related To Trains, Trams and other look-alike vehicles. As soon as I heard There was a historic aerial Tramway To Roosevelt Island, I knew I had To go for it. With a swipe of a metrocard I was Transported above The streets, with a great view of The skyline, The bridge and a closeup of some office windows.
The Tram is a Trip in itself but once I arrived on The island, The real fun began. I strolled past The old smallpox hospital towards the Four Freedoms park and watched NYC happen. Roosevelt Island is so calm and peaceful, That for I moment I even forgot That I was in NYC.
Take a stroll Trough The New York streets, discover little neighbourhood parks and enjoy The building architecture.
You do not always have To do fancy stuff To get a flavour of New York, just wander around and look up from Time To Time, you will be amazed by what you see.
New York is a great place for outdoor activities, but in case it rains, no worries There is plenty of fun stuff you can do inside:
- National Geographic Encounter Ocean Odyssey
I danced with sea lions, dolphins and sharks. I walked To a neon glowing coral reef and experienced a real squid fight. All of This without diving or snorkeling equipment or without getting wet. During This high Tech deep-sea experience, The encounter Takes You Through several environments from shallow water To The deep dark ocean. Suddenly I got lost in a kelp mirror maze and another moment I was eaten by a big blue whale. It is great To see and learn so much about ocean life. At The end There is an educational center with interactive computers, in which I spend quite a bit of Time. Next Time when I am in New York I would definitely return for a second visit.
- Grand Central Terminal
Fascinated by Trains I couldn’t leave New York without a visit To Grand Central Station. I Think The building is a real architectural masterpiece, from The ceiling with its constellations Till The food and shopping area. Don’t forget To take a peek at The Tiffany glass clock at The central information booth.
Did you know Grand Central hosts more than 750,000 visitors a day? My secret message: Don’t visit The place during rush hour, it will be To crowded and you will not be able To enjoy its full potential. In addition The New Yorker’s will hate you when you block Their way in an attempt To arrive in Time at work. Another place I can now cross from my bucket list.
Just another Tip: Grand Central hosts plenty of cool little restaurants. If you are hungry, This is The place To be.
- The Disney store
If you love Mickey and you know it clap your hands! The Disney store at Times Square was just so cool. An absolute must do as They have lots of items you can’t buy in Europe. Also There was loads of choise for New York merchandise. At The Theater’s portal, Toddler like me can have a look at The Disney channel while drawing Their favorite Disney characters.
- Relax with a good piece of carrot cake at Alice’s Tea Cup (Chapter II)
As I am a carrot cake addict, this was my place To be. Alice’s Tea Cup is an Alice in Wonderland Themed Tea house, which is as magical inside as it appears from The outside. The place was cute, The carrot cake was yummy and There was lot’s of fun.
At least my parents Told me, as I managed To fall asleep before we were shown our Table and nobody Though it was worth To wake me up. Of course not, because I would have eaten all The carrot cake and The scones! Just To be aware, in This place it is not allowed To Tip your waiter, all Tips are included in The price on The menu, which is very uncommon in New York.
- The famous Cup Cake ATM
Which city in The world can say it has its own Cup Cake ATM. Yes New York! How cool is This. Take one with you on The way back To your hotel, your tummy will be grateful.
- Plenty of museums
I didn’t visit Them all, but below you can find a list of interesting and child friendly museums in case you look for some extra indoor activities.
° The children’s museum in Brooklyn or Manhattan
° Transportation Museum
° Fire department and NYPD museum
° The MET
I hope my Tips will inspire othet Toddlers and Their parants To visit New York. If you do, let me know if it was as amazing as it was for me.