Traveling has honestly become one of my favorite things to do. And as I’ve gotten older, I’ve had the incredible opportunity to be able to travel more. (And luckily, I have a job that allows me the freedom to travel often). I’ve loved posting travel guides lately and thought it would be fun to share another one today.
(Be sure to check out my Philadelphia travel guide and St. Louis travel guide).
I recently took a quick trip to New York City. Although I’ve visited NYC dozens of times, this was one of my shortest trips. I only had 48 hours to really explore NYC. Two days might sound short, but I’m here to tell you that there’s TONS to explore in New York City in a short amount of time.
Here’s what to see, do and eat in New York City:
10 AM: Explore the Metropolitan Museum of Art.
In this post I’m essentially going to be giving you an hourly run down of my recent 48 hour trip to NYC.
I always recommend heading straight to a museum upon arrival since most museums close early (at 5PM). This way, you can take your time exploring the museums and possibly hit up more than one.
I absolutely adore The Met. (Throwback to my first visit to The Met in 2014!).
12 PM: Grab Lunch
In between museum hoping it’s important to make sure to grab some lunch. I don’t recommend eating at the museums themselves as the food is overpriced and often mediocre. I stopped by Shake Shack since it was on the way to my next destination. (And it’s super yummy!).
1 PM: Head to the American Museum of Natural History
If you couldn’t already tell, I’m a huge museum person. Unlike a lot of people, I don’t find them to be “touristy” at all. Heck, I even love exploring the museums here at home in Chicago even though I’ve visited them hundreds of times. I do get that museum admission can get a little pricey. Especially if you plan on visiting several museums. That’s why I highly recommend getting a CityPASS!
I don’t know why but I’ve always been obsessed with dinosaurs for some reason.
Along with a CityPASS, another must for any trip to NYC is a Metro Card! All those taxis + Ubers can add up quick. Plus, everything in the city is accessible via public transportation.
3 PM: Check into your hotel
Normally when I visit NYC I stay in Brooklyn with one of my best friends. But for this trip I stayed at Hotel Edison in Times Square.
3:30 PM: Marvel (get it) at the amazing Disney Store in Times Square
Okay, so I know everyone isn’t a Disney lover like me but if you’re a Disney fan, definitely check out the Disney Store in Times Square. It’s two floors of Disney awesomeness!
4-7 PM: Window Shop in Times Square
Since my hotel was located right in the middle of Times Square, after checking in, I decided to spend a few hours resting (aka taking a mini nap) and then window shopping!
8 PM: Dinner at Raclette NYC
And now it’s time for dinner!
I love Raclette NYC! Some of you may remember me mentioning this restaurant on the blog back in 2017 when I spend the holidays in New York City.
11 PM: Empire State of Mind
Did you know that between peak hours (10 AM-10 PM) you can wait in line upwards to TWO hours just to get to the observation deck at the Empire State Building? No ma’am. Not I. They say the best times to visit to avoid crowds are before 10 AM and after 10 PM. So that’s what I did.
Nothing beats no lines/zero wait time and a gorgeous view! I definitely recommend taking a quick midnight trip to the Empire Building.
9 AM: Top of the Rock
Remember how I said peak hours at the Empire State Building were from 10 AM – 10 PM? Well the same goes for Top of the Rock, so be sure to get there early to avoid long wait times.
What a view!
10 AM: Grab Brunch
Since I was already at 30 Rock, it made sense to run over to Rock Center Cafe for some brunch!
I don’t know about you guys but brunch is my FAVORITE! In fact, I could eat breakfast food all day long!
11:30 AM: Stop by the Nintendo Store
So much cuteness packed into one store! I wish they had more keychains though. I really wanted a Pokemon keychain but they only had Pokemon plushies.
1 PM: Scroll along The High Line
You may have noticed I jumped from 11:30 AM to 1 PM. Well, you do have to account for travel time. Personally, I am all about public transposition or just walking from place to place. I feel like that really helps you truly experience the city.
2:00 PM: Climb the Vessel at Hudson Yards
Directly in front of The High Line sits the Vessel. The Vessel opened in March of this year (2019) and is a 16-story, 150-foot-high structure of connected staircases between the buildings of Hudson Yards.
All those stairs may look intimidating, but trust me, it’s so worth it to climb to the top. Not only is the view nice but that feeling of accomplishment when you finally reach the top is so amazing!
3:30 PM: Re-hydrate with Bubble Tea from Kung Fu Tea
Personally, I really only like slushy based bubble tea with either mango, strawberry or passion fruit bubbles. BUT, I plan on trying to be more adventurous and tasting other flavors.
4:30 PM: Stop by the Flatiron Building
Fun Fact: I’ve been to New York City at least a dozen (maybe more) times but I think this trip was the first time I ever saw the iconic Flatiron Building in person. I was a little bummed because most of the building was covered up due to construction. Oh well, at least I got to see it in person finally.
5:30 PM: Grab a slice of NYC thin crust pizza
Towards the end of my trip, I had to head back to Times Square because I left my luggage at the hotel (so I didn’t have to carry it around). Times Square has a ton of food options but I couldn’t leave NYC without some good ole thin crust pizza!
After that it was time to head to the airport so I could fly back home to Chicago. This was a super quick trip but I’m impressed with how much I was able to see and do in such a short amount of time! I want to thank CityPass again for providing me with a NYC CityPass.
Of course there’s so much more to see and do in NYC, that I didn’t get around to this trip, like seeing a Broadway show. That’s why I’m heading back to New York City in January and I plan on dedicating that trip solely to seeing as many Broadway shows as I can!
See you in a few months NYC!