It’s been over a month since we got back from the trip but it has taken me a while to finally sort through the obnoxious amount of photos so yeah, this is the time where we’re gonna talk about it.
Right off the bat, I’ll tell you that New York with 4 kids was challenging. I’ll always have love for the city, but when you’re hoisting 4 jet-lagged kids around everywhere, NYC isn’t the easiest place to navigate.
And I knew this, so when I was putting the itinerary together, we had already planned for a laid back touring style but even then, these guys were seriously slowing down our travel game. I think we eventually managed to cover like half of what we intended to, but it still made for a very enjoyable trip with some pretty rad moments.
We spent 6 days in New York and these are some of the highlights:
1. Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade
One of the things we really wanted to do was go for Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade. We were prepared that it was going to be crazy (6 million people along the sidewalks level of crazy), but it was Thanksgiving, and we were in New York City, and we had to at least try. So try we did.
The plan was to reach Columbus Circle by 6.30am to stake out a front-row spot along the curb, so we set our alarms for 5am. Amazingly, everyone was up at 5 on the dot (yay jet lag!!), but we had to put on 17 articles of clothing per child (x4 kids) and re-clothe them after enforced toilet breaks (because it was going to be a 4 hour wait at least) so despite our best efforts at making all the kids hustle, we only managed to leave the room at 6.45. Columbus Circle was buzzing with crowds by the time we got there.
If we get to do this again, everyone’s getting up at 4.
We didn’t get to be as close to the action as we wanted and it was way too cold to be sitting by the sidewalk for so many hours, but the vibe was so full of happy it made the long wait worth it.
2. Parks + Playgrounds
These kids have not met a park/playground they didn’t like so we spent a lot of time exploring playgrounds around the city.
It might seem like a waste of time to hang out at playgrounds when we were in New York City, where there’s so much else to do, but as we discovered, NYC has some of the best playgrounds.
Their favourites in order of preference was heckscher playground, brooklyn bridge park, and east river state park.
3. Christmas markets
This was mostly for me. I love Christmas markets so I dragged everyone along with me to the markets at Bryant Park and Union Square. And it was lovely. We had hot chocolate and chocolate truffles and cookies and churros and pork buns and hot dogs and cheesesteaks under the lights and chilly wintery air.
4. American Museum of Natural History
We had planned to visit more museums but after dropping rest from the itinerary, the only one we managed to spend time at was the one at the top of the list, the American Museum of Natural History.
Why? Two words: Dinosaur bones.
I can totally understand their fascination with dinosaurs because it’s quite something to be up close with all these magnificent fossils. We spent half a day there and only managed to cover a fraction of the exhibits so I guess this means we’ve got to come back again to explore the rest of it.
5. Ice skating
Ice skating in New York is a special kind of dreamy. Maybe it’s the view of the city in the background, or too many rewatches of Serendipity or just something in the air, but it’s probably my favourite place in the world to go ice skating.
// And a couple more photos to round this up.