Even writing the title ‘returning to New York’ has me feeling giddy, I can’t believe I’ve been lucky enough to visit the city four times now! Only recently we paid a visit to the Big Apple over the holiday weekend, and were incredibly lucky to experience such great weather (and a little bit of sunburn, oops)

The best part about revisiting a city is experiencing all my favourite bits before, and ticking off more places on the never-ending to-do list. More posts will likely be coming soon, but I wanted to highlight some of my favourite parts of the trip!

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203 Rooftop Bar

This had been top of my to-do list and I’m so glad we had the chance to visit, last minute but on our first evening in the city. It was a great, relaxed spot to sit back and enjoy some Frosé with a view of the Empire State building. The top deck is surrounding by tables and hanging chairs to sit back and relax in.

They also have a happy hour and a pretty good looking snack menu, so if you’re around in the afternoon and fancy a view of the city with a drink in hand, look no further.

Katz’s Delicatessen

The infamous deli has always been on my New York bucket list but I was always slightly hesitant after hearing about how long the queue could get. Luckily we arrived early enough to only endure a 10 minute wait. We opted for table service, but you also have the option to head up to the deli yourself and then pick a table.

As promised, the food was hearty and huge. I chose to split a pastrami sandwich with a salmon and cheese bagel (top tip – smoked salmon is called Lox in the states). To be honest, picking a dish and splitting it with someone else is a great way to experience the deli, as I don’t think I would’ve been able to finish a full plate to myself.

The service was quick and no-nonsense, but not rude. So we could sit back and enjoy the atmosphere without worrying about jostling for food or a table.

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Chillhouse

On a recent quest to start looking after my nails and having them painted professionally on a regular basis. As I’m a recent convert to gel nail polish I decided New York would be a great place to treat myself and try out some jazzy nail art I’d spotted on Instagram.

After doing my research from this very helpful article on Refinery 29, I chose Chilhouse, enticed by their cool Instagram pics and their extensive menu of designs, not to mention there reasonable prices and the promise of a coffee shop there as well.

My nail artists, Marilyn, was incredible and her precision to detail was admirable and so interesting to watch. They lasted forever too and I’m glad I gave it a go whilst in the city that basically invented the manicure.

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Exploring by Boat

This was something we stumbled upon completely by accident, as we were down in brooklyn in the heat and wanted to head back up to Manhattan asap. A quick Google advised the best, cheapest and quickest route would be via boat and so we decided why not.

Turned out it was a great way to get back up to the city! It cost us roughly $3 each to get onto the boat and we sat on the open-top for roughly a 30 minute ride. The boat even had beers and wine to enjoy which we indulged in to sit in the sun and enjoy.

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Early Morning Exploring

I’ve mentioned this before, but when jet lag hits and you’re up at the crack of dawn there’s nothing better than embracing it and getting up and out to explore.

New York is a city that absolutely benefits from an early morning visit. When else can you get Times Square to yourself? Or the Brooklyn Bridge? Or the High Line? I could go on…

We got up and out before 6am everyday (jet lag really is a killer) but it was so worth it to have the city to ourselves for a few hours before everyone else came out.

Brooklyn Flea Market

Last time I was in New York with my mum and sister we stumbled across a flea market on the upper east side and so it was top of their list to try and replicate it. My sister actually came across Brooklyn Flea which runs every Sunday morning, and so it was a great excuse to head to Brooklyn and explore.

If you’re a fan of vintage and flea markets then I’d definitely recommend this, I managed to pick up a vintage wicker bag that I managed to squeeze into my hand luggage to take home.

It’s a great way to shop in New York without having to battle crowds on fifth avenue, and you can take home something a bit more unique.

Well, phew, that was quite a lot more than I was planning on writing but I hope you enjoyed this post. My most recent trip was such a treat to explore the city and see things I wouldn’t have otherwise.

If you want to head to New York and avoid the tourist spots then I’d definitely recommend all of the above to have more of a unique trip.

I hope you enjoyed this post, more Chicago posts will be coming to the blog every week, but in the meantime my holiday snaps can be found on my Instagram @GrundyTravels.

Thanks for reading x

Posted by:Fiona G

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