Liberty, museums and the end!

Trip Start Dec 27, 2012
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Trip End Jan 22, 2013

Flag of United States  , New York
Monday, January 21, 2013

On Friday, the coldest day EVER (well it was a cool -5 degrees), we decided to go check out the Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island.

We got the subway to Lower Manhattan and found our way to Battery Park where the boats leave from.

I saw all these signs that said "No access to Ellis Island or the Statue of Liberty due to Hurricane Sandy" (or something along those lines) and didn't think anything of it. Well, I should have. Unfortunately, because of the damage the storm caused, they weren’t letting people on the islands. I was so upset! I was really looking forward to seeing Ellis Island in particular. That’s where the immigrants had to go through to get into America from 1892 - 1954.

We still got to go on a boat but it just took us near the sights so we were still able to take photos.

We got to see the island of Manhattan away from land which was impressive because you really don’t realise the pure scale of the city. We went under the Brooklyn bridge and the Manhattan bridge. We got a glimpse of Jersey City and went past the Statue of Liberty, Ellis Island and Governor’s Island.

Once we got off the boat we lined up to get a photo with the famous bull that resides just near Wall Street (yes, there was a line!) and we went past the stock exchange.

We wanted to see Ground Zero (the 9/11 memorial) but didn’t realise we needed passes to do so. We had to walk all around the memorial (which is huge) because they were doing construction. They will be for a long time yet since they’re rebuilding in that area big time.

We got to the visitor’s centre and got our passes. Once we got all the way back around to the entrance, we realised they were handing out passes there anyway.

Sigh.

We had to go through security (like everywhere in this country). The memorial was a sight to see and very full on. Hundreds of names are engraved around the edges of big holes in the ground that have been turned into fountains where the towers used to be. Almost 3,000 people died that day. Fire fighters, flight crew, passengers and workers. It’s just crazy.

Once we’d had a look around we headed uptown and did some shopping. We visited Macy’s where I swear you need combat gear just to get through that place. It’s like a massive Myers and claims to be the biggest store in the world (although our movie tour guide told us that they’ve now built a bigger one in Korea).

Our last day was on Saturday which we’d dubbed “Museum Day”. 3 museums in one day which I strongly don’t recommend.

We went to Guggenheim which we were disappointed to discover had a “Black & White Picasso” exhibition on ALL levels which meant we didn’t get to see the other artwork that is normally there.

We visited the Met (Metropolitan Museum of Art) which was out of this world BIG. We saw Greek and Roman sculptures and art, medieval art, armour, Japanese art…the list goes on. The photos I took give a good idea of the breadth of stuff we saw.

We had to be a bit ruthless because you really can spend the whole day at the Met alone. Guggenheim is only small so that didn’t take long.

Lastly we went to the American Museum of Natural History which is the museum used in “Night at the Museum”. I’m a huge fan of those movies so it was awesome seeing the exhibits in real life. I kept walking around saying “remember when that comes to life!?”

My favourite was the “dumb dumb” statue in the Polynesian exhibit.

We did a lot of walking around Central Park and found the “Strawberry Fields” area which has a small tribute to John Lennon. It’s situated where it is because it’s across the road from the Dakota, where he was shot.

Our last stop was “F.A.O Swartz” a BIG toy store which is home to the “Big Piano” and lots and lots of candy. It’s a cool place but like everything in NYC, it was packed.

We returned to our hotel for a quick snooze then a late dinner at the restaurant next door called “Hurley’s”.

It has been an eventful 24 days. They’ve gone quicker than we expected. But it doesn’t end here…we have AT LEAST an hour’s worth of video footage…hel-lo movie night!

Over and out faithful followers!

CaptainG
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