A Bumper Guide To Having An Amazing And Ridiculous Time In New York City

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2 months ago I went to New York for a week with my friend Daniel. We had the most amazing, ridiculous time. In case you're going to New York and fancy doing some stuff that is amazing and or ridiculous, I have written a little (bumper) list of 'tips'.

FOOD
Daniel and I are GREAT lovers of chain restaurants. We hold great emotional attachment to several. The night we first met we went to Pizza Express. The first time Daniel saw me cry we were in Nandos (I was crying due to a hangover, obvs). We celebrated our year anniversary of meeting in Ask. Therefore we frequented several chains in our trip to New York. 

Daniel had on several occasions prior to the trip explained how important Taco Bell was to him - in fact on one Bank Holiday Monday he attempted to convince me to commute from South West London to Essex so we could get a Taco Bell - so it was a must visit during the trip. Unfortunately I elected to get the Dorito flavoured Tacos which were, to be frank, powdery. I threw them away and went to Pizza Hut, which can only be described as a great success.

The Olive Garden at Times Square served literally with no exaggeration at all the worst meal I have ever had in my entire life. AVOID.

McDonalds is even better in America than it is in the UK because there is no Jamie Oliver over there and they don't care as much about saturated fat etc. A must visit.

We also went to non chains too. On our first morning in New York on the tube (apols 'subway') we got talking to a couple of ridiculous men who were clearly on their way home from the night before and insisted we go somewhere called 'Bubbys' for breakfast. Having absolutely no idea where we were going we mugged it off and went somewhere called Canteen that we stumbled across instead. However a few days later we randomly stumbled across Bubbys during the Sex and the City tour and went back later for a burger. I had a Double Bubby with a Bubby Punch. It was exquisite.

Potentially my number one recommendation of the entire trip would be Ellen's Stardust Diner, where you eat food named after famous people as the waiters and waitresses perform Broadway showtunes and modern pop classics. This is even better than it sounds. A particular shoutout to the amazing performance of 'Bang Bang'. Daniel and I famously only started liking Bang Bang after we saw a lipsync of it by a drag queen. I believe a prophecy must have been made at some point that in our lives we will see three iconic and random performances of Bang Bang, each arguably camper than the last. I'm hoping to get Liza Minnelli to do it at my wedding as the third.

GOING OUT/NIGHTLIFE

Daniel and I spent roughly one third of the trip watching the Disney Channel in our hotel room. A few special shoutouts to the friends we made doing this:

*The Chuggingtons
*Jake and the Neverland Pirates (a bunch of idiots though - they set their secret pirate password as 'yo-ho-ho' - easiest to guess password ever)
* Egomaniac Mickey Mouse and the crew of
the clubhouse, particularly flawless queens Daisy Duck and Clarabelle Cow
*Doc Macstuffins
*Princess Sofia the First 
*Liv and Maddie
*Austin and Ally, not to forget Austin's band R5 that do an iconic song (HEY! LET'S NOT BE ALONE TONIGHT)
*Jessie the nanny and the group of odd teenagers that follow her around
*most importantly of all, the cast of the greatest TV show ever, Dog with a Blog. I can't explain how genuinely funny and amazing this show is. It is better than Modern Family. Iconic.

As for actually going out, we went to Stonewall Inn when it was closed which was a waste of time. We drank too much wine in an English themed pub on the night of the election which isn't the most authentic of New York experiences but was a Good Laugh. 

We went for a drink at the Plaza (!) which was a right laugh. The amazing thing about New York as opposed to London is that they just assume anyone British is rich so if you walk into the Plaza in shorts they let you in as if you belong. The people that work there are SO NICE and the toilets are incredible. Must visit.

ACTUAL STUFF TO DO

I may be saying this as a child of a seaside town with a mid-range amusement park, but we went to Coney Island and it was incredible. You need to set aside a whole day to go there but if you're in New York for a while PLEASE go. Although beware, the ghost train is not merely a camp delight but a genuinely terrifying experience. 

People told us to go up the Rockefeller Center instead of the Empire State. We didn't do the Empire State, but what I can say about Rockefeller was it was BREATHTAKING and one of the best things I've ever done, although I did spend much of it loudly comparing it to the Shard which I am also obsessed with.

We went to see Hedwig and the Angry Inch on Broadway which I loved. Never seen another show like it before and Darren Criss KILLED it.

Would fully recommend the Sex and the City tour to anyone who even vaguely likes the show - you get to see a good chunk of New York doing it and it's a good laugh.

We went on the Circle Line Harbour Lights cruise which was incredible - leaving dock as its light, coming back when dark, going past Statue of Liberty at SUNSET was such an experience.

The 9/11 museum was incredibly moving and I personally feel a must do. Have never felt so humbled as when looking at those fountains.

Overall my favourite place in New York was just the turtle pond in Central Park. It was so pretty and I felt so calm and happy just sitting with one of my favourite people on Earth talking about Dog with a Blog.

SHOPPING

We didn't do much shopping, but I got a few bits here and there.

Sephora is obviously a must visit if you like 'that kind of thing'. I bought a Naked 2 palette amongst some other bits but I've used it literally every day since.

I also went to Hollister and Victoria's Secret, both of which are stupidly cheaper than they are in the UK. Forever 21 on Fifth Avenue was also brilliant.

I'm a great lover of posh department stores - Harrods is arguably my favourite place in London and I once went to an exhibition of the history of Selfridge's on my own - but Bergdorf's was SOMETHING ELSE. Less a shop than a work of art. The Louboutin section nearly brought me to tears. We went back to Bergo's on the last day for a Posh Drink (obvs) and I bought some makeup just so I could have a carrier bag. It was extraordinary. 

OVERALL
New York was incredible and the best week of my life. I could not have had a better time. The only part of it I did not enjoy was MOMA. In a word, wanky. I hear others like it though so perhaps that's just me. 

If anyone has any more specific questions about being a ridiculous young(ish) person from London going on holiday to New York, feel free to email me at gonetodeadlock [@] gmail.com! 

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1 comments

  1. I happened to be lucky that my friend couldn't find a date for an event so he generously took me with him, which happened to be one of the best experience for me in recent times. I was lucky enough to see this place. If you get a chance to check this event space nyc out please do so.

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