Travel Diary: Our Honeymoon in New York - Part One

I'm not entirely sure this has taken me so long to write but going back through all the photos, I was shocked at just how much we crammed in to a week in New York. If you caught my post from our wedding, you'll likely be aware that in October 2022 we got married! And, in an error of judgement (just kidding) we thought it would be a good idea to fly out the following morning to New York for our honeymoon. Combined with the comedown of an awesome wedding and jetlag, we are absolutely exhausted but worth it for the following...

Both myself and Stevie had been to New York before separately so it wasn't entirely your typical tourist trip. However, it had been such a long time since Stevie had been that he had some catching up to do -  not to mention that there were some sights we didn't get to see the first time around for one reason or another. Plus, there are just some New York spots I will always return to as they most definitely have my heart. So without further a-do, here's what we got up on to our magical honeymoon to New York City, New York.

Day 1 in New York - Times Square, Rockefeller, Grand Central Station and Madison Square Garden 

It's safe to say we packed a lot in to our first day in New York. Having arrived late the night before, we were fully rested and ready to fulfil a jammed-packed itinerary, because who really needs sleep anyway?

With our hotel just a few blocks away, we made our way to Broadway and grabbed ourselves an egg and cheese bagel (highly recommended) from one of New York's many food trucks. Sure, it's 'touristy' but you really can't travel to New York without stopping by Times Square and it's a real must-see New York hotspot - even if it's just to check out the view on route to another destination. Unless you're visiting New York to shop, you need no more than an hour to fully take it Times Square before heading off to your next stop of the day. 

Since it was right there, it seemed only fair to stop by the newly refurbished NY Disney store. If, like us, you're a Disney fan, I'd say this is certainly worth the visit and features plenty of exclusive NY merchandise - even if you don't make a purchase, it's just fun to see and snap a photo with the Minnie Mouse Statue of Liberty. Due to the time of year also, they had all the Halloween range available which was amazing to see and highly tempting.

Located just a stones throw from Times Square is Rockefeller Centre; the famous 30 Rock and home of the Top of the Rock Observation Deck. Once inside, there is an incredible food hall which I highly recommend - and plenty of shops, including a new Universal store which features souvenirs and props from Saturday Night Live and Late Night with Jimmy Fallon, as well as famous NBC shows like Parks and RecThe Office and Brooklyn 99. Also, if you go early enough, it's likely you'll catch some celebrities on their way in for a day of filming or leaving the Morning Show.

Tinggly* very kindly sent us a Think You Know New York? gift box which allowed us to make the most of New York experiences. It's really simple to use and comes with a voucher code for you to redeem at dozens of experiences around the city. Top of the Rock was on the list of attractions we could visit, and so we were able to select the experience online, and then get a QR code which could then be redeemed at Top of the Rock. 

Personally, I've always preferred Top of the Rock over The Empire State Building as you tend to get better views and fewer queues - although Empire State was also available as part of our gift set. If you're unsure of what to get newly weds as a wedding gift, I'd highly recommend a Tinggly gift set as it allows them to choose from hundreds of unforgettable experiences all over the world, including the UK. It definitely came in handy whilst in New York, with so many spots we wanted to see. 

Next we made our way to Grand Central Station - which, besides being an actual train station, is one of the most recognised landmarks in the world and the location of countless films. You can see more about it from my New York Movie Locations post, but Grand Central also has a fantastic food hall with a selection of amazing eateries. I'd highly recommend visiting here alone for the famous Magnolia Bakery cheesecake. 

Over twenty-five thousand steps later, we made a quick stop off at the hotel to shower and get dressed before making our way out for the evening. We finished up our first night in New York with dinner at my beloved Red Lobster, before living out my How to Lose a Guy in 10 Days dream with a Knicks game at Madison Square Garden. This was made all the more exciting to Stevie as we learned that the very first Wrestlemania was hosted at MSG - so we got to see Hulk Hogan's tiny pants framed on the wall.

Day 2 in New York - The Highline, The Statue of Liberty & Ellis Island

Once a historic freight rail line, The High Line is now a public park that's funded by volunteers and The Friends of The High Line. Elevated above the streets on Manhattan’s West Side, it was saved from demolition by neighbourhood residents and the City of New York and opened in 2009 as a hybrid public space where visitors experience nature, art, and design. All 2.33km are decorated with sculptures and street art from local artists and incredible views of the city.

I will always make a point to visit The Highline as there's just something so special about it. The artworks and sculptures dotted around also changed every once in a while so you'll always see something new. Plus in the Autumn, just look at those beautiful leaves.

Up next, it was time to make our way to the River. I had always wanted to see the Statue of Liberty with my own eyes but my last two trips to New York didn't quite allow for it. Since Stevie also hadn't been, I was all the more determined to make it happen on our honeymoon. Tinggly again came in handy again here with the 
Experience New York Your Way For Two experience, which included a ferry ride visit The Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island for both of us. 

As we arrived closer to the Statue via the ferry, the sun came out for us meaning we got some perfect views of Lady Liberty in all her glory. I was so pleased to have finally ticked this famous spot off my bucket list. We spent a good little while exploring and browsing the gift shop, before heading back to Manhattan. The ferry's are fairly frequent so you can go as you please. 

Day 3 - The East Side and Couples Photoshoot 

Back on the mainland, it was time for a quick outfit change and to make our way to the East River. The East Side is perhaps my favourite part of New York and home to plenty of cool shops and bars. It was also here that we went to to meet with our photographer, Stacie from Stine Creative, for a couples shoot as part of our Tinggly experience gift set. This included a 1.5 hour session with a professional photographer in a location of our choice, although I found Instagram is a great way to find a New York photographer if you wanted to book separately.

I picked the East Side for our shoot as it had amazing views of the sunset on the Brooklyn Bridge and, due to the time of year, Pier 17 had been beautifully decorated with pumpkins. 

It was here that I finally got to visit the Funny Face Bakery - a bakery known for 'the best chocolate chip cookie in New York' and creator of the best decorated cookies I've ever seen. They hand-decorate cookies in the shape of your favourite celebrities and memes. Is it $16 a cookie? Yes. It is worth it? I'd say so. They also do workshops where you can create your own designs - maybe even put your own face on a cookie. I opted for some favourites from the Halloween collection, as well as a Dwayne 'The Rock' Johnson for Stevie.

We were really pleased with how our couples photos came out, and also to load up on cookies! We stopped off at Jeremy's Ale House before getting the subway back to Manhattan. We finished up our second full day with dinner near Grand Central before turning in for the night.

That's it for Part One of our Honeymoon in New York. Again, I'm shocked at just how long it's taken me to put this together and it quickly became apparent that just one part wasn't going to be enough to fit everything in. Be sure to come back to see Part Two of our trip and thanks so much for reading. 

Until next time fellow travellers, 

*Disclaimer: This blog features some gifted experiences. As always, all opinions are my own and do not reflect that of the brand.

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