We got off to an early start and grabbed the “Hop On” bus to tour “Uptown” New York city. We have been lucky with the weather, clear sunny skies and moderate temperatures, so riding on the upper decks of the bus was quite enjoyable.
Riding the Hop On Hop Off Tour bus in the Upper West side.
We stayed on the bus for the full circle tour and then got off the second go round on the west side of Central Park. This particular loop of the tour enters a small part of Harlem which was surprizingly clean and quite. I loved seeing the Apollo Theatre and the “Brownstone” buildings.
We got off near the former John Lennon home where Yoko Ono still lives, and quickly found “Strawberry Field” and the John Lennon Memorial. Central Park is two miles long and a half mile wide and the
John Lennon Memorial “Strawberry Field” section of Central Park
two of us walked most of it this day. We head north to the Jackie Kennedy Reservoir before crossing the park to the Upper East side of New York. It was a lovely day and we enjoyed watching people boating on the pond as well as the joggers and dog walkers of which there were plenty.
Prior to the trip Kathy purchased The New York Pass which we planned to use for the next three days. The pass is to grant entry to 70 attractions
Enjoying Central Park
and allows you to bypass the queue. Given the cost, it was not worth our while as it turns out. Getting around Manhattan is time consuming so it is almost impossible to get into enough places to cover the purchase price of the pass. We did not find the lines long, so the ability to bypass them was never an issue.
I was keen to go to the Guggenheim Museum not so much to view the art work but to view this Frank Lloyd Wright designed building.
Solomon R Guggenheim Museum designed by Frank Lloyd Wright
It truly is a glorious building and makes a great showplace for the artwork. I would have liked to spent more time but we had a number of things on our “must see” list this day.
We hopped back on the bus and swear we could have walked faster than the bus was able to go. Our next stop was Carnegie Hall. I had really been looking forward to this tour and when it arrived, found it to be closed for renovations. How disappointing! Rather than “hop” the bus we decided to walk over to 5th avenue to window shop.
Apollo Theatre in Harlem
We stopped for a late lunch and found a huge price difference in the cost of a meal. We paid at least double for mediocre food.
We peeked in the windows of Cartier and the Rolex stores but decided to go into Sak’s Fifth Avenue. I was hoping to find a low cost trinket to buy, so I could get one of their bags, but saw nothing in my budget. We kept heading downtown and eventually found our way back to our condo. By this time our bodies were rebelling with all the walking so we took a needed rest before heading out again
Kathy sightseeing along Fifth Avenue
to catch the evening bus to tour lower Manhattan.
As this was the 911 memorial day, the bus bypassed the former world trade center area of downtown and took us over to Brooklyn instead. This was a disappointment but so was the fact, buses aren’t allowed on the Brooklyn Bridge…we entered Brooklyn via the Manhattan Bridge. The lights of Manhattan were impressive but more so this evening as the had the laser beams honoring the World Trade Center. I snapped several photos, but mine did not turn out well. I later saw Kathy’s photos and determined it is time to upgrade my camera.
The guide on this particular tour was awful and didn’t want to use the microphone, so we really had no idea where we were and what we were looking at. Fortunately we had booked a tour of Brooklyn so perhaps the next trip would be better.
We felt the 911 Memorial site would be crowded
Entire day shift lost at the World trade Center Sept 11, 2001
so we deliberately stayed away from that area on this day, however our tour bus did pass the Engine 54 station which was hosting it’s own memorial. The company lost it’s entire day shift on that unforgettable day and seeing this was a very poignant moment for all on the bus.
This was a long arduous day for us and we both realize we will have to slow the pace for the rest of the week and there are some things we will not be able to see on this trip.
Laser light World Trade Center tribute