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7 Days in New York: A First-Timer’s Guide

Post 5 of 5: What I discovered, what I loved and what I didn’t about the whole experience!

Use The Subway
Walking is nice but before you know it you’ve walked halfway across Manhattan and your feet hurt too much to walk back again. If you think you’ll use the subway a few times a day, get a 7 day unlimited pass for the subway and it more than pays for itself. We used an app called MyTransit NYC and you simply put in your location and where you want to get to and it’ll tell you which subway to get, how long it will take and where to get off. After you’ve used the subway a few times you probably won’t even need the app. As long as you know which direction you’re heading and roughly which street you want to be on it’s pretty easy to work it out.

Everywhere is different
I found nothing more exciting than getting off the subway in a different area of Manhattan. Everywhere is completely different. Whether you’re looking for skyscrapers or nature, busy shops or quiet riverside parks – the atmosphere you’re looking for is never far away!

You Can’t Get Lost
Everything is split into blocks. Broadway is an exception, but streets run horizontally through Manhattan from East to West, Avenues run vertically from North to South and 5th Avenue splits East from West. Street numbers get higher as you work your way from South to North. As long as you know where you’re hotel is situated it’s difficult to get lost.

You Don’t Need to Spend Lots of Money
So many people go to NYC to shop but there is plenty of great things to do that won’t cost you a penny!

People Will Do Anything for Instagram
This is definitely a tourist thing but people will do anything for a good photo. Stand in the middle of the road, climb Brooklyn Bridge, lie down in the middle of crowds in Times Square, lie down pretty much anywhere actually… Watch your step, it’s too easy to stand on someone!

Make a Flexible Itinerary
It’s comforting to have a rough plan when you’re in a new city but it doesn’t have to be set in stone. Make sure you leave time to explore!

All You Need is Pizza
Find a good, cheap pizza place. You won’t regret it.

Wrap Up Warm
We went at the beginning of February and most days it was so cold we needed thermals, hats, gloves, scarves and lots of moisturiser! Stay warm, buy hot drinks and use the subway to quickly get back to your hotel for little breaks when it gets too cold outside.

Make the Most of Duane Reade Pharmacies
They’re on every corner, they’re affordable and a great place to get a good, healthy lunch or stock up on snacks to bring back to the hotel.

Watch Out For Scams
It happens in any city. Just be careful who you’re trusting and stand up for yourself. Don’t get into a random persons cab at the airport – queue at the desk with everyone else. Don’t get chatting too much in Times Square because some people just want you to buy stuff. Check your hotel bill at the end of your stay before you leave for your flight. To be honest, the more confident you seem the better.


Thanks so much for stopping by!
You can read more about my adventures in the Big Apple here:

First-Timer’s Itinerary
How we planned what to do each day

Flights & The Hotel
It was my first time on a plane in 20 years!

Sightseeing with a CityPass
We bought our passes before we got there

Adventures on a Budget
Things we got up to that didn’t require spending a lot of money

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