Contiki Big Apple Explorer Day 1
New York Travel Blog› entry 28 of 33 › view all entries
We checked out at 8am and caught a cab to the Upper West side where our hotel was located. For the next 3 nights we would be staying at the Hotel Beacon. We had organised a 4 day contiki tour for New York as both of us had never been to the city before and thought it was best to have some help navigating this huge city. Plus everything was organised so that was a bonus too.
Out our began at the hotel and it was a much smaller group than our European contiki tour, there was only about 20 of us. We met our tour manager Matt, who was a native of New York and you could tell he really loved the city. Today we were doing a driving tour of the city so we hopped on the contiki bus and headed off on our first day of sightseeing!!! Our first stop was an old cathedral on the Upper West side, which was rather impressive.
After lunch we walked to the small church that was a haven to survivors and fireman/workers of the September 11 attacks. It was really moving. There were many photos and memorabilia. It was quite an emotional setting.
We then hopped back on the bus and headed to Battery Park where we lined up to hop on the ferry to the Statue of liberty.
Our next stop was Wall street and the large bull statue on the street. We took a few more snaps and then hopped back on the bus. Our last stop for the day was to the World Trade Centre site. This was also emotional. Though it did just seem like a contruction site, and you could see the trains travelling beneath it all. Very surreal again.
On our way back to the hotel, Matt told us about his experience with September 11.
We got back to the hotel, got ready and then headed out for dinner. We caught the subway to Times Square and walked to our restaurant. We didn't finish dinner until 11pm. Matt told us everyone in New York eats late because there is so much to do in the day. We then walked back to Times Square and had a group photo taken. We also got a chance to take some photos of ourselves, before walking to a local karaoke bar. While there all the Aussies (including Bree and I!) got up and sang "land down under". Everyone was cheering us and it was a great time, as well as the first time we had sang karaoke!
Bree and I didn't stay long so we caught a cab back to the hotel at about 1am and went to bed. Another big day tomorrow!