Imagine waking up to this view?
Intimidated by the Big Apple? Trust me... there's no need to be. I'm from small town America and made my way into the big city at 16 years old, the weekend after I was privileged with my drivers license. Not eveyrone has been this adventurous, even many of my family members, who live less than 4 hours away, have never even been to the world's best city! (My opinion, of course.)
It's not just a concrete jungle like the media portrays it to be. It's urban design is unlike any other. Mixed with parks and recreation, along with office and retail space, all on one small island, packed with millions of people, there's more tourist options than you can imagine. Whatever tickles your fancy, you are sure to find it in NY.
Let your kids imagination run wild and show them the sights they have only seen in photographs. We've mapped out a trip for you and your family that will make you feel safe in the City and offer you AND your little followers, the time of your life.
The view in the photo above, can be seen from the hotel we are recommending.
NYC-JC is a hotel with extended stay suites, owned by my very good friend Jarl Haugedal. This hotel is located in Jersey City, which is directly across from downtown Manhattan, along the Hudson River.
Rates are reasonable, and if you mention Connextions Magazine, you can get yourself a 20% discount. The rates do not increase with additional guests, so bring ALL the kids along!
Modern amenities and decor, along with a full kitchen and laundry facilities in each room, make this accommodation perfect for a trip with kids. They can have their bowl of cereal before bed! The Hudson Market is located in the same building as the hotel, so you can stock your fridge, grab a breakfast bagel in the morning, and on the way home, make sure to get yourself a sweet treat... the creme brule is to die for!
What's the best part about staying at NYC-JC? Well, that's a tough question, since I am partial to ALL the offerings of this hotel, but for those of you who have never been to NYC, you will be happy to know you never have to drive your vehicle directly into the city. Park in the hotel garage and take the path train into Manhattan. The path train is 2 blocks from the hotel, and delivers you in less than 2 minutes, to the World Trade Center.
Not comfortable on a subway system? Not comfortable riding through a tunnel under the Hudson River? No problem, take the kids on a ferry ride, which is only 1 block from the hotel.
Another notable mention is that the Statue of Liberty is located just minutes from the hotel. Many people come to NYC to see visit Miss Liberty... why? When she's actually located in New Jersey.
There are SO many sights to see that entrepreneurs are making a good living, just delivering daily events to tourists and residents alike. We have listed just a few of our favorites:
Empire State Building
Visit the most photographed landmark on Earth, according to scientists at Cornell University. It will cost $25 per person for a ride up to the observation deck, and they are open every day, rain or shine from 8am to 2am. http://www.esbnyc.com/
My personal favorite is the Skyride! It is New York's only virtual tour simulator where you sit in a chair and fly across the skyline and under the Hudson. Narrated by Kevin Bacon, the ride lasts 30 minutes and it is a MUST-SEE for kids AND adults! I don't know who enjoyed it more, me or the kids. For tickets and info: http://www.skyride.com/
A visit to NYC isn't complete without a stop in Times Square. This is what they kids think of when they picture New York. You can find a dozen tourist shops on every block and this is a great place to stop for lunch because all the familiar favorites are located here. Be prepared for a wait, no matter which restaurant you choose, but the kids will never forget it!
Administered by the Wildlife Conservation Society, the Bronx Zoo is one of the best zoological parks in the world. There's over 265 acres, full of exhibits, so plan on spending the entire day.
Ticket prices are as follows: $29.95 adult/$19.95 ages 3-12 but if you buy tickets online, you can save 10%. They also offer military discounts.
After an exhausting day in the city, you can rest easy when you land back in Jersey City for the night and enjoy the peace and quiet.
If you are flying in, NYC-JC offers car service from all the major airports.