Sept 11 Memorial, NY
It’s been 13 years. And New York City, as well as the rest of our country, has come a long way… even though we are still battling the forces that instigated the deadliest act of terror on United States soil Sept. 11, 2001.
New York City is vibrant again. New Yorkers are strong… all kinds of ethnicities and religions walking the streets together seemingly in peace. I often marvel how a city that to me is so nostalgic, can also be so avant-garde at the same time.
But we all know – we definitely pay for that energy… that no where like it vibe… those one of a kind experiences the city provides.
New York City one of the world’s most expensive places to visit. Fall is a gorgeous time to go! So here’s a full day in New York that is pretty contained to one area, and should cost you less than $20 per person, not including hotel room.
Here’s to you New York, on this day of remembrance.
Start the day by visiting the new 9/11 Memorial that just opened in Lower Manhattan, in the footprints of the Twin Towers. It is free to visit and walk around the plaza. The two waterfalls in the place of the towers are the largest man made waterfalls in North America, and the sound of the water forcefully flowing downward, provides a loud white noise effect that might otherwise be an empty, sad silence. It is powerful, and the names of all those who died on Sept 11 here, at the Pentagon, and in Penn are inscribed in bronze around the twin memorial pools. (As well as those who died on Feb 26 1993.)
If you bring drinks, or food, note that there are no trash cans around for security reasons. So please don’t litter – you’ll just have to hold on to your trash.
9/11 Memorial Museum, NYC
Over the budget: The Sept 11 Museum beside the Sept 11 Memorial is NOT free. You can purchase your tickets months in advance to guarantee your time of visit – there are long lines if you don’t. Adults are $24 to visit.
It is a question many parents ask me – did I bring my kids in? Tough decision because you want your kids to learn from this tragedy… yet you have to know your kids. My youngest had just turned 9, and being the sensitive guy he is, we decided not to go in. There are some moving exhibits, multi-media displays, and narratives. Honestly, our other concern was that we didn’t want to make him afraid of flying. We can take them in a few years.
Near the National September 11 Memorial and Museum is the Brooklyn Bridge. You can walk to the pedestrian ramp at the end of Centre St and stroll all the way over the bridge from Manhattan to Brooklyn for free.
View of Manhattan from Brooklyn Bridge
Great views of the city. It can be crowded, more than 4000 pedestrians cross daily, so avoid the weekends if possible.
Brooklyn Bridge, NY
The bridge is a National Historic Landmark, and when it opened in 1883, it was the longest suspension bridge at the time. It was a sign of optimism, and source of fascination because of the new technology used to build it. It is a beautiful structure from many angles.
After working up an appetite, make your way to Chinatown near the bottom of the bridge back in Manhattan. Yes, there are many uber-expensive world class restaurants in New York… but don’t skip your chance to try something authentic and cheap in one of the country’s most bustling Chinese neighborhoods.
Cheap Eats in Chinatown, NYC
My nephews who live here were our tour guides, and knew the good places to eat and visit. It isn’t glamorous, and the streets don’t sparkle, but you feel like you’ve entered a different world where the kids will enjoy seeing all sorts of interesting items – we ate at a top rated dim sum restaurant that was very good – and very cheap!
Chinatown NYC cheap eats
If you can see the prices on my blurry menu , LOL, you will see some dishes are $4.00. You eat family styles so you can try a number of dishes – great for the kids to discover what they like.
Central Park, NYC
There’s no better place in New York City than Central Park. One can visit every trip and still discover a new detail.
Cannoli in Central Park, NYC
It is the heart and soul of the city that never sleeps… and one can actually catch a nap here pretty easily if he or she isn’t too busy with all the other activities.
Childrens’ Zoo, Central Park NYC
The Childrens’ Zoo is a highlight, as well as Turtle Pond.
You’ll have to take the subway or catch a cab from Lower Manhattan to get here… http://www.centralparknyc.org/
NYC used book vendors
If you have some money leftover after a very inexpensive day, look for the used book vendors that sell everything from cookbooks to classics along the perimeter of Central Park. You can find some treasures at great prices… perhaps to read while relaxing in the park while the kids run around.
If you plan a longer stay on a budget, there are definitely more free things to do in NYC – you just have to research and look for them. www.nycgo.com/free/
“One hand in the air for the big city..Street lights, big dreams, all lookin’ pretty.. No place in the world that can compare.. Put your lighters in the air…”