There are many small things that can be done to make your trip to New York City enjoyable, especially if you take a little time to prepare for the trip with the details in mind. I found some of these seemingly small things to be quite important when we made a journey to the Big Apple a few years ago.
One of the first items on the list was to make sure that we had a nice, but not overly expensive hotel room, hopefully one that was within walking distance of a few key attractions in the city. This room does not have to be at the Plaza, with a view overlooking Central Park, although that would be nice. However, own way, a number of clean, efficient hotels can be found just a few blocks off Broadway and not too far north of the place everyone wants to visit – Times Square.
We tried to avoid putting too much emphasis on the style and decoration of a hotel, because we just did not seem to spend much time there. Friendly and efficient was just fine. We also found it relaxing to have the option of eating breakfast in the hotel restaurant, while choosing one of the many restaurants in Manhattan for midday meals and evening meals. This made starting the day much easier by eliminating an early morning decision about where to go to eat.
Then, we found a diner that served some of the best steak and chicken in the city. Of course, we returned the next night for a piece of mouth-watering cheesecake since we simply did not have room for it on the same night as the steak. The prices were actually very reasonable and the restaurant was about a 20-minute walk from our hotel.
A second thing we made sure of within a few hours of arriving in New York City was to learn the basics about the public transportation. The subway in New York is not quite up to the standards of the London Underground, but it is run relatively well, getting you to most of the places you need to go. Additionally, we found the stops to be conveniently located within a block or two of just about all the things we wanted to see and do.
I admit I was a bit leery of traveling on the subway at night, but we did not have any frightening experiences. I was always on the lookout for any sign of trouble, but no one bothered us at any time during our travels on the subway. In spite of some of the scare stories I have heard, our trips up and down the length of Manhattan went smoothly.