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06/22/2010 10:02:33 PM · #1
We're planning a few days in the Big Apple while on vacation next week. I'm looking for some ideas of things to do or see -- tours, parks, landmarks, whatever -- that will both appeal to the wife and kids (two boys, 14) and the photographer husband/father (that would be me).

I guess I'm looking for something a little bit off the beaten path. Sure there's Empire State and the Statue of Liberty. But maybe there's some lesser known buildings or architecture to see (old factories, churches). Or a cemetery tour. Or perhaps a sewer tour. Obviously "photography is prohibited" tours are out (hey, it's my vacation too!).

Hopefully you get my drift. Any ideas?
06/22/2010 10:23:31 PM · #2
I might suggest the top of the Rock as an option as opposed to the Empire State building. Less crowded and less than half the price. Plus you get to SEE the ESB! It's right next to Radio city music Hall too.
06/22/2010 11:48:10 PM · #3
Send Pawdrix a note. But with kids, I'd say hit Central Park. Huge, wonderful, fun for wandering. Walk through the "upper East side" and check out the doormen (seriously!). Times Square... eh. It's good, though. Lots of taxis.

B&H? :-)

The bus tours are always a good idea - get to see a LOT without a lot of effort on your part - I always did that in Europe just to get a feel for the city. They are not cheap, though. Still, a good way to see the place - wish I'd have done that on one of the non-GTG days.

Really no way to go wrong. Enjoy!!
06/23/2010 12:02:57 AM · #4
Don't miss Cartier Bresson at MoMA!
06/23/2010 12:35:41 AM · #5
I'll echo Central Park as well. If you get down to the Lower East Side, don't miss Katz's Deli.

The B&H Superstore is at 33rd & 9th, a few blocks from the Empire State Building. Like the web site, the store is closed on Saturday (and Friday evening), so plan accordingly.

If you want to see a show, you can get discounted tickets at the TKTS booth. Selection varies from day to day, even hour to hour, so you have to go to see what they have.

~Terry

Message edited by author 2010-06-23 00:39:04.
06/23/2010 01:18:31 AM · #6
American Museum of Natural History and Hayden planetarium right next door is all great for kids and adults. Very busy and loud on the weekends. Check out their website as they have a kids and family page. Lots to do and see, plus the surroundings are great for photography. Beautiful architecture, candid street photography (tons of people out), nature photography in Central Park, lots of street vendors too. Easy to get to as the subway and buses stop right there. Not sure, but I guess photography is allowed without the use of flash. Amsterdam Avenue, a little west of the Museum, and West End Avenue, even more west of that, is loaded with great shops and restaurants of many different ethnicities. Plan on spending the whole day in the area.
06/23/2010 07:31:43 PM · #7
Great stuff. Thanks folks. Upper and Lower East Side sound good. Central Park, definitely.

B&H, of course.

The Cartier-Bresson exhibit ends, I think, before we'll get there. Damn!

Top of the Rock looks intriguing too. The top of anything is cool in New York...
06/23/2010 07:50:57 PM · #8
I thought the exhibit closed on the 30th but actually the 28th is the last day. Sorry.
06/23/2010 08:00:08 PM · #9
If you all prefer people, walk the kids through Washington Square Park. Otherwise the Central Park Zoo is small and pretty nice.
If you go to the American Museum of Nat History, don't miss the Planetarium.
The Metropolitan Museum allows photographs inside.
I would second Katz's Deli.
Top of the Rock is near Rockefeller Center - if it's a nice day that's a better duo than trying to get to the top of the ESB (which is awesome but expensive and on a nice day a very long wait).
The Staten Island Ferry boat ride is always fun too. It's free - go late in the afternoon and maybe coming back you'll catch a beautiful sunset.
South Street Seaport? nah. Only for the view of the river and the old Peking Boat.
For 2 adults and 2 14yr olds I think the Circle Line Tour might be fun - takes a trip around the island.
Have fun!
06/23/2010 08:12:34 PM · #10
Another vote for the top of the rock! Try to get there on a cloudy evening, and wait for sunset (assuming it's open that late in the summer), I was there in winter:

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No tripods allowed, though you can bring a table top tripod and place your camera on the ledge. You might be able to bring a monopod--I don't recall.
06/23/2010 08:27:32 PM · #11
My wife and I have been twice so far. Top of the Rock was great, so we vote it as a must go as well. On our last trip we mapped out movie locations to see which took us all over the city. We actually could have got some shots of the red carpet for Clash of the Titans on the Upper West Side. We were in that area taking shots of the locations for "You've Got Mail". So if you're a movie buff try that route to plan your trip...or the subways can be fun too. You never know what types of characters you may find there!!

Copyrighted_Image_Reuse_Prohibited_893200.jpg
07/04/2010 12:47:39 PM · #12
I'm back! Thanks for all the tips. As expected, we didn't get to do but a fraction of the things we wanted. Still, we did get to MOMA and to the HCB exhibit on the very last day. Thanks for that tip, Penny. It was huge! He did so much. What I found especially interesting were the maps tracking his travels over the course of his career. There was also a women in photography exhibit that had some Arbus, Model and Levitt, including several of her color works which I love.

Additionally we did some Central Park, Times Square, the Staten Island Ferry, ate in the Village... My son had to see the Red Square Apartments with the statue of Lenin on top (he's a history buff).

And, of course, B&H. I picked up a five pack of Kodak Portra.

Lots of pictures, but I haven't downloaded anything yet. I shot a few rolls of film, too, with my Vivitar Ultra Wide & Slim. NYC is a great place to shoot at 22mm!
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