On Thursday we left Dublin at 11am and arrived just after lunch time in New York. Although tired from our flight we were determined to drop our bags into the hotel and get out exploring asap. We stayed in the Double Tree Hilton in Hell’s Kitchen. The hotel was two blocks away from Penn station and just a few blocks away from port authority, Times Square and many other popular locations.

Our first stop was at the shake shack for amazing burgers and milkshakes.

Shake shack NYC

We then went to see the madness that is Times Square, Amy’s excitement was priceless!

Times squareAmy and sophie nyc

On the way home to our hotel we stopped into Sephora, because let’s face it, it would be rude not to! And that’s where I spent my first few hundred dollars *gulp*.
We made the decision to head to the Jersey Gardens outlet mall at the start of our trip rather than the end as we felt it would be best to check out the offers there before spending all our money in the city. It was the right choice as we picked up bargain after bargain from stores such as the Nike outlet store, Guess, Calvin Kline, Michael Kors among others. Carrying everything back on the bus was no easy task and it was touch and go for a while thankfully we made it back to our hotel with all arms still attached.

Jersey gardens mall

After a few hours nap in our hotel we went to the Refinery hotel rooftop for dinner and some cocktails. Drinks here are the usual New York expensive price but we decided to get a large jug of a lovely lemonade cocktail that worked out much cheaper than buying singles. I forget its real name but I liked to call it a cocktail picnic.

Cocktail picnicSophie at refinery rooftop

At about 11pm we left the rooftop bar to explore an even more impressive rooftop, the empire state building. I’ve visited here a few times both during the day and at night; I can’t recommended visiting here at night enough. It’s one of the most popular tourist destinations in New York and the queues can be painfully long during the day but at night you can almost always go straight up without much delay. The view of the city lights from here are like no other.

Sophie empire state buildingEmpire state buildig view

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Day 3: Grand Central Station, Brooklyn Bridge, Helicopter, One World Tour

Day 4: Central park, the boat house, the met steps, 5th avenue, Top of the Rock, Matilda Broadway show

Days 5 & 6: High Line park, Chelsea Market, 230 Fifth, Madison square garden’s tour, home time