Can it be that our endless summer is actually coming to an end? Time to get my head back in a New York frame of mind. Although we’re leaving so much stillness and beauty in Greenwood Lake, there is culture and excitement, chaos and adventure that lies ahead. In some ways I can’t wait…
Before school ended, the kids had a half day at school and I wanted to share a few pictures from our day since the weather was perfect for a Red Bus tour. If you’re ever in NYC for the day, do not miss this activity– I could ride the bus a dozen more times and still be content.
I’ve mentioned it before on the blog, so it should come as no surprise that I love to be a tourist in New York City. There’s so much to see, and the best thing about a Red Bus tour is that you can see so much of it at once.
I’ve taken Lauren on the tour before, but this was Sam’s first time. Lauren fell asleep 10 minutes into the last tour, so I was hoping that Sam wouldn’t do the same since it ain’t cheap to ride the Gray Line, but fortunately they were well-rested and up for some fun.
Starting with lunch at Westville, or “West Village” as Lauren likes to call it, not realizing that there’s an actual West Village and that this isn’t it.
(I felt the need to include a ketchup action shot since that’s how we roll there…they have my kids’ favorite fries in the city, lightly breaded to make them extra crispy.)
We started our tour on 8th Ave with some frustrating non-kid-sized headphones, but once we squashed and pinched the ear buds enough, we finally got them wedged into position.
And we were off….cruising first through Times Square past the Neil Simon theater…
…then on to Columbus Circle where Lauren stole my old lady hat.
Finally, we rode up along Central Park West and through the Upper West Side to Harlem.
We weren’t long into our trip when we passed 110th Street and our guide pointed out the Cathedral of St. John the Divine. Although I’ve taken the bus tour a few times, I must have always tuned out at this point because I didn’t realize that it’s the biggest cathedral in North America.
The tour guide asked if anyone wanted to be dropped off at this stop, and my kids surprised me by jumping up to volunteer.
Not only is the exterior impressive in its detail, but there was so much to see inside, from beautiful stained glass windows…
…to the two Phoenix sculptures that are on exhibit by the Chinese artist Xu Bing.
Although you don’t have to pay to enter, there’s a $10 suggested donation, which we were happy to donate. “Just be quiet as you near the East Wing” the ticket lady cautioned as we walked off. “There’s a funeral happening right now.”
This was by far the most exciting detail to my kids, whose experience with funerals to-date (fortunately) has been limited to Halloween and fake coffins. One day we’ll have the life and death conversation, but it wasn’t the time, so I stayed mum. I’m not sure whether they were expecting to see vampire bats or mummies but I’ve never seen them be so quiet and respectful.
After a little more exploring, we were all ready for some sunlight again, and made our way into the Children’s Garden, which features a sculpture of the Archangel Michael, surrounded by tiny animals. My kids felt the need to introduce themselves to every single one, which took 30 minutes in the sweltering heat.
Our immediate need was then water and frozen yogurt….so much for the rest of the bus tour. But the cathedral visit was worth it, and Sam has been egging me to go back. Not with actual eggs, that’s my husband’s department.
We made our way home, and finished up our day as we so often do in the summer, with a visit to 16 Handles.
So cheers to summer, fro yo, and off-the-beaten path adventures. Hope your summer is full of all of the above…
Amazing photos! Love that you guys really explore your amazing city!
I loved the tour fun photos and to top it in the 4th pic there was a glimpse of the theatre showing Jersey Boys my favourite show heheh!
Have a tourtastic week 😉
What a Summer you have had!
Thank you for sharing this trip! Its like I am there too! #ww
As a cathedral junkie I really need to add that one to my must-see list!
It sure sounds and looks as it was a great trip. Very interesting shots.
Cathedrals enthrall always – where ever they are in the world; fabulous shots as ever! YAM xx
Now I am wishing I had taken that bus when I was in NY. When I saw that photo of the them holding their ears, I thought it was a load noise until I read it was headphones.
What a cool outing! We have tours with similar buses in Cape Town. I have only done it once. The cathedral reminds me of the Notre Dame in Paris. I got to see it as a teenager. I think that being a tourist in your own city is great and it’s wonderful that the kids get to learn and see so much. Take care!
You always capture such wonderful memories!
This has inspired me to take the kids on a double-decker bus tour of our city here in Toronto. They would LOVE it!
Love, love, love your photos! Great pictures of fun times!
Teresa from Nanahood.com
Beautiful pics. Would love to tour that cathedral. Thanks for the tip on the bus tour. We are only in MA, so one of these days we need to make the trip to NYC.
Oh we went on a bus tour like that when my eldest was a baby. My biggest memory of that day was that it was so hot and being on top of the bus – I feared I was giving her sunstroke.
Stunning cathedral and sculpture. How cute that your kids introduced themselves to all the animals. ^.^
Tours are so cool. You learn a lot about where you live, or where you are visiting. It looks like a fun time.
beautiful scenic photos.
Thanks for sharing! NYC looks beautiful. Someday maybe I’ll get to visit too. 🙂
The last time I was in NYC was in May of 2001. Hubby and I stayed at the Millennium Hilton across from the Trade Centers.
Prior to that was in 1989. THAT visit included someone stealing my father-in-law’s camera gear and me chasing the guy down…. NOT RECOMMENDED. But I made it back alive with my hubby and in-laws standing with mouths gaping open…
Any who, the 2001 visit made me appreciate the city so much more. It was peaceful as we were there over the weekend.
Seeing your tour makes me want to go back. The cathedral looks amazing. One day…
Have a fun adjustment back to the city life! 🙂
What a gorgeous cathedral! I like all of the pics!
I loved this so much! I especially like the photo of your kids standing quietly at the cathedral. Beautiful.
Here’s my Wordless Wednesday!
Absolutely BEAUTIFUL pics!!
Looks like a fun day. And that is cool they were so interested in the church. It looks beautiful 🙂
Great looking chruch
I love those bus tours. There are some amazing looking Cathedrals in New York.
two young city explorers. I hope they enjoyed!
Brings back very happy memories of our trip to NYC –
Happy Wordless Wednesday –
I’ve just joined – I have much to learn about photography, and would appreciate and suggestions!
I really enjoyed that tour. Great pix! Thanks.
I love these pics. It looks like you guys had an awesome day. 🙂
What a neat idea to ‘play’ tourist! That cathedral is so impressive – and your kids are absolutely adorable. Thanks for bringing us along on your fabulous tour! 😉
First (Kiddie) Roller Coaster Ride – Team Nagger or Team Little Dude?
What a great adventure! YUM! I love fro yo. It’s so fun reading and getting snapshots of your kids adventures. Happy Wednesday!
I love being a tourist anywhere! LOL!
Growing up on Long Island we went to the city a lot but we really didn’t do many “touristy” things until I was an adult!. Thanks for linking up on MeHimAndTheCats.com!
kids in church, great shots. fantasy: someday in chartres, or notre dame and then brie, terrine, bordeaux, chevre, more pictures, kids probably drinking with us by then….
Yay NYC double decker! Yay Phoenixes of St John the Divine!