My First New York Trip. Where to Eat and Where to Go! Budget Friendly.

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If you want to travel to New York it is a trip worth taking. I live in the DC area and this was my first time going to New York despite it only being a train ride away.  What did surprise me the most about New York was the New York life. The show Sex in the city makes it seems so glamorous, and it is in a way.  But since I am a city girl, it really was just another city and the New York life was just really similar to DC life, South Beach Life (see my blog here), Baltimore life (see my blog here), or any other life in a major city.  However, there are some things that you can see In New York of course that you cannot see anywhere else.  So without further delay, here is a recap of my New York City trip.


To get there I chose to go on Amtrak and I left from Union Station in DC. This was my first time taking Amtrak and my first time going to Union Station.  It is a pretty building with beautiful architecture. A round trip to DC to New York from there was less than $100.  There were many stops along the way so it took about 3-4 hours to get there, and I arrived at Penn Station in NYC.

 Out Hotel NYC

The hotel I chose to stay at was the Out. It is only a few blocks from Time Square and the Subway; and it is also a great price.  When I got to the hotel it was not busy at all, which was odd since it was a nicely decorated hotel with an art deco theme.  I did notice many gay couples and I found out that the Out was a gay friendly hotel, which explained that.  I went with a girlfriend so they probably thought we were a couple or something.  Either way it is a nice hotel with a lot of amenities such as a gym, hot tub, sauna, and plenty of sitting space outside of our room.

Our room was small but it had an art deco theme and it came with a mini bar and a cool TV in which you could use the internet. The hotel also had free Wi-Fi.  The cons of this hotel was that it was not jumpin or a happening place to be.  The bar was empty all of the time and their restaurant was closed for renovations.  It was no big deal, because like I said there was so much stuff in walking distance that it did not matter.


Carmines – Time Square

This food was so good and the portions were big. The food was expensive but ordering one thing can be split between two people because it was a family size serving.  We got lucky because there were seating at the bar when we got there, otherwise you have to make reservations or you will not get in.  I had the stuff artichokes for dinner.

Shake Shack – Time Square

This is more of a burger place. I had the portabella mushroom burger and it was so good.  But I did have to wait in line for like 30 minutes to get it, the line was out of the door.  The place was so packed that there was nowhere to sit and you have to literally stalk people and wait for them to get up so you can sit down.  That was not fun at all.

Los Pollitos- Brooklyn

I went here for brunch and they had good brunch specials. You could get four drinks and an entrée for $14.95, which is what I chose to do.


Carlos Bakery- Hells Kitchen

This is the home of the cake boss, the line was always long but they were good about getting you in and out. I ordered a cannoli, some crème cake thing, and a cookie.  All of which were good.


This was a small shop in Manhattan, everyone there was friendly and the cupcakes were delicious as well.

Other places I went to was of course Central Park and Rockefeller Center (which had ice-skating despite it being warm). There was also tons of shopping to do.  Some of the places were places that you can see anywhere like H&M, Express, and Sephora; but some of the places that I was excited about that were not everywhere were the M&M store and the Hershey store.  Since you cannot see those places anywhere and I would recommend seeing the sights that are solely in New York first, before just making it a shopping trip.




The Subway

The subway was confusing but you can go anywhere on it. I was only in New York for three days, but had I stayed longer I would have seen more.  I took the subway to various parts of Manhattan, Brooklyn, China Town, and Little Italy.  Despite the myths about New Yorkers being rude, they were all really friendly to me when they saw that I was lost.  Many people took time out of their way to help me out.


Uber and a Taxi

I took an Uber a few times in New York. Once to get from Penn Station to the hotel and twice in Brooklyn.  There was always an Uber available. You could also take a cab.  I ended up taking a taxi when leaving because the Uber driver was taking too long to get to me due to traffic.  All I did was lift up my hand and a taxi stopped, hopped out, grabbed my bags, and I was on my way. It was a traumatizing experience as he drove fast and in and out of traffic.  But he knew what he was doing so I just closed my eyes and trusted that I would get there alive.

Overall, New York is a place I would visit again. I am looking forward to going for New Years.  If you go to New York and decide to just stay in one location, I would chose Manhattan/ Time Square area, because there is so much to see that you can stay there for your whole trip and be good.  Debunking a myth is that New York was not that expensive, but I do live in the DC area which is expensive; so it was about the same.  And the New Yorkers were really friendly.  Except for this one lady who was like abusing her kid on the bus in Brooklyn.  She hit him and threaten to knock his teeth out.  But the crazy thing about it was that she leaned over to my friend and I when she saw we were lost to help us make it back to the subway.  Her parenting was just questionable.

About Sophia Reed (319 Articles)
I am a single mother of one, Christian, and Lover of Life. I have a Master's degree in marriage and family therapy, I am a National Certified Counselor, and I am currently a PhD candidate in Human Behavior. I love motivating others and encouraging all women to be beautiful from the inside and out. To get in contact with me, you can email me at

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