Well, we've had a couple of busy days.
Saturday 7 Jan
We took the Staten Island ferry to Staten island and spent a few hours at the Botanic Garden, which was quite spread out, but small. Because it's winter it was very quiet and nothing in bloom; more a winter walk.
Staten Island Ferry
Coast Guard escort to Staten Island
Statue of Liberty - from Ferry
From there we headed to Wall Street - for such an important area - the street itself is quite small - and these days there are big metal barricades stopping vehicles going down the street. Again - mazing architecture in this street - one of the buildings (14 Wall St) has a replica of the Mausoleum at Halicarnassus at the top.
After that we went to Union Square and listened to a brass band performing in the park. Great playing - we stayed for a few pieces before wandering through Greenwich Village. It's an area with a very particular feel to it - very studenty and bohemian - a bit like north Melbourne around Melbourne University.
Union Square - Performers
Sunday 8 Jan - Brooklyn.
Sunday was quite busy.
We started out by going to the Brooklyn Tabernacle, to attend one of the services, which features the Brooklyn Tabernacle Choir - a very famous gospel choir. It was a long service (2 hours). Most of the first half was the choir, and most of the second half was the preaching. The choir were excellent - amazing singers!!
The one thing that the pastor did was tell a bit about the history of the building. The Brooklyn Tabernacle is housed in what was the third largest theatre in New York - bigger than Carnegie Hall. I suspect that they regularly fill the building to capacity. The church bought the site and totally renovated it - restoring it to its mostly original look - it's very impressive.
Brooklyn Tabernacle - 2
After that we went to the Brooklyn Museum. The museum houses some very well known pieces of art - from Monet's to Judy Chicago's dinner.
The museum had some lovely pieces - but the ones that intrigued me the most were the re-constructions of houses and rooms from various periods within the museum. Large portions of the house (from outside walls to rooms and furnishings) were re-built in the museum so that you could walk into them and look into the rooms. It was very interesting and impressive (it gives you an idea of how tall the ceilings are in this building.
Brooklyn Museum - daytime
After the museum we went further down to Brooklyn to Grimaldi's Pizza - a well renowned pizza restaurant - situated under the Brooklyn Bridge. The building it's in is famous for being used as a film set.
We had an excellent pizza for dinner and then set out to walk across the Brooklyn Bridge.
Grimaldi's Pizza - Brooklyn
Grimaldi's Pizza - Brooklyn
Walking across the bridge was very cold - the temperature was showing as 2 deg C! However, the views of Manhattan and Brooklyn at night were worth it.
Brooklyn Bridge 2
Manhattan building from Brooklyn Bridge
Brooklyn Bridge from walkway
Brooklyn Bridge Rd at night
Brooklyn Bridge at night
Monday 9 January
Today was a visiit to Macey's - the famous department store, mostly for alook around and a little clothes shopping.
The main visit here was the Empire State building and a visit to the 86th and 102nd observation decks.The views of Manhattan were very good. The sky was clear (and cold) so we could see a far way into Manhattan.
Empire State Bldg - Observation Deck
Top of Empire State Building
Manhattan - From Empire State Observation deck
On Observation Deck - Empire State Bldg
Taxis on Street - From Empire State Bldg - Level 86
Manhattan - Empire State Bldg
New York - from Empire State Building
Empire State Building - Observation Deck - Level 86
The next stop was a visit to Times Square to have a look at all the lights.
Times Square - Broadway
Park behind NY Library
Finally we headed off to Grand Central Station to visit the main concourse (which is very impressive and to have dinner.
The main concourse is indeed grand - the building has an amazing dimension to it. It was very quiet while we were there but I can imagine it being incredibly busy with people evrywhere.
The architecture of the main concourse is amazing - the roof has the constellkations drawn on it with lights showing where each of the4 stars are. Very impressive.
Grand Central Station
Grand Central Station - Concourse
Grand Central Station - Main concourse
One observation that I can make about New York is that teh buildings - particularly the museums, the library etc are all magnificant buildings - in fact I think they're pieces of art in their own way.