travel

See New York City in One Day

BrooklynBridge2

New York City can be pretty big sometimes. Big and intimidating. When you travel here, you probably ask yourself how can I see all of New York City in one day? Is there a tour that I can see the top NYC sights in a short time so I can save the rest of my week for other sightseeing activities? Well, now there is.

Statue of LibertyIntroducing the all new New York City in One Day Tour!

In this 6-hour personalized tour of 12 people or less, you will sightsee by foot, minibus and boat. See all of the top New York attractions like the Empire State Building and the Brooklyn Bridge with a knowledgeable, local tour guide. Experience the neighborhoods of Manhattan, the New York skyline from the Hudson River, and more when you sign on for the New York City in One Day Tour.

ESBHighlights:

  • 6-hour New York sightseeing tour, led by a friendly local guide
  • See top New York attractions by foot, minibus and sightseeing boat
  • Relax aboard a minibus and pass sights such as the Empire State Building and One World Trade Center
  • Stroll past New York City Hall and Brooklyn Bridge, and wander along the High Line, an elevated parkland walkway
  • Enjoy a 1.5-hour New York Harbor sightseeing cruise and view the Statue of Liberty alongside other sights
  • Small-group tour with a maximum of 13 people ensures personalized attention from a guide

You can book this brand new tour now online (New York City in One Day Tour) or by calling our visitors center 1-800-669-0051

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Eat & Play Wednesday: The Intrepid

Card design

Welcome to Eat & Play Wednesday, where each week Gray Line New York will be highlighting one of our friends who offer discounts with the Eat and Play Card. Today we are taking a look at The Intrepid, Sea, Air and Space Museum, who offers 20% off with the card.

History

The Intrepid, Sea, Air and Space Museum is a grand collection of museum ships in NYC, filled with military and maritime history and is located in Pier 86 street. Shortly after a prominent New York real estate developer and philanthropist named Zachary Fisher and a journalist named Michael Stern fought for and succeeded in saving a WWII aircraft carrier named the USS Intrepid from being scrapped in 1978, The Intrepid, Sea, Air and Space Museum was founded in 1982. In addition to holding the Intrepid, the museum also houses the submarine USS Growler, a Concorde SST, A Lockheed A-12 supersonic reconnaissance plane and the most recent awarded gift, The Space Shuttle Enterprise.

Operating Info

The Intrepid is open 7 days a week, from 10 a.m. -5 p.m., and open an extra hour late on Saturdays and Sundays until October 31st.

With the Eat and Play card you receive 20% off the price of admission at the door.

5 Quick Facts

  • In 2007, The Intrepid was used in the filming of the Will Smith movie, I Am Legend
  • The Intrepid was used as headquarters for the FBI during 911
  • The Intrepid became a national landmark in 1986
  • In 2012, the Space Shuttle Enterprise landed in NYC and has since been housed on the main deck of the Intrepid
  • Until 2013, the museum served as the home base for all Fleet Week activities in NYC

You can purchase your Eat and Play Card online here, or in person at our visitors center at 777 8th Avenue.

#GLNYchat is Taking a Break

glny, glnychat, #glnychat

Every Thursday since February we have proudly hosted #GLNYchat on twitter. It has been a great place to discuss timely topics and their relation to NYC with our internet friends and we are thankful for everyone who joined us. Today, we will be taking a break.

The chat will be going on hiatus, effective immediately. We are going to take some time off to regroup and analyze our chats so that when we bring it back, it will be better than ever. #GLNYchat isn’t dying, but rather it’s recharging.

I hope that each and every one of you has enjoyed the chats, and if anyone has any suggestions for changing the format or theme or style of the chat, now is the time to let us know in the comments. This chat is designed to benefit everyone, so don’t hesitate to make your voice heard.

Free NYC Double-Decker Bus Tours

**Game runs every Friday, May-July**

So you want to take one of our fantastic double-decker bus tours, but you don’t want to spend any money on a ticket.  I don’t blame you.  Getting something for free is nice.  Well, we’re going to start being nice.

free bus tour

Win a free bus tour!

Starting this Friday, Gray Line New York is going to be giving away some free tours.  You guys, our guests, are the reason we do this, so we want to show our appreciation.  Every Friday for the foreseeable future will be Photo Friday on our Facebook page.

Photo Friday is a contest.  The contest isn’t very difficult, but it’s not necessarily easy to win either.  This is how it’s going to work:

  • Every Friday morning at 10:30, we will post a picture on Facebook with a question about the picture.
  • Some questions will be easy, such as “Where was this taken?” or “What building is this?” but others will be more difficult.
  • If you think you know the answer to the question, write it in the comments of the picture.
  • One lucky person who gets the answer right will be randomly selected to win 2 tickets for a previously stated tour.
  • Make sure you follow us on Twitter and check our blog throughout the week, because from time to time hints will be given as to what the answer will be.

So, if you’re interested in taking one of our tours for free, make sure you’re tuned into our Facebook page every Friday.  Remember, bus tours are good, but free bus tours are better!

All rules are subject to change.  Rules and regulations in accordance with New York state law.

The Tourist’s Guide to Taking Pictures in NYC

Have you ever wanted to take a picture but worried about looking “too much like a tourist?”  One of the most common fears that many tourists have is in regards taking pictures.  Is it appropriate to take that picture?  Will the locals look at me with disgust and judge me?  I don’t want to be a walking cliché, but that I really want to take that picture.  What should I do?

Does this sound like you?  Don’t worry, almost all tourists face photographer’s anxiety in some form.  The following flowchart will serve as a way to check yourself.  When you want to take a picture in New York City, but don’t know if it’s appropriate, go to the chart.  If the chart says that it is ok to take the picture, then take the picture! (Click to enlarge)

Tourist Picture Flowchart

click to enlarge image

Whatever you’re comfortable with, take it!  Don’t let other people’s dirty looks deter you.  Take as many photos as you can and make this vacation one that you’ll never forget!

This Weekend in NYC

What’s going on in NYC this weekend? We’ve got a few good ideas:

Tribeca Film Festival

Knuckleball has a free screening on Saturday Night

We love the Tribeca Film Festival because it embodies what it really means to be New York.  This weekend, there are a ton of screenings and events that you won’t want to miss.  Personally, I plan on seeing a few films this year, but I’m not sure which ones yet.  I’m leaning towards Jack and Diane and Knuckleball, which show this weekend, and then trying for rush tickets to Take This Waltz on Sunday, but I’m sure my plans will change.  That’s what’s great about Tribeca; even if plans do change, there are so many films over the next 10 days that I will undoubtedly see something that I love.

St. George Day Festival

Head over to Staten Island (on the free Staten Island Ferry) to experience this year’s St. George Day Festival.  Celebrate arts, culture, Earth Day and more on Saturday when two stages will be set full of song and dance.  There will be children’s performances, live painting, literary performances, a craft workshop and the traditional Giant Dragon Puppet Show making this year’s festival all the rage.  It will be a great day for people of all ages!

A Streetcar Named Desire

Sunday is opening night of A Streetcar Named Desire on Broadway at the Broadhurst Theatre.  See the revival of the Tennessee William’s classic staring Blair Underwood and Nicole Ari Parker as Stanley and Blanche.  While Sunday’s opening night is a strictly limited engagement, tickets for Thursday through Saturday are still available for purchase (even though opening night isn’t until Sunday. I know, Broadway can be confusing sometimes).

NYC Bus Tour

Here’s the thing about our bus tours: they go everywhere!  Not only are they a fantastic way to see and learn about the city, but since we offer hop-on hop-off tours, they also serve as a mode of transportation.  Want to see A Streetcar Named Desire?  Hop off in Times Square, right next to the Broadhurst Theatre.  Have tickets for a film screening?  Hop-off in Tribeca.  Going to the St. George Day Festival?  We drop you off right at the Staten Island Ferry!  Experience New York City by enjoying some of our weekend tips, but don’t forget to see Manhattan aboard our famous double-decker buses!

Welcome To New York: A Spotify Playlist

Last year, I spent a weekend in Arizona with some friends from college.  I flew from Philly to Phoenix on a five hour flight, and I forgot my iPod.  It was the worst.  It didn’t make things easier that I was making my cross country trip on the 10th anniversary of the September 11th terrorist attacks.  Everyone in the airport was on edge and a nice playlist would have made things much easier on me.

This is just how I am.  Music makes everything better in my mind.  I don’t know what I would do without my headphones when I hop on the 1 train for my daily, morning commute.  I’m sure for some of you, this doesn’t entirely register, but many of you are just like me.  We need music.

A couple of summers ago I took an even longer flight; this time from Newark to Heathrow in London.  For this journey, I made a special playlist on my iPod.  It was full of songs about London, and England, and Europe and songs by Englishmen.. It was all about my trip, and it put me in the perfect mood.

This got me thinking about our guests.  Many of you travel great distances to visit New York City and enjoy our tours.  With that in mind, I decided to make a playlist in hopes that it makes your travel a little bit easier.

Last Friday, we asked you on Facebook what your favorite New York themed song was, and your response was not very surprising.  At least it wasn’t surprising to me, because the two songs that were mentioned are, in my mind, songs 1 and 1a about NYC.  Frank and Jay-Z.  Old school and new school.  The Theme from New York, New York and Empire State of Mind.

But while those are probably the two most popular New York based songs, there are literally hundreds of others.  Our Spotify playlist consists of 46 songs, from Elton John to The Rolling Stones; from Beastie Boys to Wu-Tang Clan.  The list includes songs from each of the past 9 decades, with the oldest tune being ‘Rhapsody in Blue’ (1924).

The criteria for choosing songs were simple: Each song is either about New York, or has a strong connection to the City.  (For example: I know Bruce Springsteen’s ‘My City Of Ruins’ was originally written about Asbury Park, NJ, but when it was performed at the 9/11 telethon, it immediately became a song about New York, too.)

There are two important things to still point out about this list.  First is that some of the songs on the playlist have very explicit lyrics.  I just couldn’t justify a New York playlist that didn’t include Jay-Z.  Don’t worry; I plan on making a censored playlist for those of you who would like one.

The second thing is that this playlist isn’t complete.  In fact, it never will be.  If there is a song that you would like to see added, let me know.  Post it in the comments here, write it on our timeline on Facebook or Tweet at us @graylinenewyork.

Enjoy our New York Spotify Playlist