We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

best plan for 3 days without backtracking with a family of 5

Australia
Level Contributor
44 posts
1 review
Save Topic
best plan for 3 days without backtracking with a family of 5

hi guys,

we are a family of 5 with the youngest aged 3. We are in NY for a full 3 days over the Labour day weekend. We have booked thru the travel agent a NY city pass that gives us admission to ESB, Guggenheim Museum, American musuem of natural history, Intrepid sea-air-space museum, MOMA, and a 2 hour circle line harbour cruise. Also booked is is a hop off hop on tour thru gray line valid for 48 hours from the first boarding so as to get to the places in the city pass.

We are staying at the Beacon Hotel on the UWS and would like to do the tour but dont know if it would take the 2 full days and also fit in some shopping at Macy,s / Bloomingdales etc and Central Park.

i'd really appreciate some advice on the way to go with our 3 days and which order should we enjoy the sights of NY without backtracking. My main concern is my kids as they can sense when mum and dad are flustered and they then become also.We fly in Friday night 7pm and leave Tuesday around midday.

Thanks again.

New York City, New...
Destination Expert
for New York City
Level Contributor
102,457 posts
12 reviews
Save Reply
1. Re: best plan for 3 days without backtracking with a family of 5

WOW. I am assuming you're not coming all that way for just 3 days. I'm also assuming (and hoping) you won't be on Oz time when you arrive ;) Understand there is no way possible for 2 adults, let alone with kids to do all these things in 2 days, so you better figure out which are your priorities. You should use the hop on/off bus pass for your transportation for 2 days you use it. The major sights are on the downtown loop so I'd do that first. Here's the map with the different loops and stops

www.graylinenewyork.com/index_detail.cfm?id=5

Consider the fact that SOME stores may be closed on Monday, Labor Day. I can't recall whether Bloomingdales is or not. So depending on that, you might need to do your shopping on Sat. and do the touring Sun/Mon.

I also think it will be difficult to avoid some backtracking. Your hotel is right near the Mus. of Natural History which is always popular with kids because of the dinosaurs. The entry you have doesn't include the planetarium space show or the IMAX movie but I don't think you have the time anyway ;)

I think your best bet is to go to the Grayline main office (stop #1) in Times Square and start there on either Sat. or Sunday depending on what you decide about the shopping. Assuming the kids don't get too fidgety, stay on the downtown loop bus until you get all the way downtown (stop #11, Battery Park) and get off and take the FREE Staten Island Ferry to see the Statue of Liberty. Then take the ferry back and either walk or pick up the bus (if you don't have to wait too long) to the South Street Seaport. Have a look around there and then continue back uptown. If you want to shop on Canal St. where are the bargains are, do that. I think you should get out at the Waldorf Astoria. Have a look at Grand Central Station which is about 5 blocks south of the Waldorf.

Unless you're huge modern art fans, I'd give MOMA a miss with kids. They will enjoy the Intrepid and Nat. History more. I'm sorry I've run out of steam on this itinerary. Perhaps someone else can continue. Just remember this is supposed to be a holiday, not a marathon of ticking off where you've been.

Hope you have a great trip and great weather. RELAX.

USA
Level Contributor
24 posts
10 reviews
Save Reply
2. Re: best plan for 3 days without backtracking with a family of 5

I agree with nywhiz and would encourage you to cut your plans by half, at least. Then have a "backup list" in case you find yourself with extra time. But it's better, IMO, to take it slow and really enjoy what you're doing, rather than cramming in as much as possible. One of the coolest things about NYC is just "looking" at everything--taking time to soak it all in--the people, buildings, water, parks, traffic, lights, etc. Be sure to allow plenty of time for that. Have fun!