Things to see in New York

New York –  what a fun trip. It’s a diverse city with gorgeous old architecture and sleek skyscrapers, iconic landmarks and hidden surprises I was in my element exploring it.  I had no expectations, just to come away knowing it a bit and having some fun memories and photos to look back at.

Manhattan must be the most photographed place in the world.  And no trip to New York would be complete without visiting the city’s famous landmarks, but there is so much more than that. Shapes and colours grabbed me and many of my friends and Instagram followers told me how much they enjoyed my photos and asked for my itinerary. Well, I didn’t really have one, just a list, and a desire to explore and visit art galleries. I love abstract buildings, beautiful architecture and art, so these feature, but seeing the amazing Statue of Liberty and thought provoking Ellis island were also big highlights. I also took the opportunity to meet up with some fellow photographers, who were kind enough to spare some of their time with me, taking me to their favourite restaurants and galleries.  I also did a couple shoot whilst I was in the city – I will do a separate blog post to show them.

I stayed in Wall Street (my other half was working) then moved up to Columbus Circle, to the amazing Art deco Hudson Hotel, designed by Phillipe Starke. Scroll down to read my recommendations for what to do in New York City.  It was my first visit –  so clearly I’m no expert, but if you like my photos and want to see what attracted me, read on. yellow school bus simpsons bus new york city sharon cooper

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View from Top of the Rock Empire state building New York City

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Manhattan skyline view from Ferry to Ellis Island Sharon Cooper

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Ellis island

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Amazing Times Square gorgeous coloured neon Sharon Cooper New york City

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My TOP tips – well just things I found helpful or loved during my trip, of course there are many many more!
1) Download the NYC maps like Ulmon app to your phone. Walk as much as possible, so great to just soak it all up!

2) Stick $20 on a Metrocard and use the subways (each journey is $2.75) Watch out for the express trains as you might end up further out than you wished (Hello 96th street!)

3) Book a table for breakfast at Sarabeths right near Central park and really worth it (I went there first day)
4) DEFO go to Battery park (near Wall street..then just buy a ticket at the booth for Ellis island)  See great view of Manhattan from the back of the ferry! Get off and see Statue of Liberty The headset is a good idea, very interesting, the Ferries go every 40 minutes. We didn’t climb up, just viewed from below.I loved it….then you hop on boat to the Ellis Island experience and that tour was really great for me, I usually get bored at museums and the such like, but its really well done. Memorable and eerily haunting.
5) Wall street – go to the 911 memorial pools and the museum, really really gripping. You need to go and see for yourself.
6) The best views of the NYC skyline are arguably from the Top OF The Rock..I found it a bit confusing, like a shopping centre, then you buy a ticket and go up in the lift. Great for views of Central park and the city, you can take photos, I think I’d have like to have gone up at night too. Most say the view is better from there than Empire state.
7) LOVED the Guggenheim, what an amazing gallery, architecturally beautiful and full of great things to see, the cafe closed early sadly!
8) I loved ALL the art galleries,  the MOMA is fab (BEST lunch I had was here too in busy bustling canteen style)  and also a small but amazing gallery of Klimt’s work called the Neue gallery. (a highlight for me)
9) I also loved the MAD museum of art and design its near St Columbus Circle and there is A FAB little restaurant there book a table early evening and have view over a great skyline, or a coffee and cake.
10) Lovely veggie lunch (with vegan too) at Franchia Asian fusion at 12 Park Avenue( between 34th and 35th Street ) and go look out Peacefood Cafe too 12 Park Avenue( between 34th and 35th Street )
11) Have a wander around central park, go find the IMAGINE plaque at Strawberry fields. People belting out Beatles songs sit nearby. I was super excited at the snow when we arrived and would love to go back at another time of year.
12) Times square at dusk…amazing…. well Im a colour lover, so it hit all my buttons!
13) Some other free things worth just going to see are Central park,  Grand Central Station, I loved the Oculus too, such an amazing space.
PLEASE leave me a comment! Have you been? Are you planning a trip, or perhaps you have a tip for my next visit!!? Just write me a message here, I’d love to read it.
Sharon x





  • Always loved New York – Great Job

  • Such a great read! You’ve captured the energy of NYC perfectly! Nx

  • Helen

    Aww man I need to go back to NYC immediately! Great pics! 🙂

  • Lovely read and I’ve taken notes for my trip in a couple of months. So great to see your beautiful photos! Thanks Sharon!

  • Definitely will keep on mind your blog when I will go to NY! Thanks 🙂

  • Not only beautiful images but really informative

  • NYC is such an overwhelming place to photography. Love your shots!!!

  • Beautiful! Makes me want to go travelling.

  • Nicola

    Got married in the Municipal building, will be our 14th anniversary this year. Al Green playing in the yellow cab on our way to get married. The line to get that all important paper work before the big day is really interesting to people watch.

    Places we loved and things we did.

    Union Square, Zen Palate for great veggie food. Circle line ferry trip. Coney Island aquarium (not sure if it’s still there). Open air cinema in the summer. Take out salad from a deli and sit in a square taking it all in. Brookyln bridge a great walk. Diners. Walk. Walk. Walk.

  • Sylvie Croot

    Hi Sharon. Suzy Randell (flowers-by-Suzanne) just shared this with me on FB. We are planning a trip to New York together and neither of us have been. This blog is absolutely brilliant and we will make notes from you. Love your photos, one of my favourites is where you have the Empire state building and it’s reflection on another building. Very clever. Thanks again for sharing and your blog will come in very useful for us.

    BTW, not making Wedding Cakes anymore. Proved too stressful and not financially viable for me, so gone and got myself a nice little admin job! Will use my creative talents somehow no doubt, but keep up your great work xxx

    Sylvie xx

  • Fab blog. Love the pics! !

  • Zoe

    Incredible photos!! Can’t wait to go back for our big honeymoon for New Year… We loved the animal artwork at 81st St subway for The Museum of Natural History. Absolutely agree the Rockefeller views are better than ESB, though the fast lift made me giddy!! Been in summer time before, so excited to see the city in winter.

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