My parents visited last weekend, which meant we got to play tourists. Day to day we don’t fully take advantage of the city because of a number of reasons: Downton Abbey is on netflix instant, we’re creatures of habit with restaurants in the immediate neighborhood, I hate crowds (yes I willingly moved to NYC), there are dishes to do. In other words, boring ole life happens.

So when we have visitors, we must seize on the excuse to eat out for every meal and walk up and down Manhattan in the name of seeing the sights. If you’re thinking of visiting, here’s our itinerary. It’s not a bucket list and it doesn’t exhaust every hour of the day, but we had fun in the city. That’s enough.


dinner at The Vanderbilt. Yummy cocktails and pork belly. Total parent pleaser and bonus: super easy to get a table on a Friday night. Prospect Heights


Brunch at Cheryl’s. We’re regulars. Prospect Heights

The Highline park. We walked the length of the park from 14th up to 30th. Interesting way to see a part of Manhattan, though super crowded. Good for people watching.

Macys on 34th. So I kind of hate this store, but my mom desperately needed shoes after some major blisters. If you’ve ever been to the Marshall Field’s in Chicago on State Street (now Macys), this store is a letdown. Don’t really recommend it but hell, you have to say you’ve been there right? Midtown

Walk the Brooklyn Bridge. Beautiful views of Manhattan and Brooklyn and justification to eat more food.

After that we went home and ate beef roast and watched Downton Abbey. Yes.


Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island Cruise. It’s about $10/person and the security line is annoying, but the cruise itself is a lovely way to see the city (alternatively, the Staten Island ferry is as well and it’s free). We skipped getting off the ferry at the Statue, but we did hop onto Ellis Island, where there is a museum.

Grimaldi’s Pizza. Here is how you do this: call them and put in an order, then walk next door to the bar and have a drink or two. Go to Grimaldi’s, walk past the line of people giving you death stares, and pick up your pizza. Brooklyn Heights

Brooklyn Bridge Park. Take your pizza here, find a table, and relish in the best views of the city for free. We sat right next to a wedding taking place. Free entertainment!

Blue Marble Ice Cream. I’m obsessed with their hot fudge. Milk made by cows who get massages or something. Cobble Hill & Prospect Heights


Prospect Park. Another one of Olmsted’s creations, it’s easy to spend a whole morning here exploring. Park Slope-ish

Jazz at the Lincoln Center. Dinner and jazz with totally swanky views of the city. My parents LOVED this. $30 cover +a $10 minimum/person at tables. Columbus Circle

So that was my weekend of tourism. Not jam-packed, but lovely nonetheless.

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2 thoughts on “parents in new york

  1. Julie

    What a perfectly fun mix of weekend activities! It’s always a struggle to juggle the touristy stuff with things that locals would do, and I think you hit the balance.

    I’m a new visitor to your site, and I just adore it!

    1. Colleen Post author

      Thanks so much! It’s definitely a balance between showing off the scope of the city and yet the vitality of the individual neighborhoods.


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