It’s pretty amazing, and yet darft. We live only 30-40 minutes drive from Manhattan, and yet we’ve only visited NYC a handful of times. There’s no real excuse, other than saying that we have to get out more … well, we do get out, but there’s so much to experience in the area we live in, so it’s not easy to balance the various trips North, East, South and West of our current location.
However, we finally decided to experience New York City, and signed up to a Food walking tour of Greenwich village. It was a 3 hour walking tour, where we would taste different food and at the same time hear the history of Greenwich village.
Hi ho hi ho, and off we went. The Chevy Suburban family bus was packed with survival lunch boxes, water and changing clothes. We even brought rain gear, just in case, because of our years of rainy days in Ireland – you can never be too prepared.
Parking in NYC is fairly easy, if you have a normal sized car. There are parking houses on almost every block, so it’s just a matter of finding one that’s close to your destination – otherwise you would have to walk a bit further.
However, parking is still fiercely expensive – especially if you had an over-sized SUV like our Suburban. You easily pay $12-15 extra, so a 3 hour stay is a little less than $50.
Car parked. Buggy (stroller) checked. Kids wrapped up and adults ready with cameras. The tourists had arrived. Time to go eat some food and hear some stories.
The tour was good and we discovered many fantastic areas of Greenwich Village, tasted some wonderful food and were introduced to excellent shops – primarily food shops.
It all started with a delicious slice of pie (pizza) as they call over here, and Joe’s Pizza place, and then we went on to visit an Italian restaurant for meatballs, another shop to sample heavenly olive oils, the cheese monger and finally an interesting take on (and yet tantalizing) spring rolls … not to forget the most amazing Chocolate Chip Cookies at “Milk & Cookies“.
And, along the way we were introduced to the architecture of the Village, it’s history, sneak views of small theatre, strolling by Leonardo DiCaprio’s old house and various amazing sights.
Now, the only challenge along the way was to entertain the three kids for a little over 3 hours. Our oldest daughter found the tour very interesting, despite forgetting her sunglasses somewhere. Our youngest daughter had an easy ride across the Village in the stroller. But our son absolutely hated the tour.
Firstly, if he had been a little older, I’m afraid he might have punched the tour guide. Albeit good at his job, he was perhaps a little too enthusiastic. He knew his food stuff very well, but for some reason my son did not cherish that trade.
Secondly, my son likes food. However, he hates walking and eating at the same time, so this tour was absolutely torture for him. Imagine digging into a nice slice of pizza, only to be told to keep walking. The pizza was slapping him around his checks as he was walking. So, he was NOT impressed. Everywhere we had some food, he got delighted at first, but extremely pissed off when realizing we had to move on.
That said, we had a great family adventure and discovered parts of New York we would not have found easily on our own.
We are absolutely coming back soon again. This time, we’ll experience Greenwich Village on our own and will have sit-down dinner before moving on 🙂