The 5th Ave Walk (#UScape Story 1)

If you’re visiting New York City for the first time and you’re part of group tour, make sure to spend at least half a day exploring the quirks of 5th Avenue. So get your walking shoes, or pair of boots, out because we’re gonna trail along this place (at least where I’ve been through for a day).
As mentioned, we had limited time in NYC- around 3 to 4 hours midday.
Streets of NYC aren’t that hard to understand. Commuting is fun and lesser of a hassle than taking a cab. Traffic is a killer in most parts of the city. The Avenues are numbered accordingly from East to West and streets are from South to North. If your place is on 5th Avenue, then, lucky you!
If not, try to figure out the street you’re on and start counting.
If you decided to take a cab, don’t tell the cabbie to bring you to the Flatiron Building for example. Give them the exact street name which, in this case is E and W 23rd, 5th avenue. Google maps is your best friend in NYC.
So let’s get going, shall we?
For starters, we decided to check out the the famous Flatiron Building across the intersection of E and W 23rd street. If you get the perfect shot of it, try to stand in front and click that camera on. I’ve seen a lot of people over social media taking a glimpse of this famous building. I really did not know what to expect when I tried to find it. So when it finally came into view, my first reaction was,’Whoa! It really is shaped like a flatiron!
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Flatiron Building in the morning. Intersection of E and W 23rd Street, 5th Avenue, New York City
You don’t have anything to do really, but standing in front of that perfectly shaped iron-like building would give you a smile. It is plain beautiful, just watch out for the cars around, okay? Stay safe as you embrace that view. If you’re an Instagram or Snapchat addict, it’ll be a good post. Trust me, it is. 🙂
Madison Square Park is just across the street so if you wanna grab a drink and sit for a while, the place is good for it.
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Sitting in Madison Square park while having some yummy Sabrett Sausage.
The park is surrounded by buildings, you’ll see people wearing corporate attires preparing to eat their lunch or sit with their coffee before they start their day. It’s a good place to relax if you’re the ‘chill’ type of person. We decided to sit here for a while before prepping for another long walk across Fifth avenue.
Mind you, there are squirrels running around. Plus side, they run away when you get closer.
What I enjoyed about this place is the serenity it offers. It was warm for October that day but the wind isn’t humid. I like the chill of the breeze as I sat on one of the benches eating my Sabrett sausage and gulping some good old soda. I got to watch a variety of people around. There are kids playing, preschoolers having their day walk, employees grabbing up for lunch, and just some random people passing by.
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Have a pretzel or have a Sabrett
Madison park is not that far from the Empire State Building. Just don’t turn left or right, follow the straight path that is the Fifth and you’ll find New York City’s famous building. It’s a 7 to 10 minute walk depending on your speed. But yeah, it’s not that far.
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Empire State Building from W 33rd Street
So, you can’t be in New York City and not get up Empire State. It’s just not the same. You just have to be up there!
There are particularly two types of tickets for the Observation deck and they may be purchased online. Since we’re doing the cheaper version, we got the Main Deck entrance for $32 per person. That’s on  the 86th floor of the building.  If you want the bigger haul, you can always go for the $52 ticket which includes the 102nd floor of the building.
We only got to the 86th floor but really, it was enough. You get a 360° view of Manhattan and the strong wind blowing up your hair.
The Building also offers audio tours because before you get to the top, you have to learn everything about it — when it was created, how long it took to build, when it was declared the highest structure in the world— stuff like that. It’s a long way up the elevator so make sure you get to enjoy every bits and pieces they offer.
Oh, they have security checks before you could line up for the Observation deck elevator. Just don’t bring open food and sodas. They allow water, though 🙂
It’s always a long line. Everyone understands that.
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At the entrance lobby of the Empire State Building
Everything is worth it when you reach the Observatory deck. It’s a whole 360 degree view of Manhattan and boy is it awesome. Make sure to pose at every side. Go around and explore the North, South, East and West areas of the Observation deck. There are always people around so be vigilant in exploring and taking your shot!
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Manhattan from the 86th floor of the Empire State building. Do you see the Chrysler Building?
It was a foggy noon, but I bet we’ll see a much better view at night. Too bad we weren’t able to go back in the evening.
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Another side of the Empire State Building capturing New York City
It’s another long journey down, but don’t worry, the building’s elevators are fast. Plus, they have a store just before you exit so you get to buy authentic souvenirs! You can also get your souvenir pictures from their photo booths.
Climbing up the Empire state is really exhausting., you’ll get hungry eventually because really, time flies when you’re up there. O_O
That’s why, I would suggest grabbing the 99¢ pizza just across the street. C’mon, guys, New York pizza? We all have to try it! 🙂 And remember, you have a long way to go for 5th Avenue so eat up!
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It’s the New York 99cent pizza 🙂 Always fresh, always yummy!

They offer them in slices but you can always grab a box! No one would judge you, it’s pizza after all!

So continuing 5th Avenue, the New York Public Library isn’t that far from Empire State. It’s really noticeable since a lot of people are taking shots in front of it. Plus, the staircase that leads to it would always grab your attention. Maybe not just because of the crowd, but also its appeal. You can see it from afar and you’ll just go, ‘Hey, what’s that?’and you’ll find yourself in front of the New York Public Library.
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The New York Public Library along 40th and 41st street

 

Unfortunately, we weren’t able to go inside. But if you have more time that us, I suggest you go for it! There’s always nothing wrong with visiting a library, right?

You would notice that along Fifth Ave, there are a number of side stores and people offering cheap discounts over restaurants. I would suggest trying out all the street foods you can find. They’re cheap and good. Go have some sausage and pizza and bagel and coffee from side vendors. Grab a sandwich or probably a falafel. And despite the chill, grab some of those colourful New York ice creams!
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You get to choose your own toppings and colour! Don’t worry, they won’t add up to the chill.
Rockefeller Center and St. Patrick’s Cathedral are never far from each other. If you see either one, you’re most likely to find the other.
Don’t miss out on the famous ice skating rink from Rockefeller and the United Nations flags that stand around it. Take photos everywhere beause they’re all just post-worthy. We missed the Christmas tree because it wasn’t technically Christmas yet on October 23rd. But we get to see the pretty flowers around.
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Panorama shot of the member flags of the United Nations
St. Patrick’s Cathedral is just across the street. It stands between the 50th and 51st Streets. Trust me, with its grandeur, you’ll never miss this one fine architecture. Being a Catholic, church structures do not just amaze me – they give me chills. And yes, St. Patrick’s Cathedral is one of those I would never forget. The outside was sculpted to perfection with its brick-clad marble piece, the details of its walls were superb. We have a long history coming for this but I’ll have to skip it out for now.
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St. Patrick’s Cathedral from across 50th Street
As great as it is in the outside comes the interiors of the Cathedral. There are side altars dedicated to various saints. The main altar at the centre is reflected through by the stained glass and lighting from the top of the church. The pipe organs are most prominent at the top sides of the church. There is also a Pieta sculpture inside, not the one by Michelangelo definitely, but this one is said to be three times larger.
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One of the side altars inside St. Patrick’s Cathedral, Our Lady of Perpetual Help.

 

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St. Patrick’s Cathedral’s very own The Pieta

After St. Patrick’s, you can walk straight ahead for ten minutes still along 5th Avenue. Don’t get discourage if you get bumped around lots of times or the traffic lights beat you up whenever you’re crossing the streets.

 

If you see that huge Mac store along 59th Street, then you’ve reached Central Park! It’s where city meets nature. Go for a bike, ride a carriage, just don’t miss out this beautiful place when you’re in New York City!

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Cross this busy intersection and reach Central Park
Or if Central Park is listed for another day on your itinerary, go back along 45th street and turn West. Visit the Grand Central Terminal where chandeliers are a thing. 🙂
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Grand Central Terminal Station along W 45th St to W 42nd St.

 

Go and have a look at this grandeur place. People are rushing, announcements are blaring, but it still has that class it carries despite the public going in and out of its doors every second of every day.

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Inside the terminal just at the foot of its grand staircase

Take a moment to rest inside the station. Relax, watch people from various places rush in and out, take photos and when you’re done, continue to the other side of 42nd Street.

 

But Times Square is another story to tell.

 

When in New York, always remember: Don’t let your tired legs stop you from exploring! NYC is a jungle you couldn’t miss! Fifth avenue offers almost everything you see on TV and photos but there’s still a lot of NYC you need to see! 🙂

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