If you were to think back to the most incredible things you’ve ever witnessed in your life, what would they be? I’ve always had the ability of pin-pointing the exact moments that left permanent impressions on my mind and well, changed my life.
Speaking of…I’ve had the good fortune of having lived in (and traveled to) some of the greatest cities in the world that really did change my life. And so if one of your guesses was NYC, well, let’s just say you pretty much nailed it.
My love story with New York began back in summer of 2006. Was it the ridiculous pace at which this city moved? The 24 hour diners or the 24/7 home delivery? (We ordered waffles with whipped cream as a post-midnight snack once just because!) Or the mind-boggling diversity- I once found a store that sold toys selling vintage eye-glasses (they don’t kid you when they say New York has something for everyone!) and another that sold toys from the 80s! But ask anyone and they’ll tell you that the city just draws you in and envelops you in a loving embrace that makes you feel right at home. It’s just that…instantaneous.
But what completely amazed me were its museums. I mean to be able to walk down their halls and really look at such magnificence, to soak it in, is nothing short of incredible.
That is the experience you want to have. That is the experience I had and I’m going to tell you about it.
Walking through this museum, I was acutely aware of the lump that had formed at the back of my throat. Thought-provoking, hard-hitting and deeply overwhelming, this museum gives visitors a chance to remember 9/11 in a beautiful, emotional way. Looking at the artifacts, personal mementos from families of those lost in the attack and photographs from the series of events that followed the attack stirs something deep in your chest; the memory of which will stay with you for a long, long time.
Intrepid Sea, Air & Space Museum
Have you ever wondered what it would be like to be onboard the USS Intrepid in wartime? Well, at the Intrepid Sea, Air & Space Museum you wouldn’t have to wonder. The USS Intrepid served in World War II, the Vietnam War and several NASA recovery missions. So walking into this museum you get the chance to explore the torpedo rooms, the attack center and you even get to check out the high-tech simulators where you can experience what it’s like to fly a jet plane and even travel through space. Who says you need to be an astronaut to fly through space?
American Museum of Natural History
Awe-inspiring. There’s no other word to describe the American Museum of Natural History. The AMNH has a whopping 32 million specimens- including a world famous collection of dinosaur fossils, the 94-foot-long model of a blue whale, the 2 billion year old Star of India (the world’s largest gem-quality blue star sapphire), the Cape York Meteorite (Ahnighito) and the world’s largest virtual reality simulator in the Hayden Planetarium. If you’re short on time, I’d suggest taking the Highlights Tour. It might be difficult to visit all 45 permanent halls of the museum, so it might be wise to plan your visit ahead of time.
I’d visit the Guggenheim museum for the sheer beauty of the building designed by Frank Lloyd Wright. As forthcoming as it is in its uniqueness on the outside, it is just as magnificent on the inside. An art lover’s paradise, it displays some of the artwork of some of the most famed artists in history including Picasso, Monet and Renoir. What’s interesting about the Guggenheim is that it draws you in immediately catches your attention and draws you in with the beautiful textures and colors.
Discovery Times Square
I could say Discovery Times Square is a visual and immersive treat to the art and history enthusiast, but you’ll pick up on that within the first few minutes of walking into the museum. But what I loved the most about the museum is how the exhibits connect you to some of the most incredible human stories ever told. The Titanic: The Artifact Exhibition, Pompeii: The Exhibit, Dead Sea Scrolls: The Exhibition and so much more. But what really, truly blows your mind is Gunther von Hagens’ Body Worlds: Pulse. We’ve all wondered about what lies beneath our skin and what makes us tick. And through plastination, you get to learn about the form and function and truly experience the wonder that is the human body firsthand. And if you’re traveling with kids, you absolutely can’t miss The Art of the Brick. LEGO constructions by Nathan Sawaya, are some of the most elaborate and intricate display of LEGO you’ve ever seen. It isn’t just named ‘One of CNN’s Ten Global Must-See Exhibitions’ for nothing, you know?
After everything’s said and done, I’d say- Visit New York. Explore New York. Soak it in and fall in love. And as you explore, visit its museums….and fall in love some more.
I’m Kathleen Case. A cosmetologist, doting wife, hands-on mommy and a lover of all things beautiful, fun and exciting. I love to travel, soak in different cultures, meet new people and experience everything life has to offer. When I’m not giving people makeovers, cooking up something delicious or rocking my nine month old to sleep, I write about the experiences I’ve had and my overall journey and share them with my lovely readers at kattytales.com.
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About Dani Blanchette
I am a freelance travel and music photographer and creator of GoingNomadic.com.
I love music, food, and exploring cities without guidebooks. I’ve flown a helicopter, hitchhiked down the east coast USA, and once snuck into the back of a zoo (in Serbia) and pet a lion.
I am always up for an adventure, and sometimes I videotape them.