Saturday September 17th - Manhatten to Coney Island by bicycle
From the Highline I followed Washington street for a couple of blocks, bought lunch at a deli and walked to Pier 46 on the Hudson River Greenway to enjoy the river views and lunch!
I like the way many old and now unused shipping piers in the Hudson River have been converted into recreational area's where you always find people relaxing, jogging or cycling. Off course I was lucky with the ewather this week with temperatures between 21 and 30 degrees Centigrade and only some rain showers late Wednesday afternoon!
Walking around Battery Park at the southern tip of Manhattan I relived the good times I had there in 2003. From Battery Park I continued north on the East River Bikeway all the way to 34th street and enjoyed a coffee on Herald Square before returning to my hotel.
The Highline Park is probably the most unexpected park I have seen on all my travels: build on the remains of an elevated railroad track from 34th street to Gansevoort street in Chelsea, west midtown Manhattan.
After the last train ran the tracks in 1980 a period of discussion and court fights to stop demolition started but after years of planning and working on the initiative the first section opens to the public on June 9th, 2009!
For details see the website of ''.
I walked the highline in both directions. By day going south and in a moonlit evening going north.
Walking on Washington street it was interesting to see the building with the 'ONE' letters between Bethune and Bank street still showed where the track ran in the past (see photo album).
Friday September 16th - 9/11 Memorial Museum and One World Observatory
Tuesday September 13th - Highline park, lower Manhatten and East River
Wednesday September 14th - Upper Manhattan
Going north on the Hudson River Greenway from 34th Street the first significant view is the old aircraft carrier "USS Interprid" that is now the base of a Air, Sea and Space museum.
Near 70th Street a new recreational Peir 1 was build next to what looked like the remains of an old floating jetty.
From 125th Street I walked to Central Park and passed the University of Columbia. At one moment on Broadway I almost thought I was back in China with so many Chinese student grabbing a lunch from street stalls.
The size of Central Park amazed me again as can be seen on the picture right showing the water Basin in the North East side of the park.
Thursday September 15th - Hoboken and Liberty Park
A day of memories.
Taking the ferry across the Hudson River to North Hoboken to visit the Washington Street where I rented an appartment in 2003.
I was positively surprised how much better the street looked than 13 years ago. Also the walkway on the Hudson River was impressive.
With my kids I vised Liberty Island and Ellis Island by boat from Battery Park, Manhattan, back in 2003. From the Hoboken Transit Terminal I decide to follow the Hudson River Waterfront Walkway to Liberty Park and see if I could get a tcket to climb up the Statue of Liberty and from there take a ferry back to Manhattan.
I got as fas as the Ellis Island Bridge but access was not allowed. From there I walked to the abandoned Central Railroad of New Jersey Terminal to find out that tickets to climb the Statue of Liberty were sold out for the next few days.
After looking around in the abandoned terminal with the restored terminal building but broken down train platforms and ferry docks I decided to take the ferry from the Morris Canal Basin to World Financial Center.
I entered the center through the Atrium and left again via the overhead walkway at Liberty Street to walk to the 9/11 park. After a walk by the North and South pool that mark the locatopn of the old World Trade Center towers I walked to Wall Street an then by Broadway back to my hotel.
My day started with the subway to Cortland Street station and from there I walked to the 9/11 Memorial Museum. I had a one hour guided tour booked at 10:15 am and i would certainly recommend that as a great way to understand the setup of the museum.
What impressed me most was that the original foundations of the Twin Towers can still be seen under the 2 pools that mark their original locations in the park above the museum.
The elevator ride to the 100th floor of the One World Observatory is an experience in itself because of the elevator speed and the video presentation on all walls inside the cabin.
The views from the Observation deck are what you can expect 300 metres above street level.
During other visits to New York I always wanted to ride a bicycle in the city. Today I rented a bicycle at on Pier 84 at the Hudson River.
The goal of the ride was Coney Island. The beach resort south of Brooklyn.
After crossing the Brooklyn Bridge I walked on Brooklyn Heights that I remembered because of the great views of the New York harbour, Manhattan and Brooklyn piers converted to recreational and sports parks.
After passing Prospect Park in Brooklyn I did not want to ride the Bike Lane on Ocean Parkway twice so I took a more south westerly loop and rode under the subway line at New Utrecht Avenue.
I was surprised there were only a few places to eat and drink on the Coney Island Boardwalk.
I rode back via Ocen Parkway and made a full round in Prospect Park before leaving at the Grand Army Plaze with the Soldiers and Sailors Arc.
One of the reasons I wanted to ride a bicycle this Saturday was because I read about the 'trendy' Brooklyn Markets and I wanted to visit the which I did after leaving Prospect Park.
I took the Manhattan Bridge to go back to Manhattan getting there on Canal Street and from there continued north on the East River Bikeway. From 37th street I mainly had to continue on 1st Avenue.
The final goal of my ride was Central Park.
I wanted to ride through it from North to South so I first had to get to the bicycle entrance on West 110th Street and Malcolm X Blvd. From there on I really felt being a tourist. But by the time I arrived at the rental station I had more kilometres on the bicycle than the average
tourist: 82 km in one day!