NYC Day 5 – Staten Island, One World Trade Center, and Manhattan Shopping

Today we decided to head to the financial district. So we caught the R Subway Line from Times Square down to the South Ferry station, and it turns out that the free Staten Island Ferry was just about the leave, so we sprinted onboard, we were just about the last passenger.

We then cruised towards Staten Island, going past the Statue of Liberty. It’s nice to cruise along the harbour and see a bit more of Manhattan, especially the skyline from a different angle. We went past Ellis Island which was where they used to do immigration processing back in the old days. The Statue of Liberty was crowded with people – you can pay $20 for a cruise that allows you to climb the crown of the statue, but I wasn’t too obsessed about that.

We spent about say, 2 minutes on Staten Island, before sprinting for the next ferry that was just about to leave. Good timing, we ended up doing a round trip in about an hour, rather than spending half a day doing it. We were then back on Manhattan in an area called Battery Park.

We then walked up towards Wall Street. Obviously, Wall Street is a bit of a financial capital of the world. But from a tourist’s perspective, there’s not too much to see there, mostly very big old financial buildings. Imagine looking at buildings full of lawyers and accountants. That’s pretty much Wall Street. There is a Charging Bull statue down the road that is pretty synonymous will Wall Street.

A couple of blocks over is One World Trade Center, or Freedom Tower as Kathryn tells me. You have to walk past a bunch of street hawkers selling you liber-tee-shirts. Liberty-tshirts? Get it? They made that up, not me. Then, you see the 9/11 Memorial Pools. There’s a lot of construction going on so it’s quite a noisy environment, but even still, the sound of the rushing water tries its best to drown out the other noises. As you peer over the edge you can see the water falling into the edge of the pool, but you can’t quite see the bottom of the pool. It’s a very nice design. Towering above the two memorial pools is One World Trade Center. Simply massive in height, it dwarfs all other buildings nearby, and dominates the skyline.

We then tried to catch the subway back uptown. Weirdly my subway card didn’t work, leaving me stranded on one side of the barrier, and Kathryn on the other side. Thankfully, I wasn’t the only one affected, this Norwegian couple also suffered the same fate. This was my chance to use my only line of Norwegian that I knew. She understood my greeting, and responded appropriately. I was stoked.

Anyways, we made it back to the shopping district, and headed to the largest store in the world, Macy’s. Kathryn found some Nike clothing she’d been searching all of Manhattan for.

We headed back to the hotel for free beers and nibbles and then retired early for the night. Sometimes it’s nice to relax while on holiday!

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