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Vince and I hardly ever go on vacation.

The last time we went away (as in, on a plane), was for our honeymoon in the Mayan Riviera. That was in 2010.

So earlier this month when my mom asked if we wanted to join her on a trip to visit my aunt and cousins and their families in New Jersey, with a couple of trips into Manhattan, we said sure! Who wouldn’t say yes to family, walking the streets of Manhattan, and really good food (both in the city and in my cousins kitchens)??

It was a busy 5 day trip but it was so with it.

During our first day in Manhattan, we walked from a few blocks north of Penn Station all the way down to Chinatown and back up again. It was extremely challenging in the humidity, but I still believe that walking is really the best way to see as much of the city as possible. In one day we walked through 5 parks!

Below are some of our favourite photos from that day and of course, what we ate 😉

Our first meal in Manhattan was for some New York style bagels at the Best Bagel and Coffee Shop right near Penn. I haven’t eaten bagels anywhere else in Manhattan before, so I can genuinely say that these bagels and their selection of cream cheese was indeed “the best”!! As we walked through the streets of Manhattan, we kept running into so many parks and iconic stops. I wish we could say we ate the famous burgers from the Shake Shack – we would’ve even stood in the long line up that wrapped around Madison Square Park – but the bagels were so filling we didn’t need to eat again until dinner! Definitely next time!Some hilarious bowls at my new favourite store Fishs Eddy. The dish my mom got me as a souvenier from Fishs Eddy that now holds my wedding rings at the end of the day.

One of the food trucks we saw but missed! Our stop in Chinatown after we walked there from Penn station.Mario Batali’s Babbo restaurant where we ate dinner at the end of our first day.

While we liked the pasta dishes we got, we didn’t think our meal was outstanding and to be honest, we probably wouldn’t return.  You can get much better food in Manhattan at a better price, too.

My choice was spaghetti with lobster in tomato sauce – probably the most plain tasting dish of all us.  I thought that the flavour of the lobster (which was 1 lb) got lost in the sauce and wasn’t as tender as I would have liked.

Vince got the black spaghetti with rock shrimp and spicy salami calabrese.  It was good but not memorable.  

My mom got the best tasting dish of all of us: linguine with clam, pancetta and hot chili’s.  It was delicious!

After dinner we thought, why not walk back up to Penn station?  We went through Washington Square and up 5th street and across to Park Ave….

…and then right back to where we started – the iconic Flat Iron Building.

And that’s our first day in Manhattan!

With love,

Tammy and Vince