All About New York City

All About NYC!

Today, I’m sharing one of my “All About___” posts.

In case you missed my other ones, over the last two years or so, I’ve done posts featuring these three cities…

McKinney, TX

All About McKinney!

All About Dallas

All About Dallas!

All About Boston

And All About Boston!

Now, I am absolutely not an authority on New York City.  I’m just a tourist like so many others, but because I go quite a bit, I get asked a lot about where I stay, eat, visit, do, etc, so I thought I’d just do one big post sharing my favorite things.  If you are a New Yorker, PLEASE CHIME IN!!  WE ALL NEED YOUR TIPS AND ADVICE!!  Hopefully, the real authorities on the city will give us so many new ideas for making the most of our time in their great city.  In the meantime, as I fly home today from NYC, I thought I’d share mine.  (Please note, I’m going to try and remember everything, but I’m sure I’ll forget at least half of what I want to tell you…urg…I’m going to try my hardest though!!)


My answer is going to be DECEMBER!

Now, other times are lovely (and probably the weather is less risky of being too cold), but to me, nothing beats NYC like when it’s all lit up for the holidays.  Growing up, going this time of year was always magical for me and now, I see it with my own kids too.  From the Rockettes Christmas Spectacular to carriage rides through the park, the tree at Rockefeller Center, the window displays on Fifth Avenue, Macy’s and more, it really is magical to go during the holiday season.  Now, it’s BUSY this time of year, so that’s something to note, but it’s wonderful too.  My second favorite time would be the fall.  I just don’t think you can go wrong September through November.  It will make you want to buy a bouquet of freshly sharpened pencils 😉 . #namethatmovie


My mom is a museum nut.  Growing up, we would go to NYC and visit them all.  My favorites to this day are The Frick Collection (my mom is agreeing!), Museum of Modern Art, Museum of Natural History and my new favorite, the 9/11 Museum which I now have visited twice this fall and still didn’t get enough.


Well, if you’re there during the holiday season, I highly recommend this one!!

I also really love all of the Disney shows…

…here we are backstage with Aladdin himself!!  (His sister-in-law is a friend of mine.  Isn’t that random?!)  I feel like I’ve seen all of the Disney shows on Broadway (Beauty & The Beast, The Lion King, Anastasia, Frozen, Aladdin…) and love them just as much as my kids do.  That being said, some of my favorite shows have been random ones that came and went but stuck with me over the years.  I also love the classics like Chicago and Wicked. Now, I’m personally not a fan of Phantom of the Opera (sorry!), but the one show I’ve seen more than any (but currently isn’t playing in NYC) is Les Miserables.  Basically, what I”m saying is that no matter what you pick (Disney, classic, or random), you will not be disappointed!

Now, I’m sure there is a better way to get tickets, but I just always order mine through Ticketmaster in advance.  It’s easy, it’s uncomplicated and I’ve never had a problem.  I always order mine pretty far in advance so that I get the best seats, but I do have lots of friends who just buy their tickets when they get to NYC instead.


Here’s what I know about this…for shows like Today and GMA, you just show up.  Outside, they have places for people to stand where you can look inside and see what’s going on in the studio plus, often the personalities come out to do weather reports, etc, so there’s a good chance you’ll see people.  Show up early and dress warm!

As for Live with Kelly & Ryan, I’ve tried.  From what I hear and read online, the best way to see them is to show up at their Upper West Side studio early (people I know say 4:00!) and wait for the doors to open.  They allow a certain number of people in for free every day, but you have to get there early and stand in line.  I tried realllllllly hard one time to get tickets in advance instead of waiting in line and when I finally did, I was so excited…but a week before the show, I received an email saying my tickets were voided because they needed the space for VIPs.  So, I don’t know how often that happens, but I was able to google “get tickets for Live” and find the link…it just didn’t work for me.


I say skip Rockefeller Center and skate in Central Park!!  We did this a few years ago and it was a HUGE hit!  The line was CRAZY LONG when we walked up, but it took us no time at all to get inside.  The rink is huge, the hot chocolate is aplenty, the whole thing is fantastic!  I highly recommend doing it here instead of trying to get in at Rockefeller!


Lots of different ways!  When just I fly in to NYC (or Andrew and me), we use a cab to get from the airport into the city.  When I have my kids or a large group (like this weekend’s trip), we use a car service instead.  Once we’re in the city, we walk, walk, walk, use the subway (it’s really user friendly!  There are apps to help you navigate like NYC Subway!), we use cabs and even Uber.  I find that getting around really isn’t that hard…as long as you have on comfortable shoes!


Room with a view, please!

Ha! Not always 🙂 .  One time, our view was literally of a brick wall that was like 24 inches in front of the window.  Sigh.

So, my favorite spots these days are the Millennium Broadway Hotel (that pic above is from my hotel room the other night), the JW Marriott on Central Park South and the Marriott Marquee.  We have stayed at other places, but the locations of these three really can’t be beat especially if you want to walk a lot.  I would say that these three would be the ones I would recommend.  Yes, they’re in touristy parts of town and not nearly as cool as staying somewhere downtown…but they’re convenient and that trumps cool in my fam!


Oh gosh!  I have to pick?!  I really like them all!!  I think my very favorite is the Upper West Side.  The streets are wide, the shops are aplenty, the restaurants and sidewalk cafes are all over…it’s just lovely there. That being said, we also love to visit Soho, Tribeca, Chelsea, The Upper East Side and more! We almost always visit Little Italy too…

…the food, the totally cool Christmas store, and fun shops and festivals (like this one in September).


The carriages are lined up all along Central Park South, you just walk up and get on.  Easy as that!


All over.  I like to visit the little antique stores and find random treasures (they have them all over the city), I love going to Macy’s on 34th Street because, hello?  It’s famous!  I also love going in and out of the funky little shops in Soho and further downtown.  You will not lack shopping while you’re there.  If you like big department stores, they have them.  If you like unique little boutiques, they have them too!

Last but not least…


This is not a comprehensive list of our favorite spots, but I’m going to try and name as many as I can.  I love being able to make reservations on .  This makes trip planning so easy!  I hope you enjoy some of our favorites too…

Sarabeth’s on Central Park South
The Smith on the Upper West Side
Carmine’s (both Times Square and Upper West locations)
Joanne Trattoria
Hunt & Fish Club
The Food Hall at the Plaza Hotel
The Mercer Kitchen
La Pecora Bianca
Serendipity 3
Pretty much every sidewalk cafe in Little Italy 🙂
The Loeb Boathouse
Tavern on the Green
of course, we love it here…

…and our most memorable meal ever was here…

…holy decorations!!!  Rolf’s German Restaurant is decked out year around!  The food is amazing…but guys, THAT ATMOSPHERE!!!

On this last girl trip to NYC, we did a food tour!!  This was such a fun thing to do, and we will totally be doing it again!  The tour was three hours and we walked almost a mile.  You can see their website HERE.  It was one of our highlights!  Here are some other things we did in NYC for our girls trip…

Day 1: We arrived and then had lunch at the Food Hall in the Plaza Hotel.  We shopped a bit, walked through the park and then had dinner at Hunt & Fish Club.  It was delicious!!  It’s a steak restaurant but has pasta options too.  I highly recommend this for couples and/or groups.  I do not think it’s particularly child-friendly, so just a heads up there.  Another good steak place in this location is The Strip House.  We love eating there too!

Day 2: We started off with brunch at The Smith.  After that, we strolled the Upper West Side with coffee and enjoyed the outdoor markets and even a fun bizarre!  We stopped and watched the NYC Marathon and then headed down to 34th Street to visit Macy’s.  For dinner on this night, we ate at Carmine’s and then saw Mean Girls on Broadway (oh Tina Fey, you are so funny!!).

Day 3: Our final day started in Chelsea Market with our phenomenal food tour!!  We had the BEST time!!  It was three hours of food, history and FUN!!  The amazing Cindy…

…was one of a kind and we were sad our time together was only three hours.  She was FANTASTIC!!  After the food tour, we had 2:00 tickets to visit the 9/11 Museum.  Buy your tickets online the morning you go and skip the line!  We arrived at 2:00 and stayed until about 4:15.  After that, we walked around downtown for a bit and then took the subway up to Chinatown where we walked about 15 blocks north just taking in the city.  Dinner that night was super casual (and delicious!) at Toloache.  We arrived back at our hotel 12 hours after we left tired, full and super happy.

This was such a fun trip with my favorite girls!!

Whew!  I’m done.

I probably forgot half of what I needed to tell you, but enough about me…NEW YORKERS, PLEASE CHIME IN!!

I would love some new tips for the next time I visit NYC!  Comment and share!!!

Have a great day, friends!!!

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  • Charmaine Ng | Architecture & Lifestyle Blog November 6, 2018 at 4:39 am

    I’d love to ice skate in NYC one day! It seems like such a quintessential winter activity there! 🙂

    Charmaine Ng | Architecture & Lifestyle Blog

  • Jess November 6, 2018 at 5:06 am

    Have you done the Statue of Liberty with your children? I have not done this yet but it is on my bucket list. Just curious how easy it is to get too? And how long would it take to do? Thanks!

    • Mix and Match Mama November 6, 2018 at 8:47 am

      I have not!

    • Katie November 6, 2018 at 9:00 am

      I did it with my 6 year old last fall. Bought my tickets online well in advance and the whole experience took us about 2 hours. You can stay as long as you want when you get over there and just catch any boat back so the length is really up to you. It was super easy.

    • Sara November 6, 2018 at 9:25 am

      We have! I highly recommend getting the VIP tickets ahead of time (that goes for the Empire State Building too!). And especially if you want to visit the top of the Crown. Also, just know that it pretty much takes up an entire day. We also visited Ellis Island because I wanted to show the kids their great, great grandfather’s name in the book. Very cool!

    • Mandy November 6, 2018 at 9:41 am

      I was in NYC this summer and did the Statue of Liberty. It was easy to ride the subway to from Times Square where we were staying. We stood in line for about an hour outside before going through security and boarding the ferry. We were able to get off at the Statue of Liberty to walk around and board the ferry again when we wanted, which then takes you to Ellis Island and you can do the same thing there. It took a few hours to do everything.

    • Jeannie November 6, 2018 at 10:24 am

      I went with my daughter (who was 11 at the time) and friends last December. Buy your tickets in advance (saves time, however you do have to wait in the pre-advance ticket line but it’s much shorter than the line to buy). Waiting for security is by far the longest wait time (I feel like it was 30 minutes?). And then you wait to get on a ferry, which wasn’t that bad. Once you’re on the island there really aren’t any lines (there is a restaurant on the island if you get hungry; tickets to go up into the crown have to be pre-purchased). You have to wait again to get on a ferry back (they stop at Ellis Island which we did). I’d say we spent at least 5 hours total from beginning to end. Probably not the funnest with little little ones but for tweens it was fine.

    • Christi November 6, 2018 at 4:24 pm

      I have! You’ll have to book your tickets on line 2-4 weeks ahead. It’s prettycool to see it up close.

  • Jen November 6, 2018 at 5:09 am

    Are the food tours kid friendly? Or is this something only adults would like?

    • Mix and Match Mama November 6, 2018 at 8:46 am

      For adults!

    • Maria November 6, 2018 at 5:32 pm

      Check out Scott’s Pizza Tours. Very family friendly!

  • Eileen November 6, 2018 at 5:27 am

    New York City is the best! You’re right – Christmas is just magical in NYC. If you’re there for Christmas, be sure to check out the Bryant Park and visit Santa at Macy’s. Other favorites of ours are the Central Park Zoo, walking over the Brooklyn Bridge, walking the High Line, and Chelsea Market. We went to the Intrepid this summer and thought it was fabulous. Another really fun thing to do is go to the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade. It was a bucket list item of mine and we’ve done it twice now. You really can’t go wrong in NYC!

  • Elspeth Mizner November 6, 2018 at 5:41 am

    I love New York and i have traveled there sverela times! Great list and suggestions

  • Sarina November 6, 2018 at 5:49 am

    Thanks for sharing this! I’ve lived and worked in the city for the last 7 years and have always lived in this area. So here are some of my favorite recommendations.

    Bagels: Leo’s (fidi) and ess-a-bagel (midtown east)
    Breakfast: Mama jo’s Cart on 47th and park
    1. Urban space – food court style (by grand central). kuro-obi by ippudo is my favorite to-go ramen place. Almost as good as the Ippudo in Tokyo.
    2. nom wah tea parlor (best dim sum) – once I saw Justin Timberlake there
    3. South street seaport food carts/trucks
    4. SO random but my favorite pizza is actually Roses which is in Penn station – go figure?
    5. john’s on bleeker (pizza – only pies no slices)
    6. joe’s on west 4th (pizza)
    7. Of course shake shack

    Happy hours/drinks:
    1. Dead rabbit (fidi) named the number one bar in NY
    2. South street seaport
    3. Clinton Hall (by WTC) – they have games
    4. Fraunces (if you enjoy history – fidi – George Washington has been there) they also filmed that Cameron Diaz, Leslie Mann and Kate uptown movie there
    5. stone street in general (fidi)
    6. Frying Pan – boat on the west side (for the summer)

    1. Pomodoro (upper west)
    2. Queen of Sheba (best Ethiopian – hell’s kitchen)
    3. Mad dog & beans (fidi – Mexican / best margs and corn) or really any restaurant on Stone Street
    4. Sigiri (east village – BYOB – for the adventurous eaters Sri lankan – incredible food)
    5. The smith’s burrata May be my favorite thing of all time
    6. Wise fish (chelsea – poke)

    Small eats:
    1. Veselka – pierogies
    2. Didi’s dumplings
    3. Yasso (Brooklyn – amazing soup dumplings)

    • Mix and Match Mama November 6, 2018 at 8:46 am

      THANK YOU!!! This list is amazing!!!!!

    • Stacie Fillman November 6, 2018 at 8:56 am

      This may be silly but how do you get around with a little one in a car seat?

      • Amy November 6, 2018 at 12:48 pm

        Some Uber’s now offer car seat options! Once we were in the city we utilized the subway system. It was tricky with stairs & a stroller, but much more efficient than taking an Uber everywhere 🙂

    • Bri Bliss November 7, 2018 at 11:28 am

      That’s an amazing list! My husband travels to NYC all the time for work & is always asking me to find him places to eat! Thank you for your sharing!

  • Amanda November 6, 2018 at 5:50 am

    Oh wow! What an amazing list! I’ll keep this in the back of my mind. I’ve always wanted to go to New York City, especially in the fall. I just got back from a long weekend/girls trip in Atlanta! We also did a good tour. It was AMAZING-Southern food, big portions, SO much history. It was a first for me and I told myself that food tours are going to become a staple for traveling from now on!

  • Amanda @ Cupcake N Dreams November 6, 2018 at 6:02 am

    So many good things!! I’m so glad you did a food tour, it’s such a great way to see any place. I want to throw doing a Christmas lights tour while there for the holidays! The houses and decorations are unreal and they pick you up right at union square. So many great places to eat in NYC too Carmine’s, Sushi Samba, Porsena!

    Amanda @ Cupcake N Dreams

  • Ashton November 6, 2018 at 6:07 am

    Which food tour did you do? I was just in NYC a few months ago and did the Greenwich Village food tour by the same company and it was an EXCELLENT tour! I’d highly recommend them.

    • Mix and Match Mama November 6, 2018 at 8:46 am

      We did the Chelsea Market one! It was AWESOME!!!

      • Jordanna November 6, 2018 at 7:54 pm

        Born and raised in NYC, now I work upstairs from Chelsea Market!! Doughnuttery has the best munchkins!!!! Everything else is over priced, my daily coffee and breakfast is from the carts on the corner LOL! Go figure

  • Carly November 6, 2018 at 6:10 am

    I LOVED this post SO MUCH, that I’m secretly hoping you’ll still do a recap on your girls trip 🙂 safe travels!

  • Keegan Piro November 6, 2018 at 6:11 am for tickets is great for last minute discounted tickets!

  • Emily November 6, 2018 at 6:19 am

    Oh my gosh, you HAVE to go to Live with Kelly & Ryan. If you know anyone who works at an ABC affiliate news station, they are the ones who can get VIP tickets. My husband works at one and he sends clients monthly. We actually just went last spring to the show. VIPs also get to wait inside in the heat/AC and get seated in the first 2 rows. But unfortunately, it still probably all comes down to who you know.

  • Kellee November 6, 2018 at 6:25 am

    You’ve Got Mail! One of my favorite movies!

  • Kelly M Sites November 6, 2018 at 6:26 am

    Another tip is if staying right in downtown NYC is too expensive (and it is!) you can easily stay on the New Jersey side, ride across the river- and it’s much cheaper and doesn’t take long to get back into the city each day. You have a great view too.

  • Barbara Parnell November 6, 2018 at 6:29 am

    Ok..where do I begin. I live on Long Island, so I’ve been in and out of the city all my life. Central Park,and the Central Park Zoo are great. Can’t go wrong with the Broadway shows, and I didn’t like Phantom either!! The walking tours are great..did a chocolate tour a few yars back. Not only do you taste all the goodies, you get a very in depth history of the city.Had a great tour guide named Alex and it was amazing. They offer food tours, cupcake tours, etc. Chelsea Market and Eataly are great stops for foodies. NYC is full of amazing bakeries too..Dominique Ansel is a hot spot,Magnolia Bakery(no relation to Chip & Joanna), Joey Paesano’s in Little Italy is awesome. Don’t be afraid to venture off to to Brooklyn either! Visit Jacques Torres Chocolates,Valrhona Chocolate offers baking classes and Bakeds is another great bakery. Shops galore, rich in architecture and lots of people! Next time, venture over to Long Island, especially during the fall & summer..just a 40 min train ride away and so much to do!!

  • Alexis deZayas November 6, 2018 at 6:32 am

    This post is perfect timing because I’m going to New York with friends in December!! I also went last year to see the ball drop and had an incredible time 🙂 Thanks for the recommendations!

    • Riley November 6, 2018 at 4:50 pm

      Do you have any suggestions on how to do New Year’s in NYC?!

      • Michelle H. November 10, 2018 at 5:45 am

        Check out Showme Tours. Daniel does a fabulous job and his New Years Eve experience is fantastic! Great meal and entertainment prior to and step out of the restaurant and you are at the base of the ball drop!!

  • Janette @ The 2 Seasons November 6, 2018 at 6:33 am

    Great. We’re going tomorrow for a little visit. We have been there dozens of times, and it’s always nice to hear others’ suggestions.

  • Maria November 6, 2018 at 6:40 am

    Shay, I’m local. To get tickets for LIVE w/Kelly and GMA as well as many other takings you sign up here: I’m taking my kids to their first taping of LIVE next Monday. I registered for tickets two months in advance and received VIP guaranteed tickets. The tickets say to arrive by 7:15 am. Standby (without tickets) is not guaranteed. Those people wait in a separate line for hours. For GMA, you can stand outside or request inside tickets from the same website.

    For same day broadway shows, try the same day online lottery. I’ve use it many times on a rainy Sundays to see Lion King, SpongeBob, etc… the tickets are $30-$40 per seat, 2 tickets maximum. The seats are always in the orchestra section. They are usually reserved for the staff’s use then tossed into the lottery if unused.

    Our families favorite Little Italy restaurant is LaMela. My husband’s photo has made it to the wall! 😉

    • Mix and Match Mama November 6, 2018 at 8:45 am

      You’re the best!!! Thank you so much!!!!

    • Kelli November 6, 2018 at 11:34 am

      Yes! I did this! Registered with about 2 months out and we were on the 3rd row, waited inside! Kelly came and took a picture with us during one of the breaks! Such a fun experience!! I live in Louisiana, don’t know anyone up there- and it worked! Lol.

    • Danya November 6, 2018 at 5:03 pm

      LaMela is my favorite too! 😊

  • Sydney November 6, 2018 at 6:52 am

    Of course the movie is You’ve Got Mail! I fall asleep to that movie playing several times a week! 😂

  • Diana November 6, 2018 at 6:59 am

    Getting tickets to go inside for GMA was one of the favorites of my last trip! So fun!

  • Ramona November 6, 2018 at 7:02 am

    My daughter is wanting to go to New York City, I will have to save this for her! Thank you for the tips! Have a blessed day!

  • Katherine M November 6, 2018 at 7:14 am

    I live in NYC and as far at show tickets for GMA and LIVE with Kelly and Ryan, there is an app called 1iota! You can get free tickets to all those kind of shows but also get free tickets to tapings for specials on NBC, ABC, etc! I have seen Seth Meyers, LIVE with Kelly and Ryan and went to a taping for NBCs 4th of July special! It’s super easy and free!

    • Mix and Match Mama November 6, 2018 at 8:45 am

      Fantastic!!! Thank you!!!!

  • Rachel November 6, 2018 at 7:16 am

    Thank you so so much! Bucket list trip is NYC over the holidays. I know you’re a foodie too. I love Sevilla, Spanish. Their paella is to die for. Plus it’s a cozy, dark, old world Spain feel inside.

  • kathy olson November 6, 2018 at 7:19 am

    Our first trip to NYC, we walked to a bunch of the filming locations for the movie, “You’ve Got Mail”. I don’t know why that delighted me so much, but it did! You can find the locations online -Zabars, Cafe Lalo, Riverside Park (last scene of the movie), etc.
    I agree that the Christmas season is a great time to go. Our last trip, we saw the Rockettes Christmas Spectacular and it was amazing.
    We hope to go next year for our 30th anniversary:)

  • Amanda Wilson November 6, 2018 at 7:22 am

    Yes!!!! I am so excited!! When we went to Boston I literally did everything you said to and it was thr most amazing trip. Heading to New York next year and will definately be using this list.

  • Morgan Wedewer November 6, 2018 at 7:29 am

    I went to New York this past winter and got tickets to see Live with Kelly and Ryan. I requested tickets from the website where it says “request tickets” and got mine right away. My mom did not get tickets when she went to see them a couple of years ago, and yes, she had to get there at 4:00am because people start lining up early. If you don’t have a ticket, you can get in if someone doesn’t show up who has a ticket. They are pretty strict and ticket holder HAVE to show up at a certain time and from what I saw, alot of people who didn’t have tickets got in. Also, be aware that there are NO coffee shops near Kelly and Ryan’s studio, so if you want coffee make sure you get it before you arrive to the studio!

    • Maria November 6, 2018 at 5:31 pm

      There’s a Starbucks right across the street and Magnolia Bakery is one block up.

  • Nicole D. November 6, 2018 at 7:33 am

    Check out Gaia Italian Cafe on the Lower East Side your next trip. It’s really small and probably best to go for an early dinner so your wait isn’t long. But the food is out of this world!

    Loved this post. Makes me want to be a tourist in my own home!

  • Lauren Morris November 6, 2018 at 7:34 am

    Looks like so much fun! Thanks for the great suggestions. I’m wanting to plan a trip to NYC in December 2020.

  • Heather November 6, 2018 at 7:41 am

    How do you travel to NYC with babies in car seats?

    • Mix and Match Mama November 6, 2018 at 8:44 am

      Car service from the airport! Then once we’re there, we use the subway and walk.

  • Laci November 6, 2018 at 7:41 am

    This makes me want to hop on a plane and visit NYC stat! I have never been but love all the pics!

  • Dianna November 6, 2018 at 7:42 am

    I think it’s time someone broke it to you that Anastasia is not Disney. It was produced by Fox Films and is not a Disney movie/play! It was my favorite when I was a kid, we still have a birthday banner from ’98 we use at family parties <3

    • Mix and Match Mama November 6, 2018 at 8:43 am

      Did Disney do the musical though? For some reason (and I could totally be wrong!), I think Disney’s Broadway company did the musical.

      • Syntha November 6, 2018 at 1:02 pm

        Disney bought Fox Animation so she is now 🙂

      • Dianna November 7, 2018 at 6:45 am

        Not another Disney Musical, I double checked before answering back lol! I’m that annoying fact checker and had to get it off my chest. I’m very excited for that particular play to be headed to Florida next year.

  • Meredith November 6, 2018 at 7:42 am

    Love Love LOVE NYC! We were there last year between Christmas and NYE, and headed back this Thanksgiving week. Our Thanksgiving lunch will be at Rolfs…thanks for the Rec! I am having the most trouble figuring out what to do for the parade in the morning! We are staying at Marriott Marquis and have ages 75, 45, teenage girls and a 6 year old with us …a total group of 8! Any suggestions? And also, looking for the best place for dinner before Rockettes at 8:00. Were thinking Keens Steakhouse, but that seems kind of far…. Thank you!

    • Jennie November 10, 2018 at 6:11 am

      I live in NYC. For radio city you have to check our Ellen’s Stardust Diner. It has broadway stars singing live throughout your meal. A great diner with great songs to get you pumped up for your show. For Thanksgiving Day Parade. You should totally go to the blowing up of the balloons the night before. Such a great experience watching them get filled. It’s by the Museum of Natural History. As for the day of. Get a spot in the beginning or middle of the parade. It’s a long time to wait for the parade to make its way to the end. And the area around Herald Square is just crazy. Try to find a spot on the west side of Central Park around the 60s or 70s. Try to get there by 6am or earlier for a good viewing spot. You can also watch the balloons get deflated after the parade. That takes place around 34st and Sixth Avenue.

  • Kristyn Luger November 6, 2018 at 7:46 am

    You need to try K Rico! Honestly the best steak I’ve had!

    • Meredith November 6, 2018 at 9:23 am

      Thank you!!!

  • Meri November 6, 2018 at 7:48 am

    There’s a lot of great activities for kids in Brooklyn: Brooklyn Bridge Park (splashpad at Pier 6), NY Transit Museum, and I’ve also heard good things about Domino Park. Also so many fun restaurants to explore there- Brooklyn Crab has an outdoor play area which can be good for kids. Also, in Manhattan, the Children’s Museum of the Arts is really good for a wide range of ages.

    • Mix and Match Mama November 6, 2018 at 8:43 am

      Yes!! I should have included Brooklyn! it was so fun walking over the bridge with my kids too!

      • Kim T November 6, 2018 at 9:27 am

        What shoes do you recommend for walking around NYC in the fall/winter?

        • Mix and Match Mama November 6, 2018 at 10:35 am

          I wore my New Balance sneakers the whole time!

          • Tiffanie November 22, 2018 at 9:43 pm

            Even for your December trip?

          • Mix and Match Mama November 23, 2018 at 6:41 am

            When I’ve been and it’s been really cold, I always wear my Ugg boots!

  • Julie November 6, 2018 at 7:48 am

    #youvegotmail #thebestfallmovie ✏️✏️✏️

  • Clare B November 6, 2018 at 7:54 am

    This is so fun! Every time I see the tree lit up for Christmas I cry! I love NYC!!!

  • Ashley Craw November 6, 2018 at 8:03 am

    Great suggestions! We did the Bateaux New York Dinner Cruise one year and it was so much fun! You cruise around the city and have a nice dinner, good music, dancing, and you get to see the city. We went at Christmas time, so it was extra pretty with all the lights. It’s expensive and for mainly for adults, but it was a lot of fun.

  • catherine growe November 6, 2018 at 8:04 am

    This makes me even more excited! My mom and I are going in December for a mother daughter trip. We have been multiple times but never at Christmas! We bought tickets ahead of time through ticketmaster for the Rockettes and are staying at the marriott! How funny 🙂

  • Sharon November 6, 2018 at 8:12 am

    Love the tips- so fun!!! I’m taking my daughter in December for her sweet 16, along with another sweet 16-er friend and her mom! Please tell me about footwear. I know we’ll be walking a lot, so do you really wear tennis shoes all over, or can you wear cute booties etc? Or do you save the cuter shoes for evenings/shoes/dinner? I’ll be using many of your tips for where to eat, shop, etc! Thanks so much! 🙂

    • Mix and Match Mama November 6, 2018 at 8:42 am

      I wore my New Balance every single day this trip!! Go comfy and you’ll have no regrets!

    • Jeannie November 6, 2018 at 10:32 am

      I went last December and wore my Danskos the entire time. My feet didn’t hurt at all. Not the prettiest looking shoe but they are comfy and kept my feet dry (there was a lot of snow/slush one day….and NYC doesn’t seem to shovel their sidewalks as quickly as they do here in MN). My daughter wore her UGGS most of the time. They got wet in the outside but kept her feet warm & dry. Her friend wore tennis shoes and was miserable as her feet were wet and cold.

    • Carly November 7, 2018 at 8:32 am

      We’re doing the same thing with our 13 year olds this December!! I’m nervous about footwear too! I bought some cuter UGGS Shay recommended last year, but I’ve been wearing them around Waco and they aren’t comfy yet so now I’m nervous 🤣. Uncomfortable shoes can really be a bummer, and I’m nervous tennis shoes will get too wet…

  • Laura November 6, 2018 at 8:12 am

    Don’t forget cupcakes!! Georgetown… Baked By Melissa!! My favorites!!

  • Angela Ellingson November 6, 2018 at 8:16 am

    These posts with tips are the best!!! I hope to have a need to refer back someday soon. 😉

  • Candas November 6, 2018 at 8:17 am

    Totally could have used this a week ago – I literally got back from my first-ever NYC trip yesterday! 😂
    My husband was running the marathon and so refused to do too much walking, but we actually hit quite a few of these and I agree they are all fantastic choices. We stayed at the Sheraton Times Square which was also a great location – right between Central Park and Times Square! Food was our hardest thing – I should have asked for more recommendations before we went. Ellen’s Stardust Diner was my husbands favorite for atmosphere, but Remi (a tiny little Italian place with the most incredible homemade pasta) was by far the best food we had!

  • Betsy November 6, 2018 at 8:18 am

    We are going in a few weeks. My husband and I have been at Christmas, but this will be the first time for our son (age 11). We are trying to decide on a show that he would enjoy ~ we are thinking Lion King. Do you have any suggestions for a boy that age? Thank you!

    • Mix and Match Mama November 6, 2018 at 8:42 am

      Harry Potter is out right now! I also think he would like the Disney ones (The Lion King, maybe?!).

    • holly November 6, 2018 at 12:08 pm

      Lion King is amazing for all ages! If you haven’t seen it, that’s a great one!

    • Susie H November 7, 2018 at 8:30 pm

      Highly recommend School of Rock! The kids in the show are amazing. It’s only on Broadway until January 20th.

  • Beth Valenta November 6, 2018 at 8:19 am

    You’ve Got Mail…my favorite line. LOL. We adore NYC! My daughter did her internship there and once I came back she had all the cute spots to do. Our favorite pizza is a little dive called Artichoke Pizza. It is worth it, and only one piece needed. Of course Chelsea market vendors and after having been to big ticket shows like Lion King, we started finding off Broadway shows and saw Ghost and Amy Shumer play. We stay AirBNB in Chelsea, as it has such quaint little wine bars and cafes nearby.

  • Jenna November 6, 2018 at 8:28 am

    I would love to go to NYC during the holidays. That is a bucket list for me. Thank you for sharing!

  • Gabby November 6, 2018 at 8:29 am

    This is awesome! I love NYC at Christmas time- and your recommendations are pretty on point with all of my New Yorker friends’ recs (use Subway, skate in Central Park, restaurants; plus Wicked was amazing and the 9/11 Memorial Musueum is my favorite experience from our last trip)! 😍❤️🎄

  • Sarah MacDonald November 6, 2018 at 8:31 am

    I love NY too, although I have only been twice. You have got to see Come From Away when you get a chance. It’s the story of the planes that were grounded in Gander Newfoundland Canada on 9/11. Now I’m a little biased because I’m from Canada but it is the best show I’ve ever seen.
    I love the Chelsea Market and Greenwich Village.
    Another highlight was the Architectural Boat Tour around Manhattan. Better without kids maybe, but your older ones would like it.
    I’ve gone in September and November and those are great times. Can’t wait to go back when it is dolled up for Christmas some year.
    I went to Live with Kelly (and Michael, as it was then). We arrived just before 7:00 am and were the last two in the line to get seats.

  • Candice November 6, 2018 at 8:32 am

    I’m from New York! I’ve seen kelly and Ryan twice both in the winter time. I did it through their website and still arrived around 5 am to get good seats. Getting in for a show in the winter is definitely easier than the summer because most people don’t want to wait in line in freezing weather! (They also pre-record a lot of shows in the winter so you might be able to sit for more than one show that morning!)

    Both times I went I remember getting an email with my tickets pretty last minute so if you’re not from the area I think your best bet would be to arrive super early for the standby line!

  • Bronte Reed November 6, 2018 at 8:34 am

    I absolutely love The Smith at Lincoln Square, it’s my go to since it’s right around the corner from where I live. I also suggest Artichoke Bastille Pizza (they have a couple locations around the city) and for a fancier lunch/brunch/afternoon tea, BG Cafe inside Bergdorf Goodman is really nice. Also my hands down favorite restaurant in NYC is Buddakan (they have a few other locations in Philadelphia and somewhere else I think), the atmosphere is fun and the food is amazing.

  • Leah November 6, 2018 at 8:35 am

    Hi Shay! My friend and I are going on a girls trip to NYC soon, we have both been a bunch of times but we have never eaten at Carmines! Do you think it’s okay to go there with just two people, I know everything is served “family sized” which is what has deterred me in the past….

    • Mix and Match Mama November 6, 2018 at 8:41 am

      I totally have done that before! It’s festive and so fun!

  • Maddie D. November 6, 2018 at 8:46 am

    Just chiming in here about Live with Ryan and Kelly Tickets! I just went last month and it was super easy! They open the tickets about a month or so before the show date, go to the Live! Website or go to which is their ticket service. Click on the date you want and don’t be discouraged if you get general admission tickets (which say on the ticket that seating is not guaranteed) because once you show up they admit all of the “priority seating” AND “general admission seating”. We arrived at about 7:15am and they start letting people in at 7:45am. Don’t be discouraged if you show up and are at the back of the general admission line like us, we got in and had fantastic seats in the front row on TV because of the way the front of the lines filed into the top seats first 🙂 From what I understand Friday shows are hard to get tickets to but Thursday and Monday shows (as well as middle of the week like Tuesday/Wednesday) are definitely do-able because I got tickets for both! Have fun everyone!!!

  • Sonia November 6, 2018 at 8:50 am

    Living in NYC means lots of crazy experiences. I love Christmas time in this city, and a big reason why I love it is also all the holiday markets! My favorite holiday market is the one in Bryant Park, but they also have ones in Union Square and Columbus Circle. These markets are not to be missed where you’ll get to experience small shops and stalls, including really delicious food stalls! I noticed you also forgot one of the most important museums, the Metropolitan Museum of Art! It has one of the biggest collections of art in the world, and often has really interesting exhibits that are worth visiting. Some restaurants/bakeries that you MUST visit during your next time here include Two Little Red Hens (UES), Clinton St. Baking Company, Adrienne’s Pizza Bar, Chelsea Market, Lilia, Eataly, and Gaansevoort Market. All of these are incredible and are places you don’t want to miss! I would especially say, getting a reservation for Lilia (has to be done 30 days out) is a must. Although in Brooklyn, Lilia is miles and away the best restaurant this city has to offer! Lastly, other areas in the city worth visiting include the West Village, but SoHo will always be my favorite neighborhood. Parts of Brooklyn (Williamsburg) and Queens (Astoria/Forest Hills) are also worth exploring because of how unique they are!

  • Stacie Fillman November 6, 2018 at 8:53 am

    This makes me want to visit New York!😍 I’m not one who likes super large crowds though, is it manageable? 😊

  • Christina Adamson November 6, 2018 at 9:01 am

    Next time, you have to try Joe Shanghai. They have the best dumplings! So nice when it’s really cold outside!

  • Alison November 6, 2018 at 9:09 am

    We love ice skating at Bryant Park. It’s in the middle of an outdoor market with yummy food, drinks and shopping!

  • Dede November 6, 2018 at 9:09 am

    Walk across the Brooklyn Bridge and go to Junior’s Cheesecake in Brooklyn, I love cheesecake and Junior’s is my favorite! Staten Island Ferry is free and you get a great view of Manhattan. TKTS for good deals on Broadway and off-Broadway tickets.

  • Sara November 6, 2018 at 9:22 am

    I’m not a New Yorker but my brother lived on the upper west side for 15 years. One of our favorite restaurants is
    Kefi (Greek food). It’s sooo yummy! 79th Street between Broadway and Amsterdam.
    Also, Otto (one of Mario’s restaurants) is awesome! It’s downtown on 5th Ave and 8th St.
    Cookshop for brunch is wonderful and then you can go walk the high line afterwards!

  • Kim November 6, 2018 at 9:25 am

    What shoes do you recommend for walking around in NYC in the fall/winter?

    • Mix and Match Mama November 6, 2018 at 10:36 am

      Comfy ones! I wore my New Balance sneakers the whole time!

  • Stephanie Sanders November 6, 2018 at 9:32 am

    I’ve been to NYC only twice, but I highly recommend checking out VRBO or Homeaway to find apartments in the city! The last time I went, there were 7 of us and we booked a 3 bedroom, 2 bath apartment in the lower east side and it was awesome! So much cheaper than a hotel and so much more comfortable too! We had a full kitchen to cook breakfast or for snacks in the evening which is the only times we were there. We were only a few blocks from the subway. It was perfect!

  • Callie November 6, 2018 at 9:33 am

    I’m going to NYC with a few of my girlfriends at the end of November and your post got me so excited! We have Rofls on our list because we want to see ALL things Christmas, but I screenshotted the other food recommendations as well! 😉

  • Rachel Tran November 6, 2018 at 9:34 am

    New York is my absolute favorite city to visit! No matter how many times we go, there is always something new to try! One of our family favorite things to do is rent bikes and ride through Central Park or the Upper East Side neighborhoods. They have a fabulous bike share program where you can rent one bike all day and return every 30 minutes in a different spot. It is a great way to see the city and stop and check out new spots and there are hundreds of places to return bikes that are conveniently located! Central Park is huge and can easily take a whole day to ride around…highly recommend visiting the Jackie Onassis lake (beautiful!). From November – December, there is also a little Christmas village market in Bryant Park. They have ice skating, food vendors (hello Nutella strawberry crepe!), art vendors, etc.

  • Lyndsey November 6, 2018 at 9:41 am

    I hope you got to watch the NYC Marathon on Sunday!

    • Mix and Match Mama November 6, 2018 at 10:35 am

      A little bit! It was so fun!!

  • Brittany Higdon November 6, 2018 at 9:58 am

    Great tips! I live in DC, so NYC is super easy for me to get to and I have several good friends who live there and show me the ropes. All that said, a little-known secret is to go the weekend BEFORE Thanksgiving. It’s the best because all the Christmas stuff is up (only thing that isn’t there is the Rockafeller tree lit up.. It’s up though!) but the tourists are almost at zero. All the windows are done, decorations in the stores, all without the insane crowds. Highly recommend.

  • Christina November 6, 2018 at 10:02 am

    Buddakan!!!! A girls trip or fun date night must. Also where Carrie and Big had their rehearsal dinner 😉🍾🙌🏻

  • Natashajk November 6, 2018 at 10:04 am

    I definitely recommend you do The High Line. We’ve done it with our kids a couple of times and have LOVED it.

    Also, I think Katz’s Diner is an experience not to be missed. We also ate at the Seinfeld diner — Tom’s Restaurant. We loved our dinner at Becco, an Italian restaurant in the theatre district.

    We’ve done a Circle Line Sightseeing Cruise which took us out to the Statue of Liberty and I LOVED that. The hop on, hop off bus city tour is also a great way to see a lot of the city in a short amount of time. I’ve also done the New York Stock Exchange and the United Nations tours. They were both amazing.

    Don’t forget to stop at the New York Public Library. The Children’s Department will have displays of unique things — we got to see Mary Poppins’ umbrella when we were there. For museums I love The Guggenheim, Museum of Modern Art, and The Cloisters.

    If you go in the summer catch Free Shakespeare In The Park at Central Park. It is amazing! Ride on the carousel in Central Park — it is over 100 years old and one of the biggest in the country. And you should also go to the New York Botanical Gardens.

    Can you tell I LOVE New York City?!?! I’ve been seven times (soon to be eight – Whooo hooo!!!) and I find something new every time.

  • Melissa November 6, 2018 at 10:34 am

    Thanks for sharing all of this. I am taking my daughter this spring, for our first trip there!

    Do you have an airport preference?

    • Mix and Match Mama November 6, 2018 at 10:35 am

      I do not! I think they’re both fine!

      • Melissa November 6, 2018 at 11:47 am

        Thanks 🙂

    • Barbara Parnell November 9, 2018 at 1:48 pm

      There is a lot of work going on at LaGuardia and soon at JFK…sometimes, it can get a bit congested, but springtime should be fine! BTW, longer runways at JFK..just sayin’ !

  • Heidi November 6, 2018 at 10:35 am

    One museum I’ve visited during my last couple of trips to NYC is the Tenement Museum in Lower Manhattan (Orchard Street to be exact). It’s a very moving experience learning about real families who came to live in the US. And the different ways they entered the country – as immigrants, refugees, asylum seekers, etc. It chronicles how hard they worked to provide for their families, and how they attempted to a assimilate to a culture where they experienced racism. It’s a beautiful experiential museum and breaks down so many of the uneducated stereotypes people have about immigration. On the flip side, we also loved the Fraunces Tavern in the financial district near Stone Street (great food!), and they also have a museum upstairs which I believe is funded by Sons of the Revolution and has a lot of American memorabilia from the time of the Revolution. Both very different but amazing experiences!

  • Lee Ann November 6, 2018 at 10:37 am

    Just got back and had on our list to eat at Joe’s Shanghai – the best dumplings! Add it to your list! And the Artichoke Bastille Pizza is also a must!

  • Mary November 6, 2018 at 10:42 am

    I’m a big “fast casual” fan so here are my reqs for food: Bare burger (including Gluten Free and Vegetarian). Luke’s Lobster for the most amazing Maine lobster roll you will ever have (also offer GF). Baked by Melissa for cupcakes (also GF options).

  • Rachel November 6, 2018 at 10:47 am

    I’m surprised you don’t have a favorite pizza place!! Nice restaurants are fun, but New York has such an amazing pizza scene. You should try some.

    I lived in NYC for a summer and my favorite place is Pizza 33.

  • Ashley Hatfield November 6, 2018 at 10:55 am

    Love the restaurant recs! I’ve beem 4 or 5 times, and my hubby and I are headed to NYC the first week of December. We’ve been once before at Christmas, so I’m ready to do a few things we didn’t do then. One of our absolute FAVORITE restaurants is called Hummus Place. It’s small, you walk down a couple steps, and it’s like $10 for a meal. I’ve never had hummus like this and am always disappointed when I try to compare them. 🙂

  • Ashley Hatfield November 6, 2018 at 10:57 am

    Oh, and Dyker Heights lights is a must for me this time! I think it’ll be fun to travel to Brooklyn and walk around. 🙂

  • Nikki November 6, 2018 at 11:04 am

    Hey shay! If you travel with your kids to nyc (or anywhere really) how do you do car seats?

    • Mix and Match Mama November 7, 2018 at 5:35 am

      If we rent cars, we rent car seats. If it’s a city trip and we’re using the subway/walking, then the car service that takes us to and from the airport has them for us.

  • Laurie November 6, 2018 at 11:23 am

    I’d definitey add Chinatown for reflexology and soup dumplings! Foot massage really hits the spot after all the walking!

  • Kate November 6, 2018 at 11:33 am

    I live and work in NYC (well, Brooklyn and proud of it). A few of my Manhattan faves incl the following:

    To Do: catch a concert at City Winery, the Tenament Museum, karaoke in K-town (I’m a Korean adoptee), kayak in the Hudson River, Botanical Gardens, Etc

    Eat: Cote, Sorbillo, Cosme, Dirty French

    But, I must admit that you’re missing the best parts of the city by not venturing to Brooklyn… Brooklyn Heights, Park Slope, Cobble Hill, Williamsburg, they’re all super cute w the best shops, restaurants, etc. There are some great boutique hotels or always Airbnb’s. Glad to give you recs!

  • Lindsay @ Lindsay's Sweet World November 6, 2018 at 11:45 am

    NYC is my favorite city and I can’t WAIT to take our kiddos there one day… hopefully soon!! And we will surely be going at Christmas… after going at Christmasttime a few years ago I can’t even imagine going any other time!

  • Kristen November 6, 2018 at 11:54 am

    I’ve always wanted to take a trip to NYC at Christmas!! Maybe next year as baby #2 is due in early December this year!

    Our NYC trips are never complete without a trip to Levain bakery for their amazing cookies!! They have two locations now and I am drooling just thinking about them! Also, Prince Street pizza has some of the best pizza I’ve ever had!! Definitely a hole in the wall but they don’t disappoint!

  • Kristen November 6, 2018 at 11:57 am

    I’ve been dying to go to NYC at Christmas! Maybe next year as baby #2 is due in just 4 weeks this time.

    A trip to NYC is not complete without a visit to Levain Bakery for their amazing and fresh baked cookies! They are to die for!! And we love Prince Street Pizza! Hole in the wall and totally delicious!

  • Linda November 6, 2018 at 11:58 am

    I’m a tried & true New Yorker! You covered a lot of the great places to visit, but here are a few of my notes: Best Italian Food – Rubirosa (busy/cozy spot with best food), Emilio’s Ballato (very underrated and hidden gem – amazing food & celeb sitings but only walk-ins permitted), Carbone (penne vodka is unreal – reservations are tough). Best NY Pizza: Joe’s on Carmine St. Best Burger: JG Melon or Corner Bistro. I also highly recommend checking out Chelsea Market! For activites, I think you are pretty spot on.. if you are looking for a more lowkey spot to outdoor ice skate during the holidays, you should check out the skating rink at Brookfield Place. Aside from being attached to the gorgeous new mall (and next to the best movie theatre in NYC!), it’s also right on the river and has beautiful views of the Statue of Liberty and is decorated so pretty at Christmas! 🙂

  • Kathryn November 6, 2018 at 12:31 pm

    Quality Meats (Central Park South)! Best Steak dinner I have ever had! They also have a Quality Italian, but have not tried it myself!

  • Morgan November 6, 2018 at 12:40 pm

    You have me wanting to plan a return trip to NYC, stat! We went a few years ago with our then 3yo in November, and it was such a fun little trip. We stayed at a VRBO in Harlem and honestly, one of the best dining experiences we had that trip was at the Harlem Tavern. SO kid friendly – drinks and an Etch A Sketch within minutes! Good food, too. I’ve definitely added a food tour to my must-do list for next time!

  • Valerie November 6, 2018 at 12:41 pm

    We had pleasant experiences on the subway including going to the airport. Would definitely recommend it for transportation!

    I loved going to the Guggenheim, and I can’t say enough positive things about my experience at the Statue of Liberty. We got crown tickets, and it was truly an experience to remember! Visiting Ellis Island was wonderful too!

    We stumbled upon Bella Vita Pizza and LOVED it. It’s technically in Times Square but out of the hustle and bustle, and the food was phenomenal!

    One of my favorite parts was visiting Roosevelt Island. You can take the tram or subway there, but I would definitely recommend the tram! Great place for kids to play, snap some pics of the skyline, and tour several places.

  • Tellie November 6, 2018 at 12:59 pm

    So I am not from NYC but i have lived in NY my entire life. My favorite pizza place is Table 87 in Brooklyn (they were on shark tank) and then there is a taco place in Chelsea Market called Los Tacos No. 1. They have the best authentic tacos and remind me of ones you can get in CA.

  • Taylor Shill November 6, 2018 at 12:59 pm

    Hi Shay! I live in NYC and was also the one to recommend Rolf’s 🙂 So glad you loved it! Some other suggestions…Veselka is little Ukranian place in the East Village with amazing perogies (also open 24 hours!). I’m not sure if you like sushi/Japanese, but if you do Koi in Bryant Park is incredible. If you’re walking along the west side of Manhattan, you should check out the High Line–it’s an elevated park in the Chelsea area. Also, if you ever make your way to Brooklyn, there is an outdoor food market called Smorgasburg with a ton of great vendors and fun food options. Saturdays it’s on the water in Wililamsburg and Sundays it’s in Prospect Park.

  • Gardner Story November 6, 2018 at 1:27 pm

    YOU’VE GOT MAIL!!!!!!!!!!!!! One of my top 3 favorite movies. 🙂

  • Abby November 6, 2018 at 1:32 pm

    Just the other day I was thinking about how fun it would be to go to NYC. I will definitely refer back to this. Thank you for your suggestions. 🙂

  • Laura Ryan November 6, 2018 at 2:22 pm

    If you are traveling with just a few people there is an app called Today Tix and you can get day- of tickets for the shows. The prices are usually a little cheaper which is a plus. We have used this many times with no problems. We even just used it when we were in London and wanted to see a show!

  • Tanya November 6, 2018 at 3:11 pm

    Yes to the Marriott Marquis. I stayed there this summer with my daughter for her sweet 16, and I don’t think we’ll stay anywhere else now. For shows that my Broadway-obsessed girl just had to see, we ordered in advance. For others, we used the TodayTix app once we arrived to get half price seats. Thanks for all the ideas!
    Tanya – The Other Side of the Road

  • Peg McWhertor November 6, 2018 at 3:13 pm

    The first time I went to NYC was when I was 16 and on a class trip. I wore high heels the whole time! Today it’s Sketchers or Uggs.
    My daughter and I went several times when she was in college. Her late November birthday was perfect for seeing the city all decked out for Christmas. The Marriott Marquis was where we usually stayed. Super convenient for walking to Broadway shows. We also loved ALL the shopping, strolling in Central Park, and even riding the subway. We mostly saw Disney Broadway shows, the Rockettes and my very favorite…Les Miserables. One year we got up very early to watch the Macys Thanksgiving Day Parade on the street. We waited over an hour in the dark and rain for it to start. Picture seeing a giant inflatable Snoopy obscured by dozens of umbrellas. If the weather calls for rain, consider the the large flat screen tv in your comfy hotel room and room service!
    Fast forward. My husband and I have been there 3 times in as many years. We finally saw the 911 Memorial just a few weeks ago. A very emotional experience. That night we saw the play “Come From Away”, about the planes being diverted to Gander, Newfoundland on 9/11. An amazing performance and I highly recommend seeing this.
    We stayed at the Andaz in the financial district. Not quite as convenient as Times Square, but much less crowded. It is also close to The Bull and the Fearless Girl statues. Convenient also for boat tours.
    Adrienne’s is our favorite pizza place. We also did Chelsea Market this time just to see what it was like.
    Our son lives in Brooklyn now, so I plan to use your great recommendations for future trips.

  • Debbie Cook November 6, 2018 at 3:21 pm

    My husband and I were there the same time as you! I kept an eye out for 3 of my favorite bloggers, but never saw you girls. We were there Thursday-Monday. The weather was fabulous; hope y’all stayed dry Monday.
    A friend of ours that is from NY recommended Quality Meats. You and Andrew HAVE to go next time. Great food and wonderful atmosphere.

  • Connie B. November 6, 2018 at 3:36 pm

    Our youngest son left Chicago for grad school NYC in 2013 and remains to this day. We try to visit every year around Christmas/ New Year’s and have found have found it’s a big money saver to visit the 1st week of January-cheaper flights and hotel rates! Still lit up for the holidays and great sales! We discovered Washington Square Hotel, just off the Northwest corner of Washington Square Park in Greenwich. It used to be a flop house in the 60’s and housed Bob Dylan and The Rolling Stones, among others. Comfortable and cozy now and easy access to the subway, the park and and an easy walk to Union Square,lots of shopping. The best ever indie bookstore-The Strand, at 12th and Broadway. Three floors of books!!! Some of our favorite things to do are Jazz at The Village Vanguard, any Broadway show, the Morgan Museum- fabulous library and collections and Morgan’s study. We have also been in May for Jacob’s graduation and I want to go back -Spring in NYC was beautiful! That was a good time to do The Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island. The boat ride was chilly even in May. Always love Central Park and the upper west/east side. Our 1st trip we visited Marcus Samuelson’s Red Rooster in Harlem-great food! Our favorite pizza is Capizzi’s on 9th Ave. in Hell’s Kitchen-a small, family owned brick-oven pizzeria, found as a fluke on a rainy night after seeing The Jersey Boy’s!! All this makes me want to visit again! Alas, this year we will be staying home to dog sit our oldest son’s Siberian Husky while he serves a year in South Korea with the Air Force.

  • Linda P November 6, 2018 at 5:01 pm

    I was there with my family this weekend too! What beautiful Fall weather we had!! I took your previous advice and booked reservations at The Smith for dinner and everyone loved their meal! Looking forward to trying some of your other recommendations in the future. We also love Sauce on the Lower East side along with the Tenement Myseum tours. Definitely our favorite.

  • Tanya November 6, 2018 at 5:45 pm

    Have you done the Rockettes show?? Is it something your son watched? I have boys your age and I am thinking of taking them. Or would a Disney Broadway show be better for boys?

    • Mix and Match Mama November 7, 2018 at 5:34 am

      Yup! He was there too. I’m not sure he would say it was his favorite, but it’s so entertaining!

  • lindsay November 6, 2018 at 6:25 pm

    Do you like Greek food? Kiki’s in Chinatown in incredible! Just like Greece and actually very reasonably priced! Also, go see Come from Away on Broadway!! Best musical ever!!!

  • Kim November 6, 2018 at 6:48 pm

    I love NY! What a fun helpful post and the comments are great! I didn’t see Max Brenner’s mentioned, one of my favorite restaurants, is it still there? At fifty years old I have only been to NY twice but I’m dying to go back. Hopefully soon!!

  • Rae Land November 6, 2018 at 7:19 pm

    I’m a local!! Here’s a couple of my favorites:
    Spy Museum is amazing for kids and adults. Super interactive!
    Tenement Museum is fascinating (maybe not for young children though) and there’s no AC or heat
    FIT Museum – free small museum at Fashion Institute of Technology

    Serafina – multiple locations. Great pre-show Italian dinner
    Tao – fun Asian restaurant for girl’s trip
    Trattoria Dell’arte – amazing pre-show dinner. A bit pricey
    Sugar Factory – a bit of a tourist’s trap, but children LOVE it
    Da Nico – voted best pizza in Little Italy but everything else is great too. A quaint authentic Italian place
    Benihana – fun hibachi place to take children before a show

    Chloe’s – in Union Square. The ice cream is made from fruits and veggies
    Big Gay Ice Cream Shop – best ice cream in NYC

  • Beth Knecht November 6, 2018 at 7:45 pm

    Yes for 1iota! I ordered our Live with Kelly tickets about two months ahead. We got to the studio around 6 am and we’re fifth in line. I thought that would help get us the best seats, but they put you wherever they want and so being there so early didn’t really lend itself to anything extra! The show is still awesome!

  • Marilu Farnham November 6, 2018 at 7:46 pm

    I was in NYCity last weekend too. We used Ticketmaster to see Dear Evan Hansen. I highly recommend it…a modern day musical , but I’d say it’s for teens and older. We loved Carmine’s. I can’t say enough good things about the food, the staff, and the atmosphere. We also went to the 9-11 Museum. I was in awe. There are no words to explain it. Love this post. Hope you do a recap of your girls weekend.

  • Khushboo Pelia November 6, 2018 at 7:50 pm

    I highly recommend strolling through West Village in Manhattan and DUMBO in Brooklyn. Two of my absolute favorite neighborhoods! In Dumbo, make sure you hit up Juliana’s or Ignazios for some authentic pizza 🙂

  • Kayleigh Quinn November 6, 2018 at 8:07 pm

    My family and I are going to NYC for my mom’s surprise birthday present! I was put in charge of restaurants because I have Celiac Disease. Any good ideas of places my fam will enjoy (that are gluten full as they like to call it) but that will also have some good GF food? Thanks!! Love your blog!

  • Erin November 6, 2018 at 8:56 pm

    New Yorker here and I have to agree with all the others- BRYANT PARK during the winter village is AMAZING! For shopping, skating, and just people watching. If your traveling to NYC with kids the MoMath museum is pretty neat too. Small yet fun! I also really love the HighLine. The Blue Man group is fun but be prepared if your in the seats where you can get stuff on you. If you don’t schedule time to clean yourself off before dinner it could get kind of gross. My family grew up in Greenwich Village so the village also has a place in my heart! I also love the mall near Columbus Circle. I don’t even know what it’s called but it has so many fun restaurants and even a theater right inside. So many fun hideaways!

  • KRM November 6, 2018 at 9:14 pm

    Echoing some of the above recs..
    -Katz Deli – pastrami sandwich. Just get it…it’s life changing
    -Vselka – potato pierogis and a bowl of the hot borscht
    -Need to get soup dumplings from one of the many Chinese restaurants that serve it (joe’s Shanghai, the bao)
    -Dominique Ansel bakery- inventor of the cronut, but get the DKA instead (or both)
    -Laduree – macaroons flown from Paris
    -carbone – great pasta !
    -Xian famous foods – one of the best Chinese “restaurants” in the city, popularized by Anthony bourdain. Get the A1 (cold skin noodles).
    -Mari vanna- possibly the cutest restaurant! Really good Russian food
    -Joe’s pizza, prince st pizza – get a classic cheese slice from Joe’s and a Sicilian pepperoni from prince st

    Museums /sights/ other neighborhoods
    -tenenment museum is truly unique
    -Moma PS1
    -west village..Hudson Street is decorated insanely cute for the holidays
    -east village to get a feel for authentic ny
    -Brooklyn heights- the most beautiful brownstones, then walk on the promenade and look at the sunset over the manhattan skyline
    -Williamsburg/Greenpoint – transmitter park has spectular views of the skyline
    -Washington square park- there’s not a better place to do some people watching

    For your next trip I’d recommend mixing it up and staying around union square..super convenient to get around there and all the fun is below 14yh street

  • Dania November 6, 2018 at 10:39 pm

    I’ve done all the Foods of NY tours at least once, except Chelsea Market (I cant figure out why anyone would need a tour of Chelsea Market) and they are all great!! Which one did y’all do? The original Greenwich Village is my fave. Another great skating rink is Bryant Park. Bryant Park is, hands down, my favorite place in NYC at Christmas. I, too, love the UWS (lived for years in a Brownstone there). It’s still near and dear to my heart, but when I head back to visit I spend far more time in the West Village. It is so quaint and quintessential New York. As far as TV tapings, I’ve been to tons! The View, Fallon, SNL, America’s Got Talent, Anderson Cooper, Martha Stewart. Always get tickets online ahead of time (you can go to the websites to figure out when you need to come back-they release them in blocks at a time). I never had my tickets cancelled so what happened to you was not normal. I get asked all the time for tips, and I have pages of my favorite restaurants and tips on touristy things to do, but I’ll stop here 🙂

    • Mix and Match Mama November 7, 2018 at 5:32 am

      We did Chelsea Market and it was amazing!! We were STUFFED!!! We sat down inside those restaurants and ATE! It was so much fun!! Plus, the history of the market, the building, the neighborhood, the Hyline…all wonderful!

  • Jeanne B November 7, 2018 at 1:16 am

    Hi There from a native New Yorker – Brooklyn born. I live in NC now but have been going to NYC about once a month for the past two years for various reasons – mainly to visit and hang out with a dear friend of mine. I met him here in NC but he moved to NYC for better career opportunities. He’s from Serbia so I’ve been introduced to all things Balkan. Kafana on the East Side is the best for Serbian food! Astoria in Queens has restaurants from just about every corner of the world. Its a short subway ride from Manhattan.
    Tourist options involving the water that is all around NYC:
    1.If you are ever in NYC in the summer, take the water taxi (catch it near FiDi) to Rockaway Beach and spend the day at the beach in NYC. The cost is the same as a subway ride – $2.75 one way (can’t use your MTA card though), and the views of lower Manhattan, Brooklyn, Coney Island, etc are fantastic…especially if you spend the day and come back in the evening/night. Ride is about 45 minutes.
    2.Take the Staten Island Ferry to SI and back – its free! Great views of the Statue and lower Manhattan and to see just how busy New York Harbor can be at times.
    3.Catch a Circle Line tour around Manhattan. Its about 3-4 hours and goes entirely around Manhattan Island (most of the time unless the tides are working against the trip). Its a great way to see the different parts of Manhattan, all the bridges, and get some history lessons from the tour guides. Great for the kids.
    4.Take the Path to Hoboken and walk along the river. NJ has the best views of NYC. Hoboken has a lot of great places to eat too!

  • Mindy Tierney November 7, 2018 at 5:30 am

    I live in the far western suburbs of Philly. I drive to NJ and take the NJ transit train from the Hamilton station. I need to go more often.
    Here are my tips:
    1) We LOVE Juniors Cheesecake restaurant for lunch. It’s super close to Times Square. Amazing food, decent prices for NYC and excellent waiters. Funny thing is we are always so full we have never had their cheesecake! Love it there!
    2) Last time we went we got one of those day passes to see a bunch of attractions. I think it was the NYC pass. My daughter who was 12 at the time and LOVED the wax museum. It’s right next door to Ripley’s. Any tween, teeen or adult would love it. Highly recommend it. Was just a fun indoor place if you have never been to a wax museum. Was in there a long time.
    3) We found John’s Pizza Of Times Square is excellent for dinner. Has amazing architecture and excellent food. Place was super busy, but was a fun atmosphere and great food.

    Happy Wednesday!

  • Jaren November 7, 2018 at 5:40 am

    Thank you for this post!! This is definitely something I want to do very soon!! All the pictures you girls took were so great too!!

  • Sarah J. November 7, 2018 at 5:46 am

    Our last trip to NYC, we were able to score tickets to what was then Kelly & Michael (a mere week before their big split). I had tickets for the View from the same website where you get the Kelly & Ryan tickets and kept checking to see if Kelly & Michael tickets became available. They did! So, I dropped the View and grabbed the Kelly tickets! I heard they go quickly but keep checking the website because people will release theirs if they figure out they can’t go. I’ve tried for years to get tickets to Rachael Ray and just this last year, I finally got a few email offers for tickets though I haven’t been able to go. I also get email offers to see Dr. Oz.

    Seeing Kelly & Michael was a great experience….. one of the highlights for that trip!

  • Chelsey November 7, 2018 at 12:52 pm

    We are wanting to do New York next year and I would love to do it around the holidays. When do the Christmas decorations go up around the city? I figured after Thanksgiving because of the parade but didn’t want to assume!

    • Mix and Match Mama November 7, 2018 at 1:52 pm

      There were already a lot of decorations up! I would say your best bet is when they put up the trip in Rockefeller Center which is always around December 5th.

  • Alex smith November 7, 2018 at 1:50 pm

    Bryant Park during Christmas is awesome too! Skating normally isn’t too packed and there’s a giant Christmas tree…. if you’re looking for genuine real good Italian food campognolas on the upper east side is the best in NY!

  • Beth Kaiser November 7, 2018 at 2:30 pm

    Eat pizza at Artichoke Basille. We are still talking about it. I would go back just for that.
    Use the app City Mapper. It tells you what subway to get on, where to get off and how long of a walk it is after that. Best app ever!!!!
    Also, stop at Levain Bakery for a warm cookie. OMG. Yummy!!!!
    Walk across the Brooklyn Bridge & stop for lobster rolls at Luke’s Lobster!
    I want to go back, and we were there less than 2 weeks ago!!!

  • Kristen November 7, 2018 at 9:19 pm

    Can you write about what to wear? Shoe recommendations for all that walking. Going in December. Is it really that cold?

  • Maggie November 8, 2018 at 2:16 am

    “Don’t you love New York in the fall? It makes me want to buy school supplies. I would send you a bouquet of newly sharpened pencils if I knew your name and address.”

    Of course from my favorite movie,You’ve Got Mail!

  • Abby Smith November 8, 2018 at 7:58 am

    Having brunch at Bubby’s is a must (many locations, we love the one in Tribeca)!! Their homemade biscuits & jam and their pancakes are unreal! Many locals recommended it to us. Also, we did Scott’s Pizza Tour and it was one of our favorite things. On one trip, my girlfriend and I found ourselves walking through 30 Rock around 2:00pm and were recruited into the standby line for Jimmy Fallon’s monologue dress rehearsal. It was SO FUN, and only took about 2 hours of our day!

  • Katherine November 8, 2018 at 9:00 am

    Shay, the timing of your post is spot on! I am so excited to read and takes notes! I’m taking my daughter there mid-December as a surprise for her 13th birthday. As a momma I believe 13 is such a milestone age for all kids but especially our young ladies. And, I’m kind of freaking out as I’ve never been myself. We (well I, since she has no idea) plan on seeing and experiencing as much as we can while still enjoying our time and just ‘being’ in all of the moments. Thanks so much for this post!!!

  • Courtney Wagoner November 8, 2018 at 2:07 pm

    I lidved in the city for years and when I had visitors come, we always did the Circle Line boat tour. (Believe you get on at 42nd & 11Ave, but double check) There is either a 2 hour or 4 hour boat ride that takes you around the entire island of Manhattan and the guide tells you about all of the various neighborhoods, etc. I loved it because the boat goes right up to the Statue of Liberty and you get a lot of history about the city in one morning/afternoon.

    Restaurants: Mole for Mexican , L’Artusi, & Carbone are good ones!

  • April November 8, 2018 at 9:05 pm

    When walking NYC with Kids, how easy is it to find bathrooms?

    • Mix and Match Mama November 9, 2018 at 5:03 am

      We always try and go when we stop places (to eat, grabbing coffee at Starbucks, at major department stores, etc). Honestly though, it’s not that hard to find places that have them as you’re walking.

  • Kim November 8, 2018 at 9:26 pm

    If you fly into LaGuardia, you can buy the 7 day unlimited subway pass before exiting the airport. It’s $30 per person but it pays for itself when visiting the city for only a few days. Once you have the pass, walk out of the airport and a free connector bus will take you to the Jackson Heights-Roosevelt Ave Subway Station. Go into the station and then take the subway to your hotel. You’ve just saved yourself a $40 taxi ride! We do this every year when we visit NYC for a long weekend. The entire trip we zigzag all over Manhattan, because we use Google Maps app. Enter which restaurant or attraction you’d like to get to, press the public transportation button, and you will see which train to take along with how many stops are between you and your hopping-off station. Once you come out of the subway station, press the walking man on the app and then walk to your destination. You will use the unlimited subway pass a lot and you will check off your list all the places you hoped to visit on that trip. Happy travels!

  • Emily Schmidt November 9, 2018 at 7:07 am

    What was the best things you ate on the food tour in Chealsea market? Going next week!

    • Mix and Match Mama November 9, 2018 at 7:48 am

      On our 8th stop, we had chicken pot pies that were so delicious!!

  • Amanda November 9, 2018 at 8:38 am

    NYC is our favorite!! We got engaged there (in Bryant Park), and love going back whenever we get the chance! We took our kids three years ago for Thanksgiving, and it was so much fun and easier than expected (they were 6, 4, and 11 months). Besides loving the Macy’s Parade (obvi), our kids loved the Double Decker Bus tour, the Staten Island Ferry, Heckscher Playground (in Central Park), and ice skating in Bryant Park! We’re already planning to go back for Thanksgiving next year!

  • Lauren W November 9, 2018 at 8:49 am

    I am a New Yorker and couldn’t help to comment with more restaurant recommendations!

    Here are some of my favorites:

    Rosa Mexicano- I prefer the one on 18th street
    Lillies Victorian Establishment (either location)
    Beauty and Essex- a speakeasy!!
    Frying Pan (in the summer)
    Birreria- Top floor in Eataly, almost feels hidden, but its a cool rooftop that is covered in the colder months
    Carroll Place- tasty Italian food with a great atmosphere, their happy hour food/drink specials are super reasonable!!
    230 Fifth- a tourist “trap” but AWESOME views of the Empire State Building and a cool spot for a drink
    The Campbell- expensive cocktails but a must-do…it’s a secret bar inside of Grand Central Station!!
    La Lanterna Di Vittorio- lantern lit indoor garden with live jazz music and Italian food– what could be better!?
    The Cellar- in the basement of Beecher Cheese Shop!

  • Angela Pino November 9, 2018 at 12:11 pm

    I kept hoping you’d say you were there to run the marathon! I needed some friendly faces running it (or cheering) with me. I live near the city and will have to go in and do one of those food tours now — as well as see “Mean Girls”! It’s been on my list for a while now!

  • Bridgette November 9, 2018 at 12:16 pm

    The timing of this couldn’t be better! We are taking our younger teens to NYC for Christmas. I have two pages of notes just from the comments left here! Does anyone have any hints for successfully utilizing the subway system? I am a bit intimidated by the thought of it having never experienced the subway before! Someone recommended the City Mapper App which I plan to check out. Any other suggestions?

    • Mix and Match Mama November 10, 2018 at 4:21 am

      It’s really not hard! Even the iPhone “map” app can help you maneuver it!!

  • Stacie Branch November 14, 2018 at 8:20 am

    Can you give any tips on packing for your trip to NY….carry on bag/purse suggestions….Checked Baggage? I am traveling there next week for the first time with my 9 year old daughter for the parade, Lion King, and the Christmas Spectacular. I loved all your suggestions and we cant wait, but I am struggling with the packing aspect as we don’t travel a lot. This will be her first plane trip and my first in many years. Thanks

    • Mix and Match Mama November 14, 2018 at 9:07 am

      That sounds like so much fun!! When K and I went, I checked one bag (that we shared) and then we each had a tote for a carry on. You might need to check more depending on how many layers you need to bring for the colder weather.

  • Sara Roberts November 17, 2018 at 4:22 pm

    Is it weird that I can’t find a dinner reservation for Carmine’s on Jan 12? The latest time they have is 3:30 pm. Is that normal?

    • Mix and Match Mama November 18, 2018 at 5:19 am

      Yup. They book up so far in advance!! Are you trying to go before a show? If not, try the one on the Upper West Side.