SOLO TRAVEL: SAN FRANCISCO, PART II

Last time we spoke I was on the BART train from SFO to downtown SF continuing my solo journey.I know it’s been while since then (Life keeps me busy), but I hope you will join me for rest of the journey.

Downtown, SF

Downtown, SF

Downtown, SF

Downtown, SF

Little Italy

Little Italy

As you may know, SF is famous for it’s foggy, cool weather and steep hills. I think this is what makes SF especially romantic. But the September days I visited this beautiful city were blessed with unusual sunny weather. Even though the weather was cool as usual, the foggy weather was surprisingly absent… As my train was moving closer to downtown, the city’s famous hills became visible along the railroad tracks. The view of the houses on steep hills was especially beautiful.

I stayed at the Hyatt Regency in San Francisco, which is only a short distance from the train station(Powell Street). This hotel is surrounded by beautiful views. The famous Ferry building is just few steps away … From the hotel room (Hyatt Regency) I had the most amazing view of the SF Bay Bridge. During the night, the sight of the Bay Bridge and reflections of street lights on the water becomes quite spectacular. My first night at the hotel, I kept staring out of the window just lost in the scenery. It kind of reminded me of Paris at night, but the hills of SF streets were quick to remind me back that I was indeed in SF.

View of the Bay Bridge

View of the Bay Bridge

photo (5)

Hyatt Regency is in the financial district of SF..This is a good central location as you can catch cable cars or trams to all the attractions such as Fisherman’s wharf, Lombard Street and Chinatown from Financial District.

As Ferry building was only steps away from my hotel, I loved spending my mornings in Ferry plaza grabbing my morning espresso and Belgian waffles from the Blue Bottle Coffee Cafe. The plaza is filled with number of restaurants and espresso bars. Grabbing dinner from one of the restaurants in Ferry plaza might just get you a table with the beautiful view of the Bay Bridge. Something about dinner with candle lights, flowers and amazing view of the Bay Bridge just creates an overwhelmingly romantic atmosphere. Saturday mornings are perfect to stroll around the neighbourhood of the Ferry building as there’s usually a Farmer’s market…

Ferry Building

Ferry Building

photo (2)

photo (1)

Farmer's Market

Farmer’s Market

SF is one of the smallest cities I have visited, you can travel almost anywhere in SF downtown by the trams and cable cars. Riding trams all over the city was one of the exciting parts of visiting SF. It was as enjoyable as riding a roller-coaster. Tram conductors are quite friendly; they love getting to know the tourists who travel to SF from all over the world.

photo 2

photo 1 (2)

Chinatown is the perfect place to be in SF around lunch time. Most of my lunch hours on this trip were spent over Dim Sum in places such as Great Eastern, Yank Sing, and Delicious Dim Sum. The very thought of having lightly breaded Dim Sum filled with juicy deliciousness makes me want to catch the next flight back to SF…this very minute .

Most visitors to SF seem to catch the tram ride to Fisherman’s wharf to spend their evenings, but for me it was too touristy. My mission was to get to the heart of the city and embrace all its richness in the rawest form. So, I spent my afternoons, walking the hills of Lombard Street (the crookedest street in US) with my afternoon espresso. The view of San Francisco Bay and the houses on the Russian Hill from the top of the Lombard Street at sunset just creates beautiful scenery. I tried to capture this magnificent view with my camera lens, but I can tell you that my lenses were no match for such live beauty.

I told you in my previous post, the Golden Gate Beauty is what initially attracted me to SF. I visited this beauty on the second day of my trip. You can catch the 30-Stockton bus from Union Square and transfer to the 28-19 Ave bus to get to Golden Gate bridge (if you forget, you can just ask any bus driver how to get to Golden Gate Bridge, like I did).

photo (3)

The view of the Golden Gate Bridge is simply breath taking. It is one of the most impressive man-made structures; I have come know in my life. The stunning view of the 70 –year- old golden beauty mixed with blue, sunny skies overwhelmed me with pure joy. It is one of the most memorable experiences in my life; I often revisit this memory whenever I can as it always makes me smile.

photo 5

When it was time for me to leave SF, I was simply consumed with overwhelming sadness. Yes, I was nervous to take on my first solo adventure and had imagined to feel isolated and lonely. But instead I got to know this beautiful romantic city in its rawest essence. To my surprise, except for a couple of moments, I hardly felt alone. I was always surrounded by the friendliest people, who always volunteered to snap pictures for me and went out of their way to get to know me. After all, how can you feel alone in such a beautiful, friendly city!!!.

photo 4

SF is not the only thing I got to know on this solo trip… It was a rare opportunity for me to learn about myself as well. I never thought I will enjoy experiencing an unknown city while travelling solo. But I did. And this experience will be sure to remind me that anything in life is possible as I travel through different stopovers in my life……….

So, would you plan a solo trip this year? If you do plan, where would you go?(I would love to hear about it). Wherever you choose to travel, I wish you will have the same wonderful journey I had… and I hope it will be a pleasant memory that will linger in your memory for years to come, as it did for me……..

SOLO TRAVEL: SAN FRANCISCO

photo 3

photo 4

photo1

The very first time I was in San Francisco (SF), I was all by myself. I wasn’t sure what to expect and I was nervous like a little girl at her first day in school. But it was something on my bucket list, you know…. things I’d love to do before I see the sunrise for the last time;). To tell you the truth I was inspired by a Swedish girl who had travelled to Istanbul (Turkey) all by herself (I read her trip report somewhere on the internet). And I instantly felt “Travel Envy”, something I did not know I would feel before. I mean Istanbul?? Really? How adventurous this girl has to be to travel all the way around the world to a completely unknown place by herself. So then and there, I decided I had to plan it…my very first solo trip. Not to Istanbul of course, I am not that brave.

There I was on the internet searching for travel destinations and I could not keep my eyes off the breathtaking views of the Golden Gate Bridge. I was in a complete awe that I had travelled this far in life without seeing the magnificent Golden Gate beauty. Within hours, I had bought my plane ticket to SF and was planning to be there in 2 weeks’ time.

Sure, SF has a good reputation of being a friendly, safe city, but still going on a trip and spending 4 days alone in a different place filled me with agonizing feelings. Now that I look back, the solo trip to SF turned out to be anything but agonizing. It was quite a ride filled with adventure, excitement, humor and fun… all packed in one journey.

As soon as I landed in SFO airport, I thought I would disappear among massive crowds. But if you are a young, female traveler travelling solo you will be anything but invisible as I came to know. I could feel the excitement and adventure of the trip from the very beginning. Everyone I met or I passed by in the airport, train were curious. They all wanted to know the answer to one burning question: “Why is a girl like me travelling solo?” Some even volunteered to carry my baggage and guide me to the train station. Needles to say I was highly amused. I smiled with them but kept the conversation to minimum as I was being extra careful as a first time, solo traveler. I could hardly contain my excitement as I imagined the beautiful places I would see, do and feel in SF: Golden Gate Bridge, Lombard Street, Ferry building, trams and amazing food. And I was going to do all these……and explore an unknown city in and out all by myself.

All you need to enjoy SF is a train ticket (from BART station), 3-day metro pass (from the information center at the airport) and a place to stay in downtown. As soon as I collected my baggage, I went to the information center to get a 3-day Metro pass (You can ride buses, trams with this pass for about $21). From there, I went to BART (Bay Area Rapid Transportation) station at the airport. This is where you catch train to go to downtown. You can also catch the train back from Powell station, downtown to the airport.

As I was sitting down in the train, I could feel immediately I was off to a magical journey. I had hoped the train would take me to the downtown. But instead, the train took me to a romantic city that I hadn’t expected to see and feel. If you hadn’t heard this before, SF is such a romantic city; I could feel the romance in the atmosphere, even though I was solo on this trip. Four days solo in SF were some of the most magical and inspiring days in my life. These days were filled with everything wonderful; candle light dinners with the view of Bay Bridge, evenings at the Lombard street, Dimsum lunch in China Town, breakfast at the ferry building, and my first encounter with the Golden Gate Bridge; something quite unforgettable.

Being solo on this trip and meeting the city for the very first time was sort of felt like meeting a date for the first time, except I fell in love with the city instantly. I can’t wait to tell you all about that my romantic encounter with the city. I see this post is already bit long, so I will tell you about all my adventures in SF in the next post.

photo4

photo2

photo 12

photo 2a

Summer Getaway:Martha’s Vineyard

photo11

 

photo4

photo 6

 

I never planned on visiting MV (Martha’s Vineyard)…Let’s just say it happened that way. When I was in Cape Cod, I couldn’t pass on the opportunity of catching the 45 min ferry ride from Provincetown to MV.

Life sure has her ways of keeping us surprised… Some of the spur of the moment decisions I’ve made have led me to the most memorable travel experiences…MV is one of those experiences.

As soon as the ferry (steamship authority) reached the Oak Bluff port on the Vineyard, I realized why so many (including a few presidents) have fallen in love with the island. From a distance, it looks like a quaint, little island that appears in a fairy tale. When you are on the island, you feel like you have been transported to a completely different place. You see cute, colorful houses, water features in the middle of Oak Bluff, gardens filled with flowers, kites floating in the blue skies, little kids flying kites lost in their own world…
From the get go, MV echoes tranquility, which is far cry from the hectic, screaming world, I have come to know…Oak Bluff is where you have the famous gingerbread houses in the vineyard. The Gingerbread houses are painted in pretty pastel colors: blue, lavender, green, pink. They look like little cottages from the story of Little Red Riding Hood.

Oak Bluff also has a quaint town center, where you can shop for beach apparels, ice cream, food …All you need to do is rent a moped or a bicycle ( may be a boat too?) Then you are all set for the island life…

Besides Oak Bluff, there are a few other towns on the island: Tisbury, Aquinnah, Vineyard haven, Chilmark, Edgar town. There’s a bus leaving from one town to another every fifteen minutes on the island. So, you can either catch the bus or bring your own car on the ferry to roam around the island.
I especially loved Edgar town. It is a picturesque town filled with cute town center, restaurants, beaches and lighthouses. I love spending my evenings in Edgar town just laying on the beach, watching sails go by, hearing the rhythms of waves crashing on the beach and enjoying the view of the lighthouses basked in the evening light. The summer days I spent in the vineyard made me forget about everything else: hectic work schedules, to-do lists…I felt as if I was living in a parallel universe where time stood still… MV really can do that to you.

My favorite memory of the Vineyard is the magnificent sight of the sun setting over Atlantic Ocean. With only handful souls close by, you really feel as if you have been given your own little island to bask in the glory of the scenery.

And I’m counting days again this summer…to the day I can be a beach bum on the Martha’s Vineyard again.

Disclosure: MV is not the most budget friendliest place:)..

photo 3

photo 5

 

photo5

 

photo 7

 

photo3

 

photo12

 

 

Cape Cod:Let’s Go Sailing

photo 4
photo 12

Cool breezes stroking my hair, slightly warm sun-rays kissing my feet…..the breath-taking view of the sun coloring the western sky with reddish, golden tones, as I’m trying to capture the view…….. This is what I love about sailing. Something about being in water and just sailing away, drifting towards the sunset… It completely reinvigorates my soul.

Cape Cod has to be one of the most exciting places to go sailing in summer. When I was in Hyannis, Cape Cod for the first time, I had a hard time believing that it is just 4 hours away from NYC. The atmosphere in Hyannis is more like the life on an island than that of the city. I loved walking the streets of Hyannis, especially the Main Street, filled with restaurants, pubs and ice-creams parlors. You see free, wandering souls sitting at the patios of restaurants along the streets, chatting with each other, enjoying amazing foods and drinks, well after the midnight. It’s like the night will never end.

Cape Cod is not the typical tourist destination over-run by tourists that I have come to know over the years. It has a more relaxed, calm vibe, somehow everyone there seem to be transported into a Cape Cod state-of -mind almost instantly. From the Irish and British pubs you see along Main Street, you may think you have been transported to Europe for the night. But when the day dawns, you’ll know you are in Cape Cod, especially when you see blue water, sails, and jet skies everywhere. My routine was simple: stroll to a café early in the morning, grab breakfast and hit the water for sailing till sun set. Capecodians (what I call the good people of Cape Cod) are some of the nicest people I’ve met. Every time, I interact with them, I keep smiling and can’t shed the happy feeling of how nice they are! They truly keep the friendly spirit and positive vibes of Cape Cod alive.

If you stop by a local café, don’t forget to get their scoop on the local hot spots. That’s how I got to know “P” town, that’s what the locals call Provincetown. This quaint town has the vibe of a little fisherman village, with awesome spread of beaches and restaurants. “P” town is just about 30 minutes from Hyannis, where locals go to hang by the beach, jet skiing, go whale watching and enjoy yummy seafood.

More reasons to love Cape Cod? Both Nantucket Island and Martha’s Vineyard are only about one hour away from Cape Cod. You can catch the Steamship Authority Ferry from Hyannis to Nantucket. Or if an hour in the awesome blue water sounds too hectic, how about catching a helicopter ride over Atlantic to Nantucket Island?.I took the ferry from Woods hole (Falmouth) to Martha’s Vineyard (another breathtaking beautiful island, I can’t wait to talk about) on the third day in Cape Cod.

Calming winds, amazing seafood, friendly people, beautiful lighthouses, quaint towns, close-by islands, these are all reasons to love Cape Cod. But what I love most about Cape Cod is sailing out of Hyannis just before the sun is about set over it. Amazing beauty in the evening skies, light houses, sails flipping in the air, the rhythmic sounds of the water is so overwhelming, it even made my eyes teary couple of times while sailing. When someone asks me what is my favorite vacation destination, I am little hesitant to answer, it’s because there are many places on the top of my list. But somehow when I hear this question, I’ll always remember the calm, serene, beautiful summer evenings of Hyannis, Cape Cod. It is just that kind of a place…

photo 10

photo 9

photo 18

photo 17

photo
photo 1

photo 5

photo16

photo18

photo21

NYC: PART II

photo 14

Every time I come back from NYC, I seem to have captured over 200+ pictures. Still, when I go through them, I can’t shed this overwhelming sadness that I haven’t captured the raw essence of this amazing city. Somehow, Pictures never seem to capture the life of the city as it plays out in front of my naked eyes. From hotdog carts to sky scrappers and tourists, who are excited like little children at Disney world, NY seem to creates picture-worthy moment every mili-second.

This time I was on a mission to learn how to use my new Cannon Rebel T3i, while strolling in my favorite city. But when I climbed up to 69th floor of the Top of the Rock, I realized I forgot lenses for the camera. Yes, I was tempted to curse my unforgivable fate & stars!! Instead I opted to capture the amazing city through the eyes of my iphone.

The view from the Top of the Rock is so breath taking that it gives an amazing 360° view of NYC. I was there when sun was about to set over NYC, and mesmerized by the serene view of the city. For a while, I did nothing but starred at the city silently, and I could just feel the depth, character and history of the city.

From the Top of the Rock(Top of the Rockefeller Plaza), you could see the Empire State Building, Chrysler building, Central Park, Statue of Liberty and Hudson River, Needless to say I was as excited as a little kid who sees snow-fall for the first time in their life. These are some pictures of the city my iphone stored in her memory, although I am sure what my naked eyes saw is even more spectacular:)

photo 19

photo20

photo 12

photo22

photo 8

photo21

photo 16

Atalantic City: Let’s Let Loose

photo 4ac

I must drive my fellow travel mate mad by trying to “shoot” everything beautiful my eyes come across, whenever I travel… I’m constantly worried that I may not remember those moments well, if not captured on film….
But Atlantic City (AC) is not one of those places, where you find your travel Zen….But it’s where adrenaline rush overpowers you…make you feel like you’re flying high. Even when you are sitting on a chair near a $1 slot machine…

I often forget about my camera in this city…Because AC is all about living in the moment … It is also a blessing that AC is just about 2 hours from NYC. Every time, I ‘m in New York, I try to venture out to New England states. This February, I was planning to visit Maine, but snow storms and roads piled with 7 inches of snow instead lured me to adrenaline filled Atlantic City…

If I haven’t told you already….I love living on the edge, and I can’t think of a better way to do it than making spur -of the- moment decisions and gambling my life away. Plus, Atlantic City is exactly what I needed, after spending a fortune on macarons and shopping on Fifth Avenue in NYC.
The Board walk in Atlantic City sure is pretty to visit, if you can talk yourself away from those wild slot machines and black jack tables in the casinos.

Salt Water Taffy on Board Walk is a sweet way to live up to your sweet tooth. If you happen to be in AC on a sunny, warm, beach day, don’t forget to take a stroll on the board walk munching on sweet treats from Salt Water Taffy. I love Sea salt butter cream chocolate, sea salt creamy caramels and fudge from Salt from Salt Water Taffy. So yummy!

So far, I have been to four casinos in Atlantic City: Caesars, Golden Nugget, Bally’s and Borgata Casino and Resort. The casino at the Golden Nugget is smaller compared to Caesars and Borgata.

Golden Nugget Resort & Casino, AC

Golden Nugget Resort & Casino, AC

Golden Nugget Resort & Casino,AC

Golden Nugget Resort & Casino,AC


Both Borgata and Golden Nugget have a beautiful view of the marina, and both Ceesers and Ballys are located right on the Board Walk. If you are first time in AC visiting these casinos, don’t forget to get free memberships they offer. Memberships in these casinos usually come with free credit to casino floors and tier membership points often qualify members for free dinners and upgrades.

This time, I spent my first night in Atlantic City in the Golden Nugget, wasting the night away, being a night owl……… making acquaintance with slot machines. But the second day in Borgata Casino was the most memorable day that filled my trip with even more sweet memories. It turned out I wasn’t just gambling my life away… My luck wasn’t as terrible as I had imagined previously… On the second day in AC, I won a $2000 jackpot by playing $1 slot machine.

Yes!! Sometimes, the life sure has a strange way of surprising us when it’s least expected.
Needless to say I hurried straight back to New York for some more yummy macaron..

FOOD…..O’GASM

Crepes On Columbus,,NY

Crepes On Columbus,,NY


Crepes On Columbus, NY

Crepes On Columbus, NY


photo 4

They say it’s true….when you enjoy the most decadent, flavorful food; you are bound to experience a level of pleasure similar to an orgasm. Now, I am not a foodie per se, but in NYC anything is possible.

When in NY; I keep finding myself waking up in the middle of night, strolling through the streets in search of anything delicious. One night, I was up craving for some Tiramisu,around 3.00am….and Lucky for me there are many cafes open 24 hours in the city.Remedy diner on E Houston St is one of those cafes, where you can grab a hardy breakfast, cappuccino or deserts any time of the day. There are also many jazz and night clubs near Remedy Diner, if you just feel like being a night owl.

To me, Manhattan is sort of like a never ending carnival, where bunch of cultures get together and decide to enjoy their favorite cuisines along the streets, day & night. It’s like having your daily meals from three different continents: Baguette and crepes for breakfast, mediterrean for lunch. And may be something from Tuscany, Italy for dinner! Or if I don’t feel like going through the hassle of making reservations, I may just cozy up to street vendors for some lamb over rice.

The first time I was in NYC, I was most excited about trying out food from street vendors more than anything. But I was terrified at first, as with most cities in the world street food has a not-so-good reputation for being unsanitary. But as with everything else in my life, I’m glad I chose the dive first, think later approach. As you see, I indeed survived to tell you the story :).

photo 1

One thing I have noticed about New Yorkers is that they are very big on picking up on trends. They seem to love catching up with friends on relaxing afternoons, over espresso and macarons. La Maison du Macaron café is one of those quaint macaron cafes where you can enjoy having delicious macarons (passion fruit, pistachio, chocolate flavors my favorite), while watching passengers walk by the café.

Few other restaurants, I have enjoyed in the city: Serendipity III (best frozen hot chocolate, need reservation), Macaron Café (for macarons), Crepes on Columbus (for breakfast), Le Pain Quotidien and Magnolia Bakery (for cupcakes).

La Pain Quotidien, NY

La Pain Quotidien, NY

Even though, I have mentioned a few restaurants above, I should to tell you that I am not very big on following recommendations. Here’s why… I think the best way for a traveler to experience a city is on their own …stroll through the city… experience the unknown and just inhale the atmosphere of it all by just diving in…

Sometimes, it’s the lesser known hole-in-the-wall kind of restaurants in east Harlem, Staten Island that will surprise you the most.

In New York, you can just pick a café or a restaurant just by walking the streets…French, American, Italian, Chinese; they are everywhere….Just pick something your heart desires. So, what if you happen to make acquaintance with a not-so-good café or restaurant? I guess it will be your very own story that you will probably tell another traveler. Right?

Stroll with an open mind….you are bound to experience adventure on every journey…

photo 1b

A Stroll Down Fifth Avenue

photo 3fff

photo 1fff

photo 5b

photo 1c
photo 2a
photo 50

photo 4f

photo 1ff

photo 11

photo 34

Museums are such a great way to make acquaintance with any city. Fifth Avenue of NYC is full of them. But when I am in NYC, I find myself to strolling down Fifth Avenue skipping all the museums. To me, the entire Fifth Ave between E47th and 60th street is sort of a museum that showcases the beautiful modern art pieces by some of the most talented fashion designers.

I love the sight of yellow taxi cabs and shoppers hopping on and off the cabs down the entire stretch of Fifth Ave. Sometimes, I am tempted to catch a cab instead of strolling… But I wouldn’t want to miss any of it……Strolling through the streets of New York is my way of getting to know the city on a more intimate level.
I love seeing beautiful window displays by various designers and capturing them, through all four seasons. I may not stop to shop at all of them… But that doesn’t stop me from admiring their art displays. To me, fashion is like any other art form…… admiring fashion is like admiring the work of Picasso. You may either find it truly amazing or may struggle to see its wonder of it. But one thing is for certain…..that just owning an art that you don’t truly admire does not make you an art expert.

Whenever, I stroll by the window of Tiffany & Co, I cannot help but think of Audrey Hepburn in her little black dress, pearls and sunglasses from Breakfast at Tiffany’s. I truly love the scene from Breakfast at Tiffany’s , where she stops by Tiffany’s every morning and just falls into daydreaming. Can anybody be more stylish and elegant than Audrey Hepburn? I mean really? I just loved the way she defined style quite elegantly, I might say, without being a walking billboard for a designer label.

So, whenever I am passing by Tiffany’s’, I always stop to peer into their window. It is my way of expressing admiration to such a stylish, elegant woman. May be it was Audrey (Hepburn) who first got me to like Louis Vuitton or maybe it was their simple classic design, I can’t be sure..But somehow when I walk by their store on E 57th & Fifth Avenue, I feel kind of drawn to it…

photo 6

This time I wanted to welcome a Louis Vuitton Speedy 30 for my collection. Inside the E 57th store is as fashionable as you can imagine, although it is hard to tell security from the sales personnel. If you are not careful, you might confuse all the men dressed in black suits and ear pieces with CIA agents rather than sales people. They sort of made me smile.

But Paul Basso at the E 57th the store is different. He is one of those sales people that every high- end fashion store dreams about. With his pleasing, energetic personality he just knows how to make his customers feel very special. We chatted little bit about the Louis Vuitton Speedy and even about Audrey Hepburn. As I suspected, he knew the history between classic Speedy 25 and the elegant ,Audrey Hepburn. He let me try both the monogram and Damier canvas of the Speedy. And finally we both agreed that monogram canvas Speedy is too much of classic not to have. Voila! I was all set with a Louis Classic..

photo 1a

As soon as I stepped out onto Fifth Avenue with the brown Louis bag with my Speedy in it, I was swamped by some fashionable ladies strolling along Fifth Ave. They all congratulated me on the new addition, and some eager few even peered into my bag only to find a neatly wrapped box. I could just feel their excitement, because that’s exactly how I was feeling ….

It was one of those…rare, sunny winter day on Fifth Ave. The air was crisp, the crowd was fashionable, and sweet aroma of chocolate, macaroons mixed with smell of sweet nuts swayed me to head towards 7th Ave for some macaroons and Cappuccino…

NYC -Grand Central Terminal

photo 4 (2)

photo 3 (2)

Sometimes we find inspiration in life in most unexpected places…NYC is one those places. At first, all the loud sirens, colossal crowds, never ending traffic seem anything but inspiring. But when I am in the city, I always feel inspired…

Super Bowl weekend in the city was one of the most crowded, frenetic, yet most exciting weekend ever. With snow storms and zealot crowds the city just seems to stick to its tradition of keeping her inhabitants on the edge.

Every time I am in the city, I try to stay in a different hotel and just like the cafes and bistros I like to sample new one out each time. This time I chose Kitano-New York, Park Avenue. Kitano is a cute, Japanese themed hotel in the quiet Murray neighborhood. Did I also tell you that they have heated seats in their lovely bathrooms?:)

Kitano-New York is only a block down from the Grand Central Terminal and a ten minute walk to more touristy Times Square area.

Sometimes, I am glad I’m just a visitor of the city, not one of her inhabitants. Simply, because my visiting, strolling self is able to enjoy the quiet allure of places like the Grand Central Terminal leisurely.

photo 2 (3)

photo 6

photo 8

photo 7

I absolutely loved waking up and strolling down to the Grand Central Terminal in the weekend mornings to capture the allure of it. It is awe-inspiring to see the beauty of the Grand Central Terminal, which has not diminished even a bit by thousands of passengers travelling through it daily.

photo 1 (5)

photo 1

photo 2 (4)

Stepping on to the Terminal just might give you the feeling that you are in a museum that showcases the history and architecture of 100+ years. The architecture of the terminal itself is so inspiring; I could not resist myself to snap away everything my eyes came across. For a moment, I felt as if I was standing still, while everything in front of me was moving like a scenes from a movie. Some passengers crossing through the station even slowed down with a smile, so I can capture the splendor of the terminal in still prints.

photo 2

All the quaint boutiques, cafes and spice shops spread across the Grand Central Terminal were also too beautiful to ignore. I could not resist myself to grab a cup of latte with Pain au chocolat from Zaro’s bakery there, while enjoying the views of the terminal and its travelers.

photo 5 (2)

photo 9

photo 3 (3)A

What you have heard all along is so true!!! The Grand Central Terminal in New York may be one of the most beautiful stations in the world. If you are in the city, don’t forget to visit this beauty, you may very well feel like you’re in a scene of a Hollywood movie.

So, where was I strolling after the Grand Central station?…. I found myself strolling down Fifth Avenue, which is more magnificent than the Magnificent Mile ;)…I just can’t wait to share with you all the pictures and stories from the stroll down the fifth… in my next post….

NYC

photo_NY1_t
photo_NY5T

photo_NY4t

Simply put it “I love New York”. I have been to the city more than dozens times.  But, I cannot tell you precisely which trip was my favorite. Each and every time the city has overwhelmed me with her charm and vivacious nature. Perhaps, it was the first time. As I recall, it was a month in autumn. I set my eyes on the giant billboards of Times Square, and I felt it… The kid-like spirit inside me awakened with joy. I spent that autumn night sitting down in a corner of the Times Square  munching on street food, close to the time sun was about to rise. That night, I was just living in the moment…watching dozens of beings gracing the city limits of New York. They all had a warm light cast on their faces, and I was certain that it wasn’t from the giant billboards. Living in the moment can do that to a person, it gives birth to happiness.

May be, Paris is more romantic. But the city that never sleeps is always beaming with life. Even the giant concrete skyscrapers of the city seem to have lives of their own. They all seem to tell a story about generations that build such a magnificent city.

Usually, million visitors hanging on every sidewalk, every street corner would bother me, but not in New York. Ironically, tourists are part of the city; they make the city more alive.

The city is also a heaven to all the foodies…from unforgettable street food to upscale five star entrées. Another reason to love the city? ALL the quaint cupcake shops, macron and pastry shops that city has to offer. If you are in NYC, trying out frozen hot chocolate at Serendipity is a must. I make it a point to try something new every time I am in the city, but I love nothing more than buying food from street vendors and watch tourists jumping in front of masses with their massive cameras, laughing and shouting with joy.

Simple stroll through Saks Fifth Avenue in my stilettos, browsing through the window of Tiffany with a cup of latte or a cappuccino seem to makes me just happy.  Funny! But it’s true, just strolling down the streets of NYC can make you excited and make you feel like you are part of something bigger than life. The city has treated me so well in all my visits, blessing me with sunny weather, relaxed attitude.  I just seem to have this great bond, connection with her. So, it is no wonder that I will be visiting my favorite city again…tomorrow to be exact, and I just can’t wait…