NY Minute: Downtown Adventure (Part 1)

New York, concrete jungle where dreams are made of

There’s nothing you can’t do

Now you’re in New York

These streets will make you feel brand new

Big lights will inspire you

Hear it in New York, New York, New York

Alicia Keys – Empire State of Mind


This was the song playing in my head while I was on the bus to New York City last Saturday.

I convinced my husband Abraham and my friend Minette to go with me and explore downtown NYC. We left Albany, NY  at 7:30 am and arrived at 10:20 am in NYC Port Authority Bus Terminal.

We purchased Gray Line’s NY Sightseeing Downtown Day Tour for 35$ each. We only had 8 hours to spend in NYC, so we planned to check out a few places we’ve never been to before.


The Plan:

1. Korea Town

2. Little Italy

3. 9/11 Memorial

4. Wherever our feet take us


What We Did:

The ticket agent told us to wait for our bus on 42nd Street between 9th and 8th Avenue. We planned to eat lunch at the New Wonjo Restaurant in Korea Town on 32nd Street and 5th Avenue. It’s a 17-minute walk from our location.

We were so eager to start exploring the city. We did not wait for the bus. Instead, we started walking towards 5th Avenue. Guess what? It took us almost an hour to reach our destination. Why? Well, we can’t help ourselves from stopping and taking photos of these gorgeous sights!


Lowell Fountain at Bryant Park
Lowell Fountain at Bryant Park
Empire State Building
Empire State Building at 5th Avenue


And yes, we did a little bit of shopping too! It was around 91 degrees Fahrenheit, we thought of getting hats to protect our face from the scorching heat. The caps were on promo (Buy one, get one 50% off), so we took advantage of the discount.


NY Yankees Hat
Yankee Clubhouse Shop at 5th Avenue


Finally, we arrived at the New Wonjo in Korea Town. A friend recommended this place when she heard that we were looking for a great Korean BBQ restaurant.


New Wonjo NYC
New Wonjo Restaurant


We ordered the Marinated Premium Gal Bi (Short Rib) that comes with various side dishes: salad, kimchi, steamed egg, etc. The meat was charcoal grilled on our table. We tried the beef, and we all agreed – the steak was delicious!


New Wonju Restaurant
Premium Gal Bi


Our belly was full when we left the restaurant. We are definitely going back to New Wonjo next time we are in Korea Town.

We were happy to find a Gray Line/NY Sightseeing bus stop near the restaurant. The open-top, double-decker bus arrived, we got on the bus and joined the other passengers seated on the top deck. We had an excellent panoramic view of downtown NYC!


Union Square NYC
Union Square
Grace Church in NY
Grace Church (Manhattan)


We enjoyed the sights so much that we missed our stop at Soho/Little Italy, so we decided to hop off the next one – Chinatown. Abraham was telling me to walk faster because it’s almost 2:30 pm and we still need to find Lombardi’s Pizza in Little Italy. I hurriedly took a snap of these colorful Chinese lanterns before I followed him.




Every corner in NYC has its own story. I don’t want to skip the details of our trip because I want to show you the various facets of New York.

On my next post, I will tell you about our quest to find the first pizzeria in the US. Of course, there were unexpected turns along the way. Did we have enough time to visit the 9/11 memorial? Find out more about our NYC downtown adventure next week.

Thank you so much for reading. Till next time!


– What & Where – 

Bryant Park

The Empire State Building

New Wonjo Restaurant


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  1. Love how you took advantage of your trip and made the most out of it! The Korean BBQ looks DELICIOUS! I keep forgetting that there is a Chinatown in NY – it looks interesting. Glad you had fun!

    Nancy ♥ exquisitely.me

    1. We really love the Korean BBQ! I still need to do some research regarding Chinatown’s best restaurants, we didn’t have enough time to check it out. Thanks so much for stopping by – really appreciate your comment:)

  2. Absolutely love Boston!! Need to get back, we visited Salem and it was lovely, next time would love to drive through New England during fall! great snaps looks and sounds like you had a great time! 🙂

    1. Hi there, thank you so much for visiting my page. Driving through New England during fall is a great idea. I traveled from NY- Vermont – New Hampshire to attend my friends wedding a few years ago and the autumn foliage was beautiful!

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