Girls’ Week in New York City

I had an amazing time exploring New York City with my girlfriends last week! Check out how much fun we had and learn the best things to do in New York City!

Exploring New York City

Last week I had such a fun opportunity to tag along with my sweet friend and neighbor Stephanie to NYC. She travels to all sorts of fun places for work, and when she slyly told me she was heading to NYC on her next fabulous trip, you know there was no way I was letting her go alone! :) She only had to work for two days, and we got to stay an extra few days to run around the city. Meanwhile, I was able to see my dear fellow bloggers Shelly at Cookies and Cups (we had tea at Alice’s Tea Cup!) and Maggy at Three Many Cooks (Finally got to try Grimaldi’s!) while Steph was at work. It was so much fun running around NYC with these three sweet girls! We saw Wicked, shopped on 5th Avenue for $900 shoes, bought purses on Canal Street, had tea at the Plaza, and ate way too many sweets. :)

Best Things To Do on a Girls Trip to NYC

Like this Spectacular Melting Chocolate S’Mores Sundae from Max Brenner. I am a bit obsessed with everything S’mores lately!! This was absolutely swoon-worthy. It’s a massive scoop of vanilla ice cream and another scoop of chocolate ice cream topped with milk chocolate fondue, pure chocolate chunks, marshmallow fluff & whipped cream. Then it’s garnished with the gooiest toasted marshmallow ever. Oh. And it’s served with white chocolate ganache on the side, and two chocolate-covered graham crackers. Heaven help me. If you follow me on Instagram you might’ve gotten a peek at this incredible sundae! Max Brenner is such a fun restaurant, definitely a must stop if you are ever in NYC. Their regular food is fabulous as well!

Best Things To Do on a Girls Trip to NYC

Totally had to do some window shopping on 5th Ave! How fun are these hot pink shoes??! Only $900.

Best Things To Do on a Girls Trip to NYC

Did I mention there were deep fried Oreos involved, served with a gelato milkshake for dunking?? Mamma mia! These were from Lavo. Now I will admit, I am from the south and have had a better fried Oreo in my day — but I did actually love the food here! I just had a simple tomato basil spaghetti but it was so light and wonderful. I also tried Stephanie’s salmon and it was so buttery it melted in my mouth. Yummy. We were able to make reservations on OpenTable, which I love to use. I would totally recommend this for a dinner, but fair warning — it was extremely loud in there!! Plan to communicate via telepathy. Or texting. Their brunch menu looked pretty delicious as well — maybe it would be quieter in the morning. :)

Best Things To Do on a Girls Trip to NYC

Oh my gosh, I had a life-changing bagel experience at Ess A Bagel one morning. Best darn bagel ever. Totally come here for a traditional New York bagel. I am totally a plain bagel and butter kinda gal, but they have tons of fun bagel and cream cheese flavors as well.

Best Things To Do on a Girls Trip to NYC

Seeing a Musical in NYC

We saw Wicked! Steph had never been before. Had to take her!!

Best Things To Do on a Girls Trip to NYC

Oh my gosh, I was dying over our seats!! I don’t know how we lucked out on these tickets. There were right in the middle, 10 rows from the stage. We just went to the box office around three o’clock that afternoon, and they were selling these seats for half price. I think I flipped out a little bit!

Best Things To Do on a Girls Trip to NYC

Oh my gosh. You totally know we had to do Serendipity. We showed up starving and ordered not one, not two, but three desserts!! In our defense, we counted one of them as our before dinner drink, and then we each ordered only one dessert after dinner. ;) That makes it okay, right? Here was mine, the Forbidden Broadway Sundae. The base is the richest chocolate fudge cake ever, topped with an incredibly fabulous chocolate ganache frosting, vanilla ice cream, whipped cream, hot fudge and chocolate shavings. Swoon.

Best Things To Do on a Girls Trip to NYC

Here was Stephanie’s Insanity Sundae, a new addition to the Serendipity menu. It is a pecan pie lover’s dream!! This slice of pecan pie is topped with butter pecan ice cream, hot fudge, whipped cream, and toasted almond slivers. So yummy.

Best Things To Do on a Girls Trip to NYC

Here was our innocent before dinner drink :) A Frozen Peanut Butter Hot Chocolate, topped with whipped cream and chocolate shavings. Such a amazing twist on their famous Frozen Hot Chocolate. Loved the addition of peanut butter!! It definitely tasted like an extra thick peanut butter milkshake just a hint of ultra rich milk chocolate.

Best Things To Do on a Girls Trip to NYC

Of course we had to have a  little cupcake taste-testing party at Dylan’s Candy Bar :) How fun are these flavors?? They are fun to look at, but definitely your basic boxed mix cupcake. You could make these at home easy. :)

Where to Stay in New York City

Here was the view from our hotel room. We stayed at The Jewel at Rockefeller Center. This was a nice little place. We had two twin beds with plenty of plug-ins for phones and laptops that were easily accessible on the nightstand, free WiFi, and right outside our room was an endless supply of fresh, free chilled bottled water. Loved those things. We had a corner room, and the view was pretty darn good! Out one window we could see the massive Anthropologie at Rockefeller Center, and out the other we could see Radio City Music Hall and the Gershwin Theatre. Can you see the Wicked sign way in the background? :) The lighting in the bathroom was great for putting on makeup. The only negative was that there was practically zero water pressure in the shower. I totally have a thing about needing nice, solid water pressure!! :)

How to Take Great Nighttime Photos in the City

I took this photo on Friday night after seeing Wicked and realizing that we could see the Gershwin from our room. Here’s how I took it.

  • Set the ISO to 100 — Night photos can get grainy pretty easily, so I always try to use as low of an ISO as possible.
  • Put the camera in TV (shutter-priority) mode and set the shutter speed to 15 seconds — This was to get those streaked car tail lights.
  • Positioned the camera on a chair — My makeshift tripod :)
  • Turned on the two-second self timer — I do this to avoid accidentally shaking the camera when taking the photo. I especially needed it this time because the chair was really soft and squishy!

After taking the photo, I checked to see if it was too bright or too dark and used the exposure compensation to adjust accordingly. The hardest part was waiting in between shots for the light to turn green so the traffic would be moving! :)

And now I’m in the mood to watch You’ve Got Mail. And When Harry Met Sally. And, for some reason, Sabrina.


You May Also Like:

38 Responses
  1. Charlotte

    Hi Amanda! I love your NYC posts. A friend and I are planning a trip to NYC in June. I’m curious as to how you carry your camera as you explore the city. Do you carry a larger tote bag? A big purse? Do you use more than one lens? Have fun in Italy!

  2. Tami R

    I was in NYC this week too…. only during the week. We stayed on the Upper West side and walked around that area. We took our boys to FAO which was fun, but the a/c was broken and I thought I might pass out! We got cupcakes at the new Crumbs and I thought of you. Of course I took pictures of them. I also got chocolates at Jacques Torres. Yummy! I will be posting about the trip sometime this week.

  3. Sharyn

    I loved following your trip!!
    I have never visited NYC, but I spent my first 40 years of life in Chicago, and seeing all that food, brings back a ton of (mouth watering) memories!
    Thanks for the fun!

  4. Kris

    What a fun trip! Love NYC! Without traffic it takes us about 40 minutes to get there – hardly ever go though.

    Saw Wicked when it first came out – before it won the Tony – with Kristin Chenoweth and Indina Menzel. Amazing!

    Now I have to go and hunt down some of those yummy treats you’ve showed

  5. Barbara

    I loved Serendipity so cute we went late one night and had the Frozen hot chocolate YUM! NYC is just so much fun will have to go back soon it’s been four years and take my new camera.

  6. Jessi

    Thanks for the photo tips. I got a new camera for Christmas and I just feel like I’m stumbling around with it. Your trip looks amazing – Alice’s Teacup is awesome! And for the chocolate lover – have you ever tried Chocolate by the Bald Man? Giant, wonderful desserts, only to be eaten if you intend to walk 50 blocks… but so worth it.=)

  7. Southern Gal

    Two of my girlfriends and I are going to see Wicked this month! Not in NYC. :(
    But I’m still so excited to be able to see it. Those desserts look sinful. And, as always, thanks for the photography tips.

  8. Erin @ Brownie Bites

    Oh my goodness, it sounds like you had an absolutely perfect trip to NYC. Shopping for extravagant things, sampling amazing sweets, and seeing a Broadway show! I adore NYC. Thanks for the pick-me-up with this fun post!

  9. Kelly

    This makes me want to visit NYC! I went in high school but haven’t been back since. Hubby doesn’t really want to go, but I think I can convince him otherwise with the pictures of those delicious desserts! Thanks for sharing, it sounds like you had a really fun time.

  10. scrappysue

    i hope you know how much i enjoy reading your blog. i went to the griddle cafe in la and the macaroon cafe in ny based on your posts, and i can’t believe u were in NY just after i was! i saw wicked too! i didn’t know there was a max b in ny, but when i visit my bestie in sydney – i go to that one! i went to grimaldis (also on a recommendation) when i was ny in 2008. i walked the brooklyn bridge first – great morning out!

  11. Kim Beaulieu

    This looks like so much fun. I hate to admit I have never gone away for a girls weekend in my life. I would desperately love to though. Looks like a weekend any gril would enjoy. Food, shoes, more food, shows, more food, and great friends. Nice to live vicariously through you and really enjoyed all the photos. I hope it was the original Sabrina with Audrey, love that movie. Although I’m a Roman Holiday kind of gal.

  12. Chelsie @ A Little Peanut

    I’m so jealous of all your trips! They look so amazing and fun. I seriously want to go to New York! It’s a dream of mine.

  13. Madison

    ahh! i saw wicked for the first time this past january and i loved it! we got lucky too and we won TWO tickets from the lottery that they do a couple of hours before the showing :)

  14. Suzanne Shepherd

    Amanda, I always enjoy your travelling posts! Many years ago (oh, so many) I saw Garrison Keillor and his Prairie Home Companion show at Radio City Music Hall. It was a fun and memorable experience! Neat to see your photo of the marquee at night. Is that cheesecake place still across the street?

    Loved the cupcake bakery photo! So pretty and tempting that I just had to bake this week, LOL. Must learn not to let your gorgeous pictures make me so hungry!

  15. Tracy

    Hey Denise, can I be number two??!! : )
    Amanda, I am so glad I discovered your blog. You are such a great photographer and looking at your images is the next best thing to being there! I appreciate your photography tips, too. Love it!

  16. toni

    Looks like you had another fabulous time in NYC! How could you not??
    I’m heading there next weekend and I can’t wait!!
    We saw Wicked in London and it was fantastic. Would love to see it in NYC.

  17. Denise

    I want to go to NYC with you! You should totally do that as a giveaway. 3 readers could go with you. [I should go automatically since it was my idea. :) ]

  18. Jamie

    That looks like such a fun time. I hope to do a girls weekend with some of my good friends soon.
    Sabrina is one of my favorite movies!
    New follower to your blog. New to this whole photography thing and really enjoying learning about it.

  19. Marsha

    Wow! Another fab New York trip! We went for Thanksgiving and I read all your New York posts before going (I took notes, too) so we could check out the fun places you had visited! Love Ess A Bagel–a real fill you up experience !!
    Thanks for sharing!

  20. AmyS

    I have such a long list of what I want to do when my husband and I finally get to go to NYC for a vacation. Our dream trip would be during the holiday season.

  21. The Mrs @ Success Along the Weigh

    Ever since you posted the hot chocolate and sundae the other night, the Mr has been OBSESSED with finding the perfect sundae. He said “I want THAT, where can we get that around here?” I said “we can’t.” I’m thinking it would be fun to try to recreate it though! YUM!

  22. Stacey

    Oh how I miss NYC! Before the kids, we were there all the time! Need to fix that.
    Beautiful pictures as always and I love that you add a camera “tutorial” ((( taking notes))).

  23. shelly (cookies and cups)

    Had such a fun time running around the city in search of cupcakes with you! Can’t wait for our next adventure :)

  24. Terry

    Amazing pictures!! Thank you for sharing!!…sadly I have ridden thru NYC but didn’t stop, so one day I will go back and spend a few days. I really really want to see the Thanksgiving Day parade ~ my bucket list top 10!!!!

  25. Sandra

    WOW!! It looks delicious! Once in my life I will go to NY…
    I love your blog! Thanks for share all this beautiful things with us!

  26. Maureen

    Oh a girl after my own heart, more photos of food than anything else! LOL! I am from NYC and wish yu had hollered while you were here. Sounds like you got to see and do lots though, I am glad you enjoyed your stay. Thanks for sharing it with us, it is fun to see the city through someone else’s eyes.

  27. LaVonne D.

    Amanda I loved your trip pictures of NYC!! brought back so many
    fond memories and I loved SERENDIPITY!! Glad you enjoyed your
    trip and shared it with us – thank you – LaVonne

  28. Averie @ Averie Cooks

    Awesome recap and Ive been following along with your trip on instagram and the desserts, mama mia! I have wanted to reach through the screen umpteen times!

    So glad you had a ball, had great food, hung out with your girls, went shopping & to Wicked, and even gave a photography tutorial. Awesome, Amanda!

Do you have a question or comment?

Meet Kevin & Amanda

Kevin and Amanda

We love to travel and to eat! Here we share our favorite quick and easy recipes, plus travel tips and guides for our favorite places around the world. If you have any questions about what camera I use or how I edit my photos, check out my photography tutorials.


Subscribe via Email: