What to See Near New York: the best lesser-known excursions

Many of you write to us for advice for short trips out of town from New York City (remember in this regard that for this type of request there is a private group on Facebook www.facebook.com/groups/288129894992673/ , do not write us a mail because we can not answer).
When you are lucky enough to visit the city for more than 5-6 days, it is normal that you feel the need to see something more ” provincial “.

Let’s be clear, New York does not represent the United States , it is a real world apart and having the chance to get an idea about the American province can be very interesting and allows you to capture some aspects of the country that can remain hidden in the chaotic rhythms of New York.

The most popular trips are those directed to the Niagara Falls , always very popular combination although they are not very close, and those that lead to discover another of the great metropolis of Northeastern USA. Many opt for the nearest, Philadelphia , others prefer Boston or Washington DC . Combining another big city with a visit to New York is easy to organize thanks to the many train and bus connections.

  • 1 Hoboken
  • 2 Fire Island
  • 3 Breakneck Ridge
  • 4 Woodstock

Today, however, I would like to analyze some destinations near New York a little less traveled by tourism , small corners of America more or less close that can give an authentic experience.

Hoboken

 

 

 

 

 

This can not be considered a real trip, also because it is reached in a few minutes of PATH (Port Authority Trans Hudson) from Manhattan. But it has the merit of giving you another perspective on the city of New York and to let you know the life of a suburb that, despite being crushed by the beauty and fame of what lies beyond the Hudson, can have its own soul well distinct.

We are in another state, New Jersey , and the city clearly shows signs of a strong immigration of our compatriots. Among the reasons that push so many people to cross the river for a trip to this town there is the pastry shop managed by Buddy Valastro Jr., the so-called Boss of the Torte that own Hoboken’s workshop and store. Carlo’s Bakery is located at 95 Washington Street.

One of the most famous Italian-Americans in the world, Frank Sinatra , was born in Hoboken. If you walk up to 415 Monroe Street , home to one of the greatest voices in history, you’ll find a star very similar to Hollywood Boulevard in California.

After this walk through the streets of the town, I have been there in the morning so as to organize a breakfast + tour of Hoboken, it is time to move along the banks of the river to enjoy the wonderful skyline of Manhattan .
Along the Sinatra Drive you will find many point views where to stop for a relaxing break and to take some picture postcard.

Fire Island

 

 

Very popular trip among New Yorkers, especially on summer weekends when it is filled with people ready to party in many clubs and also welcomes a large part of the gay community of NYC.
The ideal time to visit is definitely the end of summer – early autumn or late spring, maybe not during a weekend, when even taking a ferry can be complicated.
Taken outside the noisy summer weekends, the island is really pleasant and offers wonderful moments of relaxation as a break from the noise of the metropolis.

Fire Island is a narrow strip of land that is located south of Long Island (another super tour of which today we will not speak) and that in summer can also be reached by the Long Island Rail Road that leaves from Penn Station, Manhattan to which a shuttle is paired to reach the Fire Island Ferry. For information see http://www.fireislandferries.com/

Since it is protected under federal law, the Fire Island National Seashore, for the most part, can not be traveled by car.

Breakneck Ridge

 

If you are looking for some wild nature not too far from the NYC, you might think of a trip to Breakneck Ridge . You can reach the place either by Metro North train or by rental car. Organize the trip well, I have been there in the context of an on the road, if you go by train, get very well informed.

The Breakneck Ridge Trail is very interesting, a bit ‘challenging and able to give wonderful views of the Hudson River. Here you will find a video to get an idea of the trail and here some information

Woodstock

 

 

Who has never heard of the most incredible festival in history? But you must know that the Woodstock festival was not held exactly here but in Bethel , a town about 60km away. But Woodstock has much more to offer and over time has married very well the hippy spirit that made it famous in the world: today you will find a pleasant town with extravagant shops and clubs.

Reaching it is very simple and practical if you have a rental car (which would allow you to easily visit the surroundings, Bethel and Saugerties). If you can not really hire a vehicle, you will have to rely on a train or bus. The second one is more practical because it leaves from the Porth Authority Bus Terminal and leaves right at Woodstock while the Amtrak train goes down to Rhinecliff and then you have to take a taxi. Both are not cheap, for a / r we start at $ 60 per person.

Walking through Woodstock is really much more interesting than expected, and on Saturday and Sunday the city hosts an interesting antiques market, the Saturday and Sunday Flea Market .

 

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Interview With Guillaume Declair: Back On The Success Of The 25th Hour And Launch Of Training | Forbes France

Of all the tips you give in your book, what do you think is most important?

 

Matthieu Chereau

Why ? Because we are constantly moving from one task to another on our computers or smartphones, we are inundated with e-mails and messages that are detrimental to our concentration … Our conviction: new technologies should not overwhelm us of work, but on the contrary to free us from it. We need to learn how to take advantage of it to organize, focus and speed up the pace of work. This is what we wanted to explain in this book.

Of all the tips you give in your book, what do you think is most important?

Guillaume Declair 

For us, the best advice is necessarily the one that entrepreneurs repeat most often because it has proved its effectiveness for a maximum of people. This advice is the power of no: the more one advances in one’s career, the more one is subjected to solicitations, the more one has to say no. But one can only succeed on two conditions: having very clearly defined objectives, and especially forgetting the conventional wisdom that saying no can upset an interlocutor. However, it is the opposite: if we say yes when we do not think it, we will disappoint his interlocutor by his lack of motivation …

Who is this book addressed to?

Guillaume Declair : To all office workers, entrepreneurs as managers. They are the ones who experience the most interruptions and distractions associated with new technologies … but if they learn to use them well, they are the ones who have the most to gain. If we asked start-uppers, it’s because they have one thing in common: that of having a time horizon and very limited financial resources. For them, working fast is a matter of life and death for their company.

Do you intervene directly in a company?

Guillaume Declair : Yes. The very positive reception of the companies surprised us very much: many of us bought the book live in packages of ten to offer it to their employees, and quite a few others contacted us for interventions or trainings: CAC40 groups as SMEs. During these interventions, we give of course directly actionable advice but above all, we try to change the state of mind of the collaborators: useless to work a lot, it is necessary to work above all effectively.

Have you had good feedback?

Guillaume Declair : During the first interventions, we feared the return of the directors or managers … Somewhere, we encourage their employees to work less! But all the returns were very enthusiastic, without exception. In fact, those who call on us are companies with bosses or HRs who have understood one thing essential: to attract and retain the best talent, do not work long hours, they must be helped to be the most productive possible. It is necessary to finish with the received ideas on the link between working time and results obtained.

And what next?

Guillaume Declair : We are three co-authors, but this is not enough to meet the demands of companies … And especially, with our respective businesses, we can not move anywhere in France. We are therefore structuring an offer with stakeholders throughout the territory. If there are interested companies, more information on our website 25hbook.com !

forbesfrance4

 

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Travel to California in 2019: offers for Los Angeles and San Francisco

If you’ve always dreamed of a trip to California , 2019 could be a good year to satisfy this desire. Traveling without spending a heresy is feasible even though the USA is certainly not a super-cheap destination.

Flights cost less and less, thanks to the arrival of low cost , but at the same time the companies offer less and less in their basic fare: most of the time the baggage in the hold is not included but only the one by hand and it is not possible to choose the place. So, when you book your flight, check what is included in the rate you are buying.

  • 1 In California between January and April 2019
    • 1.1 The flight to California: San Francisco or Los Angeles
    • 1.2 San Francisco in the first few months of 2019
    • 1.3 Los Angeles in early 2019
    • 1.4 Itineraries in California in early 2019

In California between January and April 2019

The period between the end of the Christmas holidays and Easter is usually the cheapest for flights and hotels, which represent a large part of total travel expenses.
I tell you now that the first months (Jan-Feb) I could not define them ideal for a trip to California , but if you do not venture into the mountain parks is absolutely feasible: it will not be hot, in winter San Francisco is lashed by a cold wind and pungent but temperatures rarely go below 5 ° C.

Basically, you can plan your trip based on the time you decide to go.

The flight to California: San Francisco or Los Angeles

I advise you to evaluate the proposals of our two partners: Momondo and Skyscanner . These two portals, for those who do not know them, compare the offers of hundreds of sites (including the official ones of the airlines).
It is not difficult to find flights to Los Angeles or San Francisco for less than € 350 per round trip. If you have the flexibility to be flexible, you will see that the savings will be substantial.

For hotels I recommend booking.com , for car rental you can click here and never forget travel insurance !

San Francisco in the first few months of 2019

San Francisco is for me the most interesting city in California, with its being a perfect mix of Spanish and English culture. It takes at least three full days to start appreciating it and not to lose everything its center has to offer.

 

 

Crossing the Golden Gate Bridge by bike is an experience not to be missed, do it with the cold wind but it can be an almost impossible mission: if the weather is adverse, take a taxi from the bridge to a magnificent view from Marina’s Vista Point .
The neighborhoods not to be missed are:

  • Marina
  • Fisherman’s Wharf (with Pier 39)
  • North Beach
  • Trelegraph Hill (with the Coit Tower)
  • Russian Hill (with Lombard Street)
  • Financial District and Embarcadero
  • SoMA
  • Union Square
  • Castro
  • Mission

Not to be missed are the Alcatraz prison island and the view of the Painted Ladies from Alamo Square Park.

Here our guide in San Francisco

Turning to the climate, as I said the winters are cold but never exaggerate: the only problem can arise from the strong wind that often pulls into the city. Rainfall is more frequent in winter, 7-8 days of average per month in January, February and March; 4 in April.

Month Minimum Average ° C Maximum average ° C Rainy days
January 14 7 8
February 15 8 8
March 16 8 7
April 17 10 4

Los Angeles in early 2019

Los Angeles is boundless, it does not have the classic conformation of the big cities that have a center and the suburbs but it is really spread over almost 1300 square kilometers. There are areas and neighborhoods not to be missed, others to avoid.

los angeles trip 2019

In a reality like this, having a rental car becomes almost essential for travel. These are LAX’s must:

  • Venice Beach
  • Griffith Observatory
  • Hollywood
  • Getty Center
  • Bevrly Hills
  • Downtown
  • Universal Studios
  • Santa Monica

It takes at least 3 days for a visit not too thorough in this particular city.

Here our guide in Los Angeles

The climate in Los Angeles is milder than in San Francisco, so it’s an absolutely liveable city all year round: of course, spring and autumn are exceptional times.

Month Minimum Average ° C Maximum average ° C Rainy days
January 20 10 5
February 21 10 5
March 22 12 4
April 23 13 2

Itineraries in California in early 2019

If you leave in the winter I would avoid the inland mountain areas of California, so no Yosemite and surroundings and no Sequoia National Park: you could think of a tour that touches the three big cities of California ( San Francisco, Los Angeles and San Diego) , push you to the Death Valley (and maybe Las Vegas) and visit the Joshua Tree .
Snowfall precipitation in these inland regions is rare but possible.

Those who start in April have more choices and can also venture to Yosemite and Sequoia (possible winter returns, so be careful!): The Tioga Road, a panoramic road that crosses Yosemite, usually opens at the end of May, then to svalicate towards Nevada needs a longer ride.

Golden Gate Bridge San Francisco: the most beautiful viewpoints The most famous Little Italy in the United States: a journey in search of Italianness

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How to best prepare for baby's arrival?

The birth of a child often causes profound changes in a couple or a family organizationally and even budget. So both anticipate it better and prepare it well in advance, for example during the pregnancy period. Here are some essentials to consider for a perfect baby home.

Your home

Bedroom

Baby will spend a lot of time at the beginning of his life so this room must be welcoming and have optimal use of every square meter, in short a real cocoon of well-being and calm. Of course, you will have to find him a cradle (for temporary use and a fairly high cost) or even a bed with box spring and mattress protectors, fitted sheets.

Also consider investing in a dresser (which will also act as a changing table) to store your child’s (many) clothes. A baby phone or baby monitor is also a must: it reassures parents. Do not forget it.

Last things to expect: the toys with the space to put them away under penalty of seeing you invaded, a night light but also a good armchair that you will install next to the bed of your child. You will see, it will be of great comfort in case of difficult nights!

The kitchen

Eating is the other big part of your future child’s schedule. You will of course need baby bottles (plan in several) and all that accompanies them as teats, bottle brushes, sterilizer, bottle warmer etc …

Regarding infant formula, you will obviously have to follow exactly the recommendations of your pediatrician.

You can put your child on a high chair to give him his meals, as soon as he is able to sit, that is to say between 6 and 8 months in general. You will have to diversify your meals, the infant milk is not enough anymore. Opt at that time for the purchase of a kitchen robot that will be of great use.

Beware of safety, the kitchen can be a dangerous room for your child. Remember to secure!

The bathroom

Just like you, this room is necessary for its hygiene and care. Only it is not precisely sized for your child. You will have to plan the purchase of some elements.

Let’s start with the bath tub (or bath recliner) made of plastic and specially designed for your child. It is important that the bath water is always between 35 and 37 degrees Celsius, so you will need a thermometer to make sure. Also plan what you need to dry baby and protect him from the cold after bathing.

Buy a body and hair gel specially adapted for young children as well as saline and sterile compresses. Finally do not forget the nail chisel, also the size of your child.

Your future travels with baby

The car

If you own a car, ask yourself if it is suitable for the arrival of your child. For example, if it only has three doors you will be greatly penalized to install your child in the back! Do not forget also that a baby “drags” a lot of material with him so a big chest will be quickly essential. Depending on the number of children, planning a break or space can be a good idea! Opt for a second-hand model to save money, a quick tour of the site La Centrale should be enough to find the model you need at a “sweet” price.

You will need to purchase a car seat specially adapted to baby. For this type of safety equipment, buy only certified and especially new products (a used car seat may be defective, it may for example have suffered an accident without you knowing it). You must never compromise with the safety of your child by car. If you are not sure about different types of car seats, please note that i-size models are recommended. This new classification standard will become THE standard in the coming years. Think about it!

Walk

To walk with your baby, you will need a stroller (4 wheels, 3 wheels, etc …) or a pram. It is almost essential to walk with your baby in all places.

For long trips, a changing bag with multiple pockets and compartments containing everything you need will serve you. Also think of protection in case of rain. Many parents, especially younger ones, also opt for the baby carrier. It can be ventral, dorsal or on the side and allows parents (and yes it is also suitable for dads!) To carry his baby while having his hands free.

Other essentials

Prepare the search for your future nanny or reserve a place in a nursery during your pregnancy. This will allow you to make the right choices without being in a hurry. For the choice of a nanny, word of mouth remains an effective means of selection. Be careful waiting lists for crèches are sometimes full especially in large cities.

You already know it (or otherwise you’ll see it soon by yourself): a baby consumes a lot of diapers, which is a relatively large budget. Make yourself a stock of diapers now and chase bargains! Some sites are sometimes priced at (very) broken prices.

Plan a folding bed or an umbrella bed in case your child is sleeping outside your home. He kept a comfortable level of comfort even during holidays or visiting his grandparents!

Finally a camera worthy of the name you will surely be very useful too. Indeed, each parent wants to keep memories of the first days of his child’s life. Prefer quality devices to that of your smartphone because these photos are intended to be shown. You will not have the opportunity to do it a second time …

Among this list, some items do not necessarily have to be purchased new, the second-hand market will offer you opportunities for interesting savings. Also prefer the renting of some equipment in pharmacy or even donations from family and friends. Finally you also have the possibility to create a birth list in which you will have slipped all the essentials that we have just mentioned!

How to best prepare for baby’s arrival? Does this information have more to you?

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Golden Gate Bridge San Francisco: the most beautiful viewpoints

The charm of the San Francisco symbol is out of the question, there is little to do and I challenge anyone to say that the Golden Gate Bridge is a bridge like many others. Its bright color (called International Orange ) is set in perfection with the surrounding landscape and the cold waters of the bay. Wonderful to observe on a sunny day but also wrapped in summer fog , a very frequent phenomenon in San Francisco.

I was lucky enough to admire it in late spring , it was the beginning of May and the day was sunny, and at the end of August, with a thick fog that covered the whole bay. I must say that in both cases it was a wonderful experience , even if a sunny day is really the best. Be aware, however, that if you go in the summer months the risk fog, especially in the morning there is.

  • 1 How to visit the Golden Gate Bridge
  • 2 The most beautiful viewpoints of the Golde Gate Bridge
    • 2.1 Crissy Field
    • 2.2 Fort Point
    • 2.3 Marshall Beach
    • 2.4 Battery Spencer
    • 2.5 Vista Point

How to visit the Golden Gate Bridge

Crossing the bridge can be part of the visit but the most exciting thing is certainly to observe it from the various panoramic points scattered close to it. While the Brooklyn Bridge in New York City offers unmissable views just passing by, the Golden Gate is perhaps more spectacular to capture, although I love the Brooklyn Bridge.

To cross the bridge, however, what you need to do to get to the viewpoints in the direction of Sausalito (small coastal town overlooking the bay, to visit), there are several solutions, each has its pros and cons.
If the day allows, you have a few hours of time and a little ‘desire to ride, the ideal is to rent a bike in the Marina area in San Francisco and cross the Golde Gate via Crissy Field : it is a nice ride also because there is a bit of climb to be done to reach the bridge cycle lane and that day there was a very strong wind (which is quite rare).

 

So, me and my travel companions took these bikes in the morning in one of San Francisco’s many bike rentals (not far from Fisherman’s Wharf), we headed to the bridge stopping at various points, we crossed it and we arrived in cute Sausalito . Lunch based on fish, walk and return to San Francisco by ferry ! Of course you can also return by bike.
With this tour we took almost a day but it was worth it; Consider that you can also be faster and the journey after stops and detours in the various viewpoints is about 45 minutes (Marina – Susalito).

So a hypothetical day can be a bike ride Golden Gate and Sausalito , then visit the area of Marina, Russian Hill (??) and Fisherman’s Wharf and maybe a night visit to Alcatraz, really beautiful but to be booked very widely in advance!

Alternative to the bike is the taxi , a practical and expensive means or there are public transport and here you find the most up-to-date information.

If you are renting a car the journey is even faster, there are parking lots near the vati view point but you need to consider some things: the bridge has a toll that must be paid by those who go from north to south, so who enters in San Francisco. The toll is automated with license plate reading, so either you have the service (usually paid) with your charterer for the charging of the various tolls (ask at the info counter) or you can pay before you pass us (or with a max delay) 48 hours): here you find all the info to pay first, advisable solution.

The most beautiful viewpoints of the Golde Gate Bridge

(not in order of beauty):

Crissy Field

If you come from San Francisco is the first view point that you are on the road, it is a park with a beach: the bridge is not very close but I still remember how beautiful the landscape was that day, the kites flying and behind the Golden Gate! Very beautiful.

golden gate crissy field

Fort Point

Here we are right under the Golden Gate, so a very different point of view from the others. Access to Fort Point is managed by National Park Service, check opening times (if you want to enter and get on the walls, it’s free).

golden gate fort point

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Marshall Beach

If you have time, it is worth diverting (and lengthening) to Marshall Beach, a beach with a beautiful view of the Golden Gate, west side.

golden gate beach

Battery Spencer

After crossing the bridge you will find the most beautiful (for me) view, Battery Spencer! I remember an absurd wind but it’s worth it because it gives a complete overview of the bridge.

golden gate battery spencer

Vista Point

Bella also this, is on the other side compared to Battery Spencer but being more aligned to the bridge the view is less spectacular.

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