We woke up today to pouring rain…all week the rain seemed to be holding off and today our luck ran out. It was wet. We were going out anyway…at least I had the bus tour planned for today. We dashed through the yucky wet to get on the bus, put on our ponchos, and sat back. We decided to do the Downtown loop on the Gray Line tour as we had seen a lot of Uptown and I felt the kids could only handle one loop. We sat back and watched the rain and the passing landmarks while listening to the guide. We had 4 different guides during the day and some were definitely better than others.
As we got near to the Soho stop I suggested that we get off and make a side trip to Baby Cakes bakery which I was dying to go to. It turned out I got off at the wrong stop and we walked a very long way in the pouring rain, but wow was this bakery worth it. It is vegan (read egg-free), nut-free (they don’t call it nut-free anymore but they don’t use any nuts in the bakery so it was good enough for us), and most of the baked goods are also gluten-free. My kids were able to walk into the bakery and just get anything they wanted. They have never (in their lives!!) been able to do this. It was pretty much the absolute highlight of our trip. They each chose a donut – I think it was the first donut either of them have ever had, chocolate chip banana loaf for the afternoon’s snack, and cookies too. The rest of us got donuts too. They were divine, it was all divine. Divine!! Happiest place in NYC!
We got back on our tour bus happy and full, and stayed on until we got to Macy’s. We decided to do a bit of shopping and wander around the massive department store. The kids loved the wooden escalators – they were pretty cool looking. We were there long enough that we decided to have lunch at the restaurant downstairs – it was fantastic food. We all got some type of burger (turkey, beef, salmon) and a big salad. It was really tasty and healthy too.
We left Macy’s and walked over to the Empire State Building. We didn’t go up to the top but we did take a few pictures from street level. Then we got back on the bus and stayed on until St Paul’s church. This was the church that was on the front lines for the World Trade Center recovery efforts. They had a great exhibit inside with lots of interesting things like the cots the rescue workers took naps on, and the teddy bears sent to the children of NYC. It was very moving. From there we walked to the construction site, which was a little disappointing as it was just a construction site. From there we saw the wall of heroes which is quite beautiful and again, very moving. We also went to Liberty Park, and took pictures with the statue of the Everyman.
We left there and went to Wall Street. I only really went there as we were right beside it but I ended up really enjoying the detour. The street is made of cobblestones and is quite majestic. The New York Stock Exchange is very imposing. The views from Wall Street of Liberty Church were quite lovely. Of course we took pictures with the bull as well 🙂
After that we got back on the bus and finished the loop, finally enjoying some nice weather and views from the upper deck. For supper we went to Bubba Gump’s Shrimp Co…which was surprisingly amazing! They were great with the allergies, service was friendly and fast, and the kids were thrilled to get light up cups with their drinks that they could bring home.