On New York, Hamburg and New Era of City Breaks

by Satu Vänskä-Westgarth on November 12, 2015 · 2 comments

“City break” is not a term that has often made its appearance in my vocabulary although I do get the rough idea of what these entail. Holidays in cities.

“Why on earth” I have wondered…

But then came New York.

Highline New York I @SatuVW I Destination Unknown

And with New York came jet lag induced early mornings lugging my camera equipment along the old railway line wanting to experience it all, but desperately looking for a stop in a cafeteria to get some feeling in my chilled fingers again.

New York by Citibike I @SatuVW I Destination Unknown

Arriving in New York wasn’t about yellow cabs or getting lost in the maze of subway lines and bus connections. It was about trying to find another Citi Bike spot before my “free” thirty minutes were up. These bike rental spots are literally all over the Manhattan, except when you need one.

Manhattan Waterfront Greenway I @SatuVW I Destination Unknown

Although I was told the Central Park was the place to be if you want to get outdoors in NYC, I opted for the Manhattan Waterfront Greenway instead. And not only because it was more convenient for the hotel I stayed in. I had forgotten how the early morning sun only highlights the top of the highrises in cities the size of New York, and instead of finding cover in the greenery of the Park, I found these sunny, crispy mornings by the water soothing.

Highline New York I @SatuVW I Destination Unknown

It might have been that New York only got its chance because I was in the city on business, combined with a couple of days for own exploration, but I think this might have kicked off a new era of city breaks for me: quick getaways with outdoors in a city enjoying excellent food and lots of sleep. I leave the partying to others for now, until the two under 4-year olds in our household let me catch up with, well, four years worth of sleep…

Visit Hamburg I @ Visit Hamburg

The next city brake is already literally at the door, as I head to Hamburg in Germany on Friday with four other Scandinavian bloggers. Follow along as each one of us discovers the city in our own way. For me it is going to be an exciting mix of cycling, UNESCO sites, culture, cool cafes and bit of shopping. Do follow along virtually in Instagram, Facebook and Twitter over the weekend! For all of our updates see #HamburgWinterSeason and #UnescoHamburg and check out what my fellow travellers are up to in Hamburg: Sophie at Sophie’s World, Alex at Virtual Wayfarer, Caroline at Love, Live Travel and Helena at Oh Darling, Let’s be Adventurous.

For those who might be as clueless about New York as I was, read on for some outdoors influenced tips for the city. And for the others, see you in Hamburg!?


  • Citi Bikes. Handy way to get around the city. For about $10 you get access to the bikes for 24 hours, and as long as you return them within 30 minutes, there is no extra charge. More info: Citi Bikes New York
  • Manhattan Waterfront Greenway. Perfect for strolling, biking, watching fishermen or just eating ice cream on one of the many benches. Check out the map for the Greenway here.
  • High Line. Much appraised urban park build on old railway tracks. Highly recommend in the early morning hours! See more information and what’s happening along the High Line here.
  • REI. One got to do some shopping while in New York. If you’d rather do than shop, REI has a whole host of cool activities and courses too (click click). I almost went for the compass and map reading workshop. Guess why??
  • Central Park. Park of all parks I hear. I need to go back and see what it really is all about. All I got was this one Instagram shot

Disclosure: I’m heading to Hamburg as part of a campaign between Hamburg Tourism and Nordic Travel Bloggers. What I write/photograph from this trip is as always up to me.

Hamburg Images: Visit Hamburg & www.mediaserver.hamburg.de

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