Rudy Panucci On Pop Culture

The NYC Tour Diary Part Four: The View From The Bus

Getting back to your PopCulteer’s recent trip to The Big Apple…

…if you’ve been following this, we arrived late Wednesday to find our hotel rooms to be imaginary. Thursday we saw Glenda Jackson as King Lear, and Friday we went to FAO Schwarz.

With some of our plans somewhat obliterated by the unethical actions of the worst hotel in the world, we rearranged our schedule, and found ourselves with a few hours to kill on Saturday morning, the day before we were to leave NYC for home. I had been wanting to try something, and even though it’s about the most tourist-y thing you can do Mrs. PopCulteer quickly agreed and together we found ourselves boarding one of the double-decker, open-deck, tour buses.

We went with TopView Sightseeing (there are several from which to choose), primarily because that was the first one who’s agent we ran into on Eighth Avenue. We could’ve bought our tickets online, but if you buy one from the guys in the red vests on the street they will cut you a better deal.

We decided to do this because, while we have made quite a few trips to New York recently, neither of us had seen The Empire State Building or The Flatiron Building or Ground Zero and the new tower, so this was a fun way to pass a few hours on what started as a dreary, rainy day, which then turned into a pleasant afternoon.

My ulterior motive for taking this tour was that I brought my camera, my trusty Canon, and wanted to stock up on photos to inspire my art. You’ll be seeing lots of New York-centric art every Monday for the next couple of months.

I took over five hundred photos on this bus tour. Today you’ll get to see just a tiny sampling, so that we don’t break the PopCult server. The plan now is for there to be two more entries in The NYC Tour Diary, a review of All My Sons, and one last photo essay.

Now, here’s the photos from the bus…

Right after we got on the bus, on Eighth Avenue, near 42nd Street. This is a hop-on, hop-off bus so that you can jump off and explore, then jump on the next bus that comes along in about twenty minutes. We didn’t hop off any, but we may do this again and use the bus to explore the city in more detail.

The obligatory bus selfie, this time with a real camera, and in focus.

Our first landmark was the infamous Church of Yahoo-ology.

The reason 70% of people visit New York City.

Heading into Times Square. The LED billboards start appearing.

We finally got to see the outside of Penn Station. Our trains usually arrive below it, and we forget to look back as we’re hopping into a taxi.

I finally got to see the Flatiron Building in person. It’s really flat, folks.

A rather recognizable landmark, seen from way too close up. From this angle you can’t see the antennae, the old dirigible dock, or the giant gorilla.

A quick glimpse of One World Trade Center, seen between two other buildings.

Trinity Episocopal Church, close up.

There is the money shot of One World Trade Tower One. The clouds parted, the sun was behind us, so I got a great photo.

A mural that promotes the Tribeca Film Festival, a New York Institution, and probably why we had to spend a night in Queens.

Looking down 35th Street, as we return to the place where we boarded our bus. The cost, buying our tickets from the street vendor, was thirty five dollars each, for more than two hours of fun sightseeing. The Hop-on, Hop-off element of the ticket makes it a great value if you’re planning to visit anywhere along the route. You can ride for 24 hours on one ticket, or get a deal for a whole weekend, with other routes available, as well as side trips.

Look for the NYC Tour Diary to wrap up this week.

1 Comment

  1. Thomas Wheeler

    REALLY great photos, Rudy, especially of One World Trade Tower. This sounds like a fantastic tour. If you can get it in good weather, which obviously you did, it’d be great fun. Thanks for sharing the photos!

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