Five fun things to do in New York City

1. Embrace your inner child at the Color Factory
We headed to the Color Factory immediately after the 9/11 Memorial and Museum (post here) and it was such a good thing to do because it's completely the opposite to the memorial - a very much-needed light-hearted contrast.

OK, we were the only adults there without children, but we let the families go first and then got to enjoy it at our own pace - and get some awesome photos - without holding anyone up. (You get a QR code to scan at certain photo points, so you don't have to worry about asking other people to take your photos.) Oh, and don't think you can't go if you don't have children - it's for everyone!

Color Factory, New York City
An interactive, colourful exhibition, it's 16 installations of pure fun - and there's tasty treats and gifts to pick up along the way, like the above macaroons. Treats aside, my favourite rooms were the "Balloon wishes" room (pictured below) and, of course, the blue ball pit finale (pictured at the top; that would be a weird thing to do in today's COVID-19 world!).

Color Factory New York City balloon wishes room
Tickets cost $38 each, and you must book your slot in advance as there's no walk-ins. We got free entry using our New York Pass - you still need to book a slot online if you're using this as well. 

2. Gawp at the Morgan Library
I love libraries. So when I saw the Morgan Library & Museum existed, I knew I had to go and gawp at the epic East Room (pictured below; it does not do it justice). Entry costs $22 to visit both the library and museum. If you want to skip the museum and just see the library - which is what we did - there's free admission on Tuesdays 3-5 pm, Fridays 7-9pm, and Sundays 4-6pm.

Morgan Library & Museum, New York City

3. Visit the dinosaurs at the American Natural History Museum
Our visit to the American Natural History Museum was fleeting. But we made a quick whizz around the Fossil Halls, the Mammal Halls (Night at the Museum, anyone?), and also the Rose Center for Earth and Space. There's obviously MUCH more to do. 

American Natural History Museum, New York City
Once again, we used our New York Pass for free entry. Tickets are listed as costing $23 for adults, but you can actually pay what you want at the ticket counter. Special exhibitions, IMAX films and space shows at the Hayden Planetarium do cost extra though. 

American Natural History Museum, New York City

4. Catch a basketball game 
Olly's only request was to see a basketball game. If you're the same, you have two choices: watch the New York Knicks play at Madison Square Gardens, or the Brooklyn Nets play at the Barclays Center. We went for the Nets - purely because we got better seats for less money (still pricey). Marvel at how long it takes to see four 12-minute quarters be played. In our game it took 2.5 hours to see the Nets lose to the Charlotte Hornets, 108-113... the Nets were winning until those final few minutes! 

Brooklyn Nets basketball game, Barclays Center

5. See a show on Broadway
With my love of musicals, this was always a must - if I hadn't wanted to do so much else in NYC, I'd have seen a few shows. (And if it didn't cost so much: Broadway is more expensive than the West End). The show we went for was Moulin Rouge! The Musical!

Moulin Rouge, Broadway, New York City
Moulin Rouge did not disappoint. It is AWESOME (and I'll be seeing it again once it hits the West End in 2021). I booked half price tickets in the orchestra (stalls) via a Mastercard offer (still so, so expensive): TodayTix or visiting the TKTS booths are other options to find cheaper Broadway tickets.

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