City Clipper: Sail away to adventure in New York Harbor

 

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Sail away on a two masted schooner for hours of adventure and relaxation.  It is not in the Caribbean, or some other exotic locale, but right in New York Harbor.   Manhattan by Sail offers a fantastic opportunity to see New York City on  vintage sailing vessels.  As you sail on these tall ships you will be transported to another time as you ply the waters of New York Harbor.  This is a unique escape that will make you feel that you are not in New York but rather on vacation in the islands. Although there are other tour boats that are available for sightseeing around Manhattan, this adventure is unique.

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The City Clipper prior to sail

We decided on a two hour excursion on the City Clipper, a restored 158 foot long sailing schooner equipped with two steel masts and two top sails and six fore and aft sails.  The ship was built prior to the Civil War  but has been renovated over the years and now has a steel hull, a long open deck seating for passengers and a full bar in the center of the vessel that serves drinks and snacks to the guests on board (additional cost).

We took advantage of the Twilight Sail which leaves from Battery Park at the tip of Manhattan and cruises for two hours in New York Harbor as the sun sets over New Jersey.  It was a warm and gorgeous summer evening as the City Clipper pulled away from its slip at the Battery and made its way into the harbor.  With a good wind on the water that day, the crew decided to hoist the sails and guests are able to assist in this task.

 

 

 

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Helping hoist the sails

The schooner turned away from Manhattan and navigated around Governors Island and plied the waters between that island and the Borough of Brooklyn.  This was a unique perspective and one not often seen by New Yorkers and visitors alike.   The ship made a graceful arc south of Governors Island to catch a wonderful sunset behind the Statue of Liberty as well as other ships that were enjoying the waters that evening.

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There are great photo opportunities at all points of the sail.

 

We really enjoyed the slow and quiet cruise under sail as well as the cocktails available at the cash bar.  The bar staff was friendly and helped keep the mood lively.  As the sun dropped into the west the schooner turned back toward the city and the lights of Jersey City, Battery Park, and  The Freedom Tower provided a memorable light show for all aboard.

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If you are looking for an unique excursion and a few hours of fun, you should experience a classic sail on the City Clipper.

for more information, sailing times and pricing please visit:

https://www.manhattanbysail.com/

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Classic Harbor Line: An elegant adventure around Manhattan Island

 

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Manhattan is an island of many neighborhoods and numerous flavors that it is hard to take in all the city has to offer in one day.  But a recent Sunday out on the water revealed  to me that you can see this amazing island and its many facets from the comfort and luxury of a classic motor yacht.   Classic Harbor Line provides a wonderful three hours of comfortable cruising on the waters around Manhattan.  This is not the typical tourist sightseeing cruise.  A few hours on the motor yacht, Manhattan II was a throwback to a more elegant era of boating and taking in the sights of New York City.

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The Manhattan II, based out of Pier 62 in Chelsea is a beautiful modern vessel  inspired by luxury motor yachts of the 1920s.  It is 100 feet long and 22 feet wide, with plenty of polished teak and mahogany that evokes the era of elegant cruising yachts.  But this vessel has plenty of glass on all sides and the roof for an uninterrupted view of the scenery all around.  Seating is at tables with  comfortable couches that wrap around the table on three sides.  There is also an outside area to stand or sit on the bow of the boat.

Classic Harbor Cruises offers many different types of cruise themes that are open to the public as well as private charters.  Some of the many cruise offerings are Brunch, Architecture, Fall Foliage, Sunset, and Wine cruises just to name a few.   We opted for a Sunday brunch cruise that started at 10am.  Although it was quite cold the morning we arrived at the pier, our 2 3/4 hour cruise was quite comfortable in the glass enclosed cabin.   A full multi course brunch was served and included bagels, muffins, fresh made waffles, fruit, eggs, sliced ham, veggies and much more.  The food was fresh and everything was delicious. Mimosas were served and there is a small bar on board.

The sun was shining into the cabin as we slipped away from our pier and started down the Hudson River.  The only thing you could hear other than the other guests was the light hum of the engine as we glided down river.   We sailed passed  the gleaming Freedom Tower and lower Manhattan and turned toward the Statue of Liberty.  The ship then slowly turned and made our way through New York Harbor.  We soon passed into the East River and observed the Financial District.  As you take in the panorama that is the city, I was struck by the quietness of being on the river.  It was serene.  On the island of Manhattan it is noisy and busy, but here on the water the observer has a quiet and unobstructed view of the skyline.  It was quite the contrast to cruise along quietly as the boat passed under the Brooklyn Bridge and the many other bridges along the East and Harlem Rivers .  The boat provided a unique prospective of the city not available on land all while you dine in comfort.

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Along the way the captain pointed out some of the sites and provided some background that enhanced the overall experience.   We circled Manhattan island, and turned back into the Hudson River across from the Palisades and passed under the George Washington Bridge.  IMG_0246

As we headed down river it was hard to believe our cruise was over so quickly.  What a great time.  To experience New York City from the water on a beautiful and elegant yacht is a an experience not to be missed.  Classic Harbor Cruises also has cruise offerings  originating in Newport Rhode Island , Brooklyn, Hoboken, Boston and Key West, Florida.

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For more information on the many cruises and the different types of boats and  for Tickets:

http://www.sail-nyc

Orchid Show at the New York Botanical Garden

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Looking for some Springtime inspiration while your own garden is still slumbering?   You should really check out the Orchid Show at the New York Botanical Garden in the Bronx.   This special show takes place in the Haupt Conservatory at the Garden and features thousands of beautiful  orchids from around the world on display.  As you walk, soft classical music is playing to enhance the mood. The conservatory is warm and humid and simulates a tropical garden complete with water features and palm trees.   It is quite the retreat from the cool early spring temperatures outside.

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Haupt Conservatory

There are guides to answer your questions, or you can self tour and read the many signs along the route.  It is quite a beautiful show.   In the evening there is a separate show  in the conservatory which features special lighting and you can stroll the through the show with a cocktail in hand and music is creating a romantic mood.  Your ticket to the evening show includes a signature cocktail, The Ginger Vanilla Fusion.

Your ticket also allows you access to the rest of the Botanical Gardens property.   The show runs through  April 17th 2016.

For ticket information :

http://www.nybg.org/visit/tickets.php

New York Botanical Garden

2900 Southern Boulevard Bronx New York

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