Why New York is towering over other city destinations this year
Published: November 18th 2013
In 1788, the state of New York was the 11th state to join the US federation and its star on the spangled flag certainly seems to be shining ever brighter today thanks to its largest city – the city of New York.
The Big Apple has been a ‘must see’ for decades and for varying reasons. If we go back to the origins of the city, we can consider New York as the gateway to America with immigrants passing through Ellis Island in 1892. Today, Travelbound cite this excursion as one of their top-rated visits for schools where students can learn about the process the many millions of passengers went through as they arrived on the steamships. It is a romantic vision within the film Hitch where Will Smith is able to find the descendants of Eva Mendes. While this is not something we can claim to achieve, our tour of the island provides students with the knowledge and insight to this historic landmark.
Jump around 39 years later and we see the completed Empire State Building join the Chrysler Building as a dominant figure of the New York skyline. The city of New York is a jungle, but not one where the dark of night will make any movements impossible. It is the city that never sleeps, a concrete jungle where there are signposts on every corner, crosswalks on every avenue, bright lights advertising the latest Apple creation and famous monuments within a few blocks of each other. The skyscrapers of the Empire State Building, the Rockefeller and the alike should not be seen as a daunting figure in a big city but opportunities to head above the canopy of the jungle to look down on the fantastic scenes below. The city’s grid system suddenly becomes crystal clear and famous landmarks such as the Statue of Liberty stand out as a metaphorical ray of light across the city. It is the strong links Travelbound has with the Rockefeller Centre that allows students to make the most of their stay in New York and the fantastic views across the city from the Top of the Rock. Pictures become breath-taking and words become a stuttered muddle of amazement as views rival any natural landscape.
New York is not only a melting pot of cultures but a druid’s cauldron of possibilities as the city paves the way for a variety of experiences that can enhance the learning in any subject. At Travelbound we consider what we want to offer our groups in order for them to maximise their time and learning opportunities. From the striking Times Square where the road forks for Broadway and Seventh Avenue, students are opened to globalisation in action. Where big brands equals big business, Travelbound offers groups the chance to explore businesses like Apple and Sony where interactive exhibits and activities enlighten students to the innovation behind the name. Again, we see the ties between subjects and the value of cross-curricular links as performance arts students will benefit from the neon infusion of Broadway where the only thing better than seeing a show is taking part in a workshop led by members of the cast themselves.
So you might ask, how will my history students benefit from a trip to Ground Zero? What will my travel and tourism students learn from visiting Yankee Stadium? Or does the NBC studios provide my media students with the background they need to understand how the network made the transition from radio to TV? While our Travelbound team can answer these questions, nothing beats visiting the city of New York and finding the answers yourself.