Our Favorite Places in Lower Manhattan, New York City

NYC main

McSorley’s Old Ale House

mcsorelys old ale house bar

mugs of beer at McSorleys old ale house

mcsorleys sawdust floor

  • McSorely’s Old Ale House, one of the oldest taverns in New York City, has been open since 1854. With original decor, sawdust floors, and old wooden tables, little has been updated. Things are simple inside the narrow tavern. Customers have the choice of dark or light ale and a small chalkboard menu. If visiting with a friend order the “2 and 2” to sound like a local, 2 dark and 2 light mugs of beer. Every day’s special: 2 mugs of beer for $6.
  • The Cheese Plate: a sleeve of saltines and a plate of sliced onions and white cheddar cheese. 

Traveling Gingerbread Note: Less than 3 blocks from McSorley’s Old Ale House is Please Don’t Tell Speakeasy. The entrance is through the phone booth located in Grif’s Hot Dogs. Dial 1 from the phone to receive the wait time or entrance through the wall. 

Odd Fellows Ice Cream Co.

odd fellows ice cream co new york city

  • Make your own ice cream sandwich from a selection of freshly baked cookies and 12 rotating flavors of ice cream at Odd Fellows Ice Cream Co. We recommend the salted chocolate chip cookie with Strawberry Rhubarb Crumble ice cream sandwich, but there are plenty of unique flavor to try such as Thai Iced Tea, Ginger Peach, and Coconut Coffee.

Grand Banks

grand banks oyster bar

Grand Banks bar NYC

At the end of Pier 25, past the skate park, mini golf course, swings, beach volleyball, and turf field is Grand Banks Oyster Bar on the last existing original saltbank fishing boat built in 1942. There are 2 large bars on the ship and plenty of seating. The majority of customers do not have reservations. Enjoy a nautical themed cocktail and enjoy the view of the Statue of Liberty and New York City skyline.

Fraunces Tavern

fraunces tavern dining room

porterhouse brewing co

wine rack in fraunces tavern

  • The Fraunces Tavern, built in 1719, was converted into one of the most popular taverns in 1762 by Samuel Fraunces. It is where Gorge Washington delivered his farewell address to the Continental Army officers and is one of the oldest standing structures in New York City. To learn more about the tavern and restaurant visit the Fraunces Museum open since 1907.
  • The tavern has an extensive drink menu including rare ABC vintage beers. There is live jazz music every Saturday 1:00pm – 4:00pm and Sunday 3:00pm – 7:00pm. Live Rock and Roll begins every Saturday at 6:00pm. 

Color Factory

hand dyed rice paper

  • Hand dyed strips of rice paper are used to create a paper rainbow hanging from the ceiling. 

balloon room color factory

ball pit color factory

  • Il Laboratorio del Gelato created a gelato the same shade of sky blue as the ball pit. The color is created using dried and ground butterfly pea flowers.

stripes color factory

  • The first stop is registering an email address and name to a card containing a GR code. These cards are used at picture stations throughout the Color Factory and immediately emailed to the address on file at no charge. Delectable treats and mementos are available throughout this colorful journey of sight and sound. Be sure to collect a Color Factory Map at the end to continue the journey at 22 hidden locations throughout lower Manhattan. 

Find Your True Color

The Cauldron 

tree in the cauldron NYC

inside the cauldron

  • The Cauldron Magical Pub in New York City is the only location in the United States. The fairy inspired restaurant includes a drink menu of potions with specialty marked magical items, including The Blob. 

Biergarten NYC

Ghostbusters Headquarters 

Hook & Ladder Fire Station

  • Hook and Ladder 8, the Ghostbusters Headquarters, is an operating fire station so entering is prohibited, but photos can be taken outside.

August 2019

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Author: The Traveling Gingerbread

My husband, Mitch, and I have been traveling together over 6 years. Living and working full-time in Pittsburgh, PA, we travel as much as our vacation days and finances allow. We cram each adventure with activities, tours,  and experiences to maximize our time. We always try to visit to a local brewery and can't walk by an Irish pub without stopping in for a pint of Guinness. CREATION OF THE TRAVELING GINGERBREAD: In Tokyo, we smiled every time we saw someone talking on their large, animated phone case. We had to buy one. Having an obsolete IPhone 5, the selection was limited. We purchased a gingerbread off a neglected rack in Shinjuku, Tokyo and The Traveling Gingerbread was born. You can purchase your own gingerbread friend here! The Traveling Gingerbread is an entertaining account of our travels, fun facts, and tips we learned along the way.

4 thoughts

  1. Marvelous Photos and Story! As usual! I happen to notice your Map showing the places you have been. I thought I met you in Peru, but that is not included on your map. Where did we meet? Remember, I am the guy who will photograph anyone who can stand in front of me with a wallet! Or did we meet in Cuba?

    Liked by 1 person

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