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Epic Explorers: St Christopher's High School's Unforgettable New York Adventure

Day 1: Departure and Arrival

On a bright Thursday morning, the pupils and Sixth Form students of St Christopher's CE High School gathered with excitement and anticipation, ready to embark on a five-day adventure to New York City. The atmosphere buzzed with energy as parents, teachers, and friends bid farewell to the group, snapping photos and sharing hugs. "What a morning seeing our epic explorers off as they travel to New York for a trip to see all that the Big Apple has to offer!" the school's social media page posted, capturing the sentiment of the day.

After a smooth flight across the Atlantic, the group landed safely in the Big Apple. Despite the travel fatigue, their excitement was palpable as they checked into the West Side YMCA, their home for the next few days. That first night, the students ventured out for a taste of the city's night life, capturing the iconic skyline and getting a glimpse of what was to come.

"I loved it overall, one of the best experiences of my life and I would recommend to anybody!"
Keira HF, Year 10

Day 2: Immersing in the City

The first full day in New York City was packed with exploration and discovery. The group started with a walk along the High Line, an elevated park that offered stunning views of the city. From there, they explored Greenwich Village, soaking in the historic sites including the Stonewall National Monument, a significant landmark in LGBTQ+ history.

Lunchtime saw the students at a local eatery before heading to Macy’s, where they marvelled at the grandeur of one of the world’s largest department stores. They also made a stop at the Dublin Portal, an immersive art installation connecting New York with Dublin, adding an international touch to their day.

In the evening, the group had a delightful time at Ellen's Stardust Diner, where they enjoyed dinner while being serenaded by the singing waitstaff. Their night continued with a visit to the vibrant Times Square, which left them awe-struck with its bright lights and bustling energy. The day's adventures concluded with a much-needed rest back at their base.

"I had the BEST time in the world and I wouldn't change a thing, thank you to all the teachers for organising such an amazing trip and I’m sure everyone has enjoyed it as much as I have."
Lawson B, Year 9

Day 3: Brooklyn and Broadway

On their second full day, the pupils and students experienced some of New York’s quintessential activities. They started with a subway ride to the iconic Brooklyn Bridge, taking in breathtaking views of the city skyline. Their walk across the bridge led them to Grimaldi's, where they indulged in New York-style pizza, a must-try for any visitor.

The afternoon was spent at the Museum of Modern Art (MoMA), where they encountered masterpieces by artists like Van Gogh and Warhol. This cultural immersion was followed by a serene hour in Central Park, offering a peaceful contrast to the hustle and bustle of the city.

Dinner at the Hard Rock Café provided a lively atmosphere before the group headed to a Broadway show. Watching "MJ the Musical" was a highlight, leaving them mesmerized by the incredible performances and the story of Michael Jackson's life and music.

"Couldn’t have asked for a better trip in terms of planning and experience. Felt like I have seen everything and got top value for money. Thank you to all the teachers and Mr Allen for the trip."
Harvey K, Year 10

Day 4: History and Reflection

Sunday brought another enriching day, beginning with a leisurely walk around Central Park and a hearty breakfast. The students then boarded the Staten Island Ferry, offering close-up views of the Statue of Liberty and the Manhattan skyline.

After returning to Manhattan, they explored Wall Street and the Financial District, learning about the city's economic history. A poignant visit to the 9/11 Memorial followed, where they all reflected on the events of September 11, 2001, and the resilience of the city.

Dinner at Bill's Burger Bar provided a comforting end to the day, though their plans to visit the Top of the Rock were thwarted by cloudy weather. Instead, the group enjoyed some shopping and sightseeing, making the most of their evening despite the change in plans.

"Be prepared for a lot of walking, but you will see lots of great sights."
Charlotte DS, Year 9

Day 5: Final Adventures

The last day of the trip began with a visit to the magnificent Grand Central Station, where they marvelled at the architecture and the bustling activity. Their patience was rewarded as the clouds parted, allowing them to finally ascend to the Top of the Rock. The views from the observation deck were stunning, offering a panoramic perspective of the city they had come to know and love over the past days.

As they waited at the airport, the students reflected on their incredible journey. "What a way to end their fantastic time in New York!" read the final update. The trip had been a whirlwind of experiences, from cultural immersion and historical exploration to iconic sights and Broadway magic.

As the plane took off, the students carried with them memories of an unforgettable adventure, already looking forward to sharing their stories with friends and family back home. New York 2024 was a trip they would never forget, a journey of learning, bonding, and discovering the magic of the Big Apple.

"I don’t think I’ve laughed so much on a trip. The whole group “hee-hee” on the subway has to be up there though as one of my favourite school moments."
Mr O'Doherty