NYC Area day trips by ferry and train

Skaters glide around the ice rink on a pleasant Saturday afternoon to the sounds of classic pop as Tony Carpino, of Westchester County, sips hot chocolate from a paper cup at the next destination in our series of daytrips by ferry and train, the Bank of America Winter Village at Bryant Park in Manhattan.

The Rink was added in 2005 and is now the centerpiece of the Winter Village. The 170-by-100 foot rink’s admission is free and they offer high-quality skate rentals for those who don’t have a pair with them. Open through March 1, 2015, the rink also is the venue for skating shows and special events.

Now in its twelfth year, the Winter Village features more than 125 boutique-style shops offering an eclectic assortment of unusual gifts, from handmade jewelry, clothing and decorative items to gourmet chocolates and foods.

There is something there for everyone, including the family pet.

A stop at Vivi Sun Jewelry would be worth it to get a glimpse of her handmade pieces made from watch parts. You might even get a chance to meet the New York -based artist who doubles as salesclerk in her booth.

Taylor Burnett of Houston picks up a citrus and spice candle for sniff as she shops at Seasonal Illuminations, a family owned candle maker from Garrison, N.Y. Their handmade candles feature real preserved fruits and have a gel center. When the gel burns out the candles are reusable by simply adding a votive to the center.

Vinyl record enthusiasts might well shed a few tears upon entering Wrecords by Monkey, a shop that sells accessories and home goods made with reclaimed records. But a stop by Now Chewing Allowed! for a sample of their chocolate is sure to cheer them up.

The Holiday Shops are open through Jan. 4, 2015.

Celsius, a glass-enclosed, two-story rink-side venue that is perfect for a cozy dinner out. Or for something a bit less formal, there is also Southwest Porch.

  • If you are going: From the Staten Island Ferry Terminal at Whitehall, take the 1 train or the R train to 42nd Street Times Square and walk one block East on 42ndStreet to Bryant Park.

By Bill Lyons [SI Live]

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