Cycling Central Park, New York!

One of my latest trips took me to the wonderful city of New York, in the good old USA! I still can’t decide if I love NYC or am not too bothered about the city, but since it was just a 24 layover this time I wanted to make the most of my time there.

The weather forecast was looking great – a “cool” 33 degrees, compared to an average of 47 in Dubai that’s the perfect temperature! We departed Dubai around 2 in the morning, so not the best time to be awake. Luckily that meant our passengers were just as tired as we were, and the majority of them slept for a large portion of the flight. After 14 hours (with a 2,5 hour break to sleep in the crew bunks) we finally touched down in JFK, ready for some exploring!

Due to the time difference it was still morning, but by the time we navigated the terrible traffic in the city it was around lunchtime when we finally arrived at the hotel. Myself and one of the other business class crew, Bradley, decided to hire biked and cycle around Central Park.


The weather was perfect, although I perhaps should have thought to bring some suncream! We found a place offering bikes for 20 dollars for the day, so were soon sorted out with a ride.

There is a huge bike path that’s as big as a road that goes all around the park, so we followed along with the crowd and cycled wherever we liked the look of.


I’ve been to Central Park plenty of times before on my New York layovers, but only ever walked around it. There’s actually so much to explore – and we found so many lovely spots with people out enjoying their books, picnics, or just lying in the sunshine.


This pond had a gorgeous shady spot which would have been perfect to sit under and read.

We continued our bike ride along the paths, stopping anywhere that looked nice, or whenever we needed a break or some cold water!


I love that you can see the gorgeous skyline of the city with a beautiful backdrop of so much greenery.


We stopped for lunch from one of the food carts that is set up at the entrance to Central Park – it wasn’t the best lunch I’ve ever had but it certainly hit the spot after being awake for over 24 hours!

To burn off a few of the calories Bradley and I decided we’d do another round of the park, taking a slightly different route but still more or less following the main track.


We stopped to watch a group of kids playing baseball but since neither of us understand the sport or knew the rules (me being English and him being from New Zealand!) we didn’t stay for too long.


We cycled past the gorgeous blue lake, which boasted an incredible view of the city.


The tiredness was starting to hit us, even after a coffee and plenty of fresh air, so we decided to drop the bikes back off and call it a day.


Luckily it was only one stop on the metro back to our hotel, and after resting my feet for a while I popped out to do a quick bit of shopping. After all, who can resist a trip to Sephora when it’s half the price of Dubai! Before long I was tucked up in bed, ready for a very early wake up call the next morning.

Somehow I managed to avoid jet-lag this time, and got a great night’s sleep! I think the trick is staying up all afternoon and trying to adjust to the new time-zone. Of course this doesn’t always work, but it’s worth a try on such a short layover.

The next morning we were already on our way back to Dubai, again with a full aircraft but this time our passengers were awake, hungry and thirsty! Fortunately the flight time was a bit shorter, around 12,5 hours, so it went quickly and we landed back into DXB in the morning safe and sound, just in time for sunrise.



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  1. Vitor Caldas
    September 17, 2016 / 9:59 pm

    Hi Rachel,
    I started to read your blog this morning and I’m already addicted. lol
    Let me ask you something. You mentioned that you had 2.5 hours of sleep in a 14 hours flight. Don’t you feel extremely tired?
    Is that because you are on business and there are less cabin crews than in economy for example, and the demand for crews is higher making the break shorter? Is that a regular break time(less than 3 hours) in such a long flight?
    Thanks and congrats on your blog 😀

    • thedubaidiaries
      September 19, 2016 / 9:02 pm

      Hi Vitor! Thanks for reading, glad you are enjoying my blog 🙂 I guess you do feel tired, but I usually sleep a bit after we land 🙂 Everybody gets the same break, regardless of which cabin they are working in! x

  2. Shan hope
    September 15, 2016 / 3:14 pm

    Hey i love ur blog, i really cant wait to start my career as a cabincrew especially with emirates…

    • thedubaidiaries
      September 15, 2016 / 7:48 pm

      Thanks Shan! You will love it 🙂

  3. Amie
    August 4, 2016 / 7:52 pm

    Hi Rachel! Just wondering what flights have the longest layover in NY? I assume you were on EK203 since you departed late at night.

    Also how does the crew rest system work? I there three blocks and you can chose which one?

    Congratulations on the upgrade to first class! Cant wait to read the blogpost on the training! Do you have any idea when you will get scheduled for the training.

    Amie xx

    • thedubaidiaries
      August 11, 2016 / 4:05 pm

      Hi Amie! The longest layover we have is EK207 – 42hrs. Yeah there are 3 rest periods but you are pre-assigned your position before the flight so you don’t get to choose your break. I’m not sure when I’ll get scheduled for the first class training, I’m hoping sooner rather than later as they said it could be anytime within the next 6 months! xx

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