The 10th most popular book in the United States is Catcher in the Rye. Way to go Holden! Although Holden roamed the streets of New York City at Christmas time in the early 1950s, you can take in what he did even in warmer weather. Holden Caufield’s version of NYC is certainly cheaper than the Sex in the City tour that Iva wrote about. That one costs $24,000.
Here’s my suggestion for a Holden Caufield inspired itinerary with costs included. I’m providing the adult rates. The itinerary is based on the places Holden went. Each are mentioned in the novel. I’ve thrown in the cost of a day MetroCard along with the subway and bus stops to make your gadabout easier. If you start early in the morning and don’t dawdle, you should be able to hit all stops–although this is if you only see highlights at the two museums. Each of them could take several hours. Take a copy of the novel with you so you can see what Holden saw and compare notes. There will be an essay afterwards.
Start here– Grand Central Station –free. Subways: # 4, 5, 6, 7, and S. From here walk to Rockefeller Center by heading to 5th Avenue and turning right. It’s a piece of cake.
Rockefeller Center –free, unless you go ice-skating. Ice-skating goes on through April 13th. For adults, $10–weekdays or $14–weekends. Skate rental, $8. Subways: F-D-B-Q. There are others that will get you close, but you’ll have to walk a little. Nearby is Radio City Music Hall where Holden saw the Rockettes. You’ll have to wait until their Christmas Spectacular Show to see them. Presale tickets are available.
To take the #1, which will get you to the American Museum of Natural History, the next tour stop, walk a few blocks to 50th and Broadway.
American Museum of Natural History –It can be free, however, there is a suggested admission of $15 for adults. You have to go through the line to pay what you want in order to get a ticket. Subway directions: Take B (weekdays only) or C to 81 Street or #1 to Broadway and West 79th Street.
Central Park Carousel -$2.00. The carousel and the Central Park Zoo trip fits between the two museum visits. The carousel reopens after the winter months in April. Although, the Metropolitan Museum of Art, is directly across the park from the American Museum of Natural History, I’d go to the carousel and zoo for a change of pace and to enjoy some spring flowers. Here’s a link to a teeny tiny map so you can see what I’m talking about. You can take a bus M7 to Central Park South and enter the park at 6th Avenue. Grab a soft pretzel with a dollop of mustard. If you’re lucky you can find a knish. Oh, I love those things.
Central Park Zoo – $8.00 (for adults) To get to the zoo from the carousel, keep walking across the park towards Fifth Avenue. You’ll pass by the Dairy Barn along the way.
Metropolitan Museum of Art–free, except there is a suggested donation of $20 for adults. You can walk here from the zoo, if you like to walk several blocks, or walk to Madison Ave. and take the M1, M2, M3, or M4 up to 83rd Street. On Fridays and Saturdays, the museum is open until 9 PM so you’ll have time to not hurry so much–plus there’s music.
Here’s an article that can work as a cheat sheet to show you what Holden saw at these places. You won’t be able to take in the Rockettes at Radio City Music Hall. For that, come back during the winter holidays.
Admission costs if you pay the full amount at the museums—55 + MetroCard for unlimited day use–$7 = Total $ $62.