Sightseeing in Manhattan the Fifth: Greenwich Village

Dearest blog readers!

Today I am going to share some highlights from visiting Greenwich Village and the West Village with you.

On the map you can see where Greenwich Village is situated in Manhattan.

Map from Wikipedia

A lot of the smaller streets are looking like this:

I really think those old houses are very impressive and so beautiful - and quite expensive in rental costs. *sadly*

Greenwich Village, often referred to by locals as simply "the Village", is a neighborhood on the west side of Lower Manhattan. Greenwich Village has been known as an artists' haven, the Bohemian capital, the cradle of the modern LGBT (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender) movement, and the East Coast birthplace of both the Beat and '60s counterculture movements.

Groenwijck, one of the Dutch names for the village (meaning "Green District"), was Anglicized to Greenwich.

Also the campus of the New York University (NYU) is located in Greenwich Village. It was founded in 1831 and is one of the largest private nonprofit institutions of American higher education. NYU is organized into more than 20 schools, colleges, and institutes, located in six centers throughout Manhattan and Downtown Brooklyn, as well as more than a dozen other sites across the world, with plans for further expansion. (Source: Wikipedia)

The NYU buildings are recognizable through the purple flags.

Randomly Lisa and I found the German House (= Deutsches Haus).

It is part of the NYU and offers German courses and other community activities.

Beside the Deutsche Haus is the African House and across the street is the French House. It was so precious to find this hidden gem inside this big city. We really enjoyed seeing those cute little houses and were happy to read some German language. The man on the reception of the German House couldn't tell me what those small houses used to be. My personal guess is that they used to be carriage houses. The carriage and the horses were in the down level and the carriagers' family lived above them. I know that there are houses like that in Brooklyn and they have been converted into single family homes.

A few weeks later Daniel and I came back with our friends Sören and Rachel and Sören heard some non-German tourists that walked by saying "Ah, that's where the Dutch live!" Haha, that was so funny for us! They really thought that they just discovered something there... but in reality they got it all wrong. Well, I do understand that "Deutsches" and "Dutch" has some similarity. ;-)

Above all I liked the advertisement for the German House: "Learn German if you DER".

That's an awesome play on words. It uses the German masculine article "der" that is pronounced like the English word "dare". You really must bring some courage to learn German as we have three articles (feminine, masculine and neutral) and it's not at all logical which noun has which article. For example it is "der Bus" (the bus), although you might think that bus is a thing and should have the neutral article. And there are many more cases like that. The nightmare of all foreigners that learn German - ask Daniel! ;-)

Just around the corner is Washington Square Park. This photo is from March and the trees had not yet leaves. But now it is BE-AU-TIFUUUL there! All green and so many folks chilling on the benches in the sun. I had seen the Washington Square Arch in several movies and that's why I wanted to come in the first place to check that neighborhood out. One of those movies was "August Rush" (wanna see the trailer? click here) and it also shows many other cool places from the city.

When we came with Rachel and Sören it looked like this. The whole park was filled with tourists and students.

Daniel and Sören in front of the arch. By the way I have no clue why Daniel is posing like this.... but it's kinda funny. lol

And here we are all together. Daniel has the longest arm and took our selfie. But to tell you the truth, earlier or later we need to get a selfie stick to have some more pro-photos. I tell ya'! ;-)

Back to March:

And then Lisa and I wanted to go to the "Friends" building... well actually it was more my wish and not so much my sister's... hehe. ;-)

Friends is one of my most favourite TV Shows and how could I live in this city and not look up that house?! This building - that they show in the show - is located in the West Village. We had to take the Subway until Christopher Street and then walk a little.

Christopher Street is, technically, the oldest street in the West Village, as it ran along the south boundary of Admiral Sir Peter Warren's estate, which abutted the old Greenwich Road (now Greenwich Avenue) to the east and extended north to the next landing on the North River, at present-day Gansevoort Street. The street was briefly called Skinner Road after Colonel William Skinner, Sir Peter's son-in-law. The street received its current name in 1799, when the Warren land was acquired by Warren's eventual heir, Charles Christopher Amos. Charles Street remains, but Amos Street is now 10th Street.

As a result of the Stonewall riots in 1969, the street became the center of New York State's gay rights movement in the late 1970s.  (Source: Wikipedia)

Incidentally we found this street corner while we were searching for the Friends Building. Well, sometimes I think it's cool to get lost a little and find some things you wouldn't have searched for because of not knowing that they exist.

And then eventually we found it! :-) I know that just the people that are fans of "Friends" will understand my excitement. For the others it's just a normal house... well maybe some non American readers like the fire escape which is pretty much American style.

The coffee house in the TV Show is called "Central Perk" and that's where the six friends meet every day to chat and drink coffee. In real life there is a coffee house as well. It's called "The Little Owl".

And also by chance we found this cute church.

It's the German evangelical St. John Lutheran church.

If we would really live in Manhattan and would have the needed money to pay the rent, this would be my favourite neighborhood! One of those older houses or such a cute carriage house close to Washington Square Park and so many coffee shops. Also it's not as loud and busy - compared to some other areas.

Next time when you are in NYC give Greenwich Village a try and get to know the area!

I hope you had a blessed week until now and I wish you a great second half!

Love, Kati

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