The question – by email, social chat or even by message – is always the same: what to see in Brooklyn in one day, to optimize at the best the time in New York, above all if you are in the city for the first time.
Even more than a wonderful “window” on Manhattan.
Brooklyn is a world apart, a melting pot of ethnic groups and cultures, of colors and savors allowing to go through the world virtually passing simply from on block to the other one.
An ancient and charming borough of New York which is really just as good as Manhattan. First try and then trust.
What to see in Brooklyn: ideas and tips
To visit Brooklyn really well one week wouldn’t be enough. Let it be known!
Try to think about the little surprises that the characteristic and fashion boroughs could reserve, like Williamsburg or Cobble Hill, the vintage stores, the historic dwellings, the pubs, the restaurants, the public parks, the surprising artistic spaces and even other, many, to many else.
But unfortunately time in New York, whether it is the first or second or even the third time, seems to be never enough.
So from here the idea of a one day mini-guidebook (with cues to deepen for an eventual return) about what to see in Brooklyn with the most suggestive places of the whole area, included a short explication, some deepening links and the nearest subway stop at every location to be able to optimize at the best your tour.
What to see in Brooklyn: short itinerary
Your day in Brooklyn must begin right from the Brooklyn Bridge.
Go along the pedestrian way without any hurry: from the exit of the City Hall/Chambers St. subway stop in Manhattan it takes you directly to the promenade of the bridge. After about half an hour spent to walk “suspended” on the East River soaked in one of the most beautiful views in the world you’ll arrive to Brooklyn.
The area immediately close to the bridge is rich in interesting points and unique views from which take unforgettable photos.
You can easily move on foot among the Brooklyn Bridge Park (close to the East River), the original Dumbo buildings and then little southwards towards the Brooklyn Promenade, the famous “window” on Manhattan.
Behind it towards the ancient and charming borough of Brooklyn Heights.
Click here for an itinerary among its brownstone houses, the most beautiful streets, the artists’ houses, the historic hotels, the museums and the places not to miss.
And then explore the nice district of Cobble Hill, another characteristic area where to admire the famous red stone row houses and the surprising Warren Place.
It’s a nice street of brick buildings where in 1878 the first Mews were realized: they were houses (always row houses) of about ten square meters with all comforts of that time and at affordable prices for working and immigrant families.
It was the builder and benefactor Alfred Tredway White that wanted them: he was a firm supporter that the best lifestyle favoured a major productivity.
He was right, according to the history, considering above all that these apartments over time gained a huge value and today the trading are about one million dollars.
Reach 99, Schermerhon St. where you’ll have the chance to visit the NY Transit Museum. It’s the most important museum in the States – located right in an old subway station – dedicated to the history of New York subway cars.
Click here to deepen and maybe plan at the best your tour according to the schedules.
What to see in Brooklyn: unusual locations and tips
Using the Hoyt Schermerhon subway stop linking to several lines (remember to always get with you a subway map) you can decide – according to your interests – to visit some (or all, if you have time) of these locations:
Absolutely the richest and variegate Flea Market (vintage market or flea market – call it as you prefer) in the whole New York. Here you can really find everything and above all for everyone’s reach. Password: negotiate!
The Brooklyn Flea takes place on Saturdays, from 10am to 5pm at 176, Lafayette Ave and on Sundays from 10am to 5pm in Anchorage Place. Always check the several exhibitors and the opening schedules updated according to season on the official website.
Prospect Park – Grand Army Plaza subway stop
It’s the green lung of Brooklyn, a boundless park where you can choose to visit the Brooklyn Public Library, the Brooklyn Museum, the Zoo and the Botanical Garden.
Green-Wood Cemetery – 25th Street subway stop
A boundless historic cemetery-garden where there are the graves of many famous characters: from its top it’s possible to admire original views of the Statue of Liberty and Lower Manhattan.
City Reliquary Museum – Metropolitan Ave
More than a museum, it’s an original and curious collection of the whole vintage concerning New York City. It was born about fifteen years ago where before there was an old winery: it was an idea by two eccentric characters (talking to them can be a really unique and in some ways funny experience) and this place keeps the greatest collection of objects related to NYC myth.
Coney Island – Coney Island Stillwell Avenue subway stop
The most famous New York beach. If you decide to visit it, reckon about 45 minutes by subway to arrive and at least two hours for the visit.
A place that in some way has taken up the collective imaginary of entire Americans generations light-hearted weekends: it was also the background of comics, TV series and unforgettable movies.
Bushwick Collective – Jefferson Street subway
A former working district with a stormy past which was born again thanks to Joe Ficalora’s intervention (he comes from this area) and the most famous local and international street artist. A downright open sky museum.
Click here to read its curious history and plan the tour.
Williamsburg – Bedford Ave subway
One of the coolest and fashion emergent districts in the whole New York, a former working area and dormitory for the NYU University students. Today is rich in locations, restaurants, art studios and pubs where to spend a nice afternoon/evening.
Click here for further deepening waiting for the new mini-guidebook dedicated to Williamsburg which is going to arrive in a short time.
It’s advisable to go back towards Manhattan in the first sunset suffused with lights crossing the pedestrian way of Williamsburg Bridge and then find oneself in a few dozen minutes among the suggestive buildings of the East Village.
At the end of the bridge, once arrived to Manhattan, you can decide whether have a tour around the area (if so, click here) or get the to reach your hotel/flat.