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New York City may be a “Concrete Jungle,” but that doesn’t mean the city lacks green, idyllic places where you can take a break from its hectic rhythm. And while Central Park is certainly one of those spots, if you’d like to enjoy some pretty amazing views of the Big Apple, head to Brooklyn Bridge Park.
Located under one of the most famous bridges in the world, the park spans over 1.3 miles along Brooklyn’s waterfront. The six distinct piers draw visitors with its many recreational facilities and beautifully landscaped green spaces. And last but not least, Brooklyn Bridge Park is the perfect spot to take some postcard-worthy snaps of the city’s skyline together with the Brooklyn Bridge.
Keep reading to find out how to make the most out of your time in one of New York’s best parks.
Things to Do at Brooklyn Bridge Park
While there are plenty of spots just to sit back and enjoy the view, if you’ve come to Brooklyn Bridge Park with your children or you’d like to stay active, the park will not disappoint.
The 85-acre space is divided into six piers, with each offering activities for both kids and adults. Bouldering, cycling, roller skating, shooting hoops, playing a game of soccer, kayaking—the list is endless, and it will certainly keep you busy and moving.
Brooklyn Bridge Park Pier 1 is the largest of all six and includes three picturesque lawns perfect for a picnic or for soaking up some vitamin D. Stroll along the waterfront promenade and enjoy the blooms at the water gardens.
Athletes of all levels should head to Brooklyn Bridge Park Pier 2 that offers five acres-worth of fun activities such as basketball, handball, bocce, and kayaking. Pier 2 is also home to one of the most popular attractions in Brooklyn Bridge Park—the roller-skating rink. The outdoor space is conveniently covered, so even if the weather is not cooperating, you can still take a spin on the ring. Sports enthusiasts and parents can find even more soccer fields and children’s playgrounds at Brooklyn Bridge Park’s Pier 5. The Peninsula area with its hibachi-style grills and picnic tables is the ideal spot for an alfresco meal.
Kids and their parents will enjoy getting lost in the garden labyrinth of Brooklyn Bridge Park’s Pier 3 and discovering the many salvaged treasures in it. The family-friendly Pier 6 is a haven for kids. It is home to the largest sandbox in New York, as well as a water park and a swing area with Tarzan ropes.
If you’re visiting in the summer, then make sure to hit the beach at Brooklyn Bridge Park’s Pier 4. It is also home to many native plant species and concrete structures modeled after natural tidal pools.
Where to Eat near Brooklyn Bridge Park
Whether you’re craving a refreshing cup of lemonade or have worked up a serious appetite after a long walk, the cafes and restaurants at Brooklyn Bridge Park have something delicious waiting for you.
For an aromatic cup o’ Joe (and some beautiful latter art) in the morning head to Kaigo Coffee Room at Pier 6. Treat your kids to a cup of artisanal lemonade at Lizzmonade at Pier 1 and a scoop or two of ice cream from Oddfellows. Its creative spin on classic flavors such as lemon shortbread thyme, matcha rocky road, and peanut butter and s’mores has made it a Brooklyn staple.
For the perfect lunch on the go, grab a lobster roll from Luke’s Lobster shack, located in the historic Smokestack building. For those not in a hurry, Fornino at Pier 6 offers rooftop seating with views over the Statue of Liberty and Lower Manhattan as well a long menu of antipasti, pizza, sandwiches, salads, and desserts. Wine and cocktails here are a must.
Where to Stay
Nothing beats the views of Brooklyn Bridge Park from the 4,000 square-foot rooftop of 1 Hotel Brooklyn Bridge. Designed with sustainability and wellness in mind, this luxury boutique property is located at Pier 1 and is ideal for exploring the park. Taking design cues from its lush surroundings, the hotel’s lobby features a 25-foot green wall and a nature-inspired art collection displayed throughout the property. Rooms and suites offer panoramic vistas of the city and Lady Liberty.
And if you’d rather stay in Manhattan, Mr. C Seaport, an American Express Fine Hotels & Resorts property in the historic South Street Seaport neighborhood is less than a 10-minute walk from Brooklyn Bridge. This waterfront property treats its guests to sophisticated interiors, modern Italian fare, and beautiful river and Brooklyn Bridge Park views.