brooklyn things to do
Travel,  USA

Best Things To Do In Brooklyn

A few days spent wandering Brooklyn gives you a slower-paced side of New York with an artsy and cosmopolitan vibe.

Brooklyn has niche perfume shops, cozy cafes and bookstores. Are you missing out by neglecting Manhattan? It won’t feel that way.

Brooklyn was once notorious for high crime rates, drug dealers and drive-by shootings.

But parts of it have experienced a true Renaissance.

It now boasts a sizable hipster culture, a strong art community and plenty of pubs and nightclubs. Though the artists who first flocked to Williamsburg because it was affordable are no longer doing so. Rents have skyrocketed since the 1990s.

brooklyn

brooklyn

And the ethnicities in Williamsburg give the neighbourhood a vibrant and cosmopolitan feel, along with great street food. There are Hasidim Jews and Puerto Ricans in South Williamsburg, and Poles and Italians in the North Side, among many others.

Waterfront views

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new york

Small parks offer views of the Manhattan skyline looming across the East River.

Brooklyn is all the more desirable now because of the waterfront district. A decline in industry left many warehouses decrepit and vacant. And the district was rezoned in 2005 to allow residential buildings.

The glittering Williamsburg Bridge connects the Lower East Side of Manhattan with Williamsburg.

As the sun sets, the golden New York lights reflect in the river.

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16 Comments

  • Sheree

    I walk everywhere which gives me time to really look at all the interesting buildings, people-watch, window shop and generally get a feel for the place. I too enjoy visiting museums particularly MoMa, Whitney, Neue Galerie, Met, Guggenheim, Frick and the Public Library.

    • Dee

      New York has so many great museums – you could probably plan out a whole itinerary just based on them.. And I’m with you on the walking. It really gets you to slow down and take in your surroundings.

  • Christopher Papagni

    I appreciate and applaud your piece, especially your visit to Brooklyn. Having been born in Brooklyn and having resided there most of my life, I was, in the past, disheartened by reports of high crime stats and unsafe streets. Brooklyn has over 3 million residents and covers many square miles and there were always small pockets of crime. The Brooklyn I know and love has always been beautiful, safe and living in Manhattan’s shadow. Great to see Brooklyn getting the recognition it has long deserved. Williamsburg is just one of its many colorful and ethnically diverse neighborhoods. See my piece on Brooklyn of the 60s and its rich history.

    • Dee

      Thank you, Christopher! It was an amazing trip for me, and I loved exploring a bit of New York off the beaten path or at least outside of Manhattan.. I think Brooklyn has gone through a real renaissance lately and has nearly shed its old crime-ridden image from the 80s. I’m looking forward to reading your post about its history as well!

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