DUMBO & Brooklyn Bridge Park

New York, New York Guide (A): DUMBO & Brooklyn Bridge Park

Take a stroll through one of Brooklyn’s chicest neighborhoods, DUMBO (meaning Down Under the Manhattan Bridge Overpass), and newest waterfront park area, Brooklyn Bridge Park, while discovering great shops, restaurants and local venues. End your walk at the entrance to the Brooklyn Bridge pedestrian walkway.
This article is featured in the app "GPSmyCity: Walks in 1K+ Cities" on iTunes App Store and Google Play. You can download the app to your mobile device to read the article offline and create a self-guided walking tour to visit the attractions featured in this article. The app turns your mobile device into a personal tour guide and it works offline, so no data plan is needed when traveling abroad.

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Walk Route

Guide Name: DUMBO & Brooklyn Bridge Park
Guide Location: USA » New York
Guide Type: Self-guided Walking Tour (Article (A))
# of Attractions: 12
Tour Duration: 2.0 hour(s)
Travel Distance: 1.6 km
Sight(s) featured in this guide: Halcyon   Bubby's Pie Company, Brooklyn   Brooklyn Bridge Park, Main Street Lot/Empire Ferry Fulton Park   Galapagos Art Space   Jacques Torres Chocolate   St. Ann's Warehouse   River Cafe   Brooklyn Bridge Park, Pier 1   Brooklyn Ice Cream Factory   Fulton Ferry Landing   Grimaldi's Pizzeria   Brooklyn Bridge (Pedestrian Walkway)  
Author: Terri Davis-Merchant
Author Bio: Terri Davis-Merchant is the author of “Try Anything Once,” a food and travel blog discussing local and international cuisine, restaurants and travel. While not writing about her experiences in Brooklyn and abroad, she is often cooking new recipes and cheering on New York’s sports teams. She resides in the Boerum Hill section of Brooklyn with her husband.
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Halcyon

1) Halcyon

Opened in 2004, Halcyon is a DJ or serious music lover’s paradise. Come here to find rare music finds in a funky, fun environment. The staff is very helpful and can provide great suggestions to fit your musical taste, and they do have a section for vinyl records (remember those?). The store also sells furniture and other décor elements in case you’re hoping to take your home furnishings to a new level. When you have a chance check out halcyononline.com, the store’s online community for informative music related blogs, podcasts, message boards and music for sale.

Hours: Monday/Wednesday/Saturday 12pm – 8pm;

Tuesday/Thursday/Friday – 12pm – 9pm

Sunday 12pm-6pm
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Bubby's Pie Company, Brooklyn

2) Bubby's Pie Company, Brooklyn

Stop in this American comfort food restaurant for a selection of desserts (especially the pies!) and nice brunch options. If you want a great view of the Brooklyn Bridge, try to sit upstairs if it’s open. Also if you are interested in having a meal, definitely call ahead. Bubby’s is a popular place to hold weddings and other events. Can you blame people for wanting to come here? Look at that view! There is also a branch of Bubby’s in Manhattan’s Tribeca neighborhood.

Hours: Monday - Friday, 8am – 10pm; Thursday & Friday, 8am – 11pm; Saturday, 9am – 11pm and Sunday, 9am – 10pm
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Brooklyn Bridge Park, Main Street Lot/Empire Ferry Fulton Park

3) Brooklyn Bridge Park, Main Street Lot/Empire Ferry Fulton Park

One thing you should know is that Brooklyn Bridge Park is expansive. At the end of final construction of the park, the New York City Park’s Department hopes that the park will stretch from DUMBO to the southern edge of Brooklyn Heights at the Pier 6 portion of the park, which is currently open. In this part of the park go sit on the stone steps and relish the view of the Brooklyn Bridge and the makeshift gravel beach. This is one of the best places for a picture as well as Fulton Ferry Landing, which you’ll see in a few moments. Take some time to watch the boats go by, but beware of the noise from the elevated train lines above you. It can sometimes get a little loud. We’ll see more of the park in a few minutes. Also you’re probably wondering why it’s called Main Street Lot. Well it used to be a parking lot! To the left of this park, is yet another park area, Empire-Fulton Ferry State Park, which has been the subject of a major renovation recently. As of the writing of this guide, it is currently under renovation and due to open in 2011. It will include Jane’s Carousel, a vintage carousel that used to be housed on Water Street here in DUMBO, as well as additions to the Tobacco Warehouse, a roofless event space.
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Galapagos Art Space

4) Galapagos Art Space

Artists were some of the first residents in DUMBO, so it is no surprise that DUMBO has several artistic venues in the neighborhood. Having moved from the Williamsburg, Brooklyn neighborhood, the Galapagos Art Space is a performance space and bar providing a venue for avant-garde artists. Come here for independent film, dance and performance art. Galapagos also serves as a community bar offering trivia nights and variety shows. Even if its daytime, stop in. The folks who work there tend to be very friendly and will let you take a look at the space.
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Jacques Torres Chocolate

5) Jacques Torres Chocolate

Jacques Torres is a renowned pastry chef and chocolatier, who decided to go out on a limb and begin his chocolate empire here in DUMBO, Brooklyn. Jacques Torres began his work in pastry arts in France and moved to the United States in 1988 to be the Corporate Pastry Chef for the Ritz Carlton Hotel group. Later Mr. Torres started working in the world-famous Le Cirque restaurant in Manhattan where he dazzled diners with his confections for many years. Finally in 2000, Mr. Torres opened up his own factory right here in Brooklyn. His chocolates are known for their richness and are free of preservatives and artificial colors. Stop into this cute shop for a small taste of chocolate-y goodness. My personal favorite is the basic milk chocolate. For something different, try the Wicked Bar, dark chocolate with Ancho and Chipoltle chilis, or the Gingerette Bar, dark chocolate with ginger. If you’re not interested in a Starbucks coffee, try the Coffee Break bar with enough coffee and chocolate that you won’t need a morning or afternoon pick me up. The shop also sells chic and tasty chocolate bonbons and large pieces of chocolate great for baking and just plain eating. You can even take some time to watch how the chocolate is made as the factory is visible from inside the store. Take a moment to indulge yourself here!

(Sources: en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jacques_Torres)

Hours: Monday – Saturday, 9am – 7pm; Sunday 10am – 6pm
6
St. Ann's Warehouse

6) St. Ann's Warehouse

Like the Galapagos Art Space, St. Ann’s Warehouse is a theater and concert space that has been open in the DUMBO area for thirty years. The theater specializes in innovative performances. The theater encourages playwrights and performers to take their shows to the next level. The New York Times has stated that the productions there are “tough, raw, emotion-provoking material…” Recent performances have included a modern adaptation of Hans Christian Andersen's "The Red Shoes," a performance by the Brooklyn Youth Chorus, and a dramatic retelling of the last portion of Homer's "Odyssey." Make sure to call ahead for show times, if you are interested in attending a performance.

(Source: http://www.stannswarehouse.org/about.php)

Hours: Call ahead or consult the website for showtimes
7
River Cafe

7) River Cafe

River Café is considered one of the best fine dining establishments in New York City. With its tasty menu featuring modern American cuisine and its stunning views of the Manhattan skyline, it is a wonderful restaurant for a special occasion. The restaurant offers tasty gourmet brunches and special dinners on major holidays such as Thanksgiving. River Café is also known for its excellent wine cellar and selection of wines. Gentlemen, you should know that jackets are required after 5pm each day at the Main Bar and always in the Main Dining Room. Our current Vice President Joe Biden and his wife, Jill, had a belated Valentine’s Day dinner here earlier this year. Enjoy the food and the view!

Hours: Lunch: Monday – Saturday 12pm – 3pm; Brunch: Sundays 11:30am – 3pm Dinner: 5:30pm – 11pm
8
Brooklyn Bridge Park, Pier 1

8) Brooklyn Bridge Park, Pier 1

Pier 1 of Brooklyn Bridge Park recently opened in March 2010. There is a small children’s playground, areas for picnicking and lounging around in the grass as well as more than enough benches to sit and watch the East River, the lower Manhattan skyline and the Statue of Liberty. In the summer time, be on the look out for great events like Movies with a View, a series of free outdoor movie screenings in July and August. There are food vendors including a cart from Calexico, a wonderful local Mexican roaming food vendor, and restaurant Ditch Plains’ café menu, both available starting in the spring until mid-November. Also be sure to check out the Brooklyn Wine Bar selling beer, wine and soft drinks. Have a fun time at the park!
9
Brooklyn Ice Cream Factory

9) Brooklyn Ice Cream Factory

The Brooklyn Ice Cream Factory prides itself on its use of all natural ingredients and the fact that it makes ice cream the old-fashioned way. All of the ice cream is made locally making it truly a Brooklyn institution. This won’t taste like mass-produced ice cream, but it will taste like what Mom used to make at home: fresh and delicious. My personal favorite flavors are the peach, when it's in season, and gold ol' vanilla. I hear that you can't go wrong with the chocolate either. If you’re interested in more than a cone, try the extra-thick milkshakes, tasty sundaes and banana splits.
10
Fulton Ferry Landing

10) Fulton Ferry Landing

Why is this part of the Brooklyn waterfront called Fulton Ferry Landing? Until the construction of the Brooklyn Bridge, New Yorkers living in Brooklyn needed to take a ferry across the East River to get to Manhattan. Brooklynites took the Fulton Ferry from the spot you are standing on right now. Robert Fulton established the Fulton Ferry Company in 1814 with steamboat ferry service between Brooklyn and Manhattan. After the construction of the Brooklyn Bridge, ferry service became almost unnecessary when compared with the ease of using of the bridge. Ferry service eventually ended in 1924. This is also the site where George Washington, as leader of the American colonial forces during the American Revolutionary War, retreated during the Battle of Brooklyn also known as the Battle of Long Island. By the way, if you look at the railings, you can see the imprint of the great American poet, Walt Whitman’s “Crossing Brooklyn Ferry” poem. Enough with the history! Take some time to stop right here and take it in! This is one of the best views in all of New York City. To the right is the Brooklyn Bridge (but of course!). Straight ahead of you is the lower Manhattan skyline.

(Source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fulton_Ferry,_Brooklyn)
11
Grimaldi's Pizzeria

11) Grimaldi's Pizzeria

Grimaldi’s Pizzeria is a local pizza making institution here in New York City. Grimaldi’s uses the old techniques of coal oven baking that give its pizza a distinct flavor. It’s often cited by some as some of the best pizza in New York City. As with anything that is so good, you must be prepared to wait for it. There is almost ALWAYS a line snaking outside the door and down the street for seating. Diners have been known to wait well over an hour and a half to get a table. There are no reservations, no take-out and no delivery. My advice is to get there early when they first open or go on a day with bad weather. Our current First Lady, Michelle Obama, claimed to like it so much that New Yorkers think she may even like more than her native Chicago’s deep dish pizza. Why don’t you give it a try?
12
Brooklyn Bridge (Pedestrian Walkway)

12) Brooklyn Bridge (Pedestrian Walkway)

Enter here for the Brooklyn Bridge pedestrian Walkway. Designed by architect, John Roebling, the Brooklyn Bridge was completed in 1883 and is one of the oldest suspension bridges in the United States. Roebling almost didn't get to see the bridge completed due to him suffering several debilitating injuries. Luckily, his son and daughter-in-law stepped in as the supervising architects and eventually presided over the construction and completion of the bridge. At one point, the bridge used to be open to street cars and elevated trains, but now is not only used by cars and pedestrians. The images of the bridges are iconic, and it has been seen in many Hollywood movies. In 1964, the Brooklyn Bridge was designated a National Historic Landmark. In 2008, the Bridge celebrated its 125th Anniversary of its opening with music concerts, and other performances, a film series and historical walking tours. The Bridge is a great way to experience a piece of New York City history while enjoying a fabulous view. Enjoy your walk over the Bridge!

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