Brooklyn Bridge Park
GOOD FOR: All Ages

Source:Outdoors with Kids New York City (AMC Books)
Address:Plymouth Street and Washington Street, Brooklyn, NY
Hours:6 a.m. to 1 a.m. daily
Fee: Free
Bathrooms: Near Fulton Ferry Landing
Water/Snacks: Concession buildings near Fulton Ferry Landing and Pier 6

Paved and gravel paths along the coast offer spectacular views of southern Manhattan and the landmark islands of New York Harbor.

Brooklyn Bridge Park offers stunning views, great playgrounds, and plenty of space for picnicking.
Photo by: Cheryl and William de Jong-Lambert

Pier 1, the first section of this stunning waterfront rehabilitation project, opened in 2010. It brought to the area 6 acres of beautifully landscaped park, whose still-young trees and shrubs hold great promise of creating shady groves and paths in the years to come.

From the pier’s 2.5-acre lawn and 1,300-foot promenade along the East River, families can enjoy breathtaking views of southern Manhattan, the islands of New York Harbor, and the awesome expanse of the Brooklyn Bridge. Free seasonal community boating and kayaking is offered at the boathouse at Pier 1 and Main Street.

The landscaped Interim Greenway Path stretches from Pier 1 at the northern tip to Pier 6 at the southern end, passing Piers 2 through 5, which are not yet open to the public. Walkers and riders get a good sense of the formerly active harbor, and of what will someday be an 85-acre waterfront park.

Pier 6 at Atlantic Avenue features a 1.6-acre cluster of destination playgrounds with different themes and equipment for children of various ages. Slide Mountain, as the name suggests, has several large chute slides in addition to two climbing nets for older children. Swing Village had a range of swings— from buckets to saucers—for children ages 2 through 12, and Sandbox Village has sand pits, wooden houses, and a stationary train for children to climb on. The Water Lab offers children ages 5 through 12 the chance to explore the physics of water through pumps, chutes, and water wheels. A tot-lot playground is at Pier 1.

For some sea-faring fun, hop the ferry to or from Manhattan’s South Street Seaport. Service is available seasonally on Saturdays and Sundays; visit nyharborway. com for more information. Plans are also in place to add a water taxi dock at Pier 6 that would bring visitors to Governors Island (Trip 72). This is a park worth visiting frequently to watch it develop. Remember: Many areas of the park are designated as dog free. An enclosed dog run is at Pier 6. Also, the gravel paths are a challenge for some strollers and for children on scooters.

Plan B:

Prospect Park (Trip 32) offers a comparison with a very mature park, and the Prospect Park Audubon Center at the Boathouse and the Children’s Corner (Trip 33) has many activities for children. You could also walk over the Brooklyn Bridge. Entrance to the elevated pedestrian boardwalk is at Tillary Street and Boreum Place.


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