Everything you need to know about visiting Brooklyn Heights and the Brooklyn Promenade (Columbia Heights, NY 11201).
Looking for a great place to enjoy a panoramic view of everything the city has to offer? The Brooklyn Promenade—a one-third-mile stretch of pavement along the East River—is a favorite destination of residents, tourists and couples looking to make out next to an unforgettable span of NYC’s skyline. Breathtaking views of the Brooklyn Bridge and Statue of Liberty are both visible from here, but the Promenade wasn’t originally built for aesthetic reasons: City planner Robert Moses originally wanted the Brooklyn Queens Expressway to run through Brooklyn Heights. After lots of opposition from the local community, the promenade was built to insulate the mansions and tree-lined streets nearby from highway noise and has been doing so since it opened in October 1950.
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Eat some ice cream (and pizza!)
Once you’re done enjoying the views, you’ll find no shortage of food and drinks nearby: Brooklyn Ice Cream Factory and Grimaldi’s are both within walking distance of the promenade. Fun fact: The ice cream factory is housed inside an old fireboat house. As for Grimaldi’s, it’s a household name among pizza-loving New Yorkers and this Brooklyn location is the most famous.
Take a carousel ride
Built in 1922 by the Philadelphia Toboggan Company, Jane’s Carousel is one of the highlights of Brooklyn Bridge Park—also the home to volleyball courts, dog runs and playgrounds. Even though it’s a popular location for photo shoots, birthday parties and weddings, that doesn’t mean you can’t visit it just for a ride: Tickets are just $2 and children age 3 or younger can ride for free if accompanied by a paying adult.
Learn the borough’s history
Founded in 1863, the Brooklyn Historical Society exists to teach visitors (or even longtime residents) about Brooklyn’s history: Permanent collections include paintings of the borough through the years. But you’ll want to visit soon to check out its current exhibits, including Truman Capote’s Brooklyn: The Lost Photographs of David Attie, taken by the photographer for Holiday magazine and documenting his life, and Wise Eyes: Still Woke, with profiles of women who have been catalysts for empowerment as they fought for causes larger than themselves—including suffrage, black freedom and equity in higher education.
Our New York editorial team is constantly updating and reviewing the best attractions, activities and venues across the city, so that you're always in the know, with the best of NYC. at your fingertips. Brooklyn Heights and the Brooklyn Promenade was most recently updated with new tips on June 26, 2017.