A guide of what to do in Dumbo, the Brooklyn neighborhood located “down under the Manhattan Bridge overpass” including where to eat, shop, and explore.
Dumbo is a small neighborhood within Brooklyn situated along the East River between the Brooklyn Bridge and the Manhattan Bridge. The neighborhood is known for having stunning views of the Manhattan skyline and it is quickly becoming a hotspot.
Dumbo’s size makes it easy to explore in a day. Add it to your itinerary as an escape from hectic Manhattan.
Getting to Dumbo
You can walk or bike across the Brooklyn Bridge, take the ferry, or take the train. Walking across the Brooklyn Bridge is something that everyone should do once, but make sure you do this when the weather is agreeable or it won’t be much fun. The East River Ferry gets you from Dumbo to Wall Street in just 4 minutes. Or, you can take F right to Dumbo’s York Street Subway Station. The A, C, 2, and 3 trains stop near Dumbo but not in the neighborhood.
What to Do in Dumbo
Built in 1922, originally located in Ohio, and purchased at auction and relocated to Brooklyn in 1984, Jane’s Carousel is a restored carousel with 48 wood carved horses.
It is open year-round, but it isn’t open everyday all year so check the hours. It’s $2 for a ride.
Brooklyn Bridge Park
Jane’s Carousel is located at the north end of this park. It’s known for its green space and for hosting events like Smorgasburg and movie screenings in the summer.
St. Ann’s Warehouse
This theater located in a former tobacco factory has been hosting plays and concerts for 40 years. The current play is The Jungle and several plays are put on each season. St. Ann’s Warehouse also has a puppet lab where artists working in the medium of puppetry work on projects that culminate in a four day Puppet Lab Festival.
Walk Across the Brooklyn Bridge
This is an ideal activity for a nice day. The walk from Brooklyn to Manhattan is scenic and the bridge itself is an architectural wonder.
Take the photos at Washington Street
Find one of the most famous views of the Manhattan Bridge by walking over to Washington Street. The street occupies just three blocks in Dumbo and is often crowded with photographers. If you are familiar with the show Gossip Girl, you will remember the view of Washington Street being used to introduce scenes at the Humphrey loft.
Live at the Arch-Way
A free weekly concert series that takes place in an archway just below the Manhattan Bridge during the summer. In addition to live music the event includes a pop-up gallery, magic, and spectacle opening acts.
Where to Eat in Dumbo
An iconic pizzeria that has been serving coal-fired brick-oven pizza for 100 years. They don’t accept reservations and there is often a long wait. They don’t serve slices, only whole pies – so bring a friend to two. There are a handful of locations across the USA now, but this is the first and the only location in New York.
Time Out Market
Located in a renovated warehouse with views of the Brooklyn Bridge, the Manhattan Bridge, and Manhattan, this waterfront food hall just opened in May 2019. Time Out selected the restaurants in the hall to showcase the best of New York City. The market can be found on both the ground level and the rooftop. There are communal seating areas so that you and your friends can gather meals from different food stalls and then dine together. The rooftop has a bar and terrace with can’t-miss views.
One Girl Cookies
A bakery that serves breakfast and lunch in addition to a variety of sweet treats. They are known for their gourmet cookies, brownies, bars, and cakes.
This chocotorta ice cream made with sour cream, dulce de leche, and chocolate cookie bits was exceptionally good. Oddfellows makes small batch ice cream with creative flavors.
An Italian restaurant with views of the waterfront and the Manhattan skyline. The menu includes pizzas, pastas, and wood-oven cooked meat entrees. This restaurant is elegant enough for a special occasion.
The River Cafe
A romantic Michelin-starred restaurant on the Brooklyn waterfront that is considered to be one of the most beautiful restaurants in the world. They serve breakfast, lunch, and dinner. The dinner menu is a fixed price menu with lots of seafood options and caviar service available. This is a formal restaurant and there is a dress code, men are required to wear jackets for dinner.
This large open air food market takes place alongside the Brooklyn Flea market on Sundays in Dumbo.
Where to Shop in Dumbo
This store/cafe sells coffee and snacks plus tote bags and other products with proceeds going to fight world hunger.
An outdoor flea market that features 80 vendors from April to October. It’s part vintage market, part food hall, and part craft fair.
The Modern Chemist
Part pharmacy and part quirky gift shop, this store has a wide variety of goods and lots of beauty products.
Have you been to Dumbo? It seems to have become a hub of activity now that the Time Out Market is open. Let me know what you love to do in Dumbo in the comments!