DUMBO has certainly changed over the past few decades. Once a neglected industrial stretch of Brooklyn, in the 1990s artists started to move there, and soon a small creative scene started to transform the neighborhood. Now the area is comparable to SOHO with shops, galleries and restaurants.
Take a stroll through DUMBO's interesting little streets to get the flavor of this historic, now trendy, waterfront Brooklyn neighborhood.
It's the first neighborhood in Brooklyn after crossing the Brooklyn Bridge, and many Brooklyn residents just pass right by it, en route to the city. However if you have just crossed the iconic Brooklyn Bridge are looking a fun afternoon, do spend the day exploring Front Street in Dumbo.
Here are ten things you can do just wandering down DUMBO's Front Street:
- Have a Meal. DUMBO is know for its amazing restaurants. In fact, at the beginning of Front Street you'll see a perpetual line in front of the famous Grimaldi's Pizza, If you don't want to wait an hour for a pie (it is worth it), there are numerous places to dine on Front Street. From the uber-hip yet extremely laid back Superfine to the festive yet classy Mexican restaurant, Gran Electrica If you want some casual yet incredibly tasty food, right next to Front Street, at Old Fulton Street is an outpost of New York City's favorite burger and shake restaurant, The Shake Shack. If you don't know what you're in the mood for, just stroll down Front Street and check out all the various options.
- Go Shopping. There are many places to shop in DUMBO. In the summer months, the Brooklyn Flea sets up shop underneath the historic Brooklyn Bridge, which is just steps from Front Street. You don't need to wait until the spring to shop in DUMBO. Front Street is home to a large outpost of Brooklyn Industries and other shops. If you're on the hunt for home decor, you must peruse Journey on Front Street. The shop has furniture, lighting, art and other items to enhance your home. Fans of vintage goods must stop in the well curated Front Street General Store with its selection of electric vintage goods and other items.
- Look at the Views. If you walk to the beginning of Front Street and stand in front of Grimaldi's Pizza, you will see the Fulton Ferry Landing. You can hop on the East River Ferry to Manhattan or Williamsburg at the ferry landing or you can soak in the stunning views of Lower Manhattan. This is a spot where people take wedding photos and other special event photos.
- See a Concert on a Barge. You'll also notice a parked barge at Fulton Ferry landing. This is Bargemusic. This unique music venue hosts many classical concerts and is a must visit for any music lover coming to Brooklyn. The "floating concert hall" also offers free Music in Motion concerts for families on Saturdays at 4pm.
- Take a Ride on a Historic Carousel. After perusing the many shops on Fulton Street, make a left and head to the water. You will see an entrance to Brooklyn Bridge Park, which houses a classic 1922 restored carousel. Enjoy a ride on Jane's Carousel.
- See a Show. Just a couple of blocks from Front Street on Water Street is the new home for St. Ann's Warehouse, one of New York City's most respected cultural venues.
- Have a Picnic. Walk down Front Street and make a left on Adams Street and stop in Foragers for some sandwiches and food for a picnic and head to Brooklyn Bridge Park for your picnic.
- Walk Across the Brooklyn Bridge. Just blocks from Front Street is the entrance to the Brooklyn Bridge. Take a walk across the bridge and check out the views, Want to know how long the bridge is? Here's the answer!
- Go to a Gallery. There are galleries on Front Street, as well as other parts of DUMBO. Stop by
Smack Mellon, a staple in the DUMBO art world, the gallery houses work of emerging and under-recognized artists. In addition, Smack Mellon's Artist Studio Program offers artists studio space.
Get Ice Cream. Before you start your walk down Front Street, be sure to visit the Brooklyn Ice Cream Factory on Fulton Ferry Landing housed in a former fireboat house.
Edited by Alison Lowenstein