Bradley has lived in Brooklyn since 2012, and Erin moved across the river in 2014. Collectively they’ve lived in Williamsburg, Greenpoint, Fort Greene, and Park Slope. (Erin also spent two years working in Dumbo.) Below are some of their favorite activities, restaurants, and bars in Brooklyn, organized by neighborhood.
In 1636, Gowanus Bay was the site of the first settlement by Dutch farmers in what is now Brooklyn. In the 1860s, the Gowanus Canal became a hub for manufacturing and shipping. Now Gowanus is a developing area with a mix of classic rowhouses and converted warehouses, including the wedding venue.
ROYAL PALMS SHUFFLEBOARD
The Royal Palms is a walk-in shuffleboard club. They have tropical drinks, a rotating cast of food trucks, board games, and a DJ. We recommend going right when they open at 12 PM to guarantee a spot. Fun fact: Bradley competes in a weekly shuffleboard league.
Ample hills creamery
The. Best. Ice. Cream. Bradley and Erin love Ample Hills, and recommend this location for its rooftop (yes, a rooftop at an ice cream parlor). Favorite flavors? Nonna D’s Oatmeal Lace & Ooey Gooey Buttercream.
Axe throwing for the whole family. (Ages 8 and up.) We recommend you book a reservation in advance!
Set against a backdrop of shipping yards and pre-Civil War warehouses in Brooklyn, Red Hook has a laid-back seaside village vibe.
For ambiance and views, you can do no better than Brooklyn Crab, a three level, open-air seafood spot. On sunny weekend afternoons, the place gets packed with people rolling up their sleeves and digging into steamers.
Steve’s Key Lime Pie
This dessert spot in an industrial building by the water sells key lime pies that have been frozen and covered in chocolate (called Swingles, and they come on sticks, like lollipops). Grab a seat and enjoy the beautiful view of the Statue of Liberty.
VAN BRUNT STREET
Van Brunt is Red Hook’s main commercial drag, home to shops, upscale boutiques, and casual, brunch-friendly restaurants.
Tom’s Diner opened in 1936 and has been a Brooklyn classic ever since. It’s famous for the pancakes - especially the Blueberry Lemon Ricotta. Get there early to avoid the wait–but if you do get stuck in line you’ll be treated to free coffee and treats. Tom’s is a short walk to the Brooklyn Museum & Botanical Gardens. It’s also lovely to walk down Vanderbilt Avenue after breakfast.
The Brooklyn Museum
The Brooklyn Museum is NYC's third largest in physical size and holds an art collection with roughly 1.5 million works. It houses a huge permanent collection categorized by culture, as well as visiting exhibitions. It’s situated next to the Brooklyn Botanic Garden, and visitors can purchase discounted passes that allow them to tour both in the same day.
BROOKLYN BOTANICAL GARDENS
Brooklyn Botanic Garden is an urban botanic garden situated on 52 acres in the heart of Brooklyn. The garden is open year-round and has plants for every season, plus indoor tropical gardens and bonsai trees. Our favorite is the indoor “desert.”
Prospect Park is a 526-acre park in the center of Park Slope, designed by the same architect as Central Park, Frederick Olmsted. It is home to the only lake in Brooklyn, a beautiful boathouse and a small zoo. If you’re up for it, we recommend walking (or running!) the three mile path around the park.
Since the late 1990s, Williamsburg has undergone a transformation characterized by hipster culture, a contemporary art scene, and vibrant nightlife.
The Bedford is great for brunch and lunch—and it’s the home of Bradley’s all-time favorite burger. There’s also a back room that turns into a quiet cocktail lounge at night.
Cafe Mogador in Williamsburg is Erin’s favorite brunch spot. She recommends the Middle Eastern Eggs. Get there early for a table!
If you’re looking to grab a beer with a group, check out Spritzenhaus. This beer hall serves craft brews with communal tables—and kids are welcome. Get the fries!
Dumbo, or “Down Under the Manhattan Bridge Overpass,” is known for its cobblestone streets and converted Brooklyn warehouse buildings.
EAST RIVER FERRY
Erin’s favorite mode of transportation in NYC. The ferry will take you from South Street Seaport in Manhattan, to Dumbo, to South and North Williamsburg, across to Midtown, and back again.
One way or the other, the Brooklyn Bridge is a must-see when traveling to Brooklyn. The walk across the Brooklyn Bridge, whether you’re walking from Brooklyn to Manhattan or vice versa, is one of the most iconic walks New York City has to offer.
Brooklyn bridge park
Brooklyn Bridge Park, as its name would suggest, is stationed under the Brooklyn Bridge. It draws thousands of visitors each week who come for awe-inspiring views of Manhattan and picnic spots along the waterfront.