Well first you have to get to New York City any way you can and from there it can get interesting. Your choices are taxi, train, subway, ferry, water taxi and of course by foot. On the day I wanted to explore Dumbo (down under Manhattan Bridge overpass) it involved almost all of those options.
First we walked to the path train station that was closed for repairs so they were (and still are, this repair situation is every weekend for a year) making you swipe your metro card to walk in and right back out where they gave you a ticket for a ferry across the Hudson River. Oh! I forgot to mention we were staying in Jersey City, New Jersey. From there we walked to the ferry station and waited in line for the ferry to take us across
Ferry ride from Jersey City, New Jersey to Manhattan.
As you can see from the map here, the ferry took us from Jersey City to right about where the N is in New York.
We could’ve walked right across the lower end there to the Brooklyn Bridge (and it probably would’ve been a shorter walk) but we decided to stroll through Battery Park, past a food festival and tons of tourists lining up to get on the ferry to the Statue of Liberty until having grown weary and quite warm (it got up to 78 degrees that day) we opted to take another smaller ferry directly to Dumbo.
Battery Park was beautifully blooming that day!
Once we arrived on the Brooklyn shore we were met by a swarm of other locals and visitors enjoying the day and the over priced restaurants and street food. We knew that was coming but unfortunately I had left my list of cheaper eats back at the hotel so it was what it was but it was so worth it in the end.
One of the guys running this ferry let us know exactly where to stand (and let us stand on the outside too) to get some good shots like this one of the Brooklyn and Manhattan Bridges as we headed towards Brooklyn. Shooting on a moving and bouncing ferry is – ahem – fun!
Our first stop after disembarking was Brooklyn Bridge Park and some iconic views from there. There is just so much to do and see in this park that we didn’t even begin to scratch the surface.
Talk about a bench with a view!
One spot that many many photographers gravitate to is this one of some old piers looking out towards Manhattan. I didn’t bring the equipment with me to take “the” shot (meaning for day a tripod and ND filter or for night the tripod and remote trigger) so this was as good as I got hand held. I would like to come back and try it again at sunrise, sunset or night one day.
After the park we went hunting for the most famous photography spot in Dumbo; the Manhattan Bridge on Washington Street where the legs of the bridge frame the Empire State Building. We and hundreds of other photographers, selfie takers, tourists, wedding and quinceanera photographers were there for that shot. With it’s old brick streets and warehouses, Dumbo has become the new hip and trendy spot which translates to popular, crowded and expensive. I made a couple of new photographer friends that day as well.
They don’t call it down under Manhattan Bridge overpass for nothing!
And here’s the shot everyone comes to Washington Street for. The Empire State Building framed through the legs of the Manhattan Bridge. This spot is best photographed early in the morning before the crowds descend but I still like the shots I took. The street isn’t blocked and is a working street so there were many frustrated drivers trying to get through here as people swarmed the street for their shots.
All of the walking had made us very hungry and it was time for some tasty but expensive seafood (first time I ever had skate and it was pretty good) and an ice cream cone from an ice cream truck. I discovered that I don’t like the old ice cream cones like I did as a child. Give me the waffle cones any day now! After our needed break we walked our way alongside the East River to the ferry to take us back to Manhattan where this time using One World Trade as our landmark (easy to see from most any place on the island), we walked straight across from the pier, past One World Trade and to the ferry back to our hotel.
It wasn’t until just the other day that I found out you can rent jet ski’s to have fun in the river as shown in the image below. I wondered where this group got them from. They were blasting music from their boat and having a grand time doing tricks on their rides. It was a fun parting shot for our day in Dumbo.
We definitely plan on returning but next time armed with the proper equipment and other information like where are the cheaper eats and best times to take photos in some areas. Would you travel someplace like NYC and Dumbo to get an iconic shot? Have you and if so where?
(Still under the weather but seeing signs of improvement. Actually slept all last night without coughing violently for the first time in a week. WOOT!)