Brooklyn Bridge, Wall Street, Statue of Liberty
- Physical DifficultyThis is the average user-submitted rating on the physical difficulty of this route. In general, green is beginner, blue is intermediate, black is advanced/most difficult and double-black is expert-only. It is recommended that users build up to black and double-black routes.
- Technical DifficultyThis is the average user-submitted rating on the technical difficulty of this route. In general, green is beginner, blue is intermediate, black is advanced/most difficult and double-black is expert-only. It is recommended that users build up to black and double-black routes.
This route of this NYC walk will take you through some highlights of New York City’s history. Begin at the Brooklyn Bridge, head past City Hall, pay homage at the World Trade Center memorial site, venture deep into the financial hub of Wall Street, check out birthplace of the American government at Federal Hall and finish at Battery Park – the place where it all began. Make sure to pay attention to the details here, from the intricate architecture to the expertly crafted Charging Bull.
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Route Description for Brooklyn Bridge, Wall Street, Statue of Liberty
From Borough Hall subway station enter Columbus Park. Continue about 200 m north, passing over Johnston Street until you reach Tillary Street. Take a right here and continue about 50 m until you reach the pedestrian entrance for the Brooklyn Bridge, also known as the Brooklyn Bridge Promenade. Continue for about a kilometer on the route, watching out for bikers. At first it’s not too impressive, but we promise it gets better!
Soon you’ll approach the bridge entrance. Completed in 1883, the Brooklyn Bridge was the first steel-wire suspension bridge constructed anywhere in the world, connecting the boroughs of Manhattan and Brooklyn across the East River. It was (and still is) an icon of New York City, designated a National Historic Landmark in 1964. As you approach the bridge entrance, the skyline will begin to unfold in front of you. Follow in the footsteps of more than 100 years of history as you move across the bridge.
Once you reach the East River, and as you continue across the bridge for the next kilometer or so, make sure to stop and take frequent breaks to enjoy spectacular city views in every direction. After you arrive back on land, continue on the promenade for about 800 m. The City Hall Park will be directly in front.
Take some time to walk around the park, marveling in the architectural gems dating back as early as 1812 and enjoying a short respite from the dense urban life that flanks its borders. Today, it’s home to the New York City Hall but this site has played a central role in the city’s development for centuries. It’s served as the site of a pasture, prison, parade ground, public execution site, almshouse, art museum, post office, and rebel outpost.
Exit the park directly opposite of where you entered. You should now be on Broadway at the subway stop City Hall serving lines R and W. Head left on Broadway towards Park Place. After about 150 m, the Woolworth Building will be on your right. This was an early US skyscraper, constructed between 1910 and 1912. At 241 m it remains one of the 100 tallest buildings in the US, and has been a New York City landmark since 1983. Continue on Broadway about another 50 m-100 m until you come to Vesey Street. Take a right here.
On your left-hand side is the St. Paul’s Chapel of Trinity Church Wall Street. This chapel has served as a continuous location for prayer since it first opened in 1776. If it’s open you can visit the inside of the chapel and the grounds. Continue on Vesey, taking your next left onto Church Street. Continue on Church for about 50 m, taking your next possible right to go towards the 9/11 Memorial and Museum.
The site is a tribute to the nearly 3,000 people that died during the terror attacks of September 11, 2001. Today, the Memorial features twin reflecting pools that are nearly an acre in size, sitting within the footprints of where the twin towers once stood. The pools inside feature the largest man-made waterfalls in North America. We definitely recommend taking some time to visit here.
Exit the way you entered, turning right on Greenwich, taking your next left onto Cortland. Continue on Cortland for two blocks until you hit Broadway. Turn right here. Continue on Broadway for about 250 m, absorbing the endless buzz of excitement this neighborhood is famous for, until you hit Wall Street. Take a left here. After nearly 100 m, Federal Hall will be on your left. This site was essentially the birthplace of the American government – where George Washington took the oath of office as the first President and the home of the first congress, Supreme Court, and Executive Branch offices.
Continue another 150 m until the National City Bank Building (also known as 55 Wall Street) is on your left. This building dates back to the early 1830s and served as the Merchant’s Exchange in the early part of American history. Go another 50 m or so until you hit Pearl Street. Take a right on Pearl.
Immediately, you’ll be greeted with a uniquely shaped triangular building. Known as the Cocoa Exchange. Built in 1904 this building served as – you guessed it – the New York Cocoa Exchange from 1931 to 1972. Today it’s home to pricey condominiums.
Continue past the Cocoa Exchange until you hit a tiny pocket of green space, known as Hanover Square. Take a break here if you wish, or continue a slight right down Stone Street. If you’re in the mood for a bit of luxurious mouthwatering history hop one street over to Delmonico’s. This was the first eatery to be called a “restaurant” in the US, opening its doors to the area’s budding financial geniuses in 1837. It’s here that the infamous Delmonico Steak was born and later, in the 1860s where Chef de Cuisine Charles Ranhofer invented a number of original dishes such as Eggs Benedict, Baked Alaska, Lobster Newburg and Chicken A la Keene, which still remain on the menu today.
Keep walking down Stone Street – famous for its many historical buildings, along with South William, Pearl Streets and Coenties Alley, which form the Stone Street Historical District. There are tons of restaurants and cafes here if you’re feeling hungry. When you’ve come to the end of the street (after about 100 meters) take a left onto Coenties Alley and a quick right back onto Pearl Street. Continue on Pearl Street for about 250 m until you run into Battery Park.
Directly in front will be the Battery Urban Farm an organic farm where residents, visitors, and students can go to learn about sustainable farming, protecting natural resources and the joys of fresh, seasonal foods. Stop here for a visit or continue into the park, taking a right to head towards the Netherland Monument, commemorating the Dutch establishment of New Amsterdam (which later grew into the megalopolis of New York City).
If you wish, exit the park here and head up Broadway to see the statue of the Charging Bull – a symbol of the neighborhood. Return back the way you came, and head either to the slight right or slight left path after the Netherland Monument (they meet at the same place in the end). After about 100 m you’ll reach the Castle Clinton National Monument. Originally built to prevent a British invasion in 1812, the fortress transformed to be an immigration station, welcoming more than 8 million people to New York City between 1855 and 1890. Today it stands as a national monument.
Go around the Castle Clinton National Monument to reach the Statue of Liberty Viewpoint – Battery Park. Here you can simply take in the spectacular view or head just 50 m to the left to hop on a ferry to visit both Ellis Island and the Statue of Liberty. However, if you just want to get a closer look at the statue, we recommend taking the free Staten Island Ferry at the end of the walk. From the cruise departure spot, continue along the water for about 200 m. Take a left at the turn by Battery Gardens. After the gardens, take a right to exit the park in the direction of the Staten Island Ferry. Once you’ve reached the ferry terminal, this marks the end of the walk.
Insider Hints for Brooklyn Bridge, Wall Street, Statue of Liberty
- The walk along Brooklyn Bridge can be super windy – make sure you pack a light jacket even on a warm day.
- Many of the sites on this route are free to see the outside, but require a ticket to enter inside. Check out which ones are worth it for you to get a closer look at.
- You have to book reservations in advance to visit the crown of the Statue of Liberty. More information can be found here.
- This walk goes through one of the priciest areas in NYC. You can still grab a cheap bite at one of the many street vendors – NYC hot dog, anyone?
Getting to the Brooklyn Bridge, Wall Street, Statue of Liberty Trailhead
We’ll start this walk at Borough Hall subway station in the Brooklyn Heights neighborhood (lines 2, 3, 4, 5 and R).
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