Seven fun things to do in DUMBO, Brooklyn

Things to do in Dumbo, Brooklyn

If you’re a Gossip Girl fan like me, then visiting DUMBO, Brooklyn should be at the top of your New York list. And why wouldn’t it be? It is after all the home of the Humphrey family and so many scenes between Serena and Dan! But more than that (so much more than that), DUMBO has a certain kind of charm that’s hard to miss. The merlot coloured century old buildings, cobblestoned streets, artsy vibe and of course, iconic views of the Brooklyn and Manhattan bridges makes it one of those must see (and must return to) places.

DUMBO is located in the north east area of Brooklyn, with most of it being under the Manhattan Bridge. The name DUMBO, or rather the acronym, stands for “Down Under the Manhattan Bridge Overpass” because of its location. It used to be a pretty industrial neighbourhood but has since changed into one of NYC’s most artsy hotspots. Here you’ll find tons of old warehouses, cute bars, some pretty pricey high-rise apartments and lots of art spots.

If you’re visiting DUMBO and are not sure what to do in the area, here is a list of the top 10 things to do!

walking to Dumbo, Street name

Wander down the cobblestoned streets

DUMBO is known for its scenic charm and a walk around the area is sure to show you this. Many of the buildings are centuries old and line some of the prettiest cobblestoned streets. Much of DUMBO’s cobblestone was laid down in the early 1900s. Be sure to take a long stroll and find some pretty shopping boutiques, art galleries and little foodie shops.

Dumbo views

Take in the iconic view of Manhattan Bridge

You can’t come to DUMBO without taking in the breath-taking view of Manhattan Bridge. It’s a photo opportunity you don’t want to miss but more than that, it will really give you that true New York City feel. Be wary of the passing cars and it’s quite a busy street. It is located at the corner of Washington and Front Street.

Brooklyn Skyline

The Clocktower Building

The Clocktower is pretty special because it was the first of the old, abandoned industrial buildings in the area to be converted into a luxury apartment building. While all the apartments in the Clocktower have great views, the penthouse is said to be one of a kind with 4.2 m round windows each with four working clocks. In 2010, the penthouse was listed on the real estate market with an asking price of $25 million. 

Clocktower Building in Brooklyn

Janes Carousel

If you walk towards Brooklyn Bridge Park you will find Jane’s Carousel. This is a restored 1922 carousel which holds 48 carved horses and two grand chariots. You can take a ride for $2 and enjoy the great views of Manhattan and the river nearby.

illuminated carousel in amusement park in evening

Visit a local bar

DUMBO has a fantastic bar scene with tons of options depending on your taste. Visit one of the many bars, grab a cocktail and take in more of the gorgeous skyline views.

Nightlife in Brooklyn

Grimaldi’s Pizza

Before DUMBO was a destination of its own, crowds of people came down to Old Fulton Street to wait for hours in line for a taste of the famous Grimaldi’s pizza. Be sure to get in line early as the queues are pretty long.

Visit Brooklyn Bridge Park

To the left of Fulton Landing, Brooklyn Bridge Park stretches along the shoreline of DUMBO. Her you’ll find uninterrupted views of the lower Manhattan skyline, making this a great destination for a picnic or afternoon stroll.


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I'm Shalinee - a Geminian scientist who loves to travel, write, draw and eat chocolate. I've visited over twenty countries, published a Environmental Science encyclopaedia and somewhere along the way started a science communication company to help students and corporates translate that hard-to-read data generated in a lab. Other than that, I'm just searching for the magic still hidden in the world.

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