Manhattanite turned Brooklynite – Hipster Williamsburg

After 20 years of living in Manhattan, we recently moved to America’s third largest city, the borough of Brooklyn (see Biting the Bullet in Brooklyn for more about our first impressions).  In celebration of our move, we will be spending the last few weeks of summer exploring this diverse borough and learning about all of its fantastic offerings.  Here is the second in a series of posts about the various “hoods” of BK.  See Let’s Go to Prospect Park for our first post, and a review of Central Park’s rival park.

Last weekend of summer, and it’s a staycation for us.  So me and my teens hit the subway rails to see another of Brooklyn’s neighborhoods,  the hipster hub of Williamsburg.  We hopped on that awesome G train and cruised right over to Metropolitan Ave.  First stop- Crest Hardware to see Franklin the famous pot bellied pig.  There is also a parrot in residence called Finlay who, among other things, can make the sound of a fax machine.  Conveniently located next door to Crest Hardware, was Desert Island Comics, which is always a good pit stop for teen entertainment.

Next stop heading west on Metropolitan, the City Reliquary, a fun little community museum filled with NYC artifacts including hundreds of different versions of the Statue of Liberty.


Continuing west on Metropolitan, we walked towards Kent St. to wander north along the Williamsburg waterfront.  We planned our visit for a Saturday just so we could stop at the much talked- about Smorgasburg, an outdoor foodie market.  We arrived hungry, and in time for lunch.  So many fantastic choices, I wish we had room in our bellies for 2 meals there!  The crowds make the wait for your food a little long ,but once you have collected your goodies, there are plenty of places to relax and eat.   We chose a spot along the water with a view of midtown Manhattan.

After lunch, we ambled back into Williamsburg along N. 7th St., and stopped in a few boutiques along the way.  If you didn’t get your fill of yummy food at Smorgasburg, there are plenty of hip places to stop and eat along 7th.  Of course we stopped at the always cool, artist designer and vintage market, Artists and Fleas and strolled on the main drag – Bedford Ave (mostly from Metropolitan to N. 12th).  A left turn on Bedford or Driggs will take you right up to Mc Carren Park and pool.  This enormous outdoor pool, right on the border of Williamsburg and Greenpoint, is a hot spot in BK on a hot summer day.  We were there just as the cool weather rolled in from Hurricane Hermine, and got to enjoy the pool almost entirely to ourselves!

Before going home, we detoured to the Brooklyn Art Library to see the Sketchbook Project on display right now.  A must see for the artist in your house, the library shelves are lined with tens of thousands of sketchbooks from artists around the world!  With the help of the librarians, you are free to search for sketchbooks using key words by subject or location of author.  So many treasures to be discovered!


Want more BK?  Read Down Under the Manhattan BridgeArt on the Streets of BushwickThe Point of Greenpoint and Let’s Go to Prospect Park.

Want Manhattan? Read A Beginners Guide to Visiting New York CityFive Days in NYC for the Pro

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