Header image by Valery Stavnitser
More than 50 million tourists visit NYC each year. Yet the majority never get off the island of Manhattan. Joining this tour will provide you the perfect opportunity to see Manhattan’s famous skyline from a comfortable distance, while learning a lot about its famous neighbor across the East River — Brooklyn. Of course, to get there, we’ll walk over the 130-year-old Brooklyn Bridge, with its own incredible history.
• Walk over the iconic Brooklyn Bridge (only 1-mile long) and learn about this marvel of engineering and the incredible story of the Roebling family, all while admiring the spectacular views
• Discover DUMBO, Brooklyn’s industrial-turned-trendy waterfront neighborhood
• Explore the brand-new Brooklyn Bridge Park, including Jane’s Carousel and the 19th-century Tobacco and Coffee warehouses
• Wind your way through Brooklyn Heights, NY’s first suburb, and get your camera out for fantastic photo opportunities on the Brooklyn Heights Promenade, which overlooks the Harbor, Statue of Liberty, and Manhattan’s skyline
• Sample a delicious Belgian waffle from a food truck and a enjoy a chocolate break at Jacques Torres Chocolates in Dumbo
Basic Tour Info:
• Start Time: Public tours resume in March, 2014 — Fridays at 3pm, as well as Tuesdays at 3pm starting in May. Also available for private booking year-round. The tour normally ends by 6:30 — perfect time for an early dinner or drink at one of the many great local restaurants in Brooklyn Heights.
• Length and Distance: About 3.5 hours and 3 miles on foot (5 kilometers)
• Schedule: Fridays at 3pm and Tuesdays at 3pm (starting Apr. 22)
• Cost: $45 for adults, $25 for kids 12 and under
• Size: Maximum group size is 12 adults
• Break: There will be 1 bathroom break
• Language: Our tours are currently offered only in English
• Private Option: This tour is also offered privately
• Location: Starts near City Hall Park (you will receive detailed info after booking), ends in Brooklyn Heights (you will be given directions) near great places for dinner/drinks.
While the Brooklyn Bridge is a key part of this tour, we usually spend no more than 45 minutes on it, which leaves us plenty of time to get to know both Manhattan and Brooklyn better. The 3.5-hour tour time is usually allocated as follows:
- 40 minutes in Downtown Manhattan
- 45 minutes on Brooklyn Bridge (including crossing its 1-mile span)
- 45 minutes in Dumbo (including a snack/bathroom break at a popular chocolate shop)
- 40 minutes in Brooklyn Bridge Park and Fulton Ferry Landing
- 40 minutes in Brooklyn Heights
- Bottled water
- 2 Snacks: usually a mini Belgian waffle and a chocolate treat
- Licensed CityRover tour guide
What to expect:
- Your CityRover guide, who hails from Brooklyn, will share his passion for the city with you
- No more than 12 adults, no flags, no microphones, no memorized scripts, no canned jokes, no notes
- An interactive, informative and scenic tour, with memorable stories and great photo opportunities
So please join us and find out why the Brooklyn Bridge was dubbed the “8th Wonder of the World” when it opened in 1883. We will uncover the tragedies and triumphs that went into its construction, as we cross the oldest suspension bridge in New York City on this scenic and eye-opening 3-hour walking tour.
The tour starts near City Hall Park in Downtown Manhattan, where we will discover some famous landmarks like the Woolworth Building (once the world’s tallest skyscraper), City Hall, and the tragic story of the pretty woman behind “Civic Fame”. We’ll also find time to rewind the clock to the American Revolution to see where the Declaration of Independence was read to New Yorkers for the first time and where George Washington staged his “midnight escape.”
Once in Brooklyn, we’ll explore Dumbo, Brooklyn Bridge Park, and Brooklyn Heights. Besides learning a lot about Brooklyn, once America’s 3rd-largest city, we’ll have phenomenal photo opportunities and stop for delicious chocolate along the way.
Before the end of the tour in Brooklyn Heights, We will visit the Brooklyn Heights Promenade, which offers unrivaled views of the harbor, Statue of Liberty, Ellis Island, and the Lower Manhattan skyline. Enjoy fantastic photo opportunities in the late afternoon light.
Recent Reviews For This Tour:
“Another insightful tour” Reviewed December 31, 2013 on TripAdvisor
“This year we did the Brooklyn Bridge tour, by Max. It is our third tour with CityRover and was just as good as the previous two. We have used other tour groups in NYC and been disappointed. CityRover provides a premium tour for people who wish to learn about the City. CityRover tells the story of New York, instead of pointing out the “tourist attractions”. If you take one of their tours remind yourself to take a few photos! You may forget when you become enthralled as the story of the city unfolds before you.”
“Best stories and snacks” Reviewed December 30, 2013 on TripAdvisor
“It was my second time in New York and my second time walking with CityRover. I took the City of Dreams and the Brooklyn Bridge tours and they were every bit as enjoyable as my first walk with CityRover 1,5 years ago. The groups are small so there’s time to ask any follow-up questions you might have. Max takes care that no-one’s left behind and has time to take a moment to talk to everyone in the group.
As usual, Max had found the most amazing and delicious stops for snacks and refreshments (included in the price!) on the way. I love how into the history he is and has the most interesting stories to tell. You might think there’s no reason to get a guide for crossing Brooklyn Bridge, but you’d be wrong. Of course you can do it on your own, but walking with CityRover you get to know so much more about the history and the details of the bridge, of Brooklyn Heights and buildings and history related on the Manhattan side. It was truly fascinating.
The City of Dreams tour took us through East Village, Little Italy and SoHo. Again, great stories to light up the history of the places we visited. I had so much fun I can’t wait to visit New York again, and if and when I do, I’ll walk with CityRover again. Thank you so much!!”
“Three’s a charm” Reviewed December 12, 2013 on TripAdvisor
“Our third tour with CityRover (Brooklyn Bridge), and once again we were 100% delighted with Max’s content, delivery and pacing! Just to make sure we weren’t just overrating our experience, we took a walking tour with another company (CityRover didn’t have a tour on that day). It was no contest! Max not only knows his history, but he brings events alive through stories about people – not dry facts.
As always, there were treat stops sprinkled in throughout the tour and other thoughtful gestures (like ponchos for everyone for the rain, and water bottles for all before we headed across the bridge). Always a highlight of our visits to NYC.”
“The Friendliest and Easiest Way to Learn About NY ” Reviewed December 2, 2013 on TripAdvisor
“Max was our guide on the Brooklyn Bridge tour and his friendly, easy going nature made the whole tour really enjoyable. His knowledge is excellent and his eagerness to talk to everyone in the group whilst walking between stops on the tour makes you feel that he really enjoys having you with him and he’s not just there to point at buildings, bridges and objects, say an interesting fact and move on.
It was good that he has an organised break as part of the tour and that he has a map of the destination ready for you at the end of the tour so that you can find your way around Brooklyn Heights and DUMBO to find some food, the subway or to find your way back to a spot on the tour you wish to revisit.Overall this made the tour feel very personal, even though there were others on it. We would do it again or any of the the other tours available should we go back to NY.”
Additional Tour Info:
What About Kids? Our public tours may not be appropriate for young children, as they involve a lot of walking and cover topics geared to adults. Further, some of our tours reference adult content some parents may deem inappropriate for children. On this particular tour, references may be made to bodily injury, death, crime, and scandal. That said, there are 2 “child” tickets available for each public tour for children aged 12 and under.
Meeting Point: Detailed meeting point instructions will be emailed to you once your reservation has been processed. Please note that the tour usually ends in Brooklyn Heights, Brooklyn (so we only cross the Bridge one way). Therefore, we recommend using public transportation to get to the meeting point (vs. driving). Directions on how to get back to Manhattan (a quick trip), as well as Brooklyn dining recommendations, will be provided at the end of the tour.
Are gratuities included? Guide gratuities are not included in the tour price, so if you enjoy your tour, tips are very much appreciated.
Are snacks/refreshments included in tour price? Each tour participant will be treated to a delicious chocolate bon-bon from Jacques Torres Chocolates as well as a finger-lickin’ Belgian waffle from Wafels & Dinges. In addition, each participant will be offered a complimentary bottle of water.
Is this walk strenuous? This walk is mildly strenuous. We cover approximately 3 miles in 3-3.5 hours. Participants will walk across the Brooklyn Bridge, which has a slight uphill component in the beginning (about 1/4 mile). Also, towards the end of the tour, participants will walk up a short trail bridge to get to Brooklyn Heights. That said, the pace of this tour is moderate, so no one will feel rushed. As a general gauge, if you are able to walk up one flight of stairs without having to stop, then you should find this tour suitable.
What comes to mind when you think of the Brooklyn Bridge? Perhaps it’s the Lexus commercial from 1997 in which Joe Pesci does the voice for the Bridge? Or maybe its the calamitous scenes in countless science fiction and action movies where the Brooklyn Bridge is either blown up, ripped up by a giant sea monster, or destroyed by an enormous tidal wave? If you are a fan of the Blue Man Group, perhaps you’ve seen this creative video, in which the Bridge is used as a percussion instrument.
But the Brooklyn Bridge isn’t just a famous backdrop for Hollywood studios, ad agencies, and entertainers. It is a 130-year-old marvel of design and engineering. It’s two Neo-Gothic towers were once the tallest structures on either side of the East River. It was also by the world’s longest suspension bridge when it opened on May 24, 1883 — connecting the largest city in America with the third-largest. In fact, it was such a huge achievement that it was quickly dubbed the “8th Wonder of the World” and Brooklyn’s mayor, Seth Low, declared opening day “People’s Day”. Everyone had the day off and more than 150,000 people crossed this colossal beauty on opening day (for a penny toll), including America’s president at the time, Chester A. Arthur (who didn’t have to pay). Several dignitaries and politicians gave speeches on the Bridge that no-one could actually hear (this is before microphones), ships blew their whistles, and there was a beautiful fireworks display at night.
But behind the celebration lies the oft-tragic 14-year construction process, which claimed many lives, including the life of the original engineer, John A. Roebling, and ruined many more. The Brooklyn Bridge was built by brave, hard-working men and this tour is also about their story.