On the rare occasions when I take the time to make the trip, I wonder once more, why I don't do this more often. It's only a half hour ride each way; an hour round-trip. Yet time is always the issue. It is the recurring New York "problem," too many things to do and too little time.
No inside seat for me, I remain on deck the entire voyage, speechless while I suck in the serenity of the almost cloudless azure blue sky and gently rippling waves dappled with sunlight. The view of the skyscrapers that crowd the shore near Battery Park and the Statue of Liberty is truly thrilling. Never quite prepared, but always anxious for the moment when I cross over to the opposite deck and my eyes are caught, arrested might better describe it, by the sublime beauty and graceful line of the Verrazano-Narrows Bridge. It never fails to take my breath away.
Yes, the Golden Gate, London Bridge, and Brooklyn Bridge are magnificent engineering achievements, but they cannot compare with the Verrazano's compelling elegance.
Standing at the mouth of Upper and Lower New York Bay it overlooks the Atlantic Ocean. Its long lilting cables and slender towers painted in "battleship gray,” make it appear to melt into the skyline and become a natural part of the landscape rather than something man-made.
Experience the Verrazano's majestic beauty and enjoy the waters refreshing cool during this heat spell. The Staten Island ferry departs almost every half hour every day from Whitehall Terminal. And, I'm surprised most people don't know this, it is free!
Best time to avoid the crowds, early Sunday morning, the ferries almost empty. Once on Staten Island, don't rush back; There's lots to explore, like the Staten Island Botanical Garden, with its Chinese Scholars Garden, the Snug Harbor Cultural Center, Alice Austen House and the Garibaldi Meucci Museum.
Snug Harbor Cultural Center is another attraction in Staten Island, a more relaxed one as inside the 83-acre grounds you can find a few gardens and 28 buildings that are used for cultural events, exhibitions etc Of course you can just come and walk around the gardens (for free) but there is a small fee if you want to see the exhibitions or visit the Chinese Scholar’s Garden. Many families come here for picnic so we walked a bit around and relaxed near some fountains (pic 1)
I was surprised at the entrance when I saw some buildings in greek revival style, the visitor center is housed in one of them but as we walked inside the park we noticed many other buildings (pics 2-3) and we also visited the glasshouse of the Botanical Garden (pic 4, free entrance), nothing special but we liked the Chinise Garden (pic5, $5 or free on Tuesdays) where a small lake and the Chinese like buildings make a weird spot (don’t forget we are still in New York) but yet beautiful spot (during the spring you can also admire the colors of the flowers).
The great majority of the people come back to Manhattan in the following ferry without seeing anything more,but is worth to walk a while by S.George,a very quiet little town.It's unbelievable.Just 20 minutes from the busy,noisy Manhattan.And there is museum (2$) at 5 minutes walking from the port.
One of the best sites in all the United States and maybe the world is the Statue of Liberty (thank you France)... known to us American's as Lady Liberty .... but getting tickets to the ferry to see it ..... at times is as hard as winning the lottery .. they sell out days or even months in advance ... so if you can't get them and still want to see her, jump on the Staten Island ferry for the leisurely ride to Staten Island ... best part it's free !!!!!!!! The roundtrip ride takes about an hour .....
This is FREE!
These are big and nice ferris and there is a lovely terminal for them. It goes right past the statue of Liberty, and if you go outside of the terminal at Staten Island you can look back across the water at the famous New York skyline. It take 20 minutes / half an hour and is well worth a look!
Ferries run regularly (timetable on their web site) but aviod at clocking in and out work rush hours.
The Staten Island Ferry is a must do! in New York, the views of the Manhattan skyline are breath taking and it is the best way of taking photographs of the Statue of Liberty, Ellis Island and Manhattan. The best thing about it is FREE
The Staten Island Ferry is free and there's crossings all the time.
It passes close by the Statue of Liberty, if only my camera had a zoom.....
We got off on Staten Island but soon found out the island doesn't really have much to offer.
70,000 passengers a day use the service!! It is five miles to either side and takes around 25 mins to do the crossing.
It goes from Whitehall Terminal Manhattan and arrives at St. George Terminal Staten Island.
I have since found out there is a fare bit to see on Staten Island, we just couldn't find much!
the Staten Island Ferry is free. The big orange ferrys travel many, many times during the day. You get on at the ferry station at Battery Park, and it goes to Staten Island (no fooling!) and back. While free, you do have to stand in the cattle corral and fight your way on board. Try to go upstairs - you can see much better and it generally gets you away from the people who actually use the ferry to get home after work. Anyway, the outside decks give you a terrific view of the Verazzano Narrows bridge and Brooklyn. When you get to Staten Island, you must get off, run around the gate and get back on the other ferry going back to Manhattan. This time, stay on the left side of the ferry as you will get a great view of the Statue of Liberty. Then, go to the front of the ferry for a photo op of lower Manhattan that can't be beat. All in all, it will take about an hour but is worth it. There is a snack bar for coffee and a sandwich - might be just the lunch break needed before heading up Lower Manhattan to Chinatown and Little Italy. A must do, if you have time. Use the website to look up the schedules and details of travel.
Spanning the Narrows, a strait between Brooklyn and Staten Island, Verrazano Narrows Bridge is one of the most impressive bridges in New York, and also one of the most impressive bridges in the United States. With a central span of 4,620 feet between it's two towers, the Verrazano Narrows Bridge is also the longest suspension bridge in the United States, with a span that is easily longer than any other of New York's famous bridges. The bridge is named after an Italian explorer who was apparently the first European to enter New York Harbor. At the moment, there is (sadly) no pedestrian walkway over the bridge; you can only cross by car, for a fee of $9. However, if New York Mayor Bloomberg holds his words, that is slated to change, and you may soon be able to walk over the longest suspension bridge in the US.
To make your visit to the Statue of Liberty, you will need to go to Castle Clinton in Battery Park, at the lowest point in Manhattan (use the Bowling Green subway stop). There, you can buy a ticket, the ferry leaves from Battery Park every half hour for Liberty Island first and Ellis Island last. I recommend getting there as early as possible to avoid long lines. Check out the Ferry web site for the schedule and cost. The trip is a 5 mile, 25 minute ride and gives a great view of the New York Harbor
From the ferries deck you will have a perfect view of The Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island. You'll see the skyscrapers and bridges of Lower Manhattan receding as you pull away and coming into focus again as you return. The only bad part is looking into the water. It’s amazing how filthy the bay is. It’s hard not to look at the water anywhere during the trip and not see floating plastic, bags or worse.
Note that you can buy ferry tickets in advance via www.statueoflibertyferry.com, which will allow you to board the boat without standing in the sometimes-long ticket line; however, there is an additional service charge attached. Even if you've already purchased tickets, arrive as much as 30 minutes before your desired ferry time to allow for increased security procedures prior to boarding the ferry. The ferry ride takes about 20 minutes.
If you take this free ferry, which leaves New York every half hour, to Staten Island, it takes you in good proximity to the Statue of Liberty, with a zoom lens you get some good pictures.
Best of all, its completely free!
We took a ferry out and the next one straight back again.
This is probably the best deal in town! The free ferry runs 24 hours a day every day of the year. It connects Staten Island to Manhattan via this superb ferry service. Just grab it at Battery Park. If you don't go out of the ferry at Statten Island and just take it for the ride then expect the roundtrip to take a couple of hours. It's definitly worth it for the views of Manhattan and the Statue of Liberty, which is actually closed at the moment due to the security provisions after the tragic events of Sept 11, 2001.
It's free! You can take the ferry across the harbor, FOR FREE, and take beautiful pictures of the lower manhattan skyline. You also go right past the Statue of Liberty. It's great for photo ops for the budget traveler.
South Street Seaport is not too far.. so you could do both in the same afternoon. There is no reason to hang out on Staten Island so just get back on the ferry and come back - perhaps for dinner at the South Street Seaport. It's a short walk going north.
ITS FREE Which is great and it sails past the Statue of Liberty which is also great.
Staten Island looks like a neat place in which to live.
Snug Harbor on Staten Island is nice I walked there and back taking in the view and admiring the local homes.
Its a place to relax.
The Staten Island Ferry is another MUST when in New York. And the best part... aside from the views and the cool air of the harbor is... it's FREE!! Although some who use it are tourists, most are commuters to Staten Island, and it's hard to believe that even they are out there enjoying the views. It's a terrific way to see the city from a different perspective.