Lower Manhattan is New York’s primary financial district and here you will find Wall Street, the New York Stock Exchange and the Federal Reserve. Lower Manhattan was where the original settlement of New York (then known as New Amsterdam) was located. While the “ruins” of this city have long ago been buried under towering skyscrapers, many of the city streets (Wall, Water or Canal) get their names from. Despite being surrounded by money, it wasn’t an expensive place to visit; aside from the happy hour cocktail and snack we had this was a 100% free adventure.
Our latest video adventure follows where our last one – Wandering around Brooklyn – left off, as we had just walked across the Brooklyn Bridge and into Manhattan for the first time. We found our way past City Hall towards the New York Stock Exchange, Wall Street and the Financial District. We wandered the narrow streets, eventually stopping for a quick cocktail and some happy hour appetizers at the Lovelace Tavern, which had some incredible craft Gin and Tonics. After a long afternoon of walking around, it was a needed break.
Next up was a trip on the Staten Island Ferry, which has some of the best views of New York skyline and the Statue of Liberty. If you’ve been following along on our recent adventures, you might have noticed that we really love the Staten Island Ferry. It’s an easy way to see the Statue of Liberty (without having to pay for a tour of the island) and you can drink beer. Need any other reasons? It’s a pretty great 40 minute adventure and it’s free!
The water was calm, and while it was raining a little bit, we still got some amazing pictures of the Statue of Liberty and Lower Manhattan on the 15-minute trip over, and had lots of time for a beer on the way back.
After taking the ferry, we made our way to the 9/11 Memorial, where the area has been transformed back into a living and breathing part of the city. The two footprints of where the buildings once stood have been made into reflecting pools, which is a chilling way to remember where they once stood. The new World Trade One rises triumphantly above the plaza, showing that New York rebuilds and rebounds from tragedy. Our final spot was to enter The Oculus, a structure that looks like the ribcage of a giant whale. Underneath is New York’s 5th busiest transit station, with multiple subway lines and the PATH Train to New Jersey.
Lower Manhattan & the Staten Island Ferry:
We had just crossed the Brooklyn Bridge, arriving in Manhattan for the first time on our trip. We decided to take it easy, slowly wandering through Lower Manhattan. This is where the Financial District is, including Wall Street, the Federal Reserve and the New York Stock Exchange. We spent a few hours exploring this part of town, taking the time to visit the 9/11 Memorial, have a happy hour snack and take some pictures of Wall Street.
Our favourite part of the day was the Staten Island Ferry, which is the best free attraction in New York City. The 30-minute return journey shows off the incredible view of the Manhattan Skyline and the best (free) view of the Statue of Liberty. The ferry also serves beer. What more could you ask for?