Williamsburg’s northern neighbor Greenpoint, famous for its Polish diaspora, can be at times just as charming and cool as the famous neighbor in the South. Although the area of Greenpoint Brooklyn is relatively small, there is a lot of things to do in Greenpoint.
Greenpoint in a nutshell is: exciting views of Midtown Manhattan, traditional polish shops and a great array of restaurants blending in just perfectly with trendy eateries, live music venues, vintage shops and the best bars in the area. Some call Greenpoint the new Williamsburg, others keep emphasizing its own cultural impact on Brooklyn. And yet still, this popular neighborhood feels down-to-earth. Greenpoint is a great area to explore and here’s what you shouldn’t miss while visiting:
How to get to Greenpoint Brooklyn by train
Where to go in Greenpoint Brookly then?
Historically speaking, Greenpoint is known as a Polish-immigrant enclave. It’s home to the second-largest Polish population in the country, after Chicago. Hence, Greenpoint is also called “Little Poland”. In our view, it’s one of the nicest and beautiful areas in all of Brooklyn.
The waterfront views are breathtaking and there’s so much to do and see during the day and at night. You’ll find the best Greenpoint Brooklyn Restaurants, more affordable apartments compared to the adjacent hipster town Williamsburg and great shopping options.
Perhaps you’re wondering if Greenpoint Brooklyn is a safe area? From experience, we can say that yes, Greenpoint Brooklyn is a very safe neighborhood. Particularly for families and young professionals it’s an ideal place to stay. Though we do recommend avoiding the industrial areas at night near the water and the intersection of Greenpoint Ave and McGuiness Blvd.
Top 5 Things to do in Greenpoint Brooklyn
- WNYC Transmitter Park – This 6.61-acre public park is located where Greenpoint Avenue dead-ends by the East River shoreline. From here you’ll have the best views of the Manhattan skyline. Especially in the summer, this green oasis is the perfect picnic or hangout spot during hot season. (Greenpoint Ave, Brooklyn, NY 11222, to Greenpoint Av)
- Beacon’s Closet – The most famous Secondhand clothing store in Brooklyn which offers a wide selection of vintage & modern things to buy, sell or trade (74 Guernsey St, Brooklyn, NY 11222, Nassau Av).
- McCarren Park – McCarren Park is a public park in Greenpoint Brooklyn with a track and field and other sports activities located right on the border of Williamsburg and Greenpoint (776 Lorimer St, Brooklyn, NY 11222, to Bedford Av).
- Greenpoint Fish and Lobster – It’s the seafood mecca in Greenpoint. A popular fish market in front of a very sustainable, casual seafood restaurant in the back (114 Nassau Ave, Brooklyn, NY 11222, Nassau Av).
- Peter Pan Donut & Pastry Shop – A real institution in Greenpoint that has been serving delicious donuts and pastries since 1953 (727 Manhattan Ave, Brooklyn, NY 11222, Nassau Av).
Things to do in Greenpoint Brooklyn
Greenpoint is continuously changing and is a place for both creatives and young professionals and families with their kids. There are numerous things to do here:
Spend time at the park
Greenpoint offers a great variety of parks. From the waterfront park WNYC Transmitter Park to McCarren Park there’s always a place for you to relax or do some fun activities with your friends or family. At WNYC Transmitter Park southern edge sits the Brooklyn Barge (thebrooklynbarge.com).
A seasonal bar with craft beer and fast food like hot dogs and burgers located on an old barge jutting into the East River. Right by the entrance of the park, there is the Grand Republic Cocktail Club which has a unique nautical vibe.
I come to McCarren Park to run very often. If you want to get a great workout in, the track at McCarren Park attracts the biggest running crews in NYC. Don’t be afraid to ask them if you could join them. They will gladly run with you. You’ll also find free Tennis courts, Baseball and lots of playgrounds for the kids.
Shopping in Greenpoint
Greenpoint has it all. Fashion boutiques, vintage thrift stores where you’ll find a good balance of recent fashions, vintage, and costume items and regular clothing shops.
Concentrated mostly to Franklin Avenue (similar to Williamsburg’s Bedford Ave) we recommend checking out shops like:
- Wolves Within
- Seven Wonders Vintage
- Beacons Closet
- In God We Trust
- Pas Mal
- You & Yours Fine Vintage
Experience authentic Polish cuisine
Obviously, Greenpoint Brooklyn offers a lot of authentic Polish cuisine.
From bakeries to restaurants, you’ll find great Polish food places in abundance. One of our favorite deli’s in New York “Frankel’s Delicatessen” is one of them. Peter Pan Bakery which is smack in the middle of Greenpoint, serves the best donuts around. There’s always a line, but it’s so worth the wait.
Your box should include the Bavarian Cream filled with doughnut.
Get inked in Greenpoint: Tattoo Shops in Greenpoint
Also, Greenpoint Brooklyn is known for its great tattoo shops. There are two, that we haven’t tried ourselves, we did hear great things about them though.
Greenpoint Tattoo (131 Meserole Avenue) is very experienced in the art of tattoos, and has a really cool vibe to it. Another great shop with super talented artists is Three Kings Tattoos (492 Metropolitan Ave). The place is clean and relaxed and tats start at $60.
Best Restaurants in Greenpoint
The restaurants in Greenpoint are mostly Polish inspired. But there are of course great places where you can grab lunch or have tacos. The influence of neighboring hipster haven Williamsburg is undeniable: most restaurants are hip and trendy, so wherever you’ll find yourself going, you won’t be disappointed. Make sure to try at least one Polish place to experience what Greenpoint is really all about!
These are our absolute favorite places to go in Greenpoint:
Nearby Neighborhoods To Check Out
If you’re in Greenpoint, make sure to check out these nearby neighborhoods.
Things To Do in Park Slope
Things To Do in Red Hook
Neighborhoods That are Similar to Greenpoint
If you have enjoyed Greenpoint in Brooklyn, then make sure to check out these neighborhoods below.