5 Things You Should Know Before Walking The Iconic Brooklyn Bridge

To be honest, I never considered walking the Brooklyn Bridge before reading a post from my friends in preparation for our trip. After that, I did more research and learned some great history, tips and timing that we used on our walk; and I want to share them with you!

5 Things You Should Know Before Walking The Iconic Brooklyn Bridge

It’s one of the oldest roadway bridges in the US. The Brooklyn Bridge is a hybrid cable/suspension bridge – the first in the nation. It was started in 1869 and took 14 years to build, covering the East River and making a new road from Manhattan to Brooklyn. People were charged 1 cent to cross or 5 cents with a horse (10 cents for a horse and buggy.) It was the longest suspension bridge in the world until the early 1900s – 2x longer than ever before.

PT Barnum was instrumental in the success. Six days after the bridge opened, a woman fell down the stairs and yelled (falsely) that the bridge was collapsing into the water. That caused a stampede in which 12 people were killed. About a year later, after several requests, PT Barnum led a procession of 21 elephants, 7 camels and 10 dromedaries (that’s a furry camel, btw) across the bridge to prove it was safe.

Start your walk in Brooklyn. You can walk any way you want, but walking toward Manhattan offers the prettiest views, in my opinion. We took an Uber to Brooklyn, but once we got there we were wishing we had taken the NYC Ferry or Water Taxi – just for the experience and the views. It should run you under $3 a person.

Go at sunset. You can get some amazing pictures if you head over right before sunset. We started our walk about 45 minutes before the reported sunset time. The sun is going to fall behind the Manhattan skyline before it sets, and that offers pretty photos. Take your time walking, get a thousand photos, enjoy the people watching, and by the time you make it to the end of the mile-long bridge you will see the lights of the city come alive.

Eat in Brooklyn before you head out. Grab a bite around Front Street, near the Brooklyn Bridge Park before you head out on the walk. We at pie at Grimaldi’s and loved it (cash only..be sure to read the sign out front about the history of the building.) There is also a Shake Shack if you’re not adventurous…and Luke’s Lobster boasts an incredible lobster roll. If you’re looking for something a little more fancy, go with The River Cafe.

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