A Day In New York Harbor | New York City
There are few sites as iconic as the Statute of Liberty and Ellis Island. Both represent a profound period in the history of New York City and the United States. This guide is a full day spent exploring both the Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island with recommendations on where to pick up breakfast and a picnic for your tip as well as where to do a little shopping and grab some dinner to cap the day off.
Enjoy and don’t forget to share feedback, link at the bottom. Tell us what you liked and what didn’t!
$$ | Grocery market with food court-like cafe serving global fare, with outdoor seating.
59 Maiden Ln, New York, NY 10038
If you are looking for a little breakfast or a lunch to pack as a picnic for a day on Ellis Island and the Statue of Liberty there are a few grocery stores in the Financial District worth a stop. Zeytuna is one of them. Additionally Jubilee Market Place on John is another one.
Free | Public park
Ellis Island National Museum of Immigration
Statue of Liberty National Monument
New York, NY 10004
After breakfast you’ll be just a few blocks walk in the Financial District. If you are coming directly from New Jersey, either way you’ll need to get to the Battery Park Ferry Station to catch the ferries to Ellis Island and the Statute of Liberty.
There is a ton of information available on the National Parks Service site about visiting Ellis Island. Linked above and here: https://www.nps.gov/elis/planyourvisit/index.htm
While there is no fee to enter Ellis Island or the Statue of Liberty the islands are only accessible via ferries and tickets are required to board the ferries. You can checkout the Statute Cruises site here: https://www.statuecruises.com
Statue of Liberty
Iconic National Monument opened in 1886, offering guided tours, a museum & city views.
"The Statue of Liberty Enlightening the World" was a gift of friendship from the people of France to the United States and is recognized as a universal symbol of freedom and democracy. The Statue of Liberty was dedicated on October 28, 1886. It was designated as a National Monument in 1924.
Similar to Ellis Island, there is a ton of information available on the National Parks Service site about visiting Ellis Island. Linked above and here: https://www.nps.gov/elis/planyourvisit/index.htm
There is no fee to enter the Statue of Liberty but there is a fee to take the ferry there. You can checkout the Statute Cruises site here: https://www.statuecruises.com
Spring Street Station in SoHo
Spring and Lafayette
The tour of Ellis Island and the Statue of Liberty will take roughly half a day, between 5-6 hours. Assuming then you will have another half of the day remaining, we suggest a lighter afternoon including some shopping and window browsing in SoHo followed by an amazing dinner at a New York staple.
If you are taking the subway you can take the Green Line to Spring. You need to catch the 4 or 5 train from Bowling Green and switch to the 6 train at Brooklyn Bridge - City Hall. The 6 train then stops at Spring and Lafayette.
Alternatively it would be about a 15-20 minute ride by car.
Shopping in SoHo
Wide variety of big name and independent shops line the streets of this trendy neighborhood
SoHo stands for “South of Houston” Street. It’s pronounced “how-ston” in New York as opposed to “hugh-eston” in Texas. It’s the neighborhood bordered by Canal Street to the south (Chinatown) and Houston to the north (the Village). 6th Avenue is the border street to the west and Crosby is the border street to the east.
Dominique Ansel Bakery
$$ French inspired bakery-cafe
189 Spring St, New York, NY 10012
At the far west end of Spring you will find Dominique Ansel Bakery. It’s a well known attraction for many “cronut” fans. It’s also a good spot to get a cup of coffee and something sweet mid-day. Dominique Ansel is the pastry chef and namesake behind this insanely popular cafe and bakery. There continues to be a ton of hype around this shop. Unlike with most overhyped spots this one delivers.
Some of the most inventive and delicious sweets I’ve come across have been produced in this kitchen, including the Cronut. His half donut half croissant concoction is just layer after layer of sweet crunchy dough filled with the most delicious ganaches and jams (there is a new flavor every month). Get in line early, and if you can, go on a Weekday! There have been a ton of copycats but this is the original and this Soho shop is where it all began.
$$$ French bistro fare with vintage style tavern
113 Macdougal St, New York, NY 10012 (near Minetta)
Minetta is a warm and inviting tavern. It’s part 1920s old school prohibition style steakhouse and part French bistro. It’s well regarded for its steaks and the Burger has earned lots of accolades. You can’t go wrong with anything on the menu.
$$$ | Inventive cocktails in prohibition-style bar
510 Hudson St, New York, NY 10014 (near 10th street)
If you are looking to continue the night at a solid cocktail bar nearby checkout Employees Only. A simple green awning opens up to a wooded bar that’s warmly lite with a combination of accent lighting and votives. It’s usually pretty crowded but if you can snag a few seats in the back it’s the perfect balance of a quiet space you can catchup with friends admit the buzzing bar.