South Street Seaport
“South Street Seaport is both one of New York’s oldest and newest neighborhoods. Located in the financial district of lower Manhattan and adjacent to the Brooklyn Bridge, the Seaport is a thriving waterfront community encompassing 11 square blocks of restored 19th century buildings, a maritime museum with the largest (in tonnage) fleet of historic ships in the world, the famous Fulton Fish Market, and more than 100 shops, cafes and restaurants.” Basically, it consists of 250,000 square feet on which sit five buildings.
The Pier 17 Pavilion, a modern day 3 story glass and steel building is host to quite a number of shops, restaurants and food outlets. Additionally, there is the Fulton Market Building built in 1983 which houses private party facilities. Although still under renovation, it is expected to welcome new merchants in the future within its walls. On Schermerhorn Row is where you’ll find more shops within historical buildings.
What can you do here? Apart from shopping and eating, you’ve got some really great views of the Brooklyn Bridge from the Eastern end of the Pavilion. Stand outside on any one of its floors’ outdoor walks and catch the East River Breeze as you take photographs of passing boats and the Brooklyn Bridge. Throughout the year there’s always free entertainment of some sort. From Memorial Day weekend through Labor Day you could find street performers throughout the district, daily from 12:00 noon to 10:00 pm. On your day of visit you might find a juggler, magician, mime, musician, balloonist or something else. Heck, on one of my trips there I came across a trained dog in a ballerina outfit and a puppeteer. It’s well worth the trip considering all the other sights that are nearby, within a reasonable walking distance, such as the WTC, Brooklyn Bridge, Chinatown, Financial District and City Hall.
During the summer there are other activities which you could learn about by checking the Events Calendar or by calling 212-SEA-PORT or by visiting their site… There are even activities during the latter part of the year. A big favorite would have to be The “Singing” Chorus Tree and Strolling Santa which takes place usually from November until December 31.