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Van Cortlandt Park
Vault Hill
Port Authority George Washington Bridge Page's George Washington Bridge Historical Overview
B61 Bus Schedule (.pdf)
S53 Bus Schedule (.pdf)
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Clove Lakes Park Historical Sign
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Staten Island Ferry Information
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Gantry Plaza State Park Project Information

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Five-Borough Days
Five-Borough Days, as the name indicates, involve hitting all five boroughs in one day. We have two specific intineraries -- Route A, highlighting the best of Bay Ridge and Staten Island, and Route B, which is perfect for out-of-town guests.

Route A
Start at Van Cortlandt Park in the Bronx. Take the 1 train to the end of the line at 242nd Street.

Explore with a short hike up to Vault Hill. Nice views of Manhattan on a clear day.

Get back on the 1/9 train to 181st Street to the George Washington Bridge. The entrance to the pedestrian walkway is on the south side of the bridge, near 177th Street and Cabrini Boulevard. Read more about the bridge here.

Walk across (don’t stop to take pictures or you’ll be mistaken for a terrorist) and you’ll end up in New Jersey, officially making it a five-borough, two-state day. Getting back to the Empire State is fun via the bus turnoff on Interstate 95. If you’re lucky, a cut-rate private mini-van will ferry you back to Pier Luigi Nervi’s George Washington Bridge Bus Station.

From the Bus Station, take the A downtown (the 175th Street stop). You could transfer at 14th Street to the L and have lunch in Williamsburg, or continue riding the A into Brooklyn -- Jay Street is as good a place as any to get off, or perhaps at High Street, where you can stroll around the Fulton Ferry area or Brooklyn Heights.

Next step is to take the R train down to Bay Ridge (if you went to Williamsburg, take the B61 bus (.pdf) south towards downtown Brooklyn). The best place to disembark in downtown Brooklyn is the Court Street station, just west of Borough Hall on Montague Street (if coming down from Williamsburg on the B61, use the Lawrence Street station, just east of Jay Street on Willoughby).

Get off the R at 86th Street and transfer to the S53 bus (.pdf), which takes you over the Verrazano Narrows Bridge. Read more about the Verrazano here.

The S53 is Staten Island’s lifeline to Brooklyn. Or Brooklyn’s lifeline to Staten Island, depending on your perspective. Depending on where you’re going in Staten Island, it can be quicker than the ferry.

Take the S53 to Clove Lakes Park. Weather and time permitting, you could take a stroll around the park, a boat ride on the lake, skate at the ice rink or even have a drink at the Lake Club. When you’re done, take one of the Victory Blvd. buses (.pdf) (S61, S62, S66 or S67, or their 90s express equivalents) to the ferry terminal at St. George.

When you're on the ferry, drink a beer -- just because you can. It’s one of the cheapest drinks in New York. The Statue of Liberty will be on your left.

Now that you're back in Manhattan do whatever you want . . . until you go back home to Queens (you do live there, right?). Thus, a five-borough day.

Route B
Five-borough day route B is appropriate for out-of-town guests, as it hits all the boroughs in the most efficient way.

Start at Yankee Stadium for either a day game or just to check it out and take pictures. Return via the 4 or 5 train, stopping at 86th Street to see Central Park, or not, in which case continue south to Bowling Green for a back-and-forth ferry ride (just because you don’t set foot on Staten Island does not mean you are not in Staten Island waters) to get a close up of the Statue of Liberty and drink cheap beer.

After returning to Manhattan walk up to the east side of City Hall to reach the pedestrian entrance to the Brooklyn Bridge. If memory serves, the walk over the bridge, excluding time to stop and gawk, should be about 45 minutes. When you get to Brooklyn, wend your way towards, say, Smith Street and have a well-deserved dinner. After dinner take the G train to the 21st Street station (the first one in Queens) and walk towards the waterfront to Gantry Plaza State Park, where the best view of Manhattan ever waits. A perfect way to end a five-borough day. Return to wherever you came via the 7 train at the Vernon-Jackson stop, the B61 at 11th Street and Jackson or the G train at 21st Street and Jackson.

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S53 Bus, 86th Street, Bay Ridge

7 Train

Gantry Plaza State Park, Hunters Point, Long Island City, Queens

21st Street-Van Alst G Train Subway Station, Long Island City, Queens

View from the Staten Island Ferry

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