on January 1, 2008
Manhattan is an island connected by lots of bridges, but the Brooklyn Bridge is in a class all of its own. It really is a New York icon and I always wanted to walk across it.When Brooklyn Bridge opened in 1883 after 14 years of construction, it was the largest suspension bridge in the world. The span between its 2 support towers is 1,596 feet. Today the bridge continues to dazzle. It is one of the architectural gems of New York.The Brooklyn Bridge connects Lower Manhattan with the 19th Century neighbourhood of Brooklyn Heights.We took the subway to City Hall and quite easily found the entrance to the bridge. There is a nice pedestrianised walkway right in the middle. We walked across this between huge stone pylons and a spiderweb of steel support cables.Traffic flows on the level below the pedestrian walkway.We were well wrapped up against the weather, but were nonetheless almost frozen. Make sure you wear lots of layers if you brave the bridge in winter.We walked to Brooklyn and then turned and came back to Manhattan. Most people seemed to be doing this. The views of the Manhattan skyline are unforgettable. We couldn't stop taking pictures - there is also a great view of the Empire State Building. You can just about see the Statue of Liberty in the distance.Back in Manhattan, South Street Seaport and Pier 17 are only a short stroll away. We found this a good place to have a coffee and generally warm up. There is a shopping mall with quite a few very nice shops and a food court at the top level. From the food court and the outside terrace you get excellent views of the water and the Brooklyn Bridge.This is quite a nice area to spend an hour, as outside there was a lovely Christmas tree, a choir singing, cobbled streets and old ships.
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