10 Best Sights in DUMBO, New York City

Empire Stores

DUMBO Fodor's choice

Housed in a sparkling renovation of an enormous 19th-century warehouse, this collection of shops and restaurants features a 7,000-square-foot rooftop garden with East River and Manhattan views. Tenants include creative agencies and West Elm's global HQ, as well as Time Out Market, upscale Italian restaurant Cecconi's, and Dumbo House, offshoot of Soho House. There are rotating art exhibits throughout the building, plus programming with pop-ups and installations.

Jane's Carousel

DUMBO Fodor's choice

Equal parts architectural marvel and children's plaything, this beautifully restored 1922 carousel twirls within a glass-walled waterfront pavilion designed by Pritzker Prize--winning French architect Jean Nouvel. Situated between the Brooklyn and Manhattan bridges, near the northern reaches of 85-acre Brooklyn Bridge Park and directly across from Manhattan's skyline, the carousel's 48 horses and two chariots are off to the races year-round.

Brooklyn Bridge Park, Brooklyn, NY, 11201, USA
Sight Details
Rate Includes: $2, Closed Tues. year-round and Mon. and Wed. mid-Sept.--mid-May, Mid-Sept.--mid-May, Thurs.--Sun. 11--6; mid-May--mid-Sept., Wed.--Mon. 11--7

A.I.R. Gallery

The country's first all-female, artist-run cooperative was established in 1972. This modern gallery space features hundreds of women artists' work every year and also hosts events, lectures, and creative symposiums.
155 Plymouth St., Brooklyn, NY, 11201, USA
Sight Details
Rate Includes: Closed Mon. and Tues., Wed.--Sun. noon--6 pm

Recommended Fodor's Video



Keep an eye out under and around the Manhattan Bridge and the Brooklyn–Queens Expressway, where walls display longstanding street art by the likes of CAM, Cey Adams, Apolo Torres, and Yuko Shimizu. The project is sponsored by the DUMBO Improvement District and the New York City Department of Transportation Urban Art Program.

Gleason's Gym

Want to be like Mike (Tyson)? Head to this athletic institution dating to 1937, whose illustrious alumni include the likes of Muhammad Ali, Jake LaMotta (the real-life boxer whose life is depicted in the movie Raging Bull), and Brooklyn's own Iron Mike. The gym sells one-day memberships for would-be ringmasters, as well as tickets to amateur boxing and Muay Thai matches.
77 Front St., Brooklyn, NY, 11201, USA
Sight Details
Rate Includes: $10 one-day spectator; $20 one-day workout

Kings County Distillery

New York City's oldest whiskey distillery bottles award-winning craft moonshine, bourbon, and other booze in a 115-year-old building in the sprawling Brooklyn Navy Yard. The distillery is open for 45-minute tours that include tastings and admission to the Boozeum, the spirited on-site museum. Tours are available Tuesday through Sunday at 3 and 5 pm, and on Saturday every half hour from 2 to 5 pm. (last tour at 5 pm). Reservations for weekday tours are recommended. Check the website for special events.
299 Sands St., Brooklyn, NY, 11205, USA
Sight Details
Rate Includes: Tours $14, Mon. 10--6; Tues.--Fri. 10--10; Sat. 12--10; Sun. 12--8

Manhattan Bridge Archway Plaza

In 2008, city planners transformed this industrial storage lot into an 8,000-square-foot venue for seasonal markets, performances, and other events. On Sunday from 10 am to 6 pm from April to October, the soaring space and surrounding Pearl Street blocks host approximately 80 vendors and food trucks as part of the Brooklyn Flea.

Smack Mellon

The transformation of an industrial boiler house into an edgy arts compound is quintessential DUMBO. This 12,000-square-foot structure now hosts large-scale avant-garde exhibitions and runs a prestigious residency program. Don't be surprised if you pass a smartphone-clutching event planner on your way in: the 5,000-square-foot gallery here is also a popular wedding venue.

The Stable Building


Formerly the home of the Galapagos Art Space that has since moved to Detroit, this historic building continues to showcase art with four first-floor galleries that were previously part of the 111 Front Street gallery collective. Minus Space shows artists specializing in "reductive abstract art" (simple materials, precise craftsmanship, limited color, repetition of shapes). Higher Pictures Generation offers playful photography. The Klompching Gallery focuses on fine-art photography. Gallery hours vary, but weekdays and Saturday afternoon are your best bet to visit; most are closed Monday.

Vinegar Hill

An architectural anomaly between a ConEdison substation and the 300-acre Brooklyn Navy Yard industrial park, this small DUMBO neighborhood, originally settled by Irish immigrants, has pre–Civil War brick and frame houses, Greek Revival buildings, and Federal town houses on its streets. Don't miss the Commandant's House, a 19th-century, Federal-style landmark whose artfully obscured gate lies at Evans Street near Hudson Avenue: now a (rather impressive) private residence, the house is the Navy Yard's oldest surviving structure.
Between Bridge St. and the Navy Yard, Brooklyn, NY, 11201, USA