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“Nice contrast to the big city life”
Review of Roosevelt Island

Roosevelt Island
Experience for Yourself
More Info
and up
NYC Private Luxury Yacht Rental
Ranked #88 of 1,098 things to do in New York City
Certificate of Excellence
Attraction details
San Juan, Puerto Rico
Level Contributor
11 reviews
6 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
“Nice contrast to the big city life”
Reviewed July 23, 2014

There's not much to do on Roosevelt Island. In fact, I don't think there's anything to do. But the simpleness of riding the cable car to the Island and strolling along its shores while viewing the city from afar is a nice treat. I don't think it's a must-see for people on a short vacation, but for someone like me who went for 8 days, it was a nice contrast to the fast-paced city.

Visited July 2014
3 Thank Newbourne
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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New York
Level Contributor
300 reviews
59 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 91 helpful votes
“hidden gem ...a rare find...and only a subway fare away!”
Reviewed July 22, 2014

I'm surprised that this is not amongst the top attractions in NYC! First you get to take a short ride on only aerial tram in NYC (which is a nice experience by itself) overseeing the East River. This costs only a subway fare now. Then there's the free red bus which takes you to the northern tip of the island (where the lighthouse is). The island itself is only 40+ blocks long, so on a beautiful day a nice stroll around the island would be my recommendation. There are places to eat near the subway station, a Starbucks is also there, and a Gristede super store further north where you can buy sandwiches and salads. Then you can head south to visit FDR Four Freedoms Park. Cycling around the island can also be had, and I'd say much 'safer' than cycling in Manhattan. NPS is also offering free guided tour of Four Freedoms Park so you get to learn about the history and also how to better appreciate the design of the park.

Visited July 2014
7 Thank MK330
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
New Jersey
Level Contributor
169 reviews
53 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 67 helpful votes
“Something unexpected”
Reviewed July 22, 2014

We travel to NY several times a year so we are now looking for more unconventional things to do and places to explore. We have been thinking of visiting Roosevelt Island for some time. Took the tram from NY which was a great ride. We only visited the southern portion of the island and plan to return for the north end since we got a late start. We took info from other tripadvisor reviews and walked the west side walkway to the Rossevelt Memorial in the park. There was also a small festival with food and drink along the walkway. also there is water to purchase right outside of the memorial. Also great areas to picnic. Complete water view, easy walk, lots of wild flowers, geese, and great views of NY and Queens area. Saw kayakers, jet ski's, boats, etc...memorial was a great surprise. Much larger than I had thought by reading other reviews. Beautiful design that narrows to the point of the island with another nice view and place to sit and reflect. The memorial is well staffed and you pass the old ruins of the small pox hospital which are interesting. You can get a lot of info off line before going, but I agree with some other reviewers, this trip is best for those who visit this area frequently and not for a one or two time visitor. There are much more exciting things ot see in NY but we enjoyed the peaceful diversion.

Visited July 2014
Thank slstretch
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level Contributor
25 reviews
7 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 30 helpful votes
“Absolute MUST VISIT.”
Reviewed July 14, 2014

Maybe we're biased because we had perfect blue skies and this was not our first trip to NYC but for us, this is the perfect hidden gem in the city. My friend had read about it and I was extremely skeptical - there didn't seem to be much to do and as we only had a few days in the city, I didn't want to waste time.

Boy am I glad we went here. We got the cable car easily - you just use your metro card - and it's so fun travelling up over the city. Make sure to take a camera and stand by a window, it's the perfect photo opportunity the whole way across. Once we got to the island, we pretty much walked around the whole thing.

However, by far and away our favourite was the FDR tribute park. It was deserted and one of the calmest places I've ever been. There were stunning views of the Manhattan skyline, and we just sat for ages taking it all in. It's beautiful and so easy to access from the busy, bustling city. If you're in the city for more than one day, it's an absolute MUST. Can easily tie in with a visit to Central Park (only a few blocks west from the cable car station), or 5th avenue etc.

Visited April 2014
5 Thank GeorgeAJ
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level Contributor
162 reviews
40 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 68 helpful votes
“A nice side trip during good weather”
Reviewed July 8, 2014

If you want to get a different view of the city of New York and a wonderful view of the UN building, then a tram trip to the island is a good idea. Away from the frenzy of the city, it provides a calm and pretty walk and photo op.
The tram station is at 59 and 2nd. You will need a transit card (you can get it at the station). The trams run regularly and it is about a six minute trip.
There is construction at the end of the island but you can walk along the river on a nict sidewalk with lots of benches. When the construction is finished there probably will be a free bus ride around the island.

Visited July 2014
2 Thank zaxes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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