Governors Island: Escape the Madness of Manhattan for an Afternoon

Governors Island might not be New York City’s most famous island (that would be Manhattan, of course), but it certainly stands out as a stellar summer destination. Sitting in the heart of New York Harbor just beyond shadows of Lower Manhattan’s skyscrapers, Governors Island attracts thousands of visitors each summer in search of live music, great food, acclaimed art and fresh air.

A trip to Governors Island is the perfect way to celebrate the end of summer during your next stay at The New York Palace. Grab a hearty, healthy breakfast at Istana, contact our Concierge for a taxi to the ferry terminal, and enjoy an afternoon of live music, great food and drink, and a breathtaking view of the Manhattan skyline.

New Yorkers flock to Governors Island because it’s nearby, it’s packed with activities each weekend, and it’s free. The Trust for Governors Island runs free ferries to and from the island every summer weekend, providing quick, easy and affordable access to an array of events. The 172-acre island boasts a rich history dating back to its days as a fort of the Continental Army during the American Revolution. In the past decade, the island has been rehabilitated and converted into the popular outdoor attraction it remains to this day. The city has spent the past few years beautifying the island and building bike paths.

Upcoming Governors Island Events:

Better Than Jam: Handmade Gift Shop – through September 3, noon – 4pm
Shop the creations of some of the city’s most creative artists and craftspeople and take home a one-of-a-kind souvenir from Governors Island. The shop hosts demonstrations and workshops each Saturday with staff from Etsy’s New York office.

Pig Island III – September 1, 11:30am – 4pm
This Labor Day Weekend, Colonels Row plays host to a celebration of all things carnivorous. The Pig Island festival showcases an array of delicious, locally sourced pork, seasonal foods, craft beer and wine from New York State.

Vendy Awards – September 15, 12:30pm – 5pm
The Vendy Awards are truly an only-in-New York event, honoring the city’s best street food vendor. NYC takes its food trucks seriously – some of the past participants in this cook-off include acclaimed trucks like Korilla BBQ, King of Falafel and El Rey de Sabor.

FIGMENT 2012 Installations – through September 23
The island hosts an interactive Sculpture Garden all summer. Created by FIGMENT, the current installation is centered on the Tree House, where visitors can climb, explore and interact.

How to Get to Governors Island:
Governors Island is easy to reach from The New York Palace by taking a taxi or the subway to the ferry at the Battery Maritime Building in Lower Manhattan.

Via Taxi:

  • Contact our Les Clefs d’Or Concierge to reserve a taxi from Midtown to the terminal
  • Take the free ferry from the Battery Maritime Building to Governors Island

Via Subway:

  • Walk to the 51st Street subway station at Lexington Avenue and 51st Street
  • Take the 6 train heading downtown and exit the train at Grand Central Station
  • Transfer across the platform to the 4 or 5 train and ride downtown before exiting at the Bowling Green station
  • Exit the Bowling Green station and walk south on State Street
  • Turn right on South Street and walk until you reach the Battery Maritime Building
  • Take the free ferry from the Battery Maritime Building to Governors Island

Ferry Schedule:
A free ferry runs between Battery Maritime Building and Governors Island on Saturdays, Sundays and Labor Day. Ferries leave at 10am, 11am, and every half hour until 5:30pm. Ferries return to Manhattan at 10:30am, 11:30am and every half hour until 7pm. Summer ferry service ends September 30.

 

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