Looking for all the cool things to do in Williamsburg, Brooklyn? You’ve come to the right place. This is hands down one of the coolest and popular neighborhoods within the borough (and entire city) to explore. There’s a reason why when so many people come to Brooklyn for the first time, Williamsburg is on their radar.
The food scene is incredible. The bars in Williamsburg? Well, there are plenty of cool ones to check out from faux dives to themed bars and bars with games. Music venues, art galleries, street art, indie boutiques, and oh, the thrifting and vintage scene are unmatched.
Since rezoning in 2005, Williamsburg has slowly but surely developed into a vibrant, young, and artistic community. It’s heavily gentrified and depending who you talk to, they will tell you they love Williamsburg or love to hate the hipster culture that comes with it.
Oh, and did I fail to mention already that Williamsburg has one of the best skyline views of Manhattan?! Oh, and it’s super easy via ferry or subway to get in and out of Midtown making it one of the less intimidating areas for tourists to the city to get out and explore the other boroughs beyond Manhattan.
Speaking of, that’s what makes Williamsburg one of the best places to stay in the city. Be sure to check out our full guide for the best Williamsburg hotels with skyline views too! On a budget? No worries, there are options here for that too!
There are a ton of incredible things to do in Williamsburg but check out some of our favorite spots in this Williamsburg Brooklyn guide.
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What to do in Williamsburg Brooklyn
Check Out Domino Park
When it comes to looking for things to do in Williamsburg, you have to stop at Domino Park and take in the skyline views from here. This park opened in 2018 and has easily become one of the best parks in Brooklyn for the views alone.
Located just north of the Williamsburg Bridge, this park is on the site of the former Domino Sugar Refinery, hence the name. In fact, Brooklyn is so sweet as it had not one sugar factory, but several sugar refineries during its industrial heydey. You can still see traces of the past here as the architects and designers of the park (who also created the High-Line in Chelsea) purposefully left up some of the old factory equipment to pay homage to the history here.
Domino Park is a popular gathering place for locals, there’s a cute fenced-in dog park, plenty of seating, an elevated walkway, and a tasty taco stand.
And as of 2023, the original refinery has been completely renovated and transformed into The Refinery at Domino, now a luxury office building with prime real estate.
You also can’t beat some of the great offerings to do within steps of Domino Park either. Need a beer break? Head to Other Half Brewing’s tasting room, want something more than tacos to eat? Head to Roberta’s where you can get a taste of some of the best pizza in Brooklyn. Or, if you fancy eating with a view, this. is one of the best picnic spots in Brooklyn.
Bowl in Style at Brooklyn Bowl
One of the more fun venues and things to do in Williamsburg includes Brooklyn Bowl, a super cool bowling alley and music venue combined! Don’t just take our word for it, Rolling Stone has even named it, “one of the most incredible places on earth.”
Brooklyn Bowl is awesome for a few different things. During the weekends they have family-friendly hours during the day, by night though this becomes a 21 and over hang out spot where you can bowl or bowl during a live music performance.
Brooklyn Bowl often hosts themed nights too, a friend of mine was super excited to go to a Taylor Swift themed night at Brooklyn Bowl and said it was a blast.
Each of the lanes is equipped with plush, leather sofas to hang out in between turns. There’s a full kitchen and bar here too so you won’t go hungry or thirsty while you’re hitting strike after strike!
Now, this is a very popular hang out spot and on the weekends it can get a bit nuts. The lanes are first come, first serve so plan ahead to mitigate your expectations! During the times where there are ticketed events, you have to have a ticket to that event to get in.
Brooklyn Bowl is located right in the center of the nightlife scene on Wythe Avenue and is open until 12 am almost every night. With live music and great food, you’re bound to have an epic time.
Head over to Gutter Bar for some pints and pins!
More bowling, yay! For more fun in Williamsburg that revolves around bowling, you have another option that comes without the occasional concert crowd.
The Gutter Bar is more of a traditional bowling alley, compared to Brooklyn Bowl that also has a bar. You’ll find old-school lanes and a more laid-back vibe here. There are only 8 lanes here and it has a much smaller bowling space, but the bar area is more spacious.
You don’t even have to bowl to hang out here too. You can get drinks, play board games, and bar snacks. Then if you do want to bowl, you can head over to Gutter Bar’s vintage bowling lanes for more fun.
Gutter bar is 21+ at all times so if you’re looking for things to do in Williamsburg with the whole family, then try out some of our other ideas for what to do in Williamsburg, Brooklyn that are more age and family-friendly!
Games and Drinks at Barcade
One of my absolute favorite places to take friends that visit the city and one of the best things to do in Williamsburg is spend a few hours at Barcade. If you are quick witted you might already know what this place is about, a bar + an arcade = Barcade!
They have a few locations now, including one in Chelsea but there’s something about the Williamsburg space that I enjoy the best. First of all, they have more vintage pinball machines here than the other locations. The Chelsea location has a few pin ball games but they have more vintage digital arcade games.
The bar has a great selection of beer on draft and that’s where you can purchase tokens to play games. All the old-school arcade games have cup holders so you can drink and play too.
And apparently, this Barcade location is rumored to be haunted. I haven’t noticed any spirits here other than the liquid form that make you feel tipsy, but keep an eye out!
Dive into NYC’s Past at The City Reliquary Museum
Are you a history buff? If so, this is what to do in Williamsburg, Brooklyn for you! The City Reliquary Museum is a community-run museum that highlights the history of New York City to its visitors and is true hidden gem in Williamsburg!
If an educational experience is on your list of things to do in Williamsburg, this museum is perfect for those who want to learn more about artifacts, community collections and cultural events from both the past and present.
This not-for-profit museum began in 2002 as a window display created by founder Dave Herman.
The museum has a permanent collection including everything from building fragments from landmark structures, vintage postcards from famous monuments in the city like The Statue of Liberty, antique subway tokens, paint chips from the L train platform, and other artifacts from all over the city.
The City Reliquary Museum in Williamsburg is located at 370 Metropolitan Avenue and is open every Thursday-Sunday, noon-6 PM
Check out more of the amazing museums in Brooklyn worth visiting!
Hang out at McCarren Park
Another one of the best outdoor things to do in Williamsburg, Brooklyn sharing the border with the Greenpoint neighborhood is McCarren Park. This is filled with 35 acres of space and if you’re looking for where the locals hang out, you’ll find them here chilling out on a nice day in New York City.
Their basketball courts and baseball fields make for great pickup games and their barbecuing areas are great for family and friend get-togethers. If you’re looking for a good place to go on a hot day then head over to their free outdoor pools!
Also, in the warmer months, you can find fun activities here like the Renegade Craft Fair, Movies in the Park, and other fun events.
Enjoy Marsha P Johnson Park
If you love parks, views of the city skyline, and just being outdoors then we have another great option for you at Marsha P Johnson Park, formerly known as the East River State Park.
Marsha P Johnson Park, named after Marsha P Johnson, a transgender woman of color who was a pioneer of the LGBTQ Civil Rights Movement and a prominent figure in the Stonewall Uprising of 1969, is located along the Brooklyn side of the East River offering amazing views of Manhattan as well as stunning views of the Manhattan skyline.
With the large amount of greenery, this park is a perfect place to lounge and relax. This park has also become home to Smorgasburg – a food market offered during the warmer months.
Just be aware that unlike other parks in the city, this park does not permit bicycles here. Marsha P Johnson Park is dog-friendly (except for on Smorgasburg days), but visitors can only bring in two dogs at a time – just in case the unlikely chance you’re traveling with a large pack of dogs.
Take in the Views at Bushwick Inlet Park
Oh, another park you say? Yes! Another one of the best things to do in Williamsburg is to continue checking out all the cool waterfront parks along the East River with stellar skyline views!
Bushwick Inlet Park is located directly in the center of the Williamsburg waterfront. It’s shares a stretch of waterfront land with Greenpoint, which we highly recommend exploring as well, but it’s the great views here that make it a great place to rest your dogs after walking around all day or bring some food to sit and eat to take in the views.
The park was initially designed to keep the pathway from the south and eventually expand new designs into the north. This park adds a great new look to Williamsburg and provides more green areas to the old industrial neighborhood, transforming it into this family-friendly spot with top-notch views of the city skyline!
Better yet, this park is sustainable! The community center here is powered using sustainable electricity and heating through solar panels, geothermal heating, and a green roof.
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Grab a beer at Brooklyn Brewery
Calling all beer lovers, you’re going to want to add this stop on your feverishly long list of things to do in Williamsburg. The Brooklyn Brewery is the OG of craft breweries in the city. You’d think that the city has an exploding craft beverage scene, and it does now, but it took awhile to get here thanks to antiquated prohibition-era laws that gave us a slow start.
There are so many cool breweries in Brooklyn to check out, but the Brooklyn Brewery is really one of the best and most famous. In fact, the Brooklyn Brewery was one of the first and one of New York’s first post-prohibition craft breweries starting in 1988.
The tap list ranges from classics to bold new experiments and you are able to try them out in their very own tasting room. I always love the artist collabs they do here with their merch and artwork too.
Their tasting area is a fun space, they have a few games too and seem to be pretty family-friendly during the day as everytime I’ve come on a weekend during daylight hours there are alot of families and adults with kids in here. The vibe does change come night though and is adult-focused.
They also offer guided tours of the brewery, which you’ll need to reserve your spot in advance and it comes with tastings. This is another one of the more popular picks for what to do in Williamsburg among beer lovers, so don’t miss making a reservation if you want to partake in a tour!
Enjoy some German Brews & Bites at Radegast Hall & Biergarten
I love good beer, can you tell? And while we do love a good local brewery, we do love a good imported German beer too. Transport yourself to Bavaria here in Williamsburg at Radegast Hall & Biergarten, one of our favorite bars in Brooklyn for German fare and beer.
The setting takes you right into a traditional German beer hall and beer garden serving up great German brews, different types of German food and snacks, as well as live music! The scene here is pretty lively and you’ll find yourself among a friendly and rowdy bunch! This is the perfect place to have a beer and a Bavarian soft pretzel late night!
This is also a part of our German beer garden in Brooklyn crawl!
Do Some Shopping at Artists & Fleas
Another one of my favorite places to shop (whehter it’s for me or for someone else) and best places to visit in Williamsburg is Artists & Fleas. This trendy marketplace is home to over 75 sellers including another NYC location at Chelsea Market in Manhattan.
Located on 70 North 7th Street, Artists & Fleas holds an exceptional reputation amongst international buyers. Here you’re able to discover what’s new and exciting in fashion, design, vintage, and art. Easy access to this marketplace makes it one of the best spots in town.
Enjoy Rooftop Drinks at Westlight
Ok, I am about to go into more on the best rooftop bars in Williamsburg in a minute. But, I am going to say it. Westlight has the best views and is my top recommendation for things to do in Williamsburg if you want to hit up a rooftop bar and only have time for one.
Located on the 22nd floor of the luxurious hotel, the William Vale you’ll find an indoor bar and outdoor terrace with some of the most jaw-dropping skyline views the city has to offer. You get the whole picture here, not just one or two landmarks, but the entire skyline!
This sophisticated cocktail bar is on the more bougie side when it comes to prices. Come here prepared to spend a little for the prime location, upscale cocktails, and light bites.
Here’s the skinny though. This is great all year long because of the indoor area with floor to ceiling windows. The outdoor area is the best, and the seats are first come, first serve, so we recommend coming right when they open if you have your heart set on the outdoor deck area.
Rooftop Bar Hop
Okay, I know I mentioned Westlight as its ‘own’ of things to do in Williamsburg, but there’s a whole boatload of great rooftop bars in Brooklyn located in this neighborhood!
A few of my favorites include El Nico, a rooftop bar on the top floor of the Penny Hotel (a cool art-forward hotel and stay in the neighborhood as well). From this stylish rooftop you can enjoy the full skyline view including the Empire State Building and pair that with the great Mexican-fare you can order here while you soak in a skyline sunset.
Lillistar is another supreme choice located at the Moxy Williamsburg Hotel. The outdoor terrace here has cool views of the Williamsburg Bridge and I honestly think I actually like the indoor area better than the outdoor terrace somehow. The indoor bar is funky and has a DJ booth set up and offers regular live sets.
The Water Tower Bar at Arlo Williamsburg is one of the more unique of the rooftop bars in the city. The bar is set inside a steel and glass encased water tower and overlooks the skyline and rooftop pool of the Arlo Williamsburg.
Enjoy Dinner & a Show at Nitehawk Cinema
One of the most unique experiences and things to do in Williamsburg, Brooklyn is Nighthawk Cinema. Established in 2011, it is New York’s leading dine-in theater complete with a full-service bar and one of the best movie theaters in Brooklyn.
I love independent theaters and the whole story behind Nitehawk. You know how I mentioned antiquated prohibition-era laws earlier in regards to the Brooklyn Brewery? Well, those same old laws that prohibited alcohol to be served in a movie theater setting were changed thanks to Nitehawk Cinema!
Now you can sit back and relax in their theaters, order a beer or kitchen item and have it delivered to your seat as you sit back and enjoy the show. I particularly love the fun, artistic intros they create before the movies too with local artists.
The other cool part about Nitehawk Cinema is that they don’t only show new releases, they do special screenings of old-school classics regularly and fun events like Spoons and Toons, a retro-cartoon screening and hosted show with an unlimited cereal bar and cereal-inspired cocktails!
This movie theater is definitely something to check out if you’re looking for things to do in Williamsburg indoors or need a break from walking around or rainy day activity! They also have another location at Prospect Park West and is one of the best things to do in Park Slope if you find yourself in that area of Brooklyn.
Cinephiles Run, Don’t Walk to Spectacle Theater
If you’re a cinephile and love all things film, this is what to do in Williamsburg, Brooklyn for you! Spectacle Theater is a volunteer-run movie theater is known for screening rare and under-appreciated films every day of the week for a reasonable price of $5 making it one of the most affordable things to do in Williamsburg too!
The location is small but the concept is what makes this theater stand out from the others. Spectacle Theater allows you to bring your own food and drinks which is a very rare occurrence in modern-day movie theaters.
What’s pretty cool is that when rent prices were skyrocketing in the area, the community successfully ran a fundraising Kickstarter campaign to help continue this awesome theater and community project led by local volunteers.
The space is limited and can fit no more than 30 people so plan on getting there early to find a good seat. This is an awesome date night spot and a must add to your Williamsburg, Brooklyn guide and checklist!
Brooklyn Waterfront Greenway Bike Lane
One of the best ways to get around in the city is by bicycle. It can be quicker to bike than car, subway, and ferry depending on where you’re going. And while cyclists can ride in regular traffic, there are certain roads that have better bike lanes that feel more safe and friendly to those of us on two wheels.
Insert the Brooklyn Waterfront Greenway Bike Lane, this is a 26-mile route and protected bike lane along the Brooklyn waterfront including Williamsburg. You can actually go all the way from South Brooklyn to North Brooklyn neighborhoods like Williamsburg and Greenpoint using this route!
You don’t own a bike right? Don’t worry, you can use Citibike! There are stations all over the place (although parking in Williamsburg during weekends and evenings can be a chore when docking stations are full). Download the Citibike app and you can see which stations are closest to you, just make sure to check where you’re going to make sure there will be open docks – it does become a problem in this area.
And a tip, as a Citibike member I have to say that the e-bike rentals from Citibike can get quite costly very quickly, even with a membership (without a membership the prices are absurd). If you’re not wanting to spend alot, use the regular bikes. If you’re trying to get somewhere quick, the e-bikes are a great option but they are currently $.26 a minute ($.17/minute for members) and a subway is $2.90 for a single ride. Just some food for thought as I have surprised myself on e-bike rentals and a bit shocked at the price.
Walk the Williamsburg Bridge
One of the more active things to do in Williamsburg, Brooklyn is walk the Williamsburg Bridge. Besides being an easy way to get you to/from Williamsburg and the Lower East Side, the bridge is a monument in its own right.
The Williamsburg Bridge isn’t as scenic as the Brooklyn Bridge walk (from DUMBO), but it does offer a unique perspective of the city. And on the Williamsburg side, just below the bridge you have Domino Park and a handful of great restaurants and bars.
There’s a pedestrian path and a bicycle path, so pick your route! You can alternatively drive across the bridge as well. The pedestrian route begins at Bedford Ave and S 6th Street.
It’s a little over a mile so wear comfortable shoes and don’t forget to bring your camera because the Williamsburg Bridge is the perfect spot for a photoshoot!
Play Unlimited Skeeball at Full Circle Bar
One of my favorite bars in the neighborhood and one of the more fun things to do in Williamsburg is head to Full Circle Bar tucked away down a more offset area of Grand Street. Of course there are drinks, but for $5 you can play unlimited skeeball in the back!
They even have leagues for those who want to get serious with the sport! This is a fun hang-out spot, date spot, and place to just play some skeeball while enjoying a nice adult beverage!
If you’re looking for a great bite to eat, head to Emmy’s Squared just down the street before or after your brewskee ball playing!
Take a Gander Down Bedford Avenue
Some of the best things to do in Williamsburg, Brooklyn are all located on one strip, Bedford Avenue! Williamsburg is actually one of the larger neighborhoods so it’s not fair to say that’s where everything is, but there is quite a lot going on down Bedford Ave, and a lot of what isn’t is just off of Bedford Avenue!
Be sure to walk down Bedford Avenue from the Williamsburg Bridge all the way to McCarren Park! You’ll find tons of murals and street art, shops, places to eat, bars, street vendors, and tons of people watching for street style and more right here.
Explore Williamsburg’s Street Art Scene
Easily one of the best things to do in Williamsburg, Brooklyn is hunt down all the incredible murals in this neighborhood. Even if you’re not looking for them actively you will pass by a ton! And as the nature of street art goes, some of your favorite murals come and go and then new ones appear.
Even the advertisements and what would be traditional billboards elsewhere are actual pieces of art covering entire sides of buildings disguised as street art as well as stores like Warby Parker embracing the hipster neighborhood (I mean their entire brand is hipster) with their murals to even Dunkin Donuts with entire wall-size murals.
You can’t help but love the splashes of color from artists all over the world including some of the biggest names in the street art world scene like pieces from Kobra, Brolga, ROA, and JR to name a few.
The point being, there are tons of great artists on display here whether you’ve heard of them or not. Be sure to check them out, one of the best streets to see them is by walking down Bedford Ave, then cutting down individual streets and you’ll find even more!
I really love the Kobra murals in the neighborhood, although the Elvis Presley, War is Hell mural didn’t seem to survive heavy tagging, the Andy Warhol and Basquiat, Fight for Street Art is still in great shape after years.
Read more on all the best murals & street art in Williamsburg. And if you love street art, check out our guide to the best Brooklyn street art as you can easily add street-art heavy neighborhoods like Bushwick to your time exploring around all the best Williamsburg attractions.
Vintage & Thrift Shopping
When I say Williamsburg is one of the best neighborhoods in NYC for vintage shopping, I mean it. This neighborhood has a high concentration of quality, curated vintage and thrift stores. Easily one of the most popular things to do in Williamsburg is to take in the vintage/thrift scene. You can easily spend a whole weekend only doing this and still not get to all the spots!
Below are a few, but be sure to check out our entire guide to the best vintage shopping in Williamsburg, there’s a lot more!
Awoke Vintage – A cool thrift and vintage shop reselling the coolest threads located in the Mini Mall off of Bedford Ave. While the space is small, they have curated a great collection of women’s clothing including a sizeable collection of vintage Levis!
L Train – I’ll be the first to admit that many of the trendy Williamsburg vintage spots charge a high finders fee for their items (I mean living in this city ain’t cheap). There are a few exceptions and one is L Train, there are several locations throughout the city, many of which make up the best thrifting in Brooklyn and the Williamsburg location is no different. I always find something here too.
Malin Landaeus – This upscale, chic vintage store in Williamsburg only sells the finest of vintage treasures from their amazing boot collection to women’s clothing and locally designed accessories. This is where you’ll find some really unique and stylish pieces!
Mother of Junk – Finally a vintage and antique store for everyone! You can find great housewares, accessories, and other fun finds in this fun antique store.
Wonders of Walter – This cool vintage reseller and collector sells items out of their garage-style location when the weather is nice right on Berry Street. Find all kinds of vintage gems here for both men and women.
Buffalo Exchange – Find cute vintage clothing at this trendy chain. Not only can you buy but you can trade clothes, jewelry and other accessories here as well! Check them out on 504 Driggs Avenue.
Grand Street Local – Your go-to vintage shirt shop selling all kinds of vintage finds with an emphasis on menswear and unisex clothing.
Plus BKLYN- focuses on plus-size vintage and thrift finds!
10 ft Single by Stella Dallas & Stella Dallas Living – two of my favorite vintage stores in the entire city. 10 ft Single is younger, this is where you’ll find denim, vintage tees, and more fun thrifting finds and Stella Dallas Living is where you’ll find vintage clothing and fabrics from the last century!
Enjoy the Williamsburg Foodie Scene
Where do I even begin? Williamsburg is hands down one of the best foodie neighborhoods in New York City. There are SO many good restaurants in Williamsburg that it’s really difficult to repeat a place you love as there are just so many places to try. Whether you’re looking for a great spot for brunch in Williamsburg, casual eats, or a nice sit down meal – your options are absolutely endless.
I am going to do my best to just give a quick rundown of a few great spots depending on what you’re looking for.
For quick bites in Williamsburg, don’t miss the Birria-landia taco truck (evenings only) for their sensational birria tacos (don’t forget to order a side of that consome for dipping). It’s messy and delicious.
Another quick and quality bite to eat is at Milu, they offer fast, casual Chinese cuisine – everything I’ve tried here is amazing. Go to Mekelburg’s by Domino Park for
One of the best slices of pizza in New York City can be found at L’Industrie, there are a few other trendy slice shops in the neighborhood like Fini Pizza, but nothing beats L’Industrie! Best Pizza and Joe’s also offer reliable, classic slices if you find yourself needing a late night slice.
Some of the most coveted restaurants (and hard to get reservations) are located in Brooklyn. So if you can get a reservation, consider it a sign and eat here. Misi and Lillia are famed for their pasta dishes. Laser Wolf often only has late-night reservations available for their Middle Eastern fare and gorgeous rooftop setting in The Hoxton.
Peter Luger Steakhouse is one of the most famous steakhouses in New York City, dating back to 1887, it’s the third oldest steakhouse in the city and cash only.
Oh, you want a great weekend brunch? Sunday in Brooklyn is one of the best spots, they even have a fun winter and holiday pop-up, Snowday in Brooklyn if you’re looking for the best holiday-themed restaurants in NYC too. Cafe Mogador and Diner are also favorites for brunch.
I can easily get carried away in this section and write a whole guidebook, so if you want to know more about the foodie scene in Williamsburg, I’ve linked to both our brunch and regular restaurant guides above in the first paragraph of this section.
Enjoy Free Pizza at Alligator Lounge & The Charleston
It sounds too good to be true, in a city that is as expensive as ever can you believe that there are two bars that offer a free personal, wood-fired cheese pizza with every drink purchase?
One of the best cheap things to do in Williamsburg is head to either (or both) of these dive bars that offer a free personal pizza with each drink you order. That’s right! You get a FREE personal pizza with your drink order!!! The free pizza is cheese, but if you want toppings you can add them on for a buck each.
The drinks aren’t overpriced (and don’t expect anything fancy) at both the Alligator Lounge (600 Metropolitan Ave ) and The Charleston (174 Bedford Ave).
Are you a Nathan Fielder fan? If so, you’ll recognize the Alligator Lounge from The Rehearsal!
Hit Up Some Cool Neighborhood Cafes
One of the best things to do in Williamsburg, being the cool neighborhood it is are check out the gorgeous and great cafe scene here! Whether you have some work to do and need a great spot to sit for a bit while sipping on a latte or you just need a little pick me up, there are a ton of great cafes in this neighborhood to check out.
See our full guide to the best Williamsburg coffee shops for more!
Devoción – Probably the most well-known of cafes in Williamsburg because of how beautiful this space is, Devoción sources their coffee from the finest beans in Columbia and offers one of the most inviting and beautiful atmospheres for hanging out with a cuppa in the city.
Fiction/BK Speed – This laid back cafe is a great place to get work done or just come in for a cup of coffee, beer, or light snack with the occasional live music performance.
Black Brick Coffee – If a cafe could scream Williamsburg with its decor, this would be it. This dimly lit, brick-walled cafe serves up Stumptown Coffee and has a chill, hip, and inviting vibe.
Hungry Ghost Coffee – A gorgeous space with a succulent covered wall and cozy atmosphere which has other locations throughout Brooklyn.
Bakeri – This charming Scandinavian cafe in Williamsburg has a French feel to it and famously delicious baked goods.
Check out the Bar Scene
Williamsburg is also known for having a great nightlife scene, from swanky cocktail bars to ‘dad dive bars’ you can find it all here. As already mentioned earlier as suggestions for things to do in Williamsburg you also have bowling alleys/bars and arcade/bars as well as cheap dive bars that give you a free pizza with a purchase of a drink.
A few of our favorites include Fresh Kills for incredible cocktails curated to your taste preferences and Philomena’s offers craft cocktails including flaming drinks to drinks made with specialty infused ice cubes with ingredients like habanero or tajin.
Maison Premiere and Hotel Delmano win for aesthetics, setting, and vibe. Go to Dolly’s Swing and Dive for a fun, faux dive bar with an ode to Dolly Parton in the restroom.
For great beer, head to Talea Beer Co. to visit an awesome female-founded brewery here in Williamsburg or the Other Half Brewing tasting room by Domino Park for some of the best hazy IPA selections in the city.
Hang Out at Brooklyn Art Haus
I love finding places that really strive on creating spaces for creatives. If you’re looking for one of the coolest hang out spaces for creatives and things to do in Williamsburg consider paying a visit to Brooklyn Art Haus.
Located right off the Metropolitan subway station, Brooklyn Art Haus offers a cafe and work space by day, bar, and a restaurant, and by night you’ll find many different performances and programming to attend from circus acts to comedy shows.
This giant space and venue was created for creatives, by creatives. Find a gallery with contemporary artists where you can hang out and work on your laptop or sip a cocktail with friends. You can rent studio space here and more. So yes, there’s a cafe + bar + event space + performances + studios + gallery, what else am I missing?
Whether you’re looking for what to do in Brooklyn at night or day, you can come here!
Relax at Bathhouse
If you’re looking for a chic, urban oasis and one of the best spas in NYC for a day of relaxation, check out Bathhouse. This is one of the most relaxing and pampering yourself things to do in Williamsburg and I’m all here for it.
Come for massages, exfoliations, and scrubs. Soak away your aches and pains in the communal pools, saunas, or steam rooms set in a cool, former 1930s factory. The ambiance here is insane, the halls are backlit and filled with plants and plenty of relaxation areas to unwind.
Want to stay all day? Easy, there’s even a restaurant on site so you don’t have to leave.
Get Some Boozy Ice Cream
I did not realize I needed or wanted a 21+ ice cream parlor, but here we are. I LOVE Tipsy Scoop in Williamsburg. This artisinal ice cream shop sells boozy ice cream flavors and makes over-the-top boozy ice cream sundaes!
There are special seasonal flavors that change out frequently and they even offer fun boozy ice cream workshops and classes that make for a fun activity with friends or hands-on date idea.
You can eat in the shop or even grab pints to go, what a great idea if you’re swinging by a house party nearby to come with boozy ice cream?! The shop is strictly 21+ over and all their ice cream is boozy!
Ride the Ferry
One of the best ways to to get around and see the city is by taking advantage of the NYC Ferry service! Along the East River you have some of the best skyline views of Manhattan and you get to see some of the most famous landmarks in the city by water from the skyscrapers to the East River Bridges on your commute!
There are two different ferry stops in Williamsburg, the North Williamsburg stop and the South Williamsburg stop. Both of these are serviced by the East River Ferry route.
These stops include:
- Hunter’s Point South (Long Island City, aka LIC in Queens)
- East 34th Street (very close to Midtown)
- Greenpoint (Brooklyn’s northernmost neighborhood, fun to explore)
- North Williamsburg
- South Williamsburg
- DUMBO Fulton Ferry
- Pier 11 (this is Wall Street in Lower Manhattan’s Financial District)
One of the most beloved summer in the city activities is the weekly Smorgasburg open-air food market with popular food vendors from all five boroughs presenting endless options of cuisine to try.
Smorgasburg is best enjoyed with friends though. Especially friends with similar food interests so you can all order something different and try each other’s food.
The Williamsburg Smorgasburg event takes place on Saturdays in Marsha P Johnson Park, if you want to venture further around Brooklyn you can also attend Smorgasburg on Sundays in Prospect Park too!
The Williamsburg location tends to get crowded and offers a great backdrop of the city skyline, which makes for a great place to enjoy the view while you try a bunch of different food!
This is a seasonal event though, it takes place during spring-end of summer.
Take a Tour of Williamsburg
See the best of what to do in Williamsburg, Brooklyn by joining a tour with a professional and knowledgeable local guide to teach you about the city history through walking tours, tasting tours, and historic tours!
Best of Brooklyn Walking Tour
Check out the best things to do in Williamsburg and learn about the borough in this Best of Brooklyn Walking Tour. This 3 hour walking tour takes you through the best of the Williamsburg neighborhood with a knowledgable guide.
See all the trendiest spots in this neighborhood while learning about the history and its influence on the contemporary culture of Brooklyn. See the different street art and murals, find out what the coolest local spots are, and learn about the historic buildings as you pass.
You won’t want to leave Williamsburg after! Book your Best of Brooklyn Walking Tour through Williamsburg
Best of Brooklyn Food, History, and Culture Tour
This half-day tour takes you through the best of Brooklyn paired with history, culture, and most importantly food! Hop aboard a luxury bus for this 5-hour tour with tastings in some of the coolest neighborhoods in Brooklyn. This is easily one of the best ways to see the best things to do in Brooklyn with a local expert and guide.
You’ll make stops at traditional eateries featuring cuisines from all over the world, see why this city is a melting pot of cultures through your taste buds. You’ll also visit the trendiest neighborhoods and learn about the history and iconic landmarks in Brooklyn along the way.
Your tour ticket includes all your tastings, transportation, a bottle of water, and a guide! They can accommodate to dietary requirements when you make your booking too. Book your “Best of Brooklyn” Half-Day Food and Culture Tour
Flavors of Williamsburg Food Tour
Another awesome food tour that covers the trendy neighborhood of Williamsburg. Don’t make the mistake of coming without a completely empty stomach on this 3-hour food journey through one of the most popular areas in Brooklyn.
You’ll learn about the rich culinary history, visit iconic restaurants and eateries, and sample amazing treats along this small-group tour with an expert local guide!
You’ll also get to see some of the best views in Brooklyn while you learn the history. If you have dietary restrictions please contact the tour company after you book they can accommodate to your needs ahead of time. Book your Flavors of Williamsburg Tour
Getting Around Williamsburg
Now that you’ve read about all the best things to do around the neighborhood in our Williamsburg Brooklyn guide, here’s how to get around.
There are a few different ways to get into and around Williamsburg but a lot of the action is right under the bridge so you won’t need to go far.
From Manhattan, take the L Train to Bedford Avenue and you’ll be right in the heart of all that’s trendy in Williamsburg
From Queens or a different part of Brooklyn, take the G train to Metropolitan Avenue. After getting off at Metropolitan Ave, Bedford is only a short walk away.
If you feel like walking or taking a Citi Bike for a ride, then the Williamsburg Bridge is always an option to get to where you want to be as well as the East River Ferry which connects Williamsburg to Manhattan, both downtown and midtown, as well as Greenpoint, DUMBO, & Long Island City.
There are a few subway stops that service Williamsburg on the G, J, M, Z, and L lines:
- Metropolitan Ave/Lorimer Street Station (G & L lines)
- Bedford Ave Station (L line)
- Broadway Station (G line)
- Graham Avenue Station (L line)
- Flushing Avenue Station (J, M, Z lines)
- Morgan Avenue Station (L line)
- Grand Street Station (L line)
- Marcy Avenue Station (J, M, Z lines)
- Montrose Avenue Station (L line)
- Hewes Street Station (J & M lines)
Where to Stay in Williamsburg
Not sure which neighborhood to stay in? Check out our entire guide for the best places to stay in Brooklyn by area and budget to help you plan your trip, or pick from one of these amazing Williamsburg hotels below.
William Vale Hotel
Referred to as “Williamsburg’s Only True Luxury Hotel,” The William Vale Hotel strives to provide a memorable experience for all guests. An award-winning chef, monumental pieces of art and custom metalwork details in the rooms are key to having an exceptional stay at this hotel.
The William Vale Hotel is respectfully rated 5-stars. With amazing views of the Manhattan skyline and the location being only blocks away from many venues and restaurants, this hotel has everything you could hope for.
The rooftop bar, Westlight, which is mentioned earlier in this article of things to do in Williamsburg is located right at the top of the William Vale Hotel. There is also a high-end Italian restaurant and a 60-foot long pool that is deemed the “longest pool in Brooklyn and the greater New York City.”
Hotel Le Jolie
This 3-star hotel is located only a short walk away from the Metropolitan Avenue subway station as well as from the shops along Bedford Avenue making it a great location to explore what to do in Williamsburg, Brooklyn.
Continental breakfast and free wifi are some of the perks in this European-style hotel. This hotel provides free on-site parking on a first come first serve basis with a fantastic location to explore the best of Williamsburg.
Arlo Williamsburg (formerly the Williamsburg Hotel) is one of the trendiest hotels for a trendy neighborhood sitting at eight stories high and has 147 rooms. Located on Wythe Avenue, this hotel is also walking distance away from many nearby shops and restaurants.
The rooms are brilliantly decorated with custom decor, large windows with natural light, views of the city, designer toiletries, and some even have balconies with some of the best views Brooklyn has to offer.
Besides being in a great location, The Williamsburg Hotel also has a stylish rooftop pool with incredible views of the city!
What to do in Williamsburg Map
Awesome Things to do in Williamsburg (Post Summary):
- Check Out Domino Park
- Bowl in Style at Brooklyn Bowl
- Games and Drinks at Barcade
- Dive into NYC’s Past at The City Reliquary Museum
- Hang out at McCarren Park
- Enjoy Marsha P Johnson Park
- Take in the Views at Bushwick Inlet Park
- Grab a beer at Brooklyn Brewery
- Enjoy some German Brews & Bites at Radegast Hall & Biergarten
- Do Some Shopping at Artists & Fleas
- Enjoy Rooftop Drinks at Westlight
- Rooftop Bar Hop
- Enjoy Dinner & A Show at Nitehawk Cinema
- Cinephiles Run Don’t Walk to Spectacle Theater
- Brooklyn Waterfront Greenway Bike Lane
- Walk the Williamsburg Bridge
- Play Unlimited Skeeball at Full Circle Bar
- Take a Gander Down Bedford Avenue
- Explore Williamsburg’s Street Art Scene
- Vintage & Thrift Shopping
- Enjoy the Williamsburg Foodie Scene
- Enjoy Free Pizza at Alligator Lounge & The Charleston
- Hit Up some Cool Neighborhood Cafes
- Check out the Bar Scene
- Hang Out at Brooklyn Art Haus
- Relax at Bathhouse
- Get Some Boozy Ice Cream
- Ride the Ferry
- Take a Tour of Williamsburg
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