Getting on the Staten Island ferry is an experience all in its own. It doesn't cost anything, so if you even just have the time to go back and forth, it's worth it! Bring the kids along to see Manhattan from a whole new perspective and they can also see the statue of liberty, which is a treat if they have never seen it. What kid doesn't like to go on a "boat ride" anyway!!!
This ferry runs you through the hudson river, right past the statue of liberty, to staten island. The view of the statue is pretty great when you ride it and the view of the city from behind is awesome. The ferry is free to ride and they do have food that they sell on the boat as well as beer, which was a big plus for my husband and I. I recommend this ferry if you would like to take a relaxing boat ride.
Our family chose to stay on Staten Island due to costs. The ferry was a nice surprise. We found it to be relaxing (you can purchase coffee, etc.) before boarding the ferry or on the ferry. One of our favorite dinners was purchased from a street vendor and then eaten on the ferry as we enjoyed the skyline and the statue of liberty. A great way to end a day or start a day.
It's a great (free) service an we are lucky to have it. Beats driving into the city and possibly getting caught in hours upon hours of traffic, paying the insane toll, wasting gas, and then forget about looking for a parking spot. I wish the ferry seemed a little bit cleaner but I am a germ-a-phobe so, take that comment with a grain of salt. With that many people hopping on and off, you've got to expect a little schmutz.
The Staten Island Ferry gives you a nice 25 minute ride with great views of New York Harbor and it is FREE ! If you are not visiting The Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island you will get a perfect view of them on this ride. You'll see the skyscrapers and bridges of Lower Manhattan which are lovely sites as well. Don't miss it...Did i mention that it is FREE! You will love it!
Our group of kids (boys and girls 20 months - 7 years old) loved the Staten Island ferry. Picturesque views of the Statue of Liberty, the New York City skyline, and plenty of interesting cargo ships, tug boats, and floating cranes along the way. Start off at Battery Park and check out the cannons that once stood guard over the harbor, stop at the playground near the terminal (all the kids loved running around the dated but serviceable multi-level play structures), and enjoy the ride. We took the ferry at sunset, which made for some beautiful orange swaths of sky. On the Staten Island side you can grab a bite to eat in the terminal and let the kids check out the fish in the tanks while you're waiting in line for the return ferry.
If you've had an intense day and looking for a calmer day, heading to Battery Park and jumping on the Staten Island Ferry is a great way to fit in a calmer day. We arrive around lunch time, sat at battery park with a picnic lunch, then hopped on board the ferry for 20 minute ride to Staten Island. On the way out, the view of the Manhattan skyline was simply breathtaking. It was fun to spot what we knew. I wish we had a map that pointed out the different buildings and we could have played a game with the kids trying to identify the different buildings in the skyline.
Then we got pretty close to the Statue of liberty and the kids were very excited about seeing her. With young kids, I think this was a perfect way to see the Statue of Liberty. We didn't have to wait in a long time and we could see it for free. The walk up those 300+ steps would have been hard with our group of kids ages 20 months to 7 years old.
When you land on the Staten Island side, you might consider stopping in at the Staten Island Museum of Arts and Science which is very close the ferry terminal before heading back on the next ferry back to Manhattan.
We took the Staten Island Ferry to meet up with my friend on Staten Island. It was a free ride and you get to see the Statue of Liberty. The ride was ok, the weather was nice. When you get to the other side, there aren't that many places to go to get a bite to eat. We bought snacks at the deli and the pizzeria across the street and took the ferry back to the city. Not bad for a free ride. I still don't understand why they don't charge people like other ferries here in California. It is a nice ride for the kids if they like going on boats. There is plenty of room for strollers. The terminal has clean bathrooms with changing tables.
After reading the great reviews, I was so excited to take the Staten Island Ferry. Unfortunately, by the time we arrived there, the next ferry was at 8:30pm. Although we did get to see the Statue of Liberty and the Manhattan skyline, there was too much of a glare from within the ferry boat to really enjoy the view and it was too cold to go outside. When we have the chance to visit NYC again, we will definitely take the Ferry during the day or dusk.
If you are visiting New York City and you want to see the Statue of Liberty, but you don't want to A) pay the money for the full tour B) want to spend hours in line or C) all of the above, I have the perfect solution. The Staten Island Ferry is a huge shuttle that runs from the tip of Manhattan (next to Battery Park) to Staten Island. Along the way, you will pass by the Statue of Liberty and you get close enough to take great photos. Best of all, the ferry runs every 30 minutes in the afternoon and it's FREE. You do have to get off the ferry on the Staten Island side, but you can immediately re-board the ferry and make the return trip. The whole boat ride will take about an hour. You can also buy snacks on the ferry and they have restrooms.
I commuted from Staten Island to Manhattan for a good portion of my life using the Staten Island ferry. It's a FREE ride that gives you great views of lower Manhattan, Governor's Island and Brooklyn. It's a 30 minute ride each way and you have the option of sitting inside or outside as the weather permits. Just expect lots of commuters during the peak hours. Kids enjoy being able to see the sights and sometimes there are even performers on board.
We bought reserved tickets for the ferry online, so we skipped at least one long line when we got to Battery Park. We had 10 AM reservations on a Thursday; the trip through security screening took about 15 minutes. We didn't even get off at the Statue of Liberty; figured the view was just as good from the ferry. Ellis Island was impressive; the audio tour is a definite plus (maybe not so much for little ones) and the opportunity to listen to each exhibit was great. Following other's advice, we chose to grab lunch before leaving and found the food to be good - lots of choices, served efficiently and at reasonable prices. Total time for a leisurely visit and lunch was around three hours.
A FREE ferry ride with a view of the Statue of Liberty? How can you beat that for fun and historic value? It's beautiful no matter the season, simply dress appropriately. Why would you pay for a tour when you can take this ferry? Absolutely do it, do it, do it!
What else can I say, it's free!? The kids loved seeing the Statue of Liberty from the ferry. We were able to get up and walk around and they liked that. They also liked the snack bar on board. Allow an hour to go to one side, then turn around and ride back. Bonus for those with small kids that there are restrooms on board.
This is a fun boat ride to take! You get beautiful views of lower manhattan and The Statue of Liberty! The ride is comfortable and free! Its great in the day and in the evening when you can see all the city lights. You can even get off in Staten island and take the bus around the town and explore!
But them, Why pay more? I always recommend this to friends visiting the Big Apple in lieu of the spendy tourist cruises.
The best way to do the ferry is to take it at dusk. Watch all the city lights in Lower Manhattan come on like fairy lights as the sun sinks lower on the horizon. Its absolutely magical.
Kids can also take in the shipping and views of Statue of Liberty and the bridges that span the Hudson and East Rivers
Why on earth would you take a Circle Line cruise when you could do this for free? The Staten Island Ferry is a beautiful ride. You'll see the skyscrapers of lower Manhattan, the Statue of Liberty, and Ellis Island. There's even food on board. In the winter you can ride inside (but don't be a wuss, get out on deck.)
You could visit the many tourist attractions on Staten Island when you get there, but I confess most people just walk across to the return ferry and go back to Manhattan.
Just don't go during rush hour, as Staten Islanders obviously use the ferry to get to and from work and it'll be much more crowded.