"Seaport to the Bronx" City Island by smyturn
City Island Travel Guide: 15 reviews and 26 photos
Just north of the beautiful and amazing island of Manhattan is a little community called City Island. About 1 mile long and 3 streets wide, there is a whole lot of wow packed into this little piece of the Bronx.
Pelham Bay Park is actually NYC's largest park, though obviously not as well known or oft visited as Central Park. Follow the park to the northern most part and you will find signs to City Island. The park itself is filled with bicycle and walking paths. I have barely explored all there is to see, but have spent lots of time cycling, running or walking through it. Each season creates its own beauty here, summer in particular.
There are often concerts in the park featuring everything from jazz and opera to concerts in the band shell at Orchard Beach. Orchard Beach is a public beach that I visit usually only in the spring or fall, but it is packed (and I do mean packed) in the summer. Souvenir shops, food stalls, tennis courts, hand ball courts, and basketball courts all battle for attention with the cool water off this fairly large beach.
Summertime in City Island means traffic comes to a halt. The one road that leads down the center of the island turns into a parking lot. And everyone has their car windows down and their music of choice turned up - way up. I can see how this can seem like a great time, I have been to my share of hearing damaging concerts and Louie, Louie festivals, but it gets tiresome on an ongoing basis. Still, whenever I ride across the bridge see the boats in the water, friends waving from the sidewalk and know the water is right out the front door, well I guess a little noise and traffic isn't so bad. You just learn to walk really fast when you have icecream in the grocery bag!
My younger son went to elementary school on the island. I had to laugh when his science teacher told me 'He's a great student as long as he doesn't sit by the window'. He had to rotate the students or they'd get mesmorized by the view of the water'.
I tried to think of how many restaurants there are on the island, but there are too many to remember and I am too lazy and disinterested to count. Lets just say there are lots of restaurants. There are 4 yacht clubs (I'm fairly certain), many boat yards (diminishing daily it seems) and a healthy amount of antique shops, galleries, and boating supply stores. There is a grocery store and a large corner grocer for those who think an extra 4 blocks to walk is too far. There used to be a movie theater but the times they are a changin'. City island even has a museum, a bed and breakfast, and 2 gyms. What an island!! The best part of the island is the community. Like any small town, it sometimes seems as if everyone knows everything about everyone. I personally feel that to be kind of comforting. It is nice to share good times with people who can laugh with you while laughing at you. Aw, life is too short and all that. Besides if they know your secrets you probably know theirs... If you missed the latest gossip, City Island even has it's own paper called, what else, The Island Current.
There is a large artistic community on the island and there is almost always a class to take, a jam to attend, or a gallery opening or play to enjoy. So come and visit. Tell 'em Kathy sent you.
- Pros:Close to the action and yet far enough away
- In a nutshell:Not the Bronx as you know it
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City Island Travel Guide
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