If you happen to live in or near New York City you may think, "Why the heck would there be places to visit on Staten Island? It’s a dump over there!" Although at one point Staten Island did have the biggest garbage dump on the east coast, they have cleaned up. There are also several different places to visit on Staten Island that don’t smell bad and are actually entertaining to go to. So head down to the Staten Island Ferry and start picking out the places you want to visit on this 17 mile island!
This is one of the few places to visit on Staten Island that I haven't been to yet, but I really want to go! Located in the southwest corner of Staten Island, and right next to a juvenile detention center and abandoned graveyard, is the Arthur Kill Shipyard. However, this is not like any other shipyard that you have ever encountered. This is the place where ships meet their demise. There are dozens of ships there, and several are over a century old. Unfortunately, Hurricane Sandy wiped out a good portion of the yard, but many ships still remain.
Located underneath the Verrazano Bridge, this huge structure once provided protection to the most important city on the east coast for more than 200 years. In 1995 the navy turned the fort over to the Department of the Interior. I went to visit Fort Wadsworth when I first moved to Staten Island, and it really takes your breath away.
Who doesn’t love animals? I will forever be a kid at heart because I am always up for a zoo trip. The Staten Island Zoo is a pretty ordinary zoo, but during Hurricane Sandy in October of 2012, the gates were broken on some of the exhibits and the animals escaped. People were looking out their windows and watching seals hop down their street. Fortunately all of the animals are back in the zoo so you don’t have to worry about being attacked by a lion right after you drive off of the Verrazano.
This town features almost 50 acres of true history. It has around 30 different historical landmarks, and the awesome thing about Richmond Town is that they are all the original structures. There are some buildings that are almost 350 years old, as well as an 11 acre family farm, which I’m pretty sure is the only farm left on Staten Island.
This 2.5 mile boardwalk is located right on the Atlantic Ocean, and has amazing views of the bay. It is one of the four of New York City’s spacious beach fronts. The boardwalk took a hard hit during Hurricane Sandy, with some parts of it still being rebuilt. But you can walk along this boardwalk on a hot summer day to catch a nice breeze and talk to some of the fishermen while you’re there!
I had no idea that this place existed until I started writing this article, but I really want to go once the temperature rises above 15 degrees. Located in the Snug Harbor Botanical Garden, it resembles one of the most famous scholar gardens in China. The admission for the botanical garden is free, and it’s only five bucks to get into the Chinese Scholar Garden. The construction of the garden started in 1999 and ended in 2011. So if it took 12 years of work to build I assume that it must be beautiful.
Opening its doors on December 4th, 1929, this theater was once the most magnificent theater on Staten Island. The theater seats 2,800 people in its velvet chairs. The original admission cost to get in in 1929 was 75 cents. You can’t even get a candy bar for that these days!
Staten Island doesn’t get nearly as much credit as it deserves. Many people say that it is the city’s dumping ground, when the real truth is that it is full of treasures. Don’t get me wrong, Manhattan is a gorgeous place that has a never-ending list of sites to see. But stray from the path and hop on the Staten Island Ferry, which is free by the way, to visit the forgotten borough and appreciate all of its hidden beauty. Are there any places that you would like to visit on Staten Island?
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