Williamsburg, Brooklyn is a uniquely diverse neighborhood home to three major immigrant communities: Hasidic, Hispanic, and Hipster. Each community contributes a distinct element and offers its own enriching experience making it one of the best neighborhoods in Brooklyn.
Nearly destroyed by the Holocaust, the Satmar Hasidic community immigrated to Williamsburg from Hungary after World War II. Today, a community of over 57,000 Satmar Jews thrives in this ethnic enclave. Here they have their own restaurants, shops, and school system.
You will find the community warm and welcoming. When you visit, be respectful of their culture and kosher traditions. For a taste of Hasidic Williamsburg, visit Gottlieb’s(opens in a new tab) delicatessen and order the mouthwatering pastrami sandwich.
Drawn by jobs at the nearby Brooklyn Navy yard, immigrants from Puerto Rico and the Dominican Republic started settling in Williamsburg during the 1940s. Their community in South Williamsburg is commonly referred to as “Los Sures” (The South Side).
In Los Sures, you will find Domino Park(opens in a new tab) a brilliant repurposing of the old Dominos Sugar Refinery, which operated between 1883 until 2004. The park offers beautiful views of the Manhattan skyline, as well as a nice place to sit and enjoy a Morir Soñando, a refreshing drink originally from the Dominican Republic made with orange juice, milk, sugar, and crushed ice.
In the late 1990s, property in Williamsburg was cheap, and the easy commute into Manhattan attracted artists and bohemians of all types. Because of this the neighborhood underwent a rapid gentrification process and transformed into one of the most expensive neighborhoods in the city!
As you walk the streets of North Williamsburg, you will find restaurants such as Cheeseboat(opens in a new tab), where you can indulge in melted cheese fondue in a giant bread bowl. To quench your thirst there’s the Brooklyn Brewery(opens in a new tab), which brews its own beer. To top things off with something sweet head to Sunday in Brooklyn(opens in a new tab) where you can feast on hazelnut praline pancakes.
If you enjoy shopping, take a walk along Bedford Avenue, which is lined with high-end consignment shops and one-of-a-kind boutiques. For souvenir jewelry, candles, and trinkets, check out CatBird(opens in a new tab). If you enjoy a more hands-on approach, stop by Brooklyn Charm(opens in a new tab) where you can actually make your own charm bracelets using locally-made pieces. Plus if you take one of their jewelry classes, you can even make your own charms!
If you’re looking for a unique New York City experience a custom tour(opens in a new tab) in Williamsburg is the perfect solution!