Seeing the famous bridges in NYC can be very interesting as the city is home to many iconic ones.
Throughout the whole of NYC, you can find many great bridges. From large bridges that cross the Hudson River to a small bridge in Central Park, you can find all kinds of bridges in the city. They aren’t only great if you love architecture, but they are also very photogenic.
If you’re in NYC and you love seeing iconic things, there are some bridges you shouldn’t miss out on for sure. To help you find the best ones, I made this New York City famous bridges guide with the ones you have to see!
Famous Bridges in New York City
The Brooklyn Bridge is one of the most iconic bridges in the city. It connects Lower Manhattan with Brooklyn.
Brooklyn Bridge is a beautiful bridge that can be seen from many viewpoints and areas in the city. For example, one can see the bridge from Brooklyn Bridge Park.
It is a suspension bridge that spans the East River and it dates back to the year 1883. When it opened, it was the longest suspension bridge in the world. It has a length of over 6,000 feet. Moreover, the towers of it are 278 feet tall.
Moreover, it is designated a National Historic Landmark and it is a very popular spot for photography.
A famous bridge in NYC is the Manhattan Bridge. Like the Brooklyn Bridge, this is a suspension bridge that crosses the East River, and it is the nearest bridge to the Brooklyn Bridge.
It connects Lower Manhattan with Downtown Brooklyn. More specifically, it connects Chinatown with the Brooklyn neighborhood Dumbo.
An interesting fact about the bridge is that at the beginning many didn’t like its name, because it was too general.
It opened in 1909, and a triumphal arch was added in 1915 at the end of the bridge in Manhattan.
It has a beautiful steel design and is on the National Register of Historic Places.
Furthermore, the bridge is very popular for photography, with a very popular photo spot in Brooklyn being in the Dumbo neighborhood.
Robert F. Kennedy Bridge
The Robert F. Kennedy Bridge is actually not one bridge, it consists of three bridges in total. These bridges connect the boroughs of Queens, Manhattan, and the Bronx, and cross the Randalls and Wards Islands.
One of its parts is the suspension bridge over Hell Gate, which is a part of the East River. This one connects the borough of Queens with Wards Island and has a span of 1380 feet.
Another part is a truss bridge that spans Bronx Kills. This section of the bridge complex connects Randalls Island to the borough of the Bronx.
The third major part of the Robert F. Kennedy Bridge crosses the Harlem River and is a vertical-lift bridge. It is one of the largest lift bridges in the world.
The Williamsburg Bridge is another bridge that connects the boroughs of Manhattan and Brooklyn, like the Brooklyn Bridge and the Manhattan Bridge. This one connects the Lower East Side with the Williamsburg neighborhood.
It opened in the year 1903, and what’s special is that it was the suspension bridge with the longest span in the world for more than 20 years. The span of the bridge is 1,600 feet. Furthermore, the towers on both sides are both 310 feet tall.
It has a beautiful design and there are many great places in NYC to see the bridge from, such as Domino Park in Brooklyn.
Another feature that makes the bridge unique is that it is used both for rail traffic and car traffic.
Bow Bridge is a very different bridge compared to other famous bridges in New York when you look at the size of the bridge. Bow Bridge is a small pedestrian bridge that you can find in Central Park.
It is one of the most beautiful sites in Central Park, and it is a popular place for taking photos.
Bow Bridge is a cast-iron bridge that dates back to the year 1862 and it spans Central Park Lake. The design is a combination of various architectural styles, such as the Renaissance and Gothic styles.
What’s great about this one as well is that you can enjoy an amazing view of the buildings of New York City, Central Park Lake, and nature from it.
The Queensboro Bridge, a bridge that spans the East River, is another one of the most iconic bridges in NYC.
It connects Long Island City, Queens with the Upper East Side. For this, the bridge crosses Roosevelt Island.
It is a cantilever bridge and it was the longest bridge of its kind in North America. Moreover, the bridge is one of only 4 toll-free bridges that connect Manhattan Island to Long Island.
Nowadays, it carries 9 lanes of the New York State Route 25. In the past, it used to carry railway tracks and streetcar tracks.
Also, the bridge was mentioned or shown in various books, songs, movies, and music videos.
Wards Island Bridge
Wards Island Bridge is a bridge that crosses the Harlem River. It connects Wards Island and Manhattan Island in Manhattan.
What’s unique about this bridge is that it only carries pedestrians and cyclists, it does not carry cars or other vehicles. The bridge is open all year round and 24 hours a day.
Wards Island Bridge is a vertical lift bridge made of steel and has several spans. Moreover, it has a length of about 1,200 feet.
Roosevelt Island Bridge
The Roosevelt Island Bridge is also a famous bridge in NYC. The bridge, which opened in 1955, used to be known as the Welfare Island Bridge.
This vertical lift bridge connects Roosevelt Island to Astoria in Queens, so it crosses the East River.
It is the only way for pedestrians and vehicles to travel to Roosevelt Island, without making use of methods of public transportation.
In total, it has a span that is larger than 400 feet.
The Kosciuszko Bridge is one of the newest bridges in the city. It crosses Newtown Creek and connects Maspeth, Queens to Greenpoint, Brooklyn.
It consists of several spans that are held by cables. The longest span of the bridge is over 600 feet.
It was opened in 2019 and replaced a bridge that used to be at the same place from 1939 till 2017.
George Washington Bridge
An iconic and famous bridge in New York City is the George Washington Bridge, named for the first president of the country.
This is a suspension bridge with two decks that spans the Hudson River. It connects Bergen County, New Jersey with Upper Manhattan.
It is the busiest bridge in the world and about 100 million vehicles cross over the bridge every year. In total, the bridge has 14 lanes, which is more than any other suspension bridge in the world.
It also has sidewalks that pedestrians and cyclists can use.
What makes it unique as well is that it used to be the longest span bridge in the world for more than 5 years. The longest span of the bridge is 3,500 feet. Furthermore, the towers of the bridge are both more than 600 feet tall.
Verrazano Narrows Bridge
A bridge that connects Staten Island and Brooklyn is the Verrazzano-Narrows Bridge. This is a suspension bridge that spans the Narrows.
The suspension bridge has two decks that carry 13 lanes in total. These are lanes of Interstate 278.
It is a very long one that has a total length of 13,700 feet and its longest span is 4,260 feet. From its opening in 1964 till the year 1981, it was the longest suspension bridge in the world, but it is still one of the longest suspension bridges in the world.
It is a toll bridge in both directions, but in the past, it only collected tolls in the westbound direction.
Hell Gate Bridge
The Hell Gate Bridge is also one of the most famous bridges in New York City. It’s a bridge that is owned by Amtrak, and it carries 3 rail tracks. The bridge crosses the Hell Gate, which is part of the East River.
Moreover, the bridge, which used to be called the East River Arch Bridge, connects Astoria with Randalls and Wards Islands.
The Hell Gate Bridge is a through arch bridge made from steel with a span that is close to 1000 feet. Moreover, it is more than 100 years old, as it was opened in 1916.
Broadway Bridge is a bridge that was opened in 1960, making it much newer than many of the iconic bridges on this list.
It is a vertical-lift bridge that crosses the Harlem River Ship Canal. Moreover, it connects the neighborhoods of Marble Hill and Inwood, and it carries Broadway.
Furthermore, the bridge carries a part of the New York City Subway on one of its two decks.
Besides carrying Broadway and the New York City Subway, it is also possible for pedestrians and cyclists to cross the bridge.
Another bridge famous bridge in New York City that you have to check out is the Bronx-Whitestone Bridge. This is a suspension bridge that connects Ferry Point Park in the Bronx with Queens’ Whitestone neighborhood.
Moreover, it carries six car lanes of Interstate 678 and crosses the East River.
This is a huge bridge that has a span of 2,300 feet and two supporting towers. Each of the towers has a height of 377 feet.
It was opened in the year of 1939.
If you want to get a good view of the bridge, there are many viewpoints in the Bronx to check out for this.
Tappan Zee Bridge
The Tappan Zee Bridge, which has the official name of Governor Mario M. Cuomo Bridge, spans the Tappan Zee, which is part of the Hudson River.
It was opened in the year 2018, so this is one of the newest famous bridges in New York City on this list.
The Tappan Zee Bridge replaced the older Tappan Zee Bridge, which was built in the 1950s and needed replacement.
The Tappan Zee Bridge is a cable-stayed bridge that carries 8 car lanes and paths for cyclists and pedestrians. Moreover, it has a total length of 3.1 miles, and each tower of the bridge is 491 feet tall.
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NYC Famous Bridges Tips
If you want to see the bridges in NYC on this list, that’s very easy to do. For example, you can do so by going to special viewpoints, such as viewpoints from where you can see Williamsburg Bridge.
Another great way to see them is by doing a tour. For example, there are guided walking tours that cover the Brooklyn Bridge, which can be very interesting. Through these tours, you can learn about the history of the bridge from a guide.
Famous Bridges in NYC Map
Thanks for reading my guide to the famous bridges in New York City! As you see, there are many iconic ones.