An ISLAND oasis away from it all… right next to it all, accessible to all! Governers Island – 172 Acres of AMAZING!

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There is no single place we’ve written about that we’ve gotten more thank yous, incredible, feedback and comments and “I can’t believe this place exists,” than Duke Farms in Hillsborough, NJ.

You can read about that HERE:

We have a feeling that this is going to be a close second to that… It’s another one of those kind of places that just seem too good to be true. Here’s why.


Governors Island is a 172 acre island in the heart of New York Harbor. It’s only 800 yards from Lower Manhattan, and even closer to Brooklyn.

It is a world unto itself, unique and chock full of history, bike trails, views, playgrounds, beauty and so much more, you’ll never be able to get it all in in just one or two visits.

Only accessible by Ferry boat, the island is open from early May through the summer months, and is absolutely worth a visit.

Bring along your bikes – the ferry welcomes them aboard – or rent them or even a family-sized surrey on the island, complete with helmets!

Bike past and even explore an old castle and the multiple historical military buildings that dot the island…

Check out their teaching and gardening area, with farm animals, gardening programs and more…

Each year that we’ve gone, the island has been developed further and further, with this incredible promenade opening up last year.

And slide hill, a mountain of of debris from the development of other areas of the park beautified and re-purposed for climbing, views, and the best part – FOUR slides for the young (and not so young) to get back down – including the longest slide in NYC at 57 feet!

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Not enough of a reason to go yet? There’s more!

Also recently added was  hammock grove, a wonderful tree-filled area with tens of hammocks to relax in.

…while the kids play and climb on the most unusual playground structure – unique only to this island, located right nearby.

There are so many ways to enjoy this mid-sized slice of wonderful, and the best part – you won’t feel anything like your in NYC, though you are just 800 yards off the edge.

Let’s talk a bit about how to get there:

The Governers Island Ferry is free for kids, always and on weekends as well until 11:30AM, after which it costs a nominal $2 per adult and $1 per senior citizen. Bikes, wheelchairs and strollers are always free and welcome.

The island itself is FREE to all.

Ferries run every 1/2 hour throughout the day.

Click on this ferry schedule or on the picture below, to enlarge and print.

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We found that from NJ the best way to do this and avoid a parking nightmare in NYC is to go to Staten Island Ferry Terminal. Parking is free on Sundays and many holidays, and otherwise reasonable at $8 per day.

BRING YOUR BIKES ALONG! You can bring them on this ferry as well.

We have brought our family of nine (ke”h), along with seven bikes including two mounted Wee Rider child seats  (the absolute best way to bike with an infant or child) on both ferries without issues.

The Staten Island Ferry actually passes right by Governers Island on the way to NYC, and lands 1/2 a block away from the Governer’s Island Ferry Terminal.


A guaranteed day of fun any day – but today (May 28, 2017) there’s a whole even you can do as well:

BONUS! When exploring the island can you find the old shul we found?

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Most of all, have fun!


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