Manhattan/Brooklyn Travel Guide | Watson and Walls

We love New York. You can find celebrities, the tallest buildings in the world, so much to eat, drink and shop + many murals in Brooklyn and Manhattan. Check out our adventures there here. 

Manhattan/Brooklyn

Watson being a Boss Bitch in Williamsburg Brooklyn, NY | Watson & Walls

First let me start by saying I spent wayyyy too little time in New York this trip. I used to be the type of Cali girl who said "I can only stand New York for 5 days max" but as much as I hate to admit it, this recent trip was just too short. Turns out a) I love Brooklyn and b) it's more fun doing stuff New Yorkers do than being a tourist (duh).

Therefore I find this to be a measly representation of all Manhattan and Brooklyn have to offer, however this was all I could make it to in this trip. I will be back though, and I'm coming to hang with you @caesarinthecity @mishabarkton and @darling_clem !

Watson at JFK airport in New York, NY | Watson & Walls

BRINGING YOUR DOG TO NEW YORK:

Flying to New York is way easier than flying your dog to Mexico!

All you need to do is:

  • Make sure you have a good airline carrier (we use this one from Sleepypod and could not recommend this carrier more)
  • Get a nice piece of luggage that's comfortable to travel with as well, it'll make traveling with a pup easier. I swear by Away - just ordered myself the new Rashida Jones teal! - because Watson hooks right onto the handles and I can roll him flat (plus it fits all my stuffs, and I pack a lot of stuffs).
  • Call your airline beforehand and add a pet to your reservation. All airline fees are different, Southwest is the cheapest at $95.
  • Wear your dog out before you head to the airport! We normally play in the yard and go for a really long walk, I shoot for an hour if I can spare it. Play date is the best.
  • Bring treats with you and hand them liberally to your dog before, during and after the flight 😉
  • Watson looOooooOoves bully sticks, so I also pop one of those in his Sleepypod for the trip. He normally carries a toy in with him too!

One more doggie logistic - they recently passed a law in New York that you must have your dog in a bag on the subway. See New Yorkers hilarious interpretations of that law here, but bring a bag your dog will be comfortable in. Watson in a sushi bag was quite a sight, to say the least.

Total cost: $250 for his roundtrip Delta flight and a lifetime of memories

Watson by an awesome wall in Williamsburg Brooklyn, NY | Watson & Walls

WHAT TO DO:

  • MANHATTAN
    • Washington Square Park - a must see for New York! The iconic arch and middle fountain are perfectly instagrammable and dog friendly. There are always tons of people and street performers in the area. Really can't miss it. [dog friendly]
    • The High Line - while we were sad to learn this was NOT dog friendly (come on New York, get with LA. If it's outside, dogs are allowed hahaha) but we're still so glad we went on this. We hopped on right at Artists and Fleas but this elevated park/walkway combo spans a large portion of Manhattan for you to peruse. Great views of the city and the High Line itself ain't bad looking.
    • 5th Ave, for a minute, then run away - hahaha but seriously, if you've never been to New York you need to see it (Rockefeller plaza, Empire State Building, Saks Fifth Ave, St. Patrick's Cathedral, the Met, giving the middle finger to a certain hotel to name a few)
    • Museums - the Whitney and Met are favorites, but you really can't go wrong with any of them.
    • Central Park - the pinnacle of Manhattan tourism! I was stoked to see how packed it was on a nice summer day with people, dogs and raccoons - yep we saw a raccoon casually eating food out of a stroller that wasn't being watched. Yes Watson tried to Napoleon it and no we didn't let him. There is so much to do in Central Park but my favorite is to rent a boat to paddle in at The Loeb Boathouse or sail a mini one! [dog friendly]
  • BROOKLYN
    • Brooklyn Bridge Park - beautiful walking park right along the water, across the bridge from Manhattan! So many activities along this park and picnic tables for picnicking. Perfect place to walk your dog too!  [dog friendly]
    • Prospect Park - we didn't actually make it here, but from what my Brooklyn friend says this is a much better Brooklyn version of Central Park. Smorgasburg is there too! [dog friendly]
    • Wall hunt in Williamsburg! You can't miss 'em. They're everywhere! [dog friendly]
Love Wall by @jgoldcrown in Chelsea New York | Watson and Walls

WHERE TO EAT:

  • MANHATTAN
    • Chelsea Market - love this food market! So much to eat and see here. You must stop at Dizengoff specifically for the hummus.
    • Zabar's - an old favorite of mine, I love this Jewish deli's bagels. And babka. Mmm that babka.
  • BROOKLYN
    • Building on Bond - what an adorable little corner cafe in the Cobble Hill area of Brooklyn. Dog friendly if you sit outside and they take that to heart - I think every table had a dog at it! [dog friendly]
    • Shelsky's of Brooklyn - another Jewish deli, but this one you should go to for the fish rather than the bagels ;)
    • Fornino - amazing rooftop views right on the water at Brooklyn Bridge Park! Great place for drinks on a hot summer night. They serve woodfire pizzas and a delicious kale salad too.
    • Blossom Ice Cream - did you know rolled ice cream was a thing? I didn't know that. It's a great thing - super delicious ice cream with a boat load of delicious toppings!
    • Gersi - super adorable Italian joint in Cobble Hill. We sat in their backyard patio that was quaint and romantic. Everyone loved their food and we had leftovers! Pro tip: it's cash only.
    • Smith St Bagels - my fave bagel we had in NY this trip! I put cream cheese (herbed if they have) and sliced cucumbers on my everything bagel and I must say, it tasted like victory. You really can't go wrong with bagels in NY though.
    • White Maize - I'll admit this was my first arepa so I don't know how to rank them on a scale, but boy were these mighty tasty. Also you must get the Tequeños - fried cheese. Like a Venezuelan mozzarella stick of heaven.
    • Tekoa - what a perfect little coffee and breakfast shop we found next to a perfect little park. I had the fruit and yogurt which was bomb diggity and Rahim had equally good chilaquiles. A+ almond milk latte too, and A++ for outdoor dog friendly seating. [dog friendly]
    • Smorgasburg - we didn't actually go to this one in Brooklyn because we have one in LA, but this is a definite must see for any foodie. Or anyone who likes food, which should be everyone.
    • The Meatball Shop - if you take one recommendation of mine, it should be this one. Smack dab in the middle of wall central Williamsburg with DELICIOUS meatballs. You can get a delicious meatball sub or a delicious meat ball by itself. Or in a delicious group. Either way it's a delicious! Plus delicious cookies and delicious ice cream sandwiches that you can make from those delicious cookies. See a pattern here? Oh and a few tables outside for pooch! [dog friendly]
Watson at Pig Beach in Brooklyn, New York | Watson and Walls

WHERE TO DRINK:

  • MANHATTAN
    • The Biergarten at the Standard - what a great find in Chelsea! Cute German style beer garden with ping pong, large pretzels and lederhosen. There's an interesting ticket system to make sure you ask all your questions up front! [dog friendly]
    • Flatiron Whiskey - I don't even like whiskey, but I love this bar / jazz club at the bottom of the Flatiron building. The building alone is a sight to see, but this bar is old world classy with a great selection. You can purchase a bottle of whiskey and they'll leave it with your name on it so you can come back to it whenever you want. Definition of class right there.
    • La Colombe - there are almost too many good coffee options in New York to name them all, but I was pleasantly surprised to happen upon La Colombe on our tour of Soho. They make the "Pure Black & Tan" which is half draft latte and half cold brew that I cannot recommend enough. The perfect mix straight from a tap.
  • BROOKLYN
    • Output - this club was very interesting, and from what I hear very typical Williamsburg. There were people in every sort of dress style, shape, size, color and gender. There are 3 levels: the first floor you enter on is very..interesting...hahaha. I related it to the club from the Matrix on a smaller scale, trans music, lots of people melodically nodding their heads, grunge vibe. I don't know if that's right haha but that's what I remember. Second floor you get to is the roof where we hung out for the most part. It was adorable and served rose in a can! But it's the smoking section so it's pretty much one big cloud of cigarette smoke. Worth it to be by the view though. Third and final floor is this mezzanine level club that was a bit more dramatic and elegant, with house music and a smaller dance floor. 
    • Pig Beach - this outdoor bar and BBQ restaurant was one of my favorite spots I think of the whole weekend. Dog friendly which is a major plus, and not only do they carry rose cider, but FROSE as well #winning [dog friendly]
    • Henry Public - what an adorable quaint little spot in Cobble Hill! This English style pub has a live band on Sundays, delicious oysters and a great cocktail list.
    • Swallow Coffee - first off I love the name of this coffee joint and yes I did want to swallow all the coffee once I tasted it. They had no cell phone and no laptop zones in there too, so people were reading books and actually talking to each other. It was pretty nice! 
    • 61 Local - another hip coffee joint right in Cobble Hill that was buzzing with people. Definitely worth a taste if you're in the neighborhood!

WHERE TO SHOP:

  • Artists and Fleas - vintage unique little market attached to the Chelsea Market. Tons of local artisans selling everything from leather goods to jewelry and records. Rahim got a Mexican style beach blanket that came with an awesome leather carrier, score! [dog friendly]
  • Anywhere in Soho - all of my favorite stores are located in Soho (and some in Greenwich). Just wander around and prepare your wallet for some exercise! We didn't have a problem bringing in Watson to any stores. [dog friendly]
  • If you're a bicycle fanatic like Rahim, you must stop at NYCVelo in the East Village [dog friendly] and Rapha in Soho (not dog friendly because it has a coffee shop inside! But a cute table outside)