What To See In The 5 Raddest Brooklyn Neighborhoods

In many ways, Brooklyn is much more than a borough — it's become a phenomenon. At the same time, it suffers from somewhat of a spotty reputation. It's easy to hate on Brooklyn with its panoply of trendy cafes, bearded hipsters, and ever-climbing rent.

But, don't let neighborhoods like Williamsburg or Park Slope cloud your judgement on what Brooklyn is really like. The creative energy is incomparable, and there's something new to do every night of the week. Ahead, we've rounded up five of our favorite areas to frequent — and an activity suggestion so you can feel like a cool local.

Bedford-Stuyvesant

A walk through this neighborhood is the best history lesson you can get for free. The streets are lined with brownstones and row houses built in the Queen Anne architectural style, dating back at least 150 years. A standout building you have to see is the Akwaaba Mansion, a historic landmark which now operates as a bed and breakfast.

Don't Leave Without: Attending an open mic session at Sankofa Aban Bed & Breakfast. The area may have undergone rapid gentrification over the last few decades, but it's still considered an influential mainstay for jazz culture. This inn organizes regular live jazz sessions in its cozy living room, a cultural event not to be missed.
Red Hook

Known to most New Yorkers as the home of the city's only Ikea, Red Hook has a lot more to offer than flatpack furniture. In fact, it's one of the oldest settlements in Brooklyn — Dutch colonists first arrived in 1636. The neighborhood has a charming maritime atmosphere, with many rooftop bars and restaurants to choose from. You can't go wrong with a pulled pork sandwich at Brooklyn Icehouse, a local favorite with a lively backyard.

Don't Leave Without: Grabbing a pint at Six Point. The graffiti-covered brewery recently opened its doors to the public — the first time after 13 years in the business.
Sunset Park

Families and young professionals are moving to this neighborhood in droves, and it's not hard to see why: It offers easy access to an express subway line, while property prices are still relatively affordable. Cheap rent aside, the area delivers on the cultural front, as it's home to a robust residential community to Latino and Chinese immigrants. Head over to this vastly underrated culinary destination for authentic dim sum and tacos.

Don't Leave Without: Feasting on a generous helping of tacos at Ines Bakery, a beloved local Mexican joint. If you still got room after the meal, the bakery's tres leches are also heavenly.
Bushwick

This L-train stop has been in the public consciousness for quite some time, thanks in part to Roberta's, a popular pizzeria that counts Beyoncé amongst its devotees. Despite its increasingly trendy reputation, the neighborhood's gritty, industrial side still has our hearts. Our favorite way to spend a weekend is admiring the murals at The Bushwick Collective, an outdoor gallery with works from the country's emerging graffiti artists.

Don't Leave Without: Dancing the night away at Bossa Nova Civic Club, a nightlife hot spot featuring a revolving roster of top DJs and kitschy, tropical-inspired interiors.
Crown Heights

Need a break from the city hustle? Head to Crown Heights. With its close proximity to Prospect Park — which we might prefer over Central Park, to be completely honest with you — and a farmer's market every Saturday, it's a great neighborhood to enjoy Brooklyn's slower pace.

The area has also seen a number of hip restaurant and bar openings in recent years: Mingle with fellow cool Brooklynites at Berg'n, a spacious beer hall, and get your fix on contemporary American cuisine at Mayfield.

Don't Leave Without: Taking a long, leisurely stroll along Eastern Parkway, an idyllic, two-mile-long stretch lined with towering trees.
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