Blake Walsh

20 Best Things to Do in Bushwick, New York City

  • Published 2023/02/22

Bushwick is a neighborhood in Brooklyn that fleshes out the metropolitan character of New York City.

Take a walk around Bushwick for an enchanting look at its hip street art.

These creative renditions grace the once-bare building walls in an industrial area of the neighborhood called Bushwick Collective.

You will also find many former warehouses converted to studios of prolific artists.

These structures have also been repurposed as artisanal coffee shops, further lending charm to Bushwick.

Dining options also abound in this neighborhood, where you can likewise enjoy the nightlife in several Bushwick clubs and performance venues.

Even as Bushwick covers only 6.1 square kilometers, it offers pocket parks under the shade of lush trees and children’s playgrounds.

Immerse yourself in some of New York City’s top points of interest when you check out this list of the best things to do in Bushwick, New York City:

Tour the Bushwick Street Art Gallery

A mural at Bushwick Street Art Gallery

Leonard Zhukovsky /

The Bushwick Collective, a local artists’ group, began painting murals on the walls of some neighborhood buildings in 2011.

Since then, talented international artists have participated in the street art gallery of the Bushwick Collective.

Most of the collective’s murals are along Troutman Street between Cypress Avenue and Irving Avenue.

Graffiti wall art at Bushwick Street Art Gallery

Leonard Zhukovsky /

You can also find more Bushwick murals along Starr Street and around the block of White Street, Siegel Street, Moore Street, and Bogart Street.

Watch out too for the schedule of Bushwick Collective Block Party, an annual art event featuring renowned local, national, and international artists.

This art festival takes place on Troutman Street and Scott Avenue, featuring not only artworks but also music, food trucks, and vendors.

A mural at Bushwick Street Art Gallery

Leonard Zhukovsky /

Swing to the Beat in the House of Yes

Enjoy the night in this funky place on Wycoff Avenue, where the evening fare typically features music to get funky to.

The House of Yes marquee features DJ disciples of various genres, ranging from trance to deep house and others.

Opened in 2015, it has attracted sizable patronage among creatives as a performance-centered nightclub.

Besides its eclectic DJs, House of Yes also features cabaret acts, theater, and circus performances.

The creative energy of self-expression on its dance floor is the main attraction for the House of Yes.

Visit Maria Hernandez Park

It’s a delight to visit this park, particularly around April, as the flowers of its cherry blossom trees are in full bloom at this time of the year.

Around Maria Hernandez Park, you can also enjoy viewing some of Bushwick Collective murals on the walls of nearby buildings.

This 6.87-acre park is between Irving Avenue in the northeast and Knickerbocker Avenue in the southwest.

It is also accessible from Suydam Street in the southeast and Starr Street in the northwest.

Named for an advocate against illegal drugs, the Maria Hernandez Park features various amenities.

Its facilities include a performance stage, benches under the shade of lush trees, a large playground, spray showers, and a basketball court.

This park is also a favorite place of New York’s street performers, like jugglers.

Shop at the RiseBoro Farmers Market

You can get great bargains on this weekly farmers’ market of the RiseBoro Community Partnership.

It is held Saturday from 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. between Starr Street and Suydam Street at the south perimeter of Maria Hernandez Park.

Socialize with friendly local vendors selling fresh farm produce, baked goods, pastries, and non-food items.

The Risboro Farmers Market likewise hosts culinary and nutrition for free to shoppers and visitors.

It also presents the multicultural setting of Bushwick through the Youth Arts Workshops of the local gallery Arts and Rhymes.

Relax with the Family at Irving Square Park

The grounds of Irving Square Park

Jim.henderson, CC0, via Wikimedia Commons

This park easily qualifies as the town plaza of Bushwick, as it occupies a whole city block.

Its four borders are Knickerbocker Avenue, Halsey Street, Wilson Avenue, and Weirfield Street.

Families with children enjoy this park for the playground near its entrance on Knickerbocker Avenue.

This play area’s facilities include a spray shower, springs, and a tall, colorful structure for climbing.

You can take quiet strolls on its meandering paths across grassy areas and beneath shade trees at this park.

Irving Square Park also has a small stage and many benches where you can sit and relax in a quiet setting.

West of the park, you will find the Barry ‘Sly’ Morrow Field with state-of-the-art synthetic turf for soccer, softball, and volleyball.

Hit the Targets in Mad Axe

Flex your muscles like a lumberjack throwing axes at targets in this unique, fun place on Halsey Street.

You’ll aim at the bullseye of a wooden target at 12 feet.

Beginners should try the two-handed throws before graduating to one-handed hurls, gaining skills and experience in the process.

Like shooting games, you earn points on hits on the bullseye and around its circumference.

One game session at Mad Axe lasts about an hour and 15 minutes, during which you can enjoy lots of fun competing with friends, co-workers, or family members.

The game participants have a 15-minute safety training and practice before a session in ax-throwing.

Wear Denim at L-Train Vintage

This Bushwick attraction is a thrift store selling pre-loved items on DeKalb Avenue.

At the roomy L-Train Vintage, you’ll find shelves and racks focused on denim wear like jeans, jackets, shirts, and shorts.

It also offers excellent Ralph Lauren shirts at incredible bargain prices.

Established in 1999, L-Train Vintage is a family-owned business sourcing its inventory monthly from across the States.

With regular restocking, chances are excellent that you’ll find your coveted vintage wear item in this shop.

Enjoy Dinner and a Movie at Syndicated Bar Theater Kitchen

Look for the vertical “Syndicated” signage on the southeast corner of Bogart and Thames Streets to experience this unique concept of a restaurant-movie house.

This fascinating Bushwick attraction opened in 2016 and has drawn increasing patronage among locals and visitors.

Syndicated is in a former warehouse creatively renovated to include high windows and soaring ceilings.

Its spacious hall centers on a chic marble bar, with booths and tables around its flanks and screens on the walls.

The front area of Syndicated’s hall can seat up to 100 persons who can enjoy their meals while watching cult classics and vintage films.

The main theater of Syndicated seats more than 50 movie-goers and occupies the back at the end of a hallway.

This movie section exudes a 1970s art-house and art deco vintage feel, with an old-school concession stand complementing this setup.

Each evening, Syndicated screens two to three movies, with the showings organized in monthly themes.

Samples of these movies include “unconventional love stories” and sci-fi aliens mimicking humans in their invasion of Earth.

Besides film showings, major sporting events sometimes play on Syndicated screens.

Syndicated prepares its food offerings in an open kitchen at the back, providing choices on American cuisine.

Cocktails, craft beer, and bar snacks are also served at Syndicated.

Trace Brewer’s Row in Bushwick

Recall the time when Bushwick boasted a row of breweries known as the “beer capital of the Northeast” at the King County Brewers Collective.

Established in 2016, this brewery and its taproom are on Troutman Street, conveniently located only half a block from the Jefferson station of the L Train.

Shortly after its opening, King County Brewers Collective notably won the Best Brew of New York City.

This brewery offers a 5,000-square-foot taproom where you can enjoy some 14 fresh drinks on tap.

One taproom choice is Mr. Pomelo, a one-off version of the brewery’s Mexican lager, El Tren, with grapefruit added.

From Monday to Thursday, the taproom treats its customers to a happy hour from 4:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m., offering reduced prices for steins of any of the brewery’s lagers or pilsners.

Enjoy the Culinary Delights of Bushwick

Exterior of Roberta's

star5112, CC BY-SA 2.0, via Wikimedia Commons

Like its arts scene, the culinary landscape of Bushwick holds plenty of offerings, with Hispanic and Latin American dishes among your exciting picks.

You can enjoy these delights best at Gordo’s Cantina on St. Nicholas Avenue, a short walk from Maria Hernandez Park.

This restaurant’s offerings include tempting Mexican snacks, such as grilled corn and carnitas tacos.

Other hearty items like guacamole, ceviche, and churros are available in this laid-back restaurant, which also offers vegan options for plant-based palates.

Go to Roberta’s on Moore Street if you want to go where Beyonce herself drops by for pizza.

Many other celebrities frequent this pizzeria for its wood-fired, thin-crust pizza, said to have sparked NYC’s Neapolitan pie craze.

Let the Kids Have Fun at the Tiger Playground

Families with kids visiting Bushwick will enjoy this small park on Evergreen Avenue.

The children can have fun in the Tiger Playground, which features a spray shower and well-designed play equipment.

Parents can watch their kids play on the park’s swings safely from nearby benches with shades.

The other facilities in the Tiger Playground include a running track, a basketball court, and a handball court.

Explore Bushwick’s Contemporary Art Galleries

Bushwick reaffirms its status as among New York’s leading havens for artists via a slew of contemporary art galleries around the neighborhood.

Gallery Petite on Wilson Avenue is one of these standouts, a brainchild of local artist Tyrome Tripoli.

The various forms of creative media shown in this gallery include paintings, drawings, photography, video, and mixed media.

Likewise, its space is an outlet for performances, poetry, and art installations.

With its entrance accessible from Bleecker Street, this gallery showcases the works of emerging artists.

It also provides art-centric programs for the Bushwick neighborhood, where creative hearts, hands, and minds are mainstays.

Book a Room at Artel

Create a profoundly immersive experience when visiting Bushwick by staying at one of its hotels.

The smoke-free Artel is one excellent pick for a booking, with its convenient location on Malcolm X Boulevard, which is only a short walk from the nearest subway stop.

This hotel blends perfectly with Bushwick’s ambiance, with its colorful, modern building adorned with a mural.

Artel provides 320 rooms, including mixed-gender accommodations and ladies-only dorms with bunk beds.

The choice rooms are on the upper floors with balconies, where you’ll have an overlooking view of much of the Bushwick neighborhood.

The hotel’s minimalist private rooms provide flat-screen TVs and other en suite facilities.

The amenities in Artel include free Wi-Fi, a game room, a chic bar, and a co-working space, allowing you a work-cation while visiting Bushwick.

Special events and art exhibits also happen regularly at Artel.

Get a Taste of Japan at Ichiran

Ichiran is regarded as one of the best (if not the best) ramen joints in Japan, famed for its super rich pork bone broth (tonkotsu) that separates it from its other competitors.

The very first Ichiran branch that opened in the United States was actually in Bushwick, found along Brooklyn’s Johnson Avenue.

Besides it being the first branch, simply trying out Ichiran is a must for any Japanese cuisine lover.

On top of its hot bowl of ramen, you can also take nice photographs inside due to its rustic Japanese aesthetic that features dark aisles with warm lighting.

There’s not a lot of Ichiran chains in the world, so this one is a no-brainer to visit.

Play Sports at Thomas Boyland Park

Found along Thomas Avenue and Broadway lies Thomas Boyland Park, one of the best green spaces in Bushwick.

While not a huge park, Thomas Boyland Park is a great place for relaxation and recreational activities, especially after a long day of exploring the alleys of Buswhick.

You can find the classic park amenities here, such as playgrounds, basketball courts, and baseball diamonds.

There’s also great grass here, a nice spot to do some picnics with friends and family.

Thomas Boyland Park is an excellent place as well to meet some locals during your trip.

Shop for Some African Goods at Keita West African Market

If you’re a lover of African cuisine, Keita West African Market is a must-visit during your trip to Bushwick.

It’s regarded as one of the best African specialty markets in all of Brooklyn by the locals, so you’d be hard-pressed to miss out on it.

They have a wide range of authentic African products here, ranging from meats to grocery items like instant tea and canned goods.

If you’re looking for flavor-packed and spiced African condiments, this is the place for you.

Keita West African Market can be found along Broadway Road, right next to a string of other public markets and groceries in Bushwick.

Immerse Yourself in Art at Brooklyn Art Cave

If you’re an art enthusiast who’s raring to meet locals who share the same passion as you, Brooklyn Art Cave is a great place to visit.

It’s an art gallery that’s known for various art-related events, whether simple exhibits or full-blown art shows.

Be sure to check out their announcements before you finalize your trip, as they have an abundance of year-round activities that utilize the gallery.

No matter what activity, the energy is always there and the atmosphere is always vibrant and welcoming.

Brooklyn Art Cave can be found along Broadway road, a few blocks away from Keita West African Market.

Try the Drinks over a Game of Billiards at Bushwick Public House

Bushwick Public House is a fantastic cafe and bar that can be enjoyed at any time of the day.

If you’re looking for a chic place to spend some time working on your laptop, this place offers Wi-Fi and amazing coffee drinks.

On the other hand, if you’re looking for a fun night, they have amazing cocktails here coupled with a pool table.

Their bartenders are famous—known as some of the best and most charming bartenders in Bushwick.

A fantastic cafe and bar with astounding ambiance and aesthetics, visit Bushwick Public House along Myrtle Avenue.

Other Things to Do Nearby

Visit the Brooklyn Botanical Garden

Colorful tulips at Brooklyn Botanical Garden

Andy-OSK98 /

This New York point of interest, founded in 1910, is in central Brooklyn, only some four miles southwest of Bushwick.

Drawing close to a million visitors each year, this garden spreads over 52 acres and boasts a collection of more than 14,000 kinds of plants.

Japanese garden at Brooklyn Botanical Garden

R. de Bruijn_Photography /

These collections are categorized into specialty gardens, including the C.V. Starr Bonsai Museum.

The Brooklyn Botanical Garden also takes pride in its aquatic plant house enclosed in glass and white cast iron.

In addition, the visitors of this garden can marvel at the various plant varieties in its climate-themed pavilions.

Cherry blossom trees at Brooklyn Botanical Garden

Linda Harms /

Tour the Brooklyn Museum

Exterior of Brooklyn Museum

Colin D. Young /

This museum, located about four miles southwest of Bushwick, is a repository of about 500,000 art pieces.

The Brooklyn Museum was founded in 1895, envisioned as the world’s largest art museum.

It boasts a floor space of 560,000 square feet, New York’s third-largest museum in terms of square footage.

Egyptian exhibit in Brooklyn Museum

Mark Zhu /

Art pieces from Egyptian antiquities encompassing more than 3,000 years are among the museum’s primary collections.

Vintage artworks from Europe, Africa, Oceania, and Japan are also represented in the Brooklyn Museum’s galleries.

This museum showcases the history of American art, starting from the Colonial Period.

The museum is also home to the Steinberg Family Sculpture Garden featuring architectural elements salvaged throughout New York City.

Interior of Brooklyn Museum

Billie Grace Ward from New York, USA, CC BY 2.0, via Wikimedia Commons

Final Thoughts

You’ll need to visit Bushwick when visiting New York City.

This neighborhood of Brooklyn is very much woven into the fabric of New York City life.

Drop by during your New York City trip!

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