Gowanus and Red Hook is in Brooklyn. In addition to Gowanus and Red Hook, this travel guide also covers Carroll Gardens.
The F and G stop in Carroll Gardens at Smith-9th Street (The highest station in the system and an engineering marvel), Carroll Street, and Bergen Street for Carroll Gardens. The F, G, M (rush hours only) and R stop in Gowanus at 4th Avenue-9th Street. There are no subways in Red Hook, but the B77 bus goes there from Smith-9th Street.
Gowanus Canal. The anchor of the Gowanus neighborhood is this famously polluted canal. The Carroll Street Bridge is the oldest retractable bridge in the US (and one of only four left). Recently, the canal and surrounding buildings has been considered for listing on the National Register of Historic Places.
Kentler International Drawing Space, 353 Van Brunt St. (B61/B77 buses to Van Brunt Street/Dikeman Street), ☎ (718) 875-2098. A small 2-room gallery divided by a bizzare door.
Statue of Liberty. Red Hook is the only place in New York where you can get a frontal view of the Statue of Liberty from land.
Waterfront Museum and Showboat Barge, 290 Conover Street, Pier 44 (at Reed; Subway: F/G trains to Smith-9th Streets, then transfer to B77 bus to Conover Street and Coffey Street), ☎ +1 718 624-4719, . Th 4PM-8PM, Sa 1PM-5PM. Donations suggested.
Walk. Walk around the canal (especially near the subway) and look at the signs from factories long gone.
Metal and Thread, 398 Van Brunt St., ☎ (718) 414-9651. Sells many peculiar items made from, unsurprisingly, metal and thread.
Baked, 359 Van Brunt St., ☎ (718) 222-0345. A well-priced cafe and bakeryMidrange.
Home/Made, 293 Van Brunt St., ☎ (347) 223-4135. A good place to go for homestyle brunch. You can even buy the decor!Midrange.
The Grocery, 288 Smith Street (between Union Street and Sackett Street; Subway: F/G trains to Carroll Street), ☎ +1 718 596-3335, . Tu-Th 5:30PM-10PM, F 5:30PM-11PM, Sa 5PM-11PM. A tiny spot in the middle of Smith Street's restaurant row, with outstanding American food and caring service. Reservations highly recommended.
Botanica, 220 Conover St., ☎ (718) 797-2297. A not-too-cheap homemade liqueur and cocktail bar.
Holiday Inn Express Brooklyn, 625 Union St (between 3rd Ave and 4th Ave; Subway: M/R trains to Union Street), ☎ +1 718 797-1133. Opened in 2006, the hotel features complimentary breakfast, wifi access and comfortable furnishings.
Although New York is overall a safe city, Red Hook is known for having a high crime rate. In general, North of the Gowanus Expressway, in Gowanus and Carroll Gardens, is safe, while South of it, in Red Hook, is a place to be very careful, especially near the Red Hook Houses in the northeastern section of Red Hook, just south of the Gowanus Expressway.
Brooklyn Public Library (Carroll Gardens branch), 396 Clinton Street (at Union; Subway: F/G trains to Carroll Street), ☎ +1 718 596-6972, . M-Tu 10AM-6PM, W 1PM-8PM, Th 1PM-6PM, F 10AM-6PM, Sa 10AM-5PM.
Brooklyn Public Library (Red Hook branch), 7 Wolcott Street (at Dwight; Subway: F/G trains to Smith-9th Streets), ☎ +1 718 935-0203, . M 10AM-6PM, Tu 1PM-8PM, W 10AM-6PM, Th 1PM-6PM, F 10AM-6PM, Sa 10AM-5PM.