Roosevelt Island
Roosevelt Island
4.5
About
An oasis of peace amid Manhattan’s hustle and bustle, Roosevelt Island offers great views of the New York City skyline and the East River. Stroll along the riverfront promenade from the 14-acre Franklin D. Roosevelt Four Freedoms Park in the south all the way up to the northern tip, where you can relax on the grass outside the Roosevelt Island Lighthouse. If you’re hungry, stop by one of the cafes, delis, and restaurants along Main Street. You can ride the subway to Roosevelt Island, but the tramway runs frequently and offers scenic views along the way. – Tripadvisor
Suggest edits to improve what we show.
Improve this listing
Tours & experiences
Explore different ways to experience this place.
What is Travellers’ Choice?
Tripadvisor gives a Travellers’ Choice award to accommodations, attractions and restaurants that consistently earn great reviews from travellers and are ranked within the top 10% of properties on Tripadvisor.
See what travellers are saying
  • StephenCross
    Dublin, Ireland29,791 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Great place to spend a day!
    Take the aerial tram from Manhattan. Walk or cycle the entire island. Loads of nature, sculpture and history …great stuff to see (look at photos). Really great place. Recommended.
    Visited July 2023
    Travelled as a couple
    Written 23 July 2023
  • Justin W
    Hasbrouck Heights, New Jersey5,045 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    What a great way to spend the day exploring Roosevelt Island, like a mini vacation.
    I took the tram to Roosevelt Island for the afternoon, and it was a wonderful way to spend the afternoon. You can explore historical buildings, visit wonderful parks like the FDR Four Freedoms Park and Lighthouse Park, historical buildings to visit like the Blackwell House and all sorts of interesting public art tucked here and there on the island. The Marriage of Money and Real Estate and Girl Puzzle are impressive works of art. The restaurant choices are pretty limited and be leery of the only Chinese and Pizzeria on the island. Try ZhongZhong for soup dumplings and noodles. Take your time and walk around the Cornell Tech campus. There are great views from here and they have a wonderful coffee shop. Try the Cornell Dairy made ice cream when you are there. The views of Manhattan and Brooklyn are the best and walk to the southern part of the island to enjoy the best views. Not just of the skylines but of the small islands that are just south of Roosevelt Island. The best is the tram ride over on a sunny day. This is when you see the best views of the city. A short distance away is a nice way to spend the day. Walking around this residential island with lots to do and see.
    Visited August 2023
    Travelled solo
    Written 4 August 2023
  • Patricia A
    Chicago, Illinois537 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Terrific place to visit incredible history!
    We had a great time coming to Roosevelt island! It was so much fun to be able to walk the entire island! We also happen to come when the Roosevelt area at the end was open and we could walk around his monument. so much history here! You will read everything about the blackwells and see The old historic hospital. We stayed for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. there's not an enormous amount of restaurants, but plenty. It's also very fun that you can rent one of the bikes along the road to ride bikes all around the island! So much fun!! it's also a very safe place to be because it's relatively small and hardly any riff-raff around. I can see why people live here. they can stay here where it's safe and quiet, and if they want the hustle and bustle, they can take the tramway straight to Manhattan and have all of that.
    Visited September 2023
    Travelled with family
    Written 2 September 2023
  • therichastill
    Stevenage, United Kingdom2,948 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Superb Views of Manhattan
    Roosevelt Island is tucked on the side of Manhattan Island. There is a road bridge linking it to Queens and there is also a cable car which can take you across the East River to the island from Manhattan where the terminal is on 2nd Avenue. I would definitely recommend this as a good way to get to the island. You can use your metro card to get across there and swipe again to get back. There are terminals at both stations that you can use to get a metro card of top up your existing one. Alternatively you can use your debit or credit card. There are a number of buildings on the island with offices and apartments. At the southern end of the island is the park and there are lots of lovely views from the island of the surrounding area. The Queensboro Bridge bisects the island however it is not possible to access the island from the bridge or vice versa. use the cable car instead.
    Visited October 2023
    Travelled solo
    Written 16 October 2023
  • Lainie L
    New York City, New York468 contributions
    4.0 of 5 bubbles
    A great way to spend a Sunday!
    I'm a born and bred New Yorker but I've never been to Roosevelt Island. I know! How? My friends offered to show me around. This was a great way to spend a beautiful Sunday. It was sunny with clear blue skies, and most of the cherry blossoms were blooming. We took a comfortable stroll on the riverfront promenade, which was crowded with families, picnickers, and tons of people taking selfies. As you walk along the promenade, you'll come across the dilapidated ruins of the Smallpox Memorial Hospital before arriving at the 14-acre Franklin D. Roosevelt Four Freedoms Park in the south all the way up to the northern tip. Keep walking and you'll see the Roosevelt Island Lighthouse and the amazing statues commemorating the ground-breaking work by American journalist, Nellie Bly. Other than the promenade, there's not much to see or do. There are plenty of parks for recreational activities and playgrounds for little ones. There are no restaurants or delis, besides a few Chinese takeout places and a Duane Reade. I recommend bringing food or eating first before you come. I really enjoyed the walk, and it wasn't that crowded. I can imagine how busy and crowded the island will be when summer officially arrives.
    Visited April 2024
    Travelled with friends
    Written 8 April 2024
  • Sacha🇲🇬
    Antananarivo, Madagascar38 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    A nice escape from busy NYC
    If you're looking for a quiet place to go in NYC, Roosevelt Island is one of those places. Hop on the tram or the subway at standard MTA fare and ride the RI buses for free through the island. The choice is yours between exploring the lighthouse and the girl puzzle monument at the northern point or strolling through the park and the remnants of the smallpox hostpital at the southern point.
    Visited April 2024
    Travelled with friends
    Written 19 April 2024
  • Victor L
    35 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    The Great Escape
    Great way to escape the hustle and bustle of the city. Took the free shuttle bus around the island. Then walked the southern tip to the Roosevelt memorial. Great views all around. Took the tram over to the island and returned back to Manhattan on the F train.
    Visited May 2024
    Travelled with family
    Written 12 May 2024
These reviews are the subjective opinion of Tripadvisor members and not of TripAdvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Most Recent: Reviews ordered by most recent publish date in descending order.

Detailed Reviews: Reviews ordered by recency and descriptiveness of user-identified themes such as waiting time, length of visit, general tips, and location information.

Popular mentions

4.5
4.5 of 5 bubbles915 reviews
Excellent
469
Very good
339
Average
91
Poor
9
Terrible
7

Victor L
35 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
May 2024 • Family
Great way to escape the hustle and bustle of the city. Took the free shuttle bus around the island. Then walked the southern tip to the Roosevelt memorial. Great views all around. Took the tram over to the island and returned back to Manhattan on the F train.
Written 12 May 2024
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Veronica S
1 contribution
1.0 of 5 bubbles
Apr 2024 • Family
The tram is an unbearable experience and a waste of money. It's two swipes of the omni card and the crowds were aggressive ridiculous. The lines were literally down the block and by the time we got to the platform, which was packed like sardines, everyone was ready to kill eachother. Apparently the residents hate the tourists and were downright hostile. Not only was it packed with people but there were like 10 baby strollers too. We were stuck in the middle of the tram car, literally squished between people, could barely see out of the windows to take in what I assume were great views, and before we knew it, although not soon enough, the trip was over and we had to get off, pay again and get back on another crowded car to go back to Manhattan. The island was kind of cool, I guess, but not worth the aggravation at all. We enjoyed Central Park and the ferry much more. Very overrated.
Written 28 April 2024
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Sacha🇲🇬
Antananarivo, Madagascar38 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Apr 2024 • Friends
If you're looking for a quiet place to go in NYC, Roosevelt Island is one of those places. Hop on the tram or the subway at standard MTA fare and ride the RI buses for free through the island. The choice is yours between exploring the lighthouse and the girl puzzle monument at the northern point or strolling through the park and the remnants of the smallpox hostpital at the southern point.
Written 19 April 2024
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Lainie L
New York City, NY468 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Apr 2024 • Friends
I'm a born and bred New Yorker but I've never been to Roosevelt Island. I know! How? My friends offered to show me around.

This was a great way to spend a beautiful Sunday. It was sunny with clear blue skies, and most of the cherry blossoms were blooming.

We took a comfortable stroll on the riverfront promenade, which was crowded with families, picnickers, and tons of people taking selfies.

As you walk along the promenade, you'll come across the dilapidated ruins of the Smallpox Memorial Hospital before arriving at the 14-acre Franklin D. Roosevelt Four Freedoms Park in the south all the way up to the northern tip.

Keep walking and you'll see the Roosevelt Island Lighthouse and the amazing statues commemorating the ground-breaking work by American journalist, Nellie Bly.

Other than the promenade, there's not much to see or do. There are plenty of parks for recreational activities and playgrounds for little ones.

There are no restaurants or delis, besides a few Chinese takeout places and a Duane Reade. I recommend bringing food or eating first before you come.

I really enjoyed the walk, and it wasn't that crowded. I can imagine how busy and crowded the island will be when summer officially arrives.
Written 8 April 2024
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Renato M
2 contributions
1.0 of 5 bubbles
Feb 2024 • Family
The transportation is a shame. The F train doesn’t work (maintenance for six month) and one of the Tram doesn’t work as well. If I were you l would never consider to live in this Island.
Written 24 February 2024
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

sarah
York, UK55 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Jan 2024 • Friends
Not much to do but it’s a beautiful space. The weather was clear when we went so we just had a little wander around the island.
Written 15 January 2024
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Stay710633
Ludlow, UK1 contribution
3.0 of 5 bubbles
Dec 2023 • Couples
The ride over to the island in the cable car was fun and free. When you get off, it's better to turn left and go south, there's more to see. The northern end has a small lighthouse and a small sculpture park but uts a bit of trek along the shoreline which us not the most interesting.On Saturday there is a market in the main high street,which sells mostly fruit and veg but there are crafts. The ride over and back in the cable car is the best bit but in going back a visit to the ice cream factory in Chinatown is worth it for novelty factor.
Written 19 December 2023
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

therichastill
Stevenage, UK2,948 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Oct 2023 • Solo
Roosevelt Island is tucked on the side of Manhattan Island. There is a road bridge linking it to Queens and there is also a cable car which can take you across the East River to the island from Manhattan where the terminal is on 2nd Avenue.

I would definitely recommend this as a good way to get to the island. You can use your metro card to get across there and swipe again to get back. There are terminals at both stations that you can use to get a metro card of top up your existing one. Alternatively you can use your debit or credit card.

There are a number of buildings on the island with offices and apartments. At the southern end of the island is the park and there are lots of lovely views from the island of the surrounding area.

The Queensboro Bridge bisects the island however it is not possible to access the island from the bridge or vice versa. use the cable car instead.
Written 16 October 2023
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Jose M Montoya
New York City, NY41 contributions
1.0 of 5 bubbles
Sept 2023 • Solo
THINK TWICE before you jump on the Tram to Roosevelt Island. Seriously, think twice (until April 2024)

I live on Roosevelt island and consider it the best place to live in NYC. It is a paradise that residents love sharing with tourists. We are very proud of our island.

But please, dear Tourist, DO NOT COME until April 2024. The city is doing necessary work in the subway tracks, until Q1’ 2024, and was forced to suspend the regular subway service (there is a shuttle but that is not enough for the 11,000 + residents) so the island is negatively impacted by the limited transportation options. The tram you are planing to take, from where instagram pictures are quite unique, is absurdly crowded and you will not enjoy it and your instagram posts will not be the envy of your friends (or enemies), so please DO NOT COME. The ride will be quite inhuman as the tram’s cabin will, most likely, be at maximum capacity (110 pax assuming they all have fit figures and we know that cannot be guaranteed). The experience has the potential to ruin your day and your presence will ruin the day of a large number of residents who are reacting to their commuting frustrations, by considering tourists the 11th plague of Egypt. They will give you dirty looks and some (just a few) might even exercise verbal aggression. Think the way Americas behind in Rome, Paris, Florence or Venice in July and August. I mean it, picture Americans touring Europe in the summer…. That bad! That is the way Roosevelt Island will greet you. So do not submit yourself to that and give residents of this paradise, the opportunity to welcome you, as you deserve, after April 2024, when the current commuting nightmare is over and we, Roosevelt Island residents go back to allowing our better angels to welcome you, your friends, your family to our paradise in the heart of the East River.

PLEASE, come back and enjoy Roosevelt Island after April 2024.

Safe travels back home!

Jose Mauricio Montoya
Roosevelt Island Resident
Written 6 September 2023
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Patricia A
Chicago, IL537 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Sept 2023 • Family
We had a great time coming to Roosevelt island! It was so much fun to be able to walk the entire island! We also happen to come when the Roosevelt area at the end was open and we could walk around his monument. so much history here! You will read everything about the blackwells and see The old historic hospital.
We stayed for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. there's not an enormous amount of restaurants, but plenty.
It's also very fun that you can rent one of the bikes along the road to ride bikes all around the island! So much fun!!
it's also a very safe place to be because it's relatively small and hardly any riff-raff around. I can see why people live here. they can stay here where it's safe and quiet, and if they want the hustle and bustle, they can take the tramway straight to Manhattan and have all of that.
Written 2 September 2023
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Showing results 1-10 of 450
Is this your Tripadvisor listing?
Own or manage this property? Claim your listing for free to respond to reviews, update your profile and much more.
Claim your listing

Roosevelt Island - All You Need to Know BEFORE You Go (2024)

All New York City HotelsNew York City Hotel DealsLast Minute Hotels in New York City
All things to do in New York City
Day Trips in New York City
RestaurantsFlightsTravel StoriesCruisesCar Hire