A Guide To The Bronx + Things To Do In The Bronx

The Bronx is one of the most diverse and exciting boroughs of New York City. It is full of New York’s culture and history, which can be seen all over this borough.

Though compared to the other boroughs of New York, less is known about this place; The Bronx boasts of being the heart of the street culture in New York City. It is the birthplace of hip hop and rap and is also the home of the renowned baseball team, the New York Yankees.

Yankee Stadium 1

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The Bronx is also full of different landmarks, parks, and zoos. It is also the only borough that is not an island and can be reached using the subway or the bus.

We can say a lot more about this culturally rich and colorful place. So, without further due, let us dive deep into this gem of a place in New York:

History of The Bronx 

The Bronx was not always known as The Bronx; before the European settlement, the area used to be called “Keskeskeck” by the native people. In 1639, Jonas Bronck from Sweden became the first European settler in the area.

Jonas Brocks had moved to the site for farmland, and he had utilized the river in the area later named after him, “The Bronx River.” And in 1898, the borough was named after the river.

In the 19th century, The Bronx was still recovering from the aftermath of the American revolutionary war.  The area was sparsely populated, and there were not many settlers left.

The development of The Bronx started with the construction of the subway line in the area. With the rapid growth of transit, the population of The Bronx began to grow. Many working-class people from Manhattan started to move to the area.

Between the end of the 19th century and the early 20th century, many immigrants from different parts of the world settled here in The Bronx, which affected the urbanization and diversity of the borough positively. The first of these immigrants were from European countries such as Germany, Ireland, Italy, and other East European countries.

But later on, immigrants from the Caribbean, such as Jamaicans, Barbados, and Puerto Rico, also settled in the area. After that, different African- American and South American people also settled in The Bronx, making it among one of the most diverse boroughs of New York City.

Some parts of The Bronx went through a steep decline in population in the 1960s due to different social and economic factors. This decline continued up to the 1990s, to a point where parts of the borough, specifically the South Bronx, went through urban decay.

The Bronx started experiencing population growth and other advancements in the late 1990s and is going on strong to the present day.

Where is The Bronx located?

The Bronx, one of the five boroughs of New York, is located in the northernmost part of New York City.

The Bronx is found on the north and east of New York City borough, Manhattan, alongside the Harlem River, and on the north of yet another New York City borough, Queens, along the East River.

It is also located in the south of Westchester County. The Bronx is the only district on the mainland, separated from Manhattan by the Harlem River.

The Bronx itself is also divided into two because of The Bronx River, East Bronx, and West Bronx. The East Bronx has a flat landscape, whereas The West Bronx has a Hill landscape.

Is The Bronx a city?

The Bronx is its own county, but it still is part of New York City before it used to be part of Westchester County.

Though New Yorkers might refer to the borough as “The Bronx,” officially, the county is known as “Bronx County”, one of the New York Counties.

Living in The Bronx

As said earlier, The Bronx is one of the most exciting and diverse boroughs of New York. But just as anywhere in the world, living in The Bronx has its own benefits but might also have different challenges.

Located between Manhattan along the Harlem River and Westchester, The Bronx is the perfect mix of urban and suburban life. It is also one of the country’s most diverse areas, meaning it has a great selection of different cuisines worldwide.

One of the fascinating things about The Bronx is its construction. If you don’t want to live in an apartment and would rather have an independent one or two-bedroom house, then The Bronx might be an ideal place for you.

The other great thing about living in The Bronx is its proximity to Manhattan, but it is significantly cheaper than Manhattan.

The Bronx also has different neighborhoods with different rent and cost of living ranges. Some high-end areas in The Bronx are Spuyten Duyvil, Riverdale, and Morris Park.

These neighborhoods are found in the West Bronx, and they offer a suburban style of living which is ideal for raising a family.

Neighborhoods such as Port Morris and Mott Haven are among the affordable side of The Bronx. These neighborhoods are found in the South Bronx, which has an urban and industrial style of living.

Is The Bronx safe? 

The Bronx is a moderately safe area, as long as you avoid some places. The northeast part of The Bronx is considered safe compared to the south. The crime rate in The Bronx per 1000 residents is 71.14, which is slightly higher than other areas of New York City.

This doesn’t mean there are no safe areas in the borough. Let us see some of the top safest neighborhoods in The Bronx:

  • Riverdale:Being safer than 75% of the neighborhoods in the borough, Riverdale is one of the safest neighborhoods in The Bronx; it is an ideal place to raise a family or even retire.
  • Country Club:This neighborhood is safer than 57% of any other neighborhood in the borough. With spacious housing, a front yard, and close to the subway, it is also an excellent place to raise a family in New York City.
  • Morris Park:This is a fantastic neighborhood for young people and professionals. Being surrounded by different subway stations, you can quickly go to Brooklyn, Queens, and Manhattan in a matter of minutes. Regarding the crime rate, Morris Park is safer than 40% of other neighborhoods in the borough.
  • Woodlawn: This place is full of budget-friendly apartments while being safer than 40% of the neighborhoods in The Bronx. It is an excellent place for young and professional people.
  • Kingsbridge: This neighborhood is safer than 39% of the neighborhood in the borough. It offers a lot of apartments, condos, single-family houses, and more. It is an ideal location for students, young and professional people.

Things to do in The Bronx

The Bronx (Bronx County) is one of the most famous Counties in New York. There is a lot to do, from enjoying the sun on the Orchard beach to visiting The Bronx Zoo to checking out the Yankee’s stadium and more. Let us see some of the things you can do in The Bronx.

The Bronx Zoo

2300 Southern Blvd, The Bronx, NY 10460, United States

Phone:  718-367-1010

Email: guestrelations@wcs.org

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The Bronx Zoo

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With more than 4000 animals, The Bronx Zoo was launched in 1899. It is one of the most prominent zoos in the world and the largest urban zoo in the US. The 265 acres of land are home to more than 650 species.

With The Bronx River flowing through, the zoo has a range of naturalistic habits. The zoo has a worldwide reputation for animal conservation and captive breeding.  You can easily spend the day here enjoying the different wildlife.

Yankee Stadium

1 E 161 St, The Bronx, NY 10451, United States

Phone:  718-293-4300

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Yankee Stadium

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Whether a baseball fan or not, a trip to the Yankee Stadium is a great experience, the 3rd largest baseball stadium has a capacity of 54,251. One of the Must-See Attractions in NYC, the modern Yankee stadium debuted in 2009.

It takes baseball watching to a new level with comfortable seating and food concessions. The Yankee Stadium hosts additional events like college football games, soccer matches, outdoor NHL games, and concerts.

Located in the Concourse neighborhood of The Bronx, New York City, visiting the Yankee Stadium should be on your to-do list.

New York Botanical Garden

2900 Southern Blvd, The Bronx, NY 10458, United States

Phone: 718-817-8700

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New York Botanical Garden

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The New York Botanical Garden is one of the most prominent plant research places in the world.  It has more than a million tropical, temperature, and desert flora.

Covering a massive piece of land in the middle of The Bronx Park, this place is full of fun activities to be part of.

One of their popular programs is The Edible Academy, where you can work on cultivating a crop, fruit, or vegetable.

If you are a plant lover, this Botanical Garden is a fairyland on earth for you.

Little Italy in The Bronx

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Little Italy in The Bronx

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The Bronx is home to a second little Italy in New York, the first in Manhattan. It is home to excellent Italian restaurants and markets.

This historic neighborhood dates back more than a century, with many Italian immigrants, and is one of the best places to visit in New York City.

City Island

The City Island is connected to The Bronx through a bridge from the edge of Pelham Bay Park. It was a former ship-building island reminiscent of New England style, with unique antique stores, galleries, old homes, and a calm lifestyle compared to the rest of the city.

This small community has a lot of seafood restaurants which you can enjoy. You can also rent a boat to spend some time on the water.

Wave Hill

 4900 Independence Ave, The Bronx, NY 10471, United States

Phone:718-549-3200

Email: information@wavehill.org

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Wave Hill

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These 28 acres, once a private estate, is a half park and half horticultural garden, giving visitors a chance to connect with nature. Wave Hill has elegant, lush gardens, including shaded pergolas, wildflowers, and a stunning view of the Hudson River.

Pelham Bay Park

Middletown Road & Stadium Avenue, NY 10465, United States

Phone: 718-430-1891

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Pelham Bay Park

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Pelham Bay Park is the biggest park in New York City. The park offers 13 miles of shoreline, a golf course, and a museum.

At Pelham Bay Park you can participate in many activities such as basketball, football, tennis, and many more things to do.  Pelham Bay Park is free and open to the public, but some activities and events may require purchase.

Van Cortlandt Park

Broadway and Van Cortlandt Park S, The Bronx, NY 10471, United States

Phone: 718-430-1890

Email: info@vancortlandt.org

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Van Cortlandt Park

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If you’re looking to get away from the rush of the city, Van Cortlandt Park is the best place to be. With 1000 acres of green space, this is the best place to have a run, a picnic, or just a stroll around the fresh lake.

Van Cortlandt Park is the third largest park in New York City. It also has the Van Cortlandt House Museum, the oldest surviving building in The Bronx, built-in 1748.

 Bronx Museum of the Arts

1040 Grand Concourse, The Bronx, NY 10456, United States

Phone: 718-681-6000

Email: info@bronxmuseum.org

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Bronx Museum of the Arts

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Founded in 1971, The Bronx Museum of the Arts is one of the most recent museums in the city. The Museum works on preserving the diverse cultures in the borough.

The artworks displayed in the museum are primarily modern and contemporary artworks of African, Asian, or Latino descendants.

Orchard Beach

Orchard Beach Road, Pelham Bay Park Bronx, The Bronx, NY 00754

Phone: 718-885-2275

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Orchard Beach

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Orchard Beach is the only public beach in The Bronx, New York. It is 1.1 miles and known for its unique crescent shape, which Robert Moses created in the 1930s.  It also has a stunning view of the City Island.

Even though there aren’t restaurants and bars, there are a  lot of concession stands, picnic areas, and BBQ areas. Orchard Beach also has playgrounds, basketball, volleyball, and handball courts.

Bronx River

Bronx River

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The Bronx River runs 23 miles long and flows through the southeast of New York, connects to the East River, and ultimately flows into the Long Island Sound. The river is the city’s only freshwater river.

Visitors can enjoy a day on the water canoeing and paddling. This once-polluted waterway has been cleaned and revitalized thanks to environmental groups like Bronx River Alliance.

Despite what the borough has been through throughout the years, The Bronx is one of the most dynamic, diverse, and ever-changing places in New York. It is full of places to explore and activities to enjoy.

This has been your guide to The Bronx. Please let us know in the comments if you have found this article helpful. Also, make sure to give it a thumbs up if you have enjoyed reading it.

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