StyleOnTheSaddle Diaries: Governors Island

During Memorial Day Weekend in the US, I took my new bike to Governors Island as this was the weekend it officially opened to the public, for the summer.  The island was owned by Native Americans, sold to the Dutch, then switched hands to the British for the “benefit and accommodation of His Majesty’s Governors” (aren’t we Brits so quaint?) before the American Revolutionary War transferred ownership back to American hands.  It was used as a military facility for years and the 20th century brought several developments to the island – more land was built and army facilities added.

The island was transferred to the US Coast Guard in 1966.  At this point the population was 3,500, all of whom were relocated by 1996 when the Coast Guard shut down operations there.  Governors Island was “sold” to the people of NY for a nominal cost, as announced by George W Bush, Governor Pataki and Mayor Bloomberg on April 1, 2002 (this wasn’t a joke) and was to be used solely for the benefit of the public.  No permanent housing can be created on the island, but at present the old facilities remain:

My first stop, after taking the (free) ferry over, was the man made beach with an amazing view out to the tip of Manhattan.  I stopped here for refuelling before cycling around the island several times (you can hire bikes on the island too) – it’s quite tiny: just 1 mile long and about a quarter of a mile wide.

There are plenty of events planned this summer and I’m hoping to return for the jazz weekend later this month.  Some 1920s outfits may well be required!  For this particular trip to Governors Island however it was so hot I had to be in my Gap denim cutoffs with my urban outfitters top.

I had such fun this weekend and I’d really recommend visiting Governor’s Island if you’re planning a trip to NYC, or are here already and want to check out the amazing view and events planned this summer.

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14 Responses to StyleOnTheSaddle Diaries: Governors Island

  1. Hannah Chan says:

    It looks like a great place to visit 🙂

  2. never been to NYC but will put this on my list!!!

    http://mstwirlyskirts.com

  3. Michelle says:

    Never heard of Governors Island, but it sure does look fun. Love those colourful coconut trees! PS your outfit looks so pretty.

  4. Reena says:

    Wow, looks like so much fun. Love the casual, relaxed outfit too

  5. carly says:

    OK…seriously..THANK YOU for the history lesson…I have always wondered about the island…
    looks like alot of fun…and really great that NYCers can enjoy it…I bet there are amazing festivals and events there- ENJOY-
    So disappointed that it is rainy and gloomy here at the shore…and I had grand plans to hit the beach w the little guy today..sigh.
    C

  6. Cee says:

    I haven’t been to NYC for years, but my husband and I are actually planning a trip there next spring and Governors’ Island sounds like such a fun and unusual place to stop- not to mention that those skyline views are amazing! Definitely adding this to the must-see list 🙂
    xox,
    Cee

  7. mpchouchou says:

    Love your photos of the day, and had no idea about the history! I think I went out there one day for a tour and luncheon, held be the group that sponsored by internship in NYC while in school. Funny, that doesn’t really stick out in my memory as much as the dinner we had in Harlem at Sylvias;) Which was delish.

  8. Such an amazing day! I miss New York, always inspired me!
    Hey sweety, I’m back to business. Hope you still like the blog hehehh

    Love U 🙂

  9. Ritournelle says:

    I need to check this place out during the summer as I keep hearing about it. Can’t believe I didn’t see it when touring Manhattan by boat. Maybe the words “Governor’s Island” got drowned in my ears among the tour guides non-stop talk? 😉

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