A Brooklyn Bridge Sign, with the Brooklyn Bridge in the background.

Summer is arguably the best time of year to visit Brooklyn. Prospect Park plays host to picnics, barbecues, and frisbee games; Coney Island welcomes the hordes to its beach and amusement park; and restaurant dining spills onto the sidewalks. It’s paramount for travelers to NYC’s largest borough to bring the right gear. Here are the suitcase essentials for a trip to Brooklyn.   

Concert Tickets

Brooklyn is one of the live entertainment capitals of the world. Those of you coming to NYC’s hippest borough this summer have plenty to choose from including the AfroPunk Festival in August, featuring Janelle Monae and Ice Cube. Celebrate Brooklyn! Is a free concert series in Prospect Park running into September. This year’s lineup includes indie rock band Dr. Dog, jazz group Marcus Strickland & Twi-Life, and benefit concerts with Neko Case (July 26, from $43) and the Lumineers (August 3, from $39). On top of it all, Barclays Center has summer shows from iconic names like Janet Jackson and Blink-182. Pick a show, and bring tickets on your next trip.

Walking Shoes

New York City is built for walking, and Brooklyn is one of the best boroughs to take a stroll. From Nu Hotel, travelers can explore Prospect Park—this summer there are goats helping to restore parts of the forests—along with the Brooklyn Museum and the collection of boutiques and cafés near the Barclays Center. Days spent toeing the shores of Red Hook and perusing Bedford Avenue in Williamsburg give you even more reason to bring your walking shoes.

Film Camera

Brooklyn is famous for its hipsters, who appreciate all things vintage. Get on their level and capture high quality images of Manhattan across the East River, the ramen burger you’re eating at Smorgasburg, or some of the brilliant fashion sported throughout the borough.

A Food Budget

Food options range from classic Jewish delis to fine dining restaurants. Set some cash aside for a special meal or two. Near Nu Hotel, Brooklyn’s only three Michelin-starred restaurant Chef’s Table serves French and Japanese tasting menus. For something more affordable, and more rooted in Brooklyn, take a ride to South Brooklyn for one of the famous square pizza slices at L&B Spumoni Gardens.

Extra Space

Brooklyn has an eclectic shopping scene filled with local favorites (as well as the traditional big name brands). Find cute, handmade gifts for kids and babies at Exit 9 Gift Emporium, or a wide variety of goods made in the borough at By Brooklyn. To get a taste of the thrifting craze, check out Buffalo Exchange around the corner from Nu Hotel, and the Brooklyn Flea.