A free 25-minute ferry voyage from the southern tip of Manhattan to Staten Island provides one of the city's best views of the Statue of Liberty and the downtown Manhattan skyline. Upon arrival, it's hard to miss the Richmond County Bank Ballpark at St. George, the home of the Staten Island Yankees, where minor leaguers in pinstripes affectionately known as "baby bombers" dream of one day playing in the Bronx. When venturing beyond the borough's northernmost tip, you will find that Staten Island is full of surprises. Along with suburban sprawl, there are wonderful small museums, including a premier collection of Tibetan art; walkable woodlands; and a historic village replicating New York's rural past. From the ferry terminal, grab an S40 bus to the Snug Harbor Cultural Center (about 10 minutes) or take the S74 and combine visits to the Tibetan Museum and Historic Richmond Town.

Legally part of New York City since 1898, Staten Island is in many ways a world apart. The "Forgotten Borough," as some locals refer to it, is geographically more separate, less populous, politically more conservative, and ethnically more homogeneous than the rest of the city.