There are mainly three ways New Yorkers think about the stops at the end of a subway line:
1. As a blessing, because you can always get a seat when you board the train
2. As a curse, because you have to endure every. single. stop. before the train gets to yours, or
3. They don’t think of it at all, because they don’t have to trek to the far reaches of the outer boroughs.
But what if I told you that there is a fourth way to think about the stops at the end of NYC’s subway lines? What if I told you that instead of merely being the places where trains originate or terminate, these stops are the starting points for potential adventures? This is exactly the mindset you’ll find in the book, “Subway Adventure Guide: New York City: To the End of the Line.”
“Subway Adventure Guide: New York City” is based off a pretty cool concept: as New Yorkers (and attentive tourists), we’re familiar with the names of the stops at the ends of the lines, but unless it’s our destination, we most likely haven’t been to these terminals to see what’s there. Fortunately for us, Plitt and Knoke have already done all the hard work of going to the ends of each of NYC’s 27 subway lines, and in a little over 200 pages they bring to light what’s special about these neighborhoods above ground.
Along with neighborhood overviews, the book offers suggestions on what to check out while you’re there (Spoiler: There are A LOT of great food recs). As most of the subway lines end in the outer boroughs, the majority of the book’s neighborhood highlights are off the beaten path. Who would have thought there’s a plaque marking an African Burial Ground near the New Lots Avenue stop, and that Court Square is home to the Elevator Historical Society Museum? Trust me, this is only the beginning of the surprising things the Subway Adventure Guide highlights.
Speaking of surprises, this is one of the few books about exploring the city that I’ve encountered so far that actually dives deep into the Bronx and pulls out a lot of gems. Good food, nature, and breath-taking architecture can all be found there hidden in plain sight. And they are all easily accessible because six train of the city’s train lines end in the borough. If you are looking to explore the Bronx, make sure you have this section of the “Subway Adventure Guide” by your side.
Overall, “Subway Adventure Guide: New York City: To the End of the Line” is one of the few guidebooks that both tourists and locals can benefit from. It’s a much-needed reminder that the places in NYC are a lot more than dots on the subway map and they are worth going out of your way to see.