The staten island ferry is perhaps the best deal in town. From the ferry you will have a perfect view of the manhattan island, the statue of liberty and Ellis island. With a nice breeze and not too crowded athmosphere, it is a wonderful break to the city hussle and an enjoyable and calming water voyage. And it costs nothing! You'll see the skyscrapers and bridges of Lower Manhattan receding as you pull away and coming into focus again as you return.
The five-mile (8 km) journey takes about 25 minutes each way. The Staten Island Ferry has been a municipal service since 1905, and currently carries over 21 million passengers annually on the 5.2-mile (8.4 km) run.
The ferry departs Manhattan from the Staten Island Ferry Whitehall Terminal, South Ferry, at the southernmost tip of Manhattan near Battery Park. On Staten Island, the ferry arrives and departs from St. George Ferry Terminal on Richmond Terrace, near Richmond County Borough Hall and Richmond County Supreme Court.
It is 100% free! Though riders must disembark at each terminal and reenter through the terminal building for a round trip to comply with Coast Guard regulations. Bicycles may also be taken on the lowest deck of the ferry without charge.
Service is provided 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. During rush hours, it runs every 15min, during daytime every half hour and every hour during nighttime.