Fort Tilden

Quick Facts

Fort Tilden

New York

(718) 318-4300

Map Directions

Things To Do


Fort Tilden -- part of Gateway National Recreation Area -- was established in 1917 as a U.S. Army Coast Artillery Post. Along with Forts Hancock and Wadsworth, it protected the entrance to New York Harbor from naval attack during World War I and World War II. During the Cold War, Fort Tilden became a Nike Missile installation.

Today the national park at Fort Tilden offers a mixture of military structures and reclaimed natural areas. A walk through the fort includes many great spots to see wildlife. The observatory deck on top of Battery Harris East, a historic gun site, offers dramatic views of Jamaica Bay and New York Harbor, and is a great vantage point to spot migrating birds.

Map of Fort Tilden

Latitude, Longitude: 40.560800, -73.896270



  • Bird Watching

    Birding is great at the Jamaica Bay Wildlife Refuge, as well as the back fort area of Fort Tilden.

  • Bicycling

    Bike along the historic runways of Floyd Bennett Field, or along trails at Fort Tilden.

  • Fishing

    Floyd Bennett Field, Fort Tilden and Canarsie Pier offer great fishing opportunities. Call 718-338-3799 for permit and other information.

  • Hiking

    The back fort area of Fort Tilden has walking trails.

  • Historic Sites

    Discover former military sites, including Fort Tilden.

  • Picnicking

    Individuals can picnic at Jacob Riis Park; barbeque grills are available. Group picnic facilities are available by permit at Fort Tilden.


The New York metropolitan area experiences four distinct seasons. Temperatures are moderate in the spring and fall, but range into the 90s during the summer to below freezing in winter.



From the North, East, and West:

* Take the Belt Parkway to Exit 11S (Flatbush Avenue) * Follow Flatbush Avenue south to the Marine Parkway Bridge toll plaza. * Cross the bridge, and follow signs to park parking lot.

From the South (and alternate route from other directions):

* West on Beach Channel Drive. * Follow signs to the park.

Public Transportation


* Take the #2 (also #5 at rush hours) to Flatbush Avenue. * Alternate: Take the A or S to Rockaway Park / Beach 116th Street.


* Take Q35 bus from either stop to park, or Q22 from Beach 116th Street. * Connect with the Q35 bus on Flatbush Avenue. * After the bridge, ask driver to let you off at either Ft. Tilden or Riis Park. * Alternate: Q21 or Q53 to Beach 116th Street, then Q22 or Q35 to the park.

Ferry: Ferries run between Riis Landing on Rockaway, the Brooklyn Army Terminal in Bay Ridge and Pier 11 on Wall Street.

* Summer weekends and holidays: visit New York Beach Ferry for fares and schedules. Ferries will resume Memorial Day weekend 2011. For more information, including fares, call 718-474-0593. * Weekdays throughout the year: visit New York Water Taxi for fares and schedules. For general inquiries, email or call 212-742-1969, extension 0.

Phone Numbers


(718) 318-4300