Northport used to be inhabited by the Matinecocks, one of 13 Native American tribes residing on Long Island. The land that Northport sits on, known as Opcathontyche at the time, was sold to three Englishmen in 1656. Farming began on the land around the harbor and the area of became known as Great Cow Harbor. In the 19th century, shipbuilding began, which brought much growth to the city. By the 1830s, the city became known as Northport.
By car: There are many ways to enter Long Island.
From North: The most common route is taking I-95 South to the Throgs Neck Bridge. From the Throgs Neck Bridge, take the Cross Island Parkway heading south, then take the exit for I-495/Long Island Expressway. From the LIE, take exit 53, then drive 3/4 mile down Deer Park Road, take a left at Elwood Road and drive about 3.5 miles until you come to Fort Salonga Road/Rt. 25A.
From South: Take I-95 North towards towards the Goethals Bridge. Take the Goethals Bridge to I-278/Staten Island Expressway. Take I-278 through Staten Island to the Verrazano Bridge. Getting off the Verrazano Bridge, take the Belt Parkway heading east. Take the Belt to the Southern State Parkway. Stay on the Southern State Parkway, then get off at the Sagtikos Parkway exit. Take the Sagtikos until it turns into the Sunken Meadow Parkway. Get off at Exit 4W/Pulaski Road. Take Pulaski Road all the way to Larkfield Road. Take a right on Larkfield Road and drive straight down to Rt. 25A/ Fort Salonga Road.
By train: From NYC, take the Long Island Rail Road out of Penn Station going to Huntington. Take the transfer from Huntington, which will bring you directly to Northport train station located on Larkfield Road. However, note that the Northport train station is actually located in the hamlet of East Northport, which is (paradoxically) a few miles south of Northport.
Northport does not offer much public transportation. Aside from a few buses, the best way to get around town is by car. Although, biking and walking are not bad alternatives. Everything is within a few miles walking distance.
Northport contains various attractions for visitors, as well as normal residents. The main attraction of Northport is Northport Village located in the downtown area. The village, which is located on Main Street stemming from Rt. 25A to the Northport Harbor, is lined with popular stores, bars, and restaurants. At the end of Main Street is the Northport Harbor, where many boats are moored at Seymour’s Boatyard. With the park and the dock, Northport Harbor is an extremely scenic and beautiful place to relax and socialize.
On a nice summer day, head down to Crab Meadow Beach located at the end of Waterside Rd. off of Rt. 25A. Great little beach to lay out and relax, or even bring the kids. When the weather isn’t cooperating, see a musical at the John W. Engeman Theater on Main Street. Also, enjoy shopping on Main Street at the fine boutiques and shops.
Many historic homes line the streets of Northport Village. A short easy walk along Bayview Ave will allow views from the sidewalk of many beautiful Victorian and Circa homes as well as views of the harbor, Northport Bay, and the sunny village park.
Part of the Village Park, at the foot of Main Street, was the turn around for the trolley that ran up Main Street to connect with the railroad. Tracks are still visible, but only those who have visited all the pubs in one night are able to hear the trolley whistle.
During the summer, on Saturdays, there is a Farmer’s Market in Cow Harbor Park. Visitors can buy local organic produce, seafood, baked goods, and ornamental plants and herbs. Later in the summer, there’s fruit from local orchards. It is not unusual to hear live music in the park as well.
For a nice night out, the best choice is always downtown on Main Street. With the selection of bars and restaurants, it is an eventful place on weekend nights. The John W. Engeman Theatre is also very popular downtown to see a nice musical production. After that, Lic’s Ice Cream is a great place for a scoop of Hershey’s Ice Cream. Take a walk down the pier to relax or sit in the park and listen to music in the cabana.