You've heard of Long Island Staten Island and Ellis Island in New York. Perhaps you are familiar with New York's 1000 Islands, Fire Island or Heart Island? Each of these locations are famous and/or popular for various reasons but have you ever heard of Rat Island?

What comes to mind when you hear the name Rat Island? Do you picture an infestation of rodents crawling around the island looking for food and creeping out visitors? First of all Rat Island is too small to host many, if any, visitors and rodents have nothing to do with how this place got it's name.

According to Atlas Obscura, Rat Island is a privately owned island that technically is part of the Bronx. This is one of the smallest islands in New York and it rests in the shadow of Manhattan, one of the biggest islands in the world. So what's with the name?

The name suggests that it's infested by rodents. Truth is, this island is so small that boats couldn't see it at night and residents would use rattles as warning sounds. That is where the name Rat Island comes from.

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In 2019 the New York Post reported that Rat Island is owned by Alex Shcibli, who purchased the land with a friend via auction for approximately $176,000. Rumor has it that Ivanka Trump expressed interest in buying the island but was unable to secure the last privately owned island in New York City.

Let's take a tour of Rat Island.

Rat Island New York

The smallest island in New York City is Rat Island but the origin of the name has nothing to do with rodents.

Gallery Credit: Karolyi

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