Central Park, New York City

4.5 out of 5 stars 4.5 Stars - 401 Reviews

Central Park S & 7th Ave New York, NY 10019

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  • shutterlust's Profile Photo

    A Horse in Central Park

    by shutterlust Updated Apr 4, 2011

    4.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    If you're trained in the English saddle and are visiting NY, try horseback riding in Central Park. You can rent a horse for ~$50 an hour, not including gear. The horses are completely used to traversing urban landscapes, so you don't have to worry about them getting nervous in traffic. In fact, they practically know already where exactly to go, which trails, at what speed, how to react to traffic, etc. It's an exciting way to see New York, from high above on a horse, looking down on people who will most likely be looking back at you...and the horse! :-)

    I highly suggest this activity if you know English saddle.

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  • 10028's Profile Photo

    Manhattan's Back Yard

    by 10028 Written Mar 17, 2004

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    Enjoying a snow day in the park

    You haven't seen New York until you've explored The Park. Did you know there's a hidden waterfall among rustic woods, where you'd never guess you were surrounded by NYC? There are countless entertainment possibilities in the park, or you can spread out a blanket and enjoy a bit of peace and quiet. My favorite things in the park are the annual Metropolitan Opera and NY Philharmonic concerts, usually the 1st-2nd week in July, where thousands enjoy "priceless music, absolutely free" under the stars. There's free international music at SummerStage, and free Shakespeare in the Park. You can rent bicycles, roller blades, rowboats here. Swim, play tennis, ice or roller skate, ski, sled, play chess or checkers, volleyball, baseball, horseback riding (horses are rented at a nearby stable), and even fishing. There's a beautiful carousel, a formal planted garden, an intimate zoo, a puppet theater. You can get a massage or find tango lessons.

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  • jlynyc's Profile Photo

    Have a picnic

    by jlynyc Updated Jan 12, 2011

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    The Gates at Central Park
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    Central Park is a lush oasis in the middle of Manhattan and is easily a local favorite for all that it provides. Grab some sandwiches at a local deli (there's practically one on every corner of every block) and head to the Park for a picnic. The weekends are most crowded, but it's when the Park really seems to come to life. Stop off at the Whole Foods in the Time Warner Center at Columbus Circle (59th St. and Columbus Circle/8th Ave.) for your choice of gourmet-style foods (hot and cold) already prepared or made to order, fresh baked bread, a great selection of cheese, and a variety of smoked/cured meats like prosciutto, serrano ham, etc. But you can pick up sandwiches, snacks, etc. from any deli (there's just about one on every corner throughout the city!) or take your food "to go" or just buy a famous "dirty water" hot dog from one of the many vendors you'll see. If you're on a budget, this is a great way to grab a bite and still see/experience a treasure of NYC.

    Or, just head to the Park and take a walk through the zoo, ride the carousel, row a boat on the lake, listen to music at Summerstage, stroll through Strawberry Fields, watch the rollerbladers and rollerskaters show off their skills, take a jog around the reservoir, see Shakespeare in the Park...or just lay on the grass and read a good book, marveling at the fact that you are right in the middle of Manhattan, yet without all the noise and hustle, you feel a world away. If you don't want to do the work, but would like to relax on a boat in the lake, make a reservation for the gondola at the Boathouse. You'll get a little history lesson and perhaps be serenaded by the gondolier. $30 for 1/2 hour.

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  • madamx's Profile Photo

    Central Park

    by madamx Updated Oct 29, 2005

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    Central Park, an oasis of green and a New York City landmark, was built between 1859 - 1870, and provided employment during a depression at that time. It's hard to believe that originally, this site consisted of pig farms, quarries, shacks, and swampland. The designers, Fredrick Law Omstead and Calvert Vaux seemed to have foresight about the growth of New York, as even today the heavy traffic of midtown Manhattan is largely hidden from sight by transverse roads.

    Come here and walk the various pathways, and you really do escape the hustle and bustle of the city -- don't miss out on the charming building known as "The Dairy", where years ago, children could get fresh milk and refreshments. It was restored in 1979, after falling into disrepair while being used as a shed. You can get park information here, maps and even rent chess and checker sets.

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    Central Park

    by Dabs Updated Aug 4, 2007

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    Alice in Wonderland-Central Park
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    Although more pleasant to visit in the warm summer months when all of the trees have leaves and the grass is green, even in the winter months, Central Park should be on the visitors must see list. Central Park covers 6% of Manhattan to give you an idea of it's size.

    Central Park is an 843 acre green oasis in the middle of the hustle and bustle of New York City. It was designed in 1858 by Frederick Olmsted and Calvert Vaux, it took 16 years to finish the park. It was the 1st landscaped public park in the US.

    I was only able to squeeze in a walk from the Metropolitan Museum of Art to the southern end of the park, even in that short distance there are several highlights-the Alice in Wonderland Statue, Hans Christian Andersen statue, the Reservoir and the zoo.

    On my 3rd visit to the city in 2007, we took the subway to 81st Street stop and walked into the park trying to find the Belvedere Castle. After several people gave us bad directions, we finally found someone who worked there and he pointed us in the right direction. So if you want to explore, bring a good map, there aren't many directional signs. There's a good walking tour on the attached website if you want to explore more fully.

    Belvedere Castle was erected in 1869 as a lookout and is now home to the NY Meteorological Observatory.

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    Hang out in Central Park

    by Dazzle88 Written Jan 24, 2004

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    If you wanna just lay around and tan in Sheep Meadow or ride the colorful merry-go-round or just rollerskate around Central Park is the place for you! There are also a couple of lakes-you can either rent a row boat or rent a mini sailboat and electronicly sail it around. In the summer there are face painters and portrait painters along the entrence to the "oh so famous" zoo! (where peguins and polar bears live)

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  • ZanieOR's Profile Photo

    Urban beauty

    by ZanieOR Updated Apr 10, 2004

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    Good sport  Jenny poses for her mom in Central Pk.

    How many other people have said "you've got to see Central Park when you are in New York City."
    However, I don't see how I can possibly leave it out as one of my "must see"s.
    It's as if Manhattan has a green breathing heart.
    My daughter and I walked through the park on a beautiful fall day, sharing the season and creating a special memory. There were all these little surprises, whimsical sculptures that appeared out of no where, and so many people of all descriptions out enjoying the park. The huge buildings that loomed on either side only adds to the park's uniqueness.

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  • J.I.M's Profile Photo

    Visit the Central Park

    by J.I.M Written Jan 22, 2005

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    Central Park, New York

    The Central Park is a really beautiful area of New York, a superb place to get away from the bustle of the city, and just relax. On a sunny day you'll find lots of people here, some of them laying down on the grass, others strolling through the park's woodland, and many also like to sit and paint pictures of the park's many beautiful views...

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  • roamer61's Profile Photo

    Central Park

    by roamer61 Updated Jul 28, 2005

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    Central Park is the largest urban park in the world. Situated in the heart of NYC, it extends north from 59th street to 110th street. And it spans east to west from 5th avenue to Central Park West. A total of 843 Acres. Within are numerous expanses of green as well as skating rinks, boat ponds and ball fields. There is also the Central Park Zoo and acres of woodland home to myriad species of birds. Also the Shakepeare Theater, where during the summer months, outdoor shows can be seen.

    Throughout the park are numerous jogging and walking trails for one to enjoy. The scope of outdoor activities seems nearly endless. In addition, there are muscians to listen to and statues to see.

    However, the park is also potentially dangerous at night, especially in isolated areas. So dont walk alone. The park is a great place to enjoy, away from the hustle and bustle.

    Photo is one of the many old bridges found in the park.

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  • mrclay2000's Profile Photo

    Central Park: the Heart of Manhattan

    by mrclay2000 Updated Apr 6, 2005

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    images of Central Park

    Central Park is one of the nation's most ingenious and forward-looking ideas. Planners accumulated land as early as the 1850s to create a permanent breathing park in the middle of the island, though Central Park West and Central Park East were considered "rural" in those early decades. A walk through the park is like no other. Apart from the jazz, classical and other festivals that come here or the impromptu dance rituals which materialize every week, the park is strewn with romantic and handsome structures, retreats, ponds, monuments, platforms and other constructions. None of these crowd or interrupt one another. In autumn the hardwoods glow in red and yellow. In winter the starkness of the forests detracts nothing from the beauty of the park. Addresses on the perimeter are among the most expensive and elite in the city, and with good reason: there is no better urban retreat in North America.

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  • Mahieu's Profile Photo

    Huge!

    by Mahieu Written Oct 29, 2004

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    Wow, is this park huge or what? It's about 843 acres and I think we spent half a day walking in it! It's a great way to escape the crowds of Manhattan. Lots of people jogging, cycling or just walking...
    Some of the places I loved most: the Great Lawn ( where people played baseball or just relaxed in the grass), Strawberry Fields (for the symbolism, not for its beauty) and the Wollman Rink ( seen in many movies/TV series)

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  • davesut's Profile Photo

    Central Park - It is just so big

    by davesut Written Apr 16, 2007

    4.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Central Park Boating

    Central Park - many people on VT recommend loads about central park and I echo many of them just a few 'amber' proceed with care tips that may help you

    1. Beware there are no signposts in the park to direct you. The paths tend to meander around so you can spend ages getting nowhere.

    2. On your first arrival enter the park at the southern end. This is where most of the things to do are. If you start north and work your way down you can get very tired before you find anything.

    3. Get a map from an info booth and ask what is open/closed. This can save you a lot of grief later

    4. Cafes and rest rooms may be shut for renovation. After finding the third building on a bounce closed I began to get a bit cheesed off.

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  • nicolaitan's Profile Photo

    Genetics

    by nicolaitan Updated Jun 17, 2007

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    1 more image

    Protected from the forces of nature by the city surrounding it, Central Park allows the survival of genetic variants which would not survive in a normal environment. This red tailed squirrel would be easily visible to hawks or other predators, but in the absence of these dangers, survive and thrive in Central Park. Other variants included the black squirrels seen here and in downtown Toronto. Little girls not included.

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  • Suet's Profile Photo

    Central Park

    by Suet Updated Feb 24, 2005

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    roamer61 and suet central park

    Central Park was fun, loads of dogs and puppies, very pleasant walking around there with the two guys.

    This was an oasis of green in the heart of the city.... a much needed break from the noise of traffic and people. Lakes, boating lakes, people cycling, walking, kick boxing, just chilling out.

    Regretfully left a relaxed Roamer just near a Metro Station and raced back to hotel for wash and change

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  • nicolaitan's Profile Photo

    Wooden Benches

    by nicolaitan Updated May 6, 2007

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    Scattered throughout Central Park, generally on small out of the way paths are wooden benches, each unique and each position planned by Olmstead and Vaux. Such was their attention to detail. I do wish I had taken more pictures of these one of a kind benches.

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