New York in the Summer: Seven Scenic Parks
Where’s the best place to take a picture in NYC? Contrary to immediate assumption, some believe that the best places in this fabulous city are outdoors. NYC is the city that never sleeps and all seasons, especially summer, offer fair temperatures and sunshine.
To ensure you’ve had your eye-full of scenic parks and the aesthetic pleasures lying within, look for the following locations and associated landmarks.
Washington Square Park
Within Washington Square Park, you’ll discover the stone arch. Take a picture while eating an ice cream, offered by one of the nearby vendors. The land officially became a park in the 1820s, but had formerly been a cemetery, execution ground, and parade site. Why the huge stone arch? It’s a symbol of appreciation, commemorating George Washington’s inauguration.
Hudson River Park
Who knew one could catch the sight of the sun kissing the water in the middle of New York City? Hudson River Park runs along the waters within Manhattan’s west side. But this is not your average park along the water; it’s 550 acres with five miles of bike and running paths. If you’re devouring all the delectable delights the city has to offer, burn calories while enjoying the water in Hudson River Park.
Madison Square Park
If you’re in the Flatiron District, Madison Square Park is within reach if you’re seeking a chance to relax and dine on some tasty burgers and fries. The land area has been open to the public since the 1600s, but branded a park in President Madison’s name in 1847. The nearby, ‘Shake Shack’ is notorious for killing the appetites of tourists and natives alike.
Bryant is in the heart of midtown Manhattan and home to strollers, joggers and lovers looking to relax and take a break from the concrete sights of the city. You know the park hosting all the NYC ice-skating scenes in films? That’s Bryant. But in the summer you’ll want to trade your ice skates for sandals while enjoying activities such as Shakespeare in the park and ongoing film fests.
Brooklyn Bridge Park
If all your friends went to Brooklyn Bridge Park, would you go too? All the cool kids and tourists are doing it, seeking opportunities to picnic, take children to the playground and engage in regularly-scheduled events and festivals. The park area is quickly expanding as more people gravitate toward this hip part of the city.
Union Square Park
What are all those people and vendors doing over there in the park around 14th Street (one block east of 5th avenue)? Oh, that’s the city’s largest, year-round greenmarket taking place. Aside from the fresh food, enjoy free resources, like yoga classes and Wi-Fi access. Are you entirely new to the area? Take advantage of the summer’s free walking tours.
Prospect Park makes the other parks green with envy when it comes to its professional origin; landscape architects, Frederick Law Olmsted and Calvert Vaux designed the park in the 1860s, which encompasses 585 acres and attracts more than seven million visitors per year. To add to its culture, the park also hosts the Metropolitan Opera and the NYC Philharmonic.
NYC is a place like no other, and there are currently some competitive deals from big companies like Co-op travel that you can look into. Natives and tourists enjoy the true meaning of ‘playing outside’ when it comes to the parade of parks that the city offers. Whether you want to take a quiet stroll after a picnic with a lover or meet millions of others milling about the city’s parks, summers in New York have something to offer to everyone.
Melissa Nash is a travel consultant that loves the outdoors. She has a penchant for New York and her articles mainly appear in travel blogs.