Central Park is one of New York City’s main attractions and one of the largest urban parks in the world. No trip to New York City is complete without it. Central Park was designed by Frederick Law Olmsted and Calvert Vaux and opened to the public in 1957. The Park spans 843 acres of beautiful landscape and is 2.5 miles long and 0.5 miles wide. It is bordered by Central Park West, Fifth Avenue, 59th Street, and 110th Street.
Central Park is a spectacular park with countless things to do. There are dozens of fountains, statues, sculptures, and other works of art you can spend days walking around and admiring. You can relax, sunbathe and read at one of the park’s many gently rolling hills and hilltop meadows, play chess at the Chess &Checkers; House, and catch various concerts or a show at the Delacorte Theater.
Those who love sports can catch a game of Frisbee or tennis, play baseball and softball at Heckscher Ballfields, or plays handball in one of Central Park’s many handball courts. Central Park is also a favorite place to go running in New York City, and the annual New York City marathon passes through there. Birders also come to Central Park’s Ramble section during the spring and fall to admire various bird species. There is also a public swimming pool, two skating rinks, and rock climbing available.
If you have children, they will adore Central Park, and there are many attractions geared toward them. There are many playgrounds for your children and tons of large green spaces for them to run in and play. They will also enjoy one of Central Park’s most popular attractions; the Carousel ride, the beloved Children’s Petting Zoo, and Central Park Zoo, which despite its small size holds 1,400 animals from 130 different species. Children will also be awestruck by the Water Exhibit at Belvedere Castle. In the summertime, children can enjoy many activities such as storytelling.
Above all, Central Park provides a sanctuary of nature in the midst of one of the country’s busiest cities. You can spend hours just walking around soaking in the picturesque green landscapes, and incredible flora and fauna the park is known for. You will also enjoy admiring the various ponds and bridges the Park has to offer. Besides walking, you can also explore the park on a horse-drawn carriage ride, pedicab, or bicycle, or go boating and kayaking across the park’s many bodies of water.
Since it’s a public park, access to Central Park is free, but you may have to pay for some of the attractions such as the Carousel, the Zoo, and various other sports activities. It is open every day from 6 am until 1 am. If you get hungry carousing the park, there are tons of concessions and food carts scattered all over Central Park. If you want a sit-down meal, there are also various restaurants serving different cuisines such as the Loeb Boathouse restaurant which overlooks Central Park’s main lake.
While Central Park had a dangerous reputation a few years back, crime has significantly decreased. By following common sense, remaining alert and not visiting the park alone, you can fully enjoy the park with no problem. Also, NYPD and park enforcement officers regularly patrol the park to ensure visitors’ safety and well-being.