No stranger to grand creations, New York City is home to some of the biggest and most beautiful public parks in the world. Lush greenery, athletic fields, even playhouses, carousels, and historic domiciles can all be found in the verdant borders of the city's natural monuments.
New York's "flagship" park of 843 acres, 26,000 trees, and almost 9,000 benches has had a rather checkered history. Planning began around 1868, when city commissioners chose the "Greensward Plan" developed by Frederick Law Olmsted and Calvert Vaux. In the ensuing decades of build...59th to 110th Streets
Every visitor to New York has heard about Central Park, but Brooklyn's massive Prospect Park rightfully deserves its fame. Featuring fantastic events, green spaces, and the famous Grand Army Plaza arch at the main entrance to the Park, built in 1892, the "Jewel of Brooklyn" recei...Grand Army Plaza to Parkside Ave
From the City of New York/Parks & Recreation Historical Signs Program: Madison Square Park is named for James Madison (1751-1836), a Virginian who was the fourth President of the United States (1809-17). Madison earned the title “father of the Constitution,” from his peers in ...Fifth and Madison Aves. (Between 23rd and 26th Sts.)
In the beginning of the 1930s, the 1,255-acre site which is now Flushing Meadows-Corona Park was still just a swampy marshland with little prospect for development. It was not until New York City’s powerful parks commissioner, Robert Moses, envisioned reclaiming the site for the ...Flushing Meadows Corona Park
Bronx Park, like the surrounding borough and the river that runs through it, is named for the 17th century Swedish sea captain who settled the area, Jonas Bronck (1600-1643). Bronck (sometimes also spelled Bronk) was born in Sweden, learned navigation and became a sea captain in ...
From the City of New York/Parks & Recreation Historical Signs Program: Washington Square Park is named for George Washington (1732-1799), who served as Commander-in-Chief of the Continental Army during the Revolutionary War and presided over the Constitutional Convention in Ph...W. 4th St. (Between University Pl. and MacDougal St.)
Summer attractions include Bryant Park Film Festival. As far back as 1686, New York’s colonial governor Thomas Dongan designated as public property the land that is now Bryant Park. Officially dedicated in 1842, it was not until New York City’s powerful parks commissioner, Ro...40th Street at Sixth Avenue
In 1639, the Dutch West India Company purchased most of today's Bronx County from the local Natives and, in 1646, sold it to Holland native Adrian Van der Donck. Van der Donck, New Netherlands' first lawyer, barely lived on his new homestead, having been drawn into a lengthy lega...
Located at the southernmost tip of Manhattan next to the Staten Island Ferry Terminal, Battery Park is where the first Dutch settlers landed in 1623 and where a "battery" of cannons was erected to defend what was then called New Amsterdam. Since that time, the area has been known...Battery Park
Inwood Hill Park contains the last natural forest and salt marsh in Manhattan. It is unclear how the park received its present name. Before becoming parkland in 1916, it was known during the Colonial and post-Revolutionary War period as Cock or Cox Hill. The name could be a varia...
Riverside Park spans the Manhattan coastline along the Hudson River from 68th to 155th Street. Four miles long and an eighth of a mile wide, Riverside competes with the Hudson River Park for title to the narrowest regional park in New York City. Riverside Park at Pier 1 (70th ...Upper West Side Adjacent Hudson River (68th to 155th Street)
Empire-Fulton Ferry State Park, adjacent to the forthcoming mammoth Brooklyn Bridge Park, is a nine-acre waterfront park along the East River in Brooklyn located between the historic Manhattan and Brooklyn Bridges. With its sprawling lawn and riverfront boardwalk, Empire Fulton F...26 New Dock St.
In 1998, the Hudson River Park Act officially created this park, reserving extensive portions of the waterfront exclusively for public recreation, and significantly limiting the types and locations of commercial activities. The Act also designated the river itself an estuarine sa...Battery Park City to 59th Street along the Hudson River
This 57-acre park commands views of the Brooklyn waterfront and stretches from the terribly hip Lower East Side to the East Village. The park offers tennis courts, baseball fields, and running tracks, as well as a few other athletic amenities.FDR Drive (between Montgomery and 12th Streets)