With iconic scenes in When Harry Met Sally, Enchanted and Breakfast at Tiffany’s (to name a few), it’s likely that you’ve seen quite a bit of Central Park. But as anyone who has been there will tell you, seeing it in person is an altogether different experience. An oasis of natural beauty and tranquility amidst the hustle and bustle of the downtown area, the Park is undeniably something special. But more than just beautiful, it also offers a wide variety of attractions in its own right. Here are a few of our suggestions of things to do in Central Park.
- Belvedere Castle: a real castle in New York! Now used as a Weather Station, Belvedere Castle is still a great place to visit for Victorian enthusiasts. The castle contains exhibit rooms, and an observation deck (with stunning views) for anyone to enjoy, and “Discovery Kits” (including binoculars, colored pencils and paper) are available to borrow.
- Loeb Boathouse: what could be more grand than renting a rowboat in central park? The Loeb Boathouse offers indoor and outdoor dining, and then afterwards you can take a ride in a gondola or rent a boat (available April to October).
- Strawberry Fields: this spot was a particular favorite of John Lennon while he was living in New York. As such, this area was dedicated to him, complete with a memorial and a black-and-white mosaic featuring his immortal word: “Imagine”.
- Central Park Zoo: maintained by the Wildlife Conservation Society, this zoo cares for more than 130 species of animals. From penguins to snow leopards, the Central Park Zoo is always a favorite destination for those who are enjoying the park.
- Friedsam Memorial Carousel: have your son or daughter with you? You’ll want to get a picture of them riding the famous carousel. Since 1871 this historic attraction has been delighting children of all ages in the park. And while it has had to be rebuilt and updated a few times, the smiles it puts on those who ride it have stood the test of time.
- Conservatory Garden: the only formal garden in Central Park, the Conservatory Garden has been carefully maintained. Known for its calm, quiet atmosphere (runners and bikers are not allowed), this is the perfect place to relax and take in the sights and smells offered by the incredible gardens.
With so much to see and do, it's no wonder that Central Park remains one of the top tourist destinations in the city. But don't take our word for it, come see for yourself!