Your Destination Guide to New York City

Destination Guide NYC - Your Destination Guide to New York, NY

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Parks and Squares

Parks and Squares
Parks and Squares

© Ed Yourdon

Need some respite from the concrete jungle? Keep your eye out for the grassy plots that pepper the city. You'll find not only a place to relax, but New York's parks and squares are known for hosting concerts, film screenings and markets throughout the year.

New York City | Parks and Squares

Battery Park
  • Battery Park
  • Located at the very southern tip of Manhattan and overlooking the harbor and the Hudson River, Battery Park is sometimes called "the emerald doorstep of the metropolis." Battery Park earned its name when cannons were first installed to protect the harbor in 1683.
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Bryant Park
  • Bryant Park
  • Bryant Park is not a typical park. It is not a natural expanse of grass and gardens, and at just over nine acres, the privately-managed public park has just one lawn surrounded by concrete.
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Central Park
  • Central Park
  • Now seemingly as natural as the Hudson River, Central Park's 843 acres were not always indigenous to Manhattan; the park was actually designed and constructed over the course of 15 years, using 500,000 cubic feet of topsoil from New Jersey.
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Columbus Circle
  • Columbus Circle
  • Broadway, Central Park West, Central Park South, and Eighth Avenue all intersect at the oldest traffic circle in the country.
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Flushing Meadows Corona Park
  • Flushing Meadows Corona Park
  • Once a swamp and ash dumpsite, Flushing Meadows Corona Park is now the largest park in Queens and the second-largest in the City of New York, after Pelham Bay Park in The Bronx.
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Gramercy Park
  • Gramercy Park
  • Don't be scared off by iron fences and locked gates – Gramercy Park is not as inaccessible as it seems. As the last private park in New York City, Gramercy Park remains an elite locale, even to those who live just one block from the square.
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High Line Park
  • High Line Park
  • Lush gardens with high grasses and pink flowers line the walkway. Photographers are everywhere, capturing shots of the abundant greenery and the Hudson River. Tourists stroll along the path, or sit contently on park benches.
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Madison Square Park
  • Madison Square Park
  • Sharing a name with New York's legendary sports arena, Madison Square Park has become one of the city's well-known public gathering spaces.
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Prospect Park
  • Prospect Park
  • At a vast 585 acres, Prospect Park is a natural oasis in the middle of New York City's most populous borough. The Brooklyn landmark has everything you'd want in a park and more: playgrounds, baseball fields, sprawling lawns, duck ponds, performance spaces, even forests and waterfalls.
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Riverside Park
  • Riverside Park
  • It may be narrow, but Riverside Park's coastline expanse is anything but lacking. The first design and construction of the park by Frederick Law Olmsted (co-designer of Central and Prospect...
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Socrates Sculpture Park
  • Socrates Sculpture Park
  • At the confluence of the Harlem and East Rivers, Socrates Sculpture Park overlooks the narrow inlet between Astoria and Wards Island, known by the locals as Hell's Gate for its dangerous tides.
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Times Square
  • Times Square
  • From MTV's Total Request Live to movies like King Kong and Vanilla Sky, clips and images of Times Square are everywhere. Given its name — based on the Times Building in 1904, former home of The New York Times — Times Square got off to a good start in its bid to become a cultural icon.
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Union Square
  • Union Square
  • Watch street performers, admire local artwork, and sort through colorful fruits and vegetables at produce stands. Historic Union Square is crowded with people rushing down into the subway station or weaving throughout the restaurants and stores that line the perimeter.
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Washington Square Park
  • Washington Square Park
  • A playground filled with rollicking children, picnic tables crammed with iPod-equipped NYU students gazing into laptop screens, benches lined with business people gobbling sandwiches and yammering...
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