Skip to content

Parks and nature in New York

Top parks

Park
“A walk, peddle, or carriage ride through the crisscrossing pathways of Central Park is a must-do on anyone's New York City itinerary. In winter, you can even lace up your skates and glide across Wollman Rink. This huge park in the city center, a half-mile wide and 2.5 miles long, is one of the things that makes New York such a beautiful and livable city. Besides being a great place to experience a little nature, Central Park has many attractions within its borders, and most of them are free, making it one of the few cheap things to do in NYC. Some of the most popular places to visit include the Belvedere Castle, Strawberry Fields, the Central Park Zoo, and the Lake. If you are exploring the park on your own, start by picking up a map at one of the visitor centers and plot your routing.”
  • 1149 locals recommend
Park
“Prospect Park Audubon Center is a beautiful lush green garden ideal for birding, fishing, horse- riding, a leisure walk or spending some quality time with your family. It's extremely peaceful and is the most appropriate place for you to relax, just like the Central Park! ”
  • 1503 locals recommend
Park
“This is a great area to walk and see the city skyline! It’s a old railroad that they converted to to a public park! This place is usually bustling with both tourists and locals! It’s such a beautiful place to visit and walk! ”
  • 1050 locals recommend
Botanical Garden
“Beautiful botanic garden next to the museum and the park. Features include a japanese garden, cherry tree esplanade, rose garden, shakepeare garden, conservatory garden, lily ponds, native garden and a farming garden. Perfect place to get lost for hours. ”
  • 822 locals recommend
Monument / Landmark
“The most famous monument in NYC that’s so iconic. Tip: There are special boat trips that take you to the island for a stop over, but you also can go past it for free on the Staten Island ferry. ”
  • 287 locals recommend
Park
“The hippies who famously turned up and tuned out in Washington Square Park are still there in spirit, and indeed often in person. In warmer months the park—which was once a potter’s field—is one of the best people-watching spots in the city, hummings with musicians and street artists, while skateboarders clatter near the base of the iconic 1895 Washington Arch (a modest replica of Paris’s Arc de Triomphe). Plus, kids can splash in the area's new fountain on sweltering days.”
  • 433 locals recommend
Park
“I lay out here in the summers. People watching by day and star gazing by night. Beautiful. You can have a picnic, take a boat ride, have a meal, sun bathe, cycle, or just read a novel. ”
  • 463 locals recommend
State / Provincial Park
“Beautiful view to Manhattan, ferry to the Statue of Liberty are also available. ”
  • 168 locals recommend

Playgrounds

Park
“Green space with a farmer's market + athletic facilities. Good for a picnic.”
  • 425 locals recommend
Park
“Need a place to jog? Play some basketball? Let your pup off leash? This park is a little bit of a walk, but it's worth it, as it is the best park in the area. Have you seen the Netflix show "It's Bruno!"? They frequent this park. There's also a bunch of great places to eat, cool boutiques, and vintage shops nearby. ”
  • 157 locals recommend
Park
“This is a larger park, which provides views of the East River and also access to the East River Bike Path, for longer river walks.”
  • 122 locals recommend
Park
“A must see if you are walking the waterfront it Hoboken. Pier C juts into the Hudson River and thought it's small, offers interesting terrain, and fabulous views of NYC. There's also a playground built into the landscape for kids to play. ”
  • 16 locals recommend
Playground
“Next to a children's museum, this tree-lined space has ball courts, walking paths & a playground.”
  • 30 locals recommend
Park
“a nice waterfront park with lots of flowers and trees, and a large kids play ground for kids of all ages.”
  • 9 locals recommend
Park
“Beautiful, clean park great for walks and relaxing. There’s also events that take place here (drive-in movie, boat rides etc)”
  • 8 locals recommend
Playground
“A tiny little wisp of a park, but probably my favorite park in the city (and I live around the corner from the much more grandiose Brooklyn Bridge Park). I'll bring along a book to read, and sometimes I do, but it's a better place for people watching. Grab a cuppa from the coffee shop on the corner, Tekoa. ”
  • 18 locals recommend

Beaches

Beach
“I have always love going to ROCKAWAY beach even tho I don’t know how to swim. Swimmer & non swimmer please do be aware there are strong ripe currents at this beach. I love the boardwalk, the parks and courts ( basketball and handball). Summer Friday night there is a live local band. ”
  • 58 locals recommend
Beach
“Has a lively queer section, but also an area that has more families. It's one of the more popular beaches with locals.”
  • 28 locals recommend
Park
“a nice waterfront park with lots of flowers and trees, and a large kids play ground for kids of all ages.”
  • 9 locals recommend
Park
“This is an amazing park you can take a quick uber to or if you are up for a 30 minute walk. It is huge, stunning and includes a harbor of boats, fishing, a beach to swim, and other activities throughout. ”
  • 6 locals recommend
Beach
“BEACH best beach for sunny weekends one hour train and 30 minutes bus BEST”
  • 4 locals recommend
Beach
“Just within half an hour drive is a 100,000 sq ft castle on Long Island. Parking is $15 for a day. Check out the website on time and tours. There are also trails within the area. ”
  • 2 locals recommend
Surf Spot
“Step outside your front door and learn to surf at any of the three surf schools in Rockaway Beach. Bring the kids!”
  • 8 locals recommend
Beach
“When you planned your trip to New York City you probably didn’t contemplate being able to dip your toes into the East River! At Pebble Beach, you can walk down to the water, watch it lap up against the land and take a pebble for a souvenir. The water is clean enough that the Brooklyn Bridge Boathouse sponsors a free kayaking program every summer where you can get 20 minutes free of kayak time and get out into the river, It is really an unusual experience that not many travelers know about. It is NOT something you will forget. Bring a waterproof camera!”
  • 4 locals recommend

Trails

Park
“My most favorite place in the whole world. Go there for sunset, go there for the run. It's stunning, it's peaceful, it's where the real New York life is. ”
  • 86 locals recommend
Park
“77 ft.-high waterfall with a viewing bridge & a welcome center with industrial heritage exhibits. Its a Public Park, you just go in, don't have to pay!! :) ”
  • 3 locals recommend
Park
“Hudson River Park is a waterside park on the North River, and is the part of the Manhattan Waterfront Greenway that extends from 59th Street south to Battery Park in the New York City borough of Manhattan. It is a joint state and city collaboration, but is organized as a New York State public-benefit corporation. Riding a bicycle along the Hudson River is my favorite, It’s so beautiful, scenic and calm. You’re surrounded by everyone doing the same thing and sharing that space.”
  • 5 locals recommend
Trail
“Amazing promenade in Brooklyn Heights that has great views of the Manhattan skyline!”
  • 13 locals recommend
Beach
“Just within half an hour drive is a 100,000 sq ft castle on Long Island. Parking is $15 for a day. Check out the website on time and tours. There are also trails within the area. ”
  • 2 locals recommend
Park
“Great to lay out on a hot summer day and catch some rays while people watching.”
  • 5 locals recommend
Trail
“The Ramble - My favorite section of Central Park. You’ll get lost. Find the hidden gazebo.”
  • 9 locals recommend
Lake
“This urban wildlife preserve hosts numerous animal and plant species not otherwise found in an urban environment: open to visit in summer. ”
  • 2 locals recommend
0