The biggest green space in Manhattan and one of the best attractions in New York, commonly known as Central Park is renowned for the plethora of entertainment options it has on offer. Irrespective of what season you’re visiting New York, you will always find plenty of fun things to enjoy here. You may even be surprised to learn that some of the best things to do in Central Park take place in the fall and winter.
Locals and tourists here love to frequent one of the best parks in the city for its different walking paths, fountains, lawns, trees, and picnic spots. There are also several major events hosted in Central Park from epic concerts in the summer to theatre performances, and the annual Winter Jam Festival. No matter what time you arrive here, there’s always an excuse to visit Central Park.
If you’re planning a trip anytime soon, don’t forget to check out the 10 Central Park activities that we have highlighted for you to enjoy.
1. Rock the Boat
You can easily take a romantic paddle around the lake or allow someone else to do the work for you with a Venetian gondola ride, which can be taken from Loeb Boathouse. When you’re there, you can take in the majestic views of the lake at the Central Park Boathouse Restaurant as well.
2. Check out the animals at Central Park Zoo
Lovers of animals are going to love the cute critters that can be found at the Tisch Children’s Zoo, which is next to the main zoo. From there, you can get up close and personal with goats and pot-bellied pigs. In the Central Park Zoo, you can enjoy the daily feeding of the sea lions and penguins, and even watch snow monkeys playfully leap between rocks.
3. Walk the many paths
There are 36-acres of winding trails, rocks, and streams here that are waiting to be discovered. It’s also the main bird-watching spot in the city, where you will find some 230 species in the park.
4. Learn about the cherry blossoms
The budding cherry blossom trees in Central Park are one of the prettiest sights you can view during spring in NYC. There are hundreds of trees that bloom along the Reservoir, and Central Park has its very own Cherry Blossom Tour for people who want to learn about the history of the area and where the trees came from.
5. Watch the people in Sheep Meadow
On the warmest days, you will be hard-pressed to find a better spot in all of Manhattan to check out hotties than Sheep Meadow. It is a 15-acre field that is located along the southwestern edge of the park, and you can expect to find scantily clad locals with plenty of Frisbee throwing, and guitar sing-alongs taking place here as well.
6. Check out the Alice in Wonderland Statue
Don’t worry if the kids try climbing all over this bronze statue of Alice and her mates as that is what it’s there for. It’s dedicated to the children of NYC and was commissioned by George Delacorte after his wife passed away. She loved reading the story to their children, and the statues have been explored by little kids ever since 1959.
7. Ice Skate at Wollman Rink
One of the best things about living in NYC is that you wouldn’t ever have to wait for the carnival to come to town. During the warmer weather, you can head over to the Victorian Gardens, where you can enjoy an all-American day of cart rides, performances by jugglers, magicians, and more. When winter arrives, you can hit the ice for some amazing skating and even get the chance to catch a hockey game.
8. Stroll through the Conservatory Garden
You can experience the charms of a European garden without needing to fly to Europe, as this 6-acre garden provides different styles (French, English, and Italian), along with a plethora of fountains, flowers, neatly trimmed hedges, and walkways.
9. Ride the Fake Ponies
You can bob along to organ music on top of one of the Friedsam Memorial Carousel’s 52 saddle ponies. The carousel is in its third incarnation from 1871, and the current version dates back to 1950, where it discovered in a Coney Island trolley terminal. You should expect long waits, popcorn, and hot dogs here.
10. Go to Shakespeare in the Park
Each summer, the Public Theatre provides a beloved NYC tradition and one of the best things to do in Central Park with Shakespeare in the Park. There’s nothing quite like hearing the immortal words of the Bard performed outside in New York, among a backdrop of natural splendor.