NYC – Fall (or any season) Walks in Central Park

As we say farewell to summer and get ready to enjoy the spectacular beauty of fall, we can find the changing leaves along the many paths of Central Park. The Park can also be a place to get refreshed from the sun’s warming rays and is something that is very pleasant and easy to do.

To begin with, I found an article written by Rachel Brown, who described two walks which are very accessible from midtown. Also, I have added my own personal recommendations. Ms. Brown wrote for the CP Conservatory as well as her own blog.
Often, I am asked about the location of specific sites. Sometimes the answer is more confusing than it should be. Below, each walk has highlighted some of the sites that you could visit. It is not a detailed map but, at least, it lets you know what is in the area of your walk.
CENTRAL PARK SOUTHERN SECTION

 

Wein-walk
Wallach Walk

I think it’s best to start your walk from the southwest corner of 59th St. and 5th Ave by the Pulitzer Fountain. It’s easy to find the spot because the statue is located directly in front of the Plaza Hotel’s main entrance. By wandering the winding the pedestrian paths, towards 72nd Street, you will be passing a pond, rocky outcrops, bridges, open fields, and skyline views If you follow the pathways you will end up at 72nd St. and Central Park West

LOWER SECTION Sites include Grand Army Plaza~ The Plaza Hotel~ Central Park Zoo ~The Pond~ The Dairy~ The Mall and Literary Walk~ Bethesda Terrace and Fountain Sheep Meadow~ Strawberry Fields ~The Dakota Apartments

Addition Features 
  • Hallett Nature Sanctuary – Surrounded by the Pond at the southeast corner of Central Park is the four-acre Hallett Nature Sanctuary, a peaceful haven just feet away from some of Central Park’s busiest paths.- East Side from 60th-62nd Streets

  • Sheep Meadow is a  peaceful expanse of green that inspires calm and refreshing thoughts just by looking at the meadow.- West Side from 66th to 69th Streets
  • Umpire Rock is one of the best examples of Central Park’s rich endowment of exposed bedrock, Umpire Rock is likely named for its commanding view of nearby baseball diamonds. Central Park has an unusually rich endowment of exposed, ancient bedrock People love to climb them too) -West Side at 63rd Street

 

CENTRAL PARK MIDDLE SECTION

A second walk focuses on the middle of Central Park, starting in front of the beautiful American Museum of Natural History. You even get to see the pond where Stuart Little raced his sailboat in the children’s movie! Don’t forget to bring along your camera, there are so many awesome photo opportunities in this park. You can start walking from the park entrance directly across the street from the American Museum of Natural History at the intersection of Central Park West and 79th Street and if didn’t do the lower section you could go south and end up at Bethesda Terrace, on the 72nd Street Traverse through Central Park.

MIDDLE  SECTION Sites include: American Museum of Natural History~The Swedish Cottage~Shakespeare Garden~Belvedere Castle~ Turtle Pond~The Delacorte Theatre (Shakespeare in the Park)~The Great Lawn~Cleopatra’s Needle~ The Ramble~The Lake~The Conservatory Waters~Bethesda Terrace

Addition Features
  • Strawberry Fields is a living memorial to the world-famous singer, songwriter and peace activist, West Side between 71st and 74th Streets.
  • The Ramble is a 36-acre “wild garden.”  Central Park’s designers imagined a tranquil spot where visitors could stroll, discover forest gardens rich with plantings, and meander Mid-Park from 73rd to 79th Streets. along the paths. This truly is a place for the urban explorer to escape the city and get utterly lost in nature.
  •  
  • Turtle Pond – Like all of the other water bodies in Central Park, Turtle Pond is man-made, filled with New York City drinking water. It is the home to five species of turtles who live in the Pond year-round. Mid-Park between 79th and 80th Streets.
  • Bow Bridge -The first cast-iron bridge in the Park (and the second oldest in America), the bridge was built between 1859 and 1862. Bow Bridge is named for its graceful shape, reminiscent of the bow of an archer or violinist. Mid-Park at 74th Street west of Bethesda Terrace, connecting Cherry Hill and The Ramble.
  • I have explored many walks in Central Park and I recently published a short article – A pre Fall Walk. It is a brief highlight of specific parts of the park.
I am working on material that will cover the upper part of the park. Most people know that Central Park is big.  Unfortunately, most people don’t know how big it really is because they only explore the southern and middle portions. 

 

Hamilton Grange – uptown from the NYC Broadway Stage -Hamilton Heights

Updated  July 2018 – I added additional informaion at the end in case, you would like to explore the area.

hamilton Grange (6)

Nice place to check out if you’re a history buff and you enjoy exploring the lesser explored areas of the city the Hamilton Grange House is an interesting, easy, place to visit. The house and tour are free. They offer a few tours throughout the day and there’s a small self-guided exhibit and video you can see as well. There are only a handful of original pieces in the house. The house is not exactly the way it looked, but you do get a sense of where Hamilton spent some of his last years.

You cannot miss the house as it sits precariously positioned on a hill – It is the third place the building has been moved to

You enter into the basement where the kitchen/servants quarters would have been (obviously the basement is not original to the house) and this takes you into the visitors center/small gift shop where the rangers hang out.

After touring these three rooms you can visit the first floor which has been decorated in period era furnishings.  I say period era because there are only two items in the house which were directly owned by Hamilton.  Everything else is the NPS’s best guess.

Updated on July 30, 2018

While I enjoyed the visit, it may not be for everyone. The area is away from other popular historic sites. the area streets are somewhat steep and can be difficult walking for some. The Grange is a very basic structure and inside there were several replica and period pieces as well as a few original items. To better enjoy your visit,  I suggest adding a walk around City College(immediately above the Grange)  to see the unique buildings and gargoyles. 

I added an article from amNY.com that gives a newer look at this area

Hamilton Heights is full of historic buildings of all types. St. Luke’s’ Episcopal Church, which saved the Grange in 1889, is still here. Hamilton Terrace is an out-of-the way enclave, running one block between West 141st and West 144th and Like Strivers Row and Convent Avenue, it has single-family rowhouses in excellent condition.

Also, it is worth it to walk around the corner to St Luke’s church to see the Alexander Hamilton statue…

For me, I enjoyed my visit to this summer home of Alexander Hamilton. He was a vital part of our nation’s history and it is nice to know that his heritage has been preserved.

 

hamilton Grange (49)

 

 

 Links of Interest:

City College

 Sylvan Terrace

Hamilton Historic District

NYC – Walking -W70th Street to W58th Street -Riverside Drive – updated 2018

July 2018

I recently revisited this area and found it a very poplar place for walkers, joggers and bicyclists. The Hudson River Park is clean and there are many several piers along the way for your enjoyment of the Hudson river. I note that there are clean bathrooms along the way and  two places for eating -79th Street and 69th Street.

 

79th Street Boat Basin Restaurant.

Great view, from the restaurant, of The George Washington Bridge.

 

I looked south at the horizon and immediately was taken by the tall glass-enclosed buildings, a destination at last.

 

 

 

 

I continued on up the path to Riverside Drive

 

 

This area is mostly high rise apartments/condos and is all building.At the westernmost end, beyond Central Park .

 

I did find a park amongst them and there were plenty of pre-schools along the way so I imagine quite a few people live in this area.

 

Ended the walk with a drink

NYC – Talking Statues

Came across this and thought it would be of interest to my readers.

From the web:

“Talking Statues is an original Danish concept giving voices to statues through modern technology for the first time in the world. It became a success and later was realized in the cities of Helsinki, London, San Diego, Berlin, Chicago etc. The project in New York is now running. ”

Learn about the details here

NYC – A block on Elizabeth Street (Little Italy)

This blog contains three parts – The Park, The Shops & Galleries and Trivia 

The Park

There is a small park – Elizabeth Street Gardens – on Elizabeth Street , between Prince & Spring streets (Little Italy) that is very unusual. While not open all the time it is a great place to have lunch (bring your own) or picnic or sit in the shade. You will be surrounded by statuary of all kinds. Oh by the way, it is free. Check here for when open.

 

23.gallery.sphinx1-506x380
The Elizabeth Street Gallery, open to the public in a park like setting, contains a variety of ornamental stonework, some of it depicting mythological figures

 

IMG_1126

 

 

IMG_1136

 

Shops and Galleries

Some people think that the boundary between Chinatown and SoHo is mid-block between Kenmare and Spring,  Today, you can see a noticeable upscale look to galleries and shops north of Kenmare.

As I walked up Elizabeth Street I wondered why anyone would walk  north on this street. Mott Street its Parallel neighbor seems to get more pedestrian traffic. I am glad I did though, These  two blocks just South of Houston seems to be quite alive and quite trendy.

47.musket.room_
Carved, painted and lettered shingle signs that hang over the sidewalk are becoming popular in the neighborhoods where the hip people go,

 

 galleries, shops and restaurants on street level.

Trivia

 

IMG_1165

Elizabeth and Hester may be the only intersection in Manhattan where both streets are women’s first names, though Hester isn’t used much anymore.

NYC – Public Art

New York City is full of art. Indeed, you don’t even need to step inside a museum to encounter masterpieces.   But come summer the city becomes a canvas for all sorts of new, engaging art, with temporary installations sprouting everywhere from the Bronx to Staten Island. These works and others will only be up a few months so the  artists can take more risks, coming up with some unorthodox pieces. The majority of this blog comes from Metro.us and from Central Park Web sites.

 

A Short List of Manhattan Public Art

If interested in more then google “Public Art NYC”.

goliath-copy.jpeg
Rica Takashima, El Barrio Comes in All Colors, Shapes and Sizes, Flow.15 Art and Music at Randall’s Island May 2015 to November 2015 Randall’s Island Park, Manhattan

 

Petros Chrisostomou, Sky Feather June 11, 2015 to June 10, 2016 Riverside Park, Manhattan
Petros Chrisostomou, Sky Feather
June 11, 2015 to June 10, 2016
Riverside Park, Manhattan

 

 

Art Students League, Model to Monument (M2M) June 11, 2015 to May 15, 2016 Riverside Park South, Manhattan
Art Students League, Model to Monument (M2M)
June 11, 2015 to May 15, 2016
Riverside Park South, Manhattan

 

Jorge Luis Rodriguez, Oracle of the Past, Present and Future June 6, 2015 to May 1, 2016 Tompkins Square Park, Manhattan
Jorge Luis Rodriguez, Oracle of the Past, Present and Future
June 6, 2015 to May 1, 2016
Tompkins Square Park, Manhattan

 

Rashid Johnson, Blocks May 2015 to March 2016 The High Lin
Rashid Johnson, Blocks
May 2015 to March 2016
The High Lin

 

Nicholas Fraser, All Consuming, Flow.15 Art and Music at Randall's Island May 2015 to November 2015 Randall's Island Park, Manhattane, Manhattan
Nicholas Fraser, All Consuming, Flow.15 Art and Music at Randall’s Island
May 2015 to November 2015
Randall’s Island Park, Manhattan

 

Sharon Ma, hello, Flow.15 Art and Music at Randall's Island May 2015 to November 2015 Randall's Island Park, Manhattan14 Sculptors, Oh Sit! 14 Sculptors Consider the Chair June 6, 2015 to November 8, 2015 Highbridge Park, Manhattan

14 Sculptors, Oh Sit! 14 Sculptors Consider the Chair
June 6, 2015 to November 8, 2015
Highbridge Park, Manhattan

 

Sharon Ma, hello, Flow.15 Art and Music at Randall's Island May 2015 to November 2015
Sharon Ma, hello, Flow.15 Art and Music at Randall’s Island
May 2015 to November 2015

 

 

panorama-kris-martin-altar-in-high-line-lg-1.jpeg
Various Artists, Panorama April 23, 2015 to March 2016 The High Line, Manhattan

 

teresita-fernandez-fata-morgana-lg.jpeg
Teresita Fernandez, Fata Morgana June 1, 2015 to Winter 2015/16 Madison Square Park, Manhattan

 

 

Rica-4-(March-Gersh).jpeg
Rica Takashima, El Barrio Comes in All Colors, Shapes and Sizes, Flow.15 Art and Music at Randall’s Island May 2015 to November 2015 Randall’s Island Park, Manhattan

 

Trouve-copy (1).jpeg
Tatiana Trouve, Desire Lines March 3, 2015 to August 30, 2015 Doris C. Freedman Plaza Central Park, Manhattan

NYC _ Trivia – 2015 addition

How many lakes in Central Park?

Actually lakes are called waterbodies, as they are man-made. Answer and more below.

 

How Many” Things Do You Know About Central Park?
1. How many bodies of water are there?
2. How many benches?
3. How many bridges?
4. How many sports fields?
5. How many movies have featured Central Park?
6. How many tennis courts?
7. How many playgrounds?
8. How many trees?
9. How many horses in the Freidman Carousel?
10. How many restaurants?
11. What is the oldest structure in Central Park?
12. For easy access to Central Park where’s the best place to stay?
Trivia Answers:

Note: Tavern on the Green has been renovated but is open.