One of the highlights from my trip to New York was the beautiful Central Park! There is so much to do, so this is my little map to the top spots I would recommend:
One of the best things to do in Central Park is to just chill out and have a picnic. If you just want to walk a few minutes (roughly 5 minutes) the best spot is Sheep Meadow, you can see the skyscrapers in the background but also it is slightly less manic than the initial grassy spots of the park. Then, because you can’t chill in a park without a picnic right? For the most incredible picnic food, the best discovery was Whole Foods Supermarket on 10 Columbus Circle, in the basement of the shopping centre. They have big, big old fresh sandwiches, hot food, stone baked pizzas, make-your-own salad boxes, olives, meats, cheese, breads, beer, fruit, sushi (blerg), juices and fresh coffee!! Seriously, the best selection ever. So pop there first, grab your picnic must-haves and then get to Sheep Meadow – done.
For bike rides, there are a lot of people who hire bikes out for the day or by the hour. On 57th street we found a bike hire that has bikes with baskets, and I do love a good basket!! It was roughly $12 per hour and $15 for two hours, which isn’t too bad! Central Park has a one-way system around the park so you can do the whole circuit but it takes roughly an hour to complete – but well worth it. The only hill was at the top of the park, and being less than fit it was slightly tough on the legs buuuut then you get to go downhill!!
For a drink and food, “The Loab Boathouse” is right on the lake – which has turtles!! It is on the pricier side but there is a grill/cafe behind the restaurant that has really good chips, hot dogs and salads that won’t break the bank! Plus, they give you wine in plastic cups. Then the “Tavern of the Green” is a stunning restaurant and bar with fairy lights and cocktails right by Sheep Meadow, ideal for sunset drinks. I never ate there, but from what I saw it has big armchairs, giant windows, fancy waiters and a bar with unicorns… how bloomin romantic. Lastly, if you want to stop off for food close to the park without staying within the park itself, then “Patsy’s Pizza” (61 W 74th St) has the biggest pizzas and you can pick all the toppings yourself. Yum yum yum.
Other things to see include the Alice in Wonderland statue, ‘The Mall’ and Belvedere castle which are all well worth the walk to find. For me, the Alice in Wonderland statue was slightly hard to find as it’s not as well signposted, so I recommend following signs to the Model Boat Sailing pond which is opposite Turtle Lake (sometimes referred to as just ‘the lake’) and it is right there! Plus around the Turtle Lake there are so many awesome sights, like the Bow Bridge and Bethesda Fountain. Just spend the day ambling around and you are guaranteed to find a photo spot every 10 minutes!!