Bryant Park is one of the most famous parks in New York and is also one of the most loved by tourists and New Yorkers. Smaller than Central Park and Battery Park, this green oasis, thanks to its central location, is known as Manhattan's Town Square. And like any self-respecting main square, the activities it offers follow one another incessantly in every season of the year: spring, summer, autumn or winter ... whatever season it is, do not miss the opportunity to visit Bryant Park!
- Bryant Park: general information
- Where is it and how to get there
- Tickets and Opening Hours
- Why visit and what to see
- What can you see from Bryant Park?
- Where to sleep in the area
Bryant Park: general information
The large lawn, the trees around the park, the skyscrapers that serve as a corollary, numerous places for outdoor dining and many free activities are the factors that make this park one of the most popular New York.
Despite being in the center of some of the most important and busy streets in Manhattan, Bryant Park is perfect if you want to relax a bit on one of its benches, lie down calmly on the lawn to admire the skyscrapers or have a bite with friends in one of the many receptive points present.
The history of the park is particular and deserves to be told. It was established in 1823 as a cemetery for the destitute and, when the decision was made to move the graves to Wards Island in 1840, the area was cleared.
It officially became a city park in 1847. The name Bryant Park recalls the famous William Cullen Bryant, a New York Post reporter who lived between 1794 and 1878, renowned for his fight against slavery. A few years after his death, in 1884, his name was given to this park.
In the seventies, unfortunately, Bryant Park became famous as an area for dealing and crime, so much so that it was decided to close it in 1989. With an important redevelopment project, the installation of two pavilions to house restaurants and four concessions for kiosks , the park reopened in 1992 and has since become a perfect place for families with children, workers during their lunch break and as a meeting point for friends and colleagues.
Where is it and how to get there
Bryant Park is located in the heart of New York. It extends between Fifth Avenue and Sixth Avenue and between 40th and 42nd Street. Times Square is a 5-minute walk away, as is the Chrysler Building and Grand Central Station.
The area is easily accessible by public transport. You can take the metro B, D, F o M and get off at 42nd Street / Bryant Park or the line 7 and get off at Fifth Avenue / Bryant Park. For more information on how to use the New York subway, I suggest you read our article about it.
Tickets and Opening Hours
Bryant Park is free and you can visit it at the following times:
- in January and February from 7:00 to 22:00 from Monday to Thursday and from 7:00 to 23:00 on Friday, Saturday and Sunday;
- from March to May and from September to November from 7:00 to 22:00 every day;
- June, July and August from 7:00 to 23:00 every day;
- in December from 7:00 to 23:00 from Monday to Thursday and from 7:00 to 23:30 on Friday, Saturday and Sunday.
On the evening of December 31, the park closes early.
Why visit and what to see
Bryant Park offers various well-kept areas: the Library Terrace with its iconic stone lions, theUpper Terrace with the bronze busts of Bryant and the American poet Gertrude Stein, the north side with the statue of the philanthropist and businessman William Earl Dodge, the Fountain Terrace with the beautiful fountain in pink granite. In the park you will also find the statue of Goethe, the first Brazilian Prime Minister José Bonifacio de Andrada e Silva and the Mexican independence hero Benito Juarez.
The best times of the year to visit the park are spring, summer and autumn to be able to lie down on the grass, enjoy the view of the beautiful flowers in the flower beds and participate in free activities and payment proposals: from outdoor cinema to yoga classes, from board game competitions to concerts. The evenings of open-air cinema are well known: screenings which usually take place on Mondays in August and which are completely free.
But in winter the park takes on a whole other charm thanks to Winter village: a huge Christmas tree, markets, kiosks to eat or drink hot, a large skating rink and Cozy Igloos. In fact, in Bryant Park you will find theNew York's only free skating rink: you will need to bring your skates and a backpack to keep your shoes. Otherwise you can rent the suitable equipment and you will have no limits on the ice!
If you don't like skating, but you like the atmosphere you can rent one Cozy Igloo: a real transparent igloo that can accommodate up to 8 people where you can sip a hot chocolate or a nice glass of wine accompanied by fries, cheese or Bavarian pretzels. Depending on the requested menu (Family or Adults) the price ranges from $ 200 to $ 250 for 1-4 people and from $ 400 to $ 500 for 4-8 people.
What can you see from Bryant Park?
From Bryant Park you have a splendid view of some historic skyscrapers that have made Manhattan famous around the world… but which skyscrapers are visible from the park?
On the side of the 42nd Street there are 500 Fifth Avenue with 60 floors in Art Deco style built in 1930 by the same architects of the Empire State Building, the Salmon Tower of 1926-1927 with bas-reliefs at the entrance representing the months of the year and hosting some areas of the New York University, the WR Grace Building in travertine and glass and the Bryant Park Building.
On the side of the 6th Avenue there's One Bryant Tower, a tall glass building built in 2010 and also known as the Bank of America Tower, 1095 Avenue of the Americas, and the early XNUMXs Bryant Park Studio Building.
The very special black brick skyscraper with gold decorations on the 40th Street is the American Radiator Building of 1923.
On the Fifth Avenue you will find a beautiful early twentieth century building, the Knox Hat Building, which houses a historic hat shop that has had our Enrico Caruso, Franklin Delano Roosevelt and John D. Rockefeller among its customers. On this side you will also find the huge Beaux-Arts style building of the New York Public Library, the largest marble structure built in the United States and inaugurated in 1902. The library, however, was inaugurated in 1911 and is undoubtedly worth a visit.
Where to sleep in the area
The Times Square and Broadway area is certainly one of the most popular areas to sleep in New York with a wide choice of accommodations. You can stroll among the skyscrapers and walk to the main attractions of Manhattan and with the subway you can also easily reach other areas of New York.
I suggest you take a look at our article to find out the best hotels in this area of the city and also in other neighborhoods.
Our tips on where to sleep in New York