Spring is in the air, folks! You can see it, you can feel it and you can definitely hear it. Birds are singing everywhere, the people gather in public to soak up and celebrate the return of sun light, and nature is in blossom. No other season is so up-lifting, so inspiring and carries so much positivity like the beginning of the golden period of the year. That makes it also a fantastic time to travel and enjoy these romantic moments during sweet weekend escapes.
One city, that is particularly beautiful at spring time, is the Big Apple. New York City can be rough and hideous (I mean this literally this time:)) during winter, but when the skies turn blue and the glass and concrete jungle is lightened up by sun rays, the grey and cold metropolis soul awakens to a cheerful and welcoming spectacle.
I find this preeminently thrilling here, since NYC´s reputation of being a cold, heartless and harsh city to live and work in, is being well disproved in the most beautiful way.
Come along with me and experience my most favourite spots for visual enlightenment. Satisfaction guaranteed!
1. The High Line
Situated on closed-down tracks of the New York subway system, this spot is at any time of the year a fantastic retreat to escape the big city life, if only for a moment. There is benches to sit down and relax on, read or just to watch the people pass. Everything without a haste. An oasis of tranquility in the heart of this pulsating metropolis. For further info on opening hours, location, etc, click here.
2. Brooklyn Heights Promenade
The promenade is great to just hang out with a book or your favourite coffee on one of the various benches available. You have an awesome view onto downtown Manhattan and the Wall Street, as well as the Brooklyn Bridge and the Statue of Liberty. I love this place, because it is situated right in a residential area with a very diverse and colorful crowd. Joggers run their errands, old men in grey suits walk their dogs, skateboarders practise their skills and workers hang out on their lunch breaks. It feels very authentic to be there, if you know what I mean.
3. Battery Park
It is one of the classics that New York has to offer and one of the best spots to have “Lady Liberty” and the harbour in sight. I particularly enjoy sitting close to the Bosque Fountain and look onto the water or stroll through the gardens. It is also a great place to combine lunch or dinner with! Delicious Italian cuisine is served at Gigino.
4. Hudson River Waterfront Walkway
For this one, you will have to cross borders to New Jersey, but it is well worth it! The walkway itself is quite long and there are various places to sit and rest at. The most amazing views of whole Manhattan included! Newport at Jersey City is one of my favourites and also easy to reach by PATH. So grab yourself a drink and a little bite at Morton Williams and lean back. You will love it!
5. Riverside Park
Interestingly, this huge park on the Upper West Side is not so well known to New York visitors as the Central Park, which lies only six blocks east. Riverside spreads all the way from 72nd to 129th Street and is widely regarded as one of Manhattan´s most spectacular waterfront parks. Even though you may miss outrageous skyline views from this site, Riverside is great for riding the bicycle or watch New Yorker walk their dogs. The Boat Basin Café inside is a busy and very recommendable spot to grab a sundowner on the patio in the early evenings.
6. Central Park
It is probably the most boring suggestion, but Central Park remains an all-time favourite, especially the part between 73rd and 79th Street. And since it is so fantastic for running, hiking or biking, you have well-deserved a visit to Levain Bakery afterwards. You MUST try the Bomboloncini and the Oatmeal Raisin Scones. They are to die for! If you have spent the whole day lying on the lawn though, ah, screw it, the bakery is a must do.
So pack up your bags, boys and girls, spring is on its way and it would be more than impolite to not celebrate the arrival befittingly.