New York map manhattan

A vast green breathing space in the centre of Manhattan (half a mile wide and two and a half miles long), Central Park is sports field, playground and picnic spot for tens of thousands of city-dwellers. In the 1840s, the poet William Cullen Bryant realized that New York needed more parks for its rapidly expanding population. He launched a campaign to persuade the city to buy the land then wasteland inhabited by squatters beyond the city limits. Frederic Law Olmsted and Calvert Vaux, landscape gardeners, were called upon to design the park. It took 3,000 workers 20 years to complete it. Conceived Matched pair of cyclists catch their breath on Central Park lawn in the English style, the park doesn’t really look man-made. The lake, the forests, the paths and meadows might have been there since time immemorial. The 75.000 trees, flourishing despite the shortage of soil and the abundance of rocks, are home to countless half-tame squirrels.

By day it’s perfectly safe to go walking in the park, at least as far north as 95th Street. But avoid the area in the evenings (unless you’re going to the outdoor summer theatre). The zoo at the southern end of the 7 park (64th Street and Fifth Avenue) is not always very clean, so on hot days it can be pretty smelly, but the kids love it. Behind the zoo is the Mall, a wide tree-lined promenade leading to the Bethesda Fountain on Sundays the scene of an Oriental market. Beyond the ( fountain is a pretty lake where you can hire rowing boats; nearby are statues of Hans Christian Andersen and Alice in Wonderland. Further north. ‘ on a level with the Metropolitan Museum, is Cleopatra’s Needle, a 3,000-year-old obelisk that was a gift from Egypt in the late 19th century.

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