Here's Where to Rest Your Legs After a Long Day in the City
Because New York City has so much to offer, so much to see, and so much to do, by the time you see all of these places, you're probably going to be tired! Don't worry though, as plenty of places in New York offer somewhere to sit down, relax, enjoy the view, and get some peace and quiet. We have put together this list of places so that you can have a few moments to just rest, unwind, and give your weary legs a break from all of that walking.
The heart and lungs of New York City, the famous, expansive, and huge Central Park is an iconic destination in the city featuring a variety of smaller attractions and features within itself. From ball fields and jogging paths to botanical gardens, concert spaces, cafes, ponds, playgrounds, and more, the park offers something for everyone. Don't forget to take a horse-drawn carriage ride through the park - one of the quintessential tourist activities in the city.
New York City, New York
St. Patrick's Cathedral
St. Patrick's Cathedral is a historic Neo-Gothic-style Roman Catholic cathedral which is also a prominent landmark of New York City. Located on the east side of Fifth Avenue between 50th and 51st Streets in Midtown Manhattan, it sits directly across the street from Rockefeller Center, and is a popular place for visitors and locals alike. The building is one of the finest symbols of the Roman Catholic Church in New York City and the entire United States. Built in the 1800's, it is constructed of marble and features a large rose window flanked by two large spires.
625 5th Avenue, NYC, New York, 10035
New York Public Library Main Branch
The Stephen A. Schwarzman Building is the flagship building in the New York Public Library system and a prominent historic landmark in Midtown Manhattan on 5th Avenue. Opened in 1911, it offers four stories of books and reading areas open to the public. The building itself is a work of art and has appeared in numerous films and TV shows.
476 5th Avenue, NYC, New York, 10018
The Rockefeller Center
New York's iconic Rockefeller Center is a must-see for visitors. It is a large complex that includes 19 commercial buildings and spreads out over 22 acres in Midtown Manhattan. There's an observation deck called Top of the Rock that offers beautiful views from a tower that stands 70 floors high. It has been the home of NBC Studios since 1933 and is open for public tours.
The Rockefeller Center is a quintessential destination during the Christmas season when the iconic Christmas tree is lit and the ice skating rink is opened in the plaza.
45 Rockefeller Plaza, New York, NY, 10111
Flatiron Plaza is a triangular pedestrian plaza that offers a great view of the famous Flatiron building. It's also right by Madison Square Park. During the warmer months, this plaza comes to life with live music or other forms of entertainment, but it's a nice place to relax and people watch any time of the year.
Bethesda Terrace & Fountain
In the heart of Central Park sits the Bethesda Fountain and the Terrace which overlooks it along with the lake. This scenic spot has appeared in multiple films and TV shows over the decades, and it's a very popular spot with tourists and locals alike.
Central Park, NYC, New York
African Burial Ground National Monument
African Burial Ground is the oldest and largest known excavated burial ground in North America for both free and enslaved Africans. It protects the historic role slavery played in building New York City.
NYC, New York
This is one of the first two historic buildings to be located on Wall Street. It once served as New York's City Hall and after the American Revolution it was the meeting place of the Congress of the Confederation.
Pine Street, NYC, New York, 10005
This is a one acre elevated park at the World Trade Center.
NYC, New York
Washington Market Park
This urban park in the Tribeca neighborhood has a large playground and community gardens.
308 Greenwich Street, NYC, New York, 10013
This small "vest-pocket" park on E. 51st Street between 2nd & 3rd Ave is a nice spot to relax. While it's small, it features a beautiful waterfall surrounded by shade trees, tables, and benches. Locals use it for a place to escape the office and enjoy the outdoors in the busy city for a lunch break or a quick coffee.
225 East 51st Street, NYC, New York, 10022
This small park is found in the Tribeca neighborhood.
168 Duane Street, NYC, New York, 10013
Irish Hunger Memorial
This memorial and park is dedicated to raising awareness of the Great Irish Famine, also known as "The Great Hunger", during which more than one million people starved to death.
NYC, New York, 10282
The High Line
This popular urban walking trail is located high above the city streets on an old rail line. It's a linear public park that has been lined with plants and trees that are particularly beautiful during the spring months. There are also benches and art work that give the trail a fascinating atmosphere. From the park there are impressive views of the city and access is available at various points along the route.
The High Line, NYC, New York, 100014
Gay Liberation Monument
The Gay Liberation Monument, created by American artist George Segal, is located in Christopher Park along Christopher Street in the West Village.
Christopher Street, 204 West 4th Street, NYC, New York, 10014
Riverside Park 91st Street Garden
The curated garden at 91st Street in Riverside Park was made famous from a final scene in You've Got Mail
starring Tom Hanks and Meg Ryan. Located right by the water, this small but scenic garden hosts a variety of flowers blooming throughout the warmer months.
Riverside Drive at 91st St, New York, New York, 10024
This creative playground inspires kids to use their imagination. At the heart of the playground are foam blocks that kids can use to build structures or control the flow of water. They can even build their own boat for the wading pool. This playground is designed perfectly to get kids working together to come up if fun ideas and engineer their very own projects.
158 John Street at Burling Slip
Cathedral Church of St. John the Divine
This beautiful cathedral hosts concerts and tours in addition to regular church services for locals and visitors alike. With construction beginning in the late 1800's and not completed until after World War II, this cathedral took quite awhile to finish, but it was well worth the effort given the gorgeous interior.
1047 Amsterdam Ave, New York, New York, 10025
Whitney Museum of American Art
This impressive museum relocated in 2015 to the Meatpacking District in Lower Manhattan. It sits at the edge of High Line and has more than 63,000 square feet of space that includes both indoor and outdoor settings. The collection has about 15,000 pieces that represent works from more than 2,000 artists including Alexander Calder, Willem de Kooning, Edward Hopper, and Georgia O'Keeffe.
99 Gansevoort St., Meatpacking District, New York, NY, 10014
Church of St. Mary the Virgin
This gorgeous gothic church is not just grand, but is also finely decorated with artistic pieces. Hosting regular services along with concerts and other events, this is a nice place to visit if you're looking for some solitude or that community feel in the city. From the ceiling to the great windows to the sculptures, this one is worth visiting if you're in the neighborhood.
145 W 46th St, New York, New York, 10036
The Morgan Library & Museum
This institution began as the private library of J. Pierpont Morgan and it was donated to the city. It includes drawings by Michelangelo, Rembrandt, and Picasso. There are three Gutenberg Bibles, and a copy of Frankenstein annotated by Mary Shelley, as well as manuscripts by Dickens, Poe, Twain, Steinbeck, and Wilde. There's also sheet music handwritten by Beethoven and Mozart.
225 Madison Ave, New York, NY, 10016
Church of St. Francis of Assisi
This beautiful Roman Catholic church was built in 1892 and sits in the Garment District, and features architecture from the Gothic Revival style. It also features one of the largest mosaics in the United States, making it worth a visit. Another unique service the church offers is its breadline, which has been active since the Great Depression, feeding the hungry.
135 W 31st St, New York, New York
Brooklyn Bridge Park
Sitting on the edge of the water between DUMBO and Brooklyn Heights, this park offers a number of great facilities and recreational activities. There's a bouldering wall, a roller skating rink, a pop-up pool during the summer months, and bocce courts. This is the perfect park to enjoy a run or a bike ride. The park also offers stunning views of the Manhattan skyline as it meanders along the waterfront, with the most spectacular spot being by Jane's Carousel, between the Brooklyn Bridge and the Manhattan Bridge.
Piggybacking on the Egyptian Art collection found at the Met, this playground offers climbing equipment, slides, swings, and water features that inspire kids of all ages to become explorers and archeologists. This playground, in Central Park, is the perfect place to pass some time before heading out to see more sites in New York City.
Battery Park is most notable for its beautiful views that look out over the water towards the Statue of Liberty. This is a larger park that can offer a quiet retreat from the chaos of the nearby Financial District. But it also serves as the departure point for the ferries to Ellis Island and the Statue of Liberty, so there can be crowds of tourists in certain areas. Street performers are common in the park as well, but be prepared because watching for too long will likely come with a high price tag.
St. Vincent's Triangle Park
This triangular plaza is in the middle of Greenwich Village and is the location of the New York City AIDS Memorial. The park also has beautiful vegetation and plenty of seating where wanderers can rest their weary legs. Whether you want to watch the people passing by or just take a moment to reflect to yourself, this is a nice space to spend some time.
Church of St. Francis Xavier
Located on W. 15th near 6th Avenue, this gorgeous Jesuit church has a Romanesque style. They host regular concerts featuring their choir and handbell ensemble, which is a nice way to spend a relaxing evening away from the hustle of the city.
55 W 15th St, New York, New York, 10011
How much does it cost?
Prices for activities, things to do, and tours range from $12 to $1,300. The average cost for a tour or tickets is $124. A few of the best options are below.
Where to Stay in New York City