Upicnic | Best NYC Picnic Spots: Great Hill

Best NYC Picnic Spots: Great Hill

BY KATE
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(0) Comment
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7/5/2016

Central Park’s hidden gems don’t lie within walking distance from midtown. Rather, they’re nestled away uptown, in the quieter, less populated areas. Between W 103rd and W 107th streets is Great Hill. Between its scenic properties and classic New York City history, the Great Hill is enchanting.  During the Revolutionary War, the Great Hill was considered one of the best lookout places for incoming attacks (this out-history’s any other spot). Later on, in the early twentieth century, this meadow was used as a carriage concourse and over time was slowly abandoned and no longer utilized for its space. Now, the oval space has been converted to a recreational area with picnic tables, wrapped around by a track. Great Hill expands to more than just this oval area, and breaks off into more private nooks that create the best atmosphere for picnics.

Picnic here if you’re looking for: A group spot. Great Hill is the perfect spot for a group get-together. Not only is its shape inviting to picnics (cue picnic tables), it’s also close to many of Central Park’s historical attractions (see below). Great Hill is not a designated quiet zone, so you know the drill: have fun, but be respectful of your picnic neighbors.

What’s nearby: Not only does this spot offer the best picnic perks, but it’s conveniently located too. Great Hill is a fifteen minute walk from Lasker Rink and Pool, the Harlem Meer, the Loch (I highly recommend this one), Conservatory Garden Center Fountain, the infamous Vanderbilt Gate and the North Woods (this one’s if you’re looking for some version of rough terrain).

How to get there: Take the B or C train to 103rd Street and Central Park West!

Closest bathroom?  There's a bathroom right on top of the hill, which is open during the warm season, but close in winter. If you are looking for other options, to the East of the Great Hill is Lasker Rink, but beware that the path towards the bathrooms is a little tricky, so stay on Google Maps for this one. There’s also a bathroom to the North, by the 110th bridge.

Rules you should know about: Not a designated quiet zone, so go bananas! The Great Hill is open for use from dusk til dawn, but closes for the winter.

As always, happy picnicking!

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