Central Park is located between the Upper West and Upper East Sides of Manhattan. It is one of the largest parks on the territory of NYC. It is also world-famous because of the many films shot there. You can go to Central Park for a walk, picnic, or just to sit peacefully on a bench near the lake. Central Park also offers you a great variety of sports activities to practice. Here are some suggestions to sports enthusiasts:
Biking is a cult amongst the Central Park sports activities. It is a great idea to explore the park on a bike. Thus you can see all of the attractions in a short amount of time. You can choose to ride on flat terrain or climb up on a hill to see the park from above. There are 3 special routes for bikers – the longest is 6,1 miles. If you do not have a bike, there is a place where you can rent one from. There are organized bike tours for tourists. An expert guides the group through significant landmarks and attractions.
Lasker Pool is the only place where you can go swimming in Central Park. It is located between 106th and 108th Streets. The entrance to the pool is free so it is full during the hot summer days. You can even receive free swimming lessons there. Children can participate in special Learn to Swim lessons. There is a free Lap Swim Program for adults. There are two pools – a wading and an Olympic. Both are open for visitors. During the winter Lasker Pool turns into Lasker Rink. You can go ice-skating there or sign up for hockey classes and skating lessons.
Bouldering is an alternative of rock climbing, but boulders climb challenging rocks under 10 feet in height. That makes it possible to practice bouldering in the city and Central Park offers two terrains suitable for these climbing enthusiasts. Worthless Boulder is located near 110th Street and it is suitable for more experienced boulders because of its tougher routes. Rat Rock is located near the Wollman Rink. It is appropriate for beginners and there you can always meet some experts who will be happy to help you overcome the difficult routes.
Central Park has many paths with different levels of difficulty for running people. You can run on flat terrain along the lake or choose tougher hilly terrain. Cars are not allowed in the park, so you can run undisturbed but sharing the alleys with bikers and skaters. The full loop around Central Park is 6,1 miles but there are also shorter loops. If you do not like running alone, you can join a running group – plenty of running events are held in the park. Even the big New York Marathon crosses Central Park every year. There are also organized running tours and classes.
Basketball is one of the favorite games of New Yorkers. There are two spots in Central Park where you can play basketball – the Great Lawn and the North Meadow Recreation Center. The Great Lawn includes several basketball and baseball courts. It also has many places where you can sit and relax after a tiring game. At the North Meadow Recreation Center, you can rent a basketball if you do not have one. Twelve courts dedicated to different sports. If you do not have a partner or a team for a game, you will always find people available for a game there.