It’s no secret that New York’s High Line Park is buzzing with attention. It’s a funky urban oasis where you can unwind, take long walks, relax and score a prized recliner to watch the scenic NYC views. But before you go, here are a few must-know tips to optimize your experience.
Sign Up for a Tour
A great way to enjoy High Line Park is to explore the area with a tour guide. Pick a time that’s convenient for you and you’ll learn all kinds of fun interesting facts as you walk along the trail.
A highly scenic area, the real miracle lies in the fact that they were able to transform a former torn-up railroad track into such a beautiful park. Wear a sun hat, comfy walking shoes, and travel light. Charge your phone or camera battery so you’ll be able to take plenty of pictures of the buildings, skyline, Statue of Liberty and amazing sunsets!
Go for a Scenic Walk and a Few “Scenic” Views!
If you’re tired of being cooped up in your apartment or inside a stuffy office, the park is a welcome distraction. Moreover, there may also be music playing nearby; you can find art displays in the summer, and there might even be a few tours available. Additionally, there may even be meditation classes available, depending on when you go. Moreover, if you bring your own music on your smartphone or tablet, it can make the experience more calming and tranquil.
A fun aspect of the park is that because you are on an elevated platform, as you walk around the buildings, you can get great pictures from interesting perspectives:
- The Standard Hotel is a behemoth of a hotel in the Meatpacking District where you can overlook people in the beer garden. You can even see into the hotel rooms. Just be forewarned: Sometimes hotel guests apparently don’t realize you can actually see them in their rooms (Oh, you!).
- You’ll find that the architects created cool viewing areas (right at 10th Avenue) so you can get a bird’s-eye view of NYC traffic – right from the tranquility of this garden oasis.
- The Statue of Liberty is another spectacular view you don’t want to miss – A great reason to bring your camera or charge your phone.
Make It the Ultimate Stress Reliever
If you’re tired of the pushing and shoving with crowded New York streets, plan a time to go to the west side and visit High Line Park. Pick up a coffee, tea, and snack along the way. Once you get there, take a leisurely stroll to enjoy the flowers, the wide array of rare plants, and the trees. Stop at an available bench to rest and enjoy the view of the river as you people watch and unwind.
Another way to optimize your experience is to sign up for a meditation session with a local yoga studio. It’s an awesome way to break up the tension from being in busy offices all day or feeling overwhelmed by the crowds. Bring a friend, your sweetheart, or go solo – You’re sure to have a relaxing time!
Best Place to Start Your Walk – 14th Street or 34th Street?
Because High Line Park is elevated on former train tracks, while you can start out at 34th Street South, a lot of people just take the train to 14th Street, go up the stairs, and exit from there and walk to the park. You can also enter from Gansevoort which is 3-blocks below 14th.
If you start your walk at 34th, you’ll find that you have a leisure stroll down to 14th Street. Interesting to note: When the High Line was built in the 1930’s, it went from 34th Street down to the Holland Tunnel. At 14th Street you can walk to the beautiful Whitney Museum or head to some of the local bars and area restaurants in the Meatpacking district or walk to Chelsea. Chelsea Market is nearby and worth exploring – You’ll find all kinds of gifts to buy along the way!
Tip: If you’re going to go shopping, bring a foldable shopping bag with wheels so by the time you finish your walk you don’t have to haul heavy bags back to your hotel or apartment.
Dealing with the Weather and Crowds
Visiting during cooler weather
Depending on the season when you go, if you visit the park when the sun is out while it’s warm bring a sweater as it can get a bit chilly once the sun goes down. Go when it snows and there’s less foot traffic. You can feel completely alone while in a city of millions. The park is worth checking out in every season!
Visiting in the warmer seasons
A point to note about High Line Park crowds. On the warmest and sunniest days, the park will be packed with tourists, meaning the walk will be much slower, so try not to get frustrated by the crowds. It’s kind of like the pace of walking over the Brooklyn Bridge. The walk can be crowded and slow, but everyone tries to stay on their side of the path. It’s not like the city streets where everyone is bumping each other at a frenetic pace. You’ll see people stop ever so often to take pictures or chase after their kids. It can be quite enjoyable!
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