Sunday, August 05, 2007

City Walk #12 - Battery Park City

Card no. 1 - photos
This beautiful walk between the glistening Hudson and the skyscrapers of lower Manhattan doubles as a perambulatory history lesson.

Begin at the northeast corner of the park (4 or 5 train to Bowling Green) or at the southeast corner (1 train to South Ferry).
Battery Park offers the city's greatest concentration of memorials and monuments, as well as unsurpassed views of New York Harbor. The lower part of the park, which is named for the 17th century battery of cannons that lined it, is built mainly on landfill created in the 19th century. A stroll through the park makes a delightful hour's walk by itself. You can extend the trip with a visit to the National Museum of the American Indian, or a ferry ride to Staten Island, Ellis Island, or the Statue of Liberty; all the ferries depart from clearly marked stops. Stroll along Admiral George Dewey Promenade and consult the maps posted throughout the park for memorials. Castle Clinton, built in 1807 as war with England threatened, originally stood 200 feet from shore and was connected to Manhattan by a causeway. From 1855 to 1892 (when Ellis Island opened), it was New York's immigration station. At the end of the facing green is the "Peace Sphere," salvaged from the nearby World Trade Center after September 11, 2001. At its north end, the park merges with Robert F. Wagner Jr. Park and the Museum of Jewish Heritage before narrowing to a beautiful promenade. Continue north as far as Vesey Street to see the Irish Hunger Memorial - a re-creation of a typical Irish half acre at the time of the famine - then turn onto Vesey Street and walk to One World Financial Center to begin Walk 3 (Ground Zero).

From City Walks: New York: 50 Adventures on Foot by Martha Fay

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