Bryant Park

Outdoor Activity / Park / Square
Bryant Park A luscious swath of green just behind the New York Public Library, Bryant Park is an activity-filled mecca for people of all ages and interests. New York United States 40.754217 -73.9845416
3.6 23
Bryant Park - Outdoor Activity | Park | Square in New York.
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Party Earth Review A luscious swath of green just behind the New York Public Library, Bryant Park is an activity-filled mecca for people of all ages and interests. Young professionals and local office workers take over the hundreds of patio... ... read full review

  • Neighborhood:

  • Address:

    Between 40th and 42nd Street just east of Sixth Avenue
    New York, NY 10018

    Get Directions

  • Subway:

    B, D, F, M, 7: 42nd Street-Bryant Park-6th Avenue; 7: 5th Avenue-Bryant Park-42nd Street

  • Phone:

    212-768-4242

  • Links:

  • Hours:

    Daily 7am–close (between 7 and 11pm depending on season)

  • Recommended as:

    • Day Spot
    • Night Spot

Party Earth Bryant Park Review

The Scene

A luscious swath of green just behind the New York Public Library, Bryant Park is an activity-filled mecca for people of all ages and interests.

A luscious swath of green just behind the New York Public Library, Bryant Park is an activity-filled mecca for people of all ages and interests.

Young professionals and local office workers take over the hundreds of patio tables on sunny afternoons to people-watch over lunch, as students stretch out on the grass to read amid the odd yoga or tai chi class.

Tree-lined slate paths and terraces provide cover for visitors and savvy urbanites gathered at the chess tables or strolling along the manicured walkways during the day, while evenings and weekends see everything from nine-to-fivers playing pétanque or relaxing by the fire pit at the rustic Southwest Porch, to twenty- and thirty-somethings settling in with their picnic blankets and wine for HBO’s Summer Film Festival screenings.

Those who prefer cold weather will want to stop by in the winter when the lawn transforms into a massive free ice skating rink, or grab a bite at Celsius, the rink-side restaurant with terrific views of the skaters.

Host to frequent poetry readings, writing classes, and even knitting circles, Bryant Park has managed to create an intimate community in the heart of one of the busiest urban centers in the world.

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Tip from Emma:

Ice skating in Bryant Park can be magical, but not when you have to wait an hour to get in. For $20, you can get a VIP pass and skip the line!

  • Crowd

    Business people and midtown office workers on weekday afternoons, and students, young professionals, and tourists on evenings and weekends, all ages.

  • Entertainment / Music

    Activities always available include chess, pétanque, ping pong, and a carousel. Organized events include tai chi and yoga on the lawn, free knitting lessons, and tournaments for chess, backgammon, and pétanque.

    Cultural activities include writing workshops, poetry readings, musical performances, a reading room, and game nights. Ice skating on the pond from the end of October to February. Over one hundred holiday shopping kiosks selling specialty items from around the world open in the winter.

    Summer events include Broadway in the Park featuring Broadway and Off-Broadway casts performing hit musical numbers, and the HBO Bryant Park Summer Film Festival for open-air movie screenings. Free Wi-Fi.

  • Food / Miscellaneous

    Restaurants include The Bryant Park Grill and Roof Terrace for American cuisine, Bryant Park Café, The Southwest Porch, and Celsius and its Ice Bites snack shop (winter only). ’wichcraft food kiosks by chef Tom Colicchio serve soups, salads, and sandwiches.

  • Prices

    The Bryant Park Grill: appetizers $9–$17, entrées $24–$40.

    Bryant Park Café: entrées $13.75–$22, wine $8–$16, margaritas $10/glass or $35/pitcher, cocktails $10–$13. The Southwest Porch: snacks $3–$10, beer $7, wine $8, cocktails $9.

    ‘wichcraft kiosks: sandwiches $6.95–$9.75, salads $4.95–$9.50.

    Celsius: entrées $9–$18. Ice Bites: snacks $2–$5.50. Ice skating free, skate rental $13. Chess $3/hour, backgammon $4/hour. Le Carrousel $2/ride. Most activities free.

  • What to Wear / Dress Code

    Anything goes: jeans, suits, sneakers, heels.

  • Hot Nights / When to Go

    Any sunny afternoon or for one of the many special events. Weekends are typically crowded with people unwinding after a hard work week.

  • Close By

    Times Square one block west offers Broadway shows and some of the best people-watching in the city.

Bryant Park User Reviews

Average rating:
A good place to take a break
Haiming C. Jul 17, 2013
The magic of Bryant is that it has different faces in different time and it will never let you down. In winter, it is ideal for shopping and skating; in sumer, it is enjoyable for sunshine and peace. Yes, it is very near Time Square, but it is so different. Come and feel it.
A Little Slice of Sun-Bathing Heaven
Timothy D. Jun 23, 2013
Located behind the 42nd Street library, Bryant park is a supreme example of a perfect use of juxtaposition. Who would think that just a few blocks away from the hustle and bustle that is Times Square one could find such a place of serenity? If you have grown tired of battling the sidewalk traffic, avoiding being hit by fleeing cabs, and being asked to purchase something on every step of your journey, then Bryant Park is the place for you. Bryant Park is a sanctuary for those individuals on their commute who simply needs time to stand still for just a few moments so they could properly take in the beauty that is their city. It is here you'll find parents enjoying time with their kids, friends taking in the sun, lovers enjoying one another's company, and much more. Also known for its free concerts from highly accredited artists, Bryant Park definitely has just about what any New Yorker is looking for. The only downside is that their eating establishment may be a bit pricey for the ordinary college student looking for a place to hang out with friends. However, most of the parks' allure comes from its open field perfect for bringing your own food, and radio and just having a good old fashioned picnic.
The unexpected park
Elspeth M. Jun 3, 2013
Unless you're a New Yorker, you probably wouldn't expect to find a park on the outskirts of Times Square. Located behind the 42nd Street Library (yeah, the one with the lions), Bryant Park is a wonderful spot for a break in the middle of a long day. It's quiet and shady in the crazy of summer, offering events in the green, and the holiday set up around Christmas is a quaint pleasure to explore. The Christmas tree they put up is as nice, if not nicer, than the Rockerfeller Center tree. If you're into fashion, this is the place to go during fashion week to catch a glimpse of the newest trends and well-dressed people. Perhaps the best thing about the park is that they offer ice skating during the winter - on the best rink the city has to offer if you ask me. This is definitely the place to come and relax.
Island of beauty and tranquility in the middle of the city
Lana G. May 28, 2013
Bryant park is this rare small island of beauty and tranquility. I believe this park is necessary for a city like NY. It is big enough for number of people and small enough not to get lost there. During last years many different cultural events make this park unforgettable, every year one feels that it is time to return and watch or listen or learn something new or old and interesting.
Little Escape from the City
Xiaowei Y. May 8, 2013
Located at 42nd, Bryant Park is only blocks away from all the hustles and bustles of the City----Midtown, Times Square, New York Public Library, 5th Avenue and Grand Central. The convenience of its location makes it a unique treasure for New Yorkers. Whenver one needs to take a short break from work, or some fresh air, or just a nice outdoor lunch, Bryant Park is the perfect place to go. During summer time, people usually chill on the benches and enjoy the sunshine. But during winter, this place is still a magic place full of fun events! The ice skating area in the park is absolutely gorgeous. One can enjoy the view of the christmas lights while skating with a reasonable price. With its cute characteristics and unique location, Bryant park is absolutely one of the top choice for a little break from hustle and bustle!
A MUST SEE
Ariel P. Apr 3, 2013
from picnics to a nice day out with the family even christmas morning ice skating!! Bryant Park has a little bit of everything. Great food Fun games in the park its just a allround great place to just sit back and relax no matter if sown is falling or the sun is shining Bryant Park is a must go when you are in nyc .
Perfect place for lunch on business days
Jonathan S. Mar 28, 2013
I used to work near Bryant Park, and literally had lunch there every day. It was just so tranquil, and there seemed to have special things going at least once a week. I've even been offered jobs while sitting down enjoying the day. I guess it's also a good place to expose yourself in the business world. If you work near the area, this is the place to relax for a bit. During the winter, the park has an ice skating rink. It's a beautiful setting, and funny to watch people fall. Of course, it's also a nice place to ice skate. Therefore, Bryant Park is definitely a well-known gem in NYC.
Beautiful Park
Sam D. Mar 1, 2013
Bryant Park is a beautiful place to hang out, get lunch, or sit with a significant other. Filled with green grass and fountains, on a sunny day this place is completely swamped, but its definitely worth the visit to get a table. I believe there is also a restaurant there to get food from, but I personally prefer to get food from the area (street hot dogs or takeout) and bring it to a table myself. On cold days, be warned it can get extremely cold and jackets are a must, though getting hot chocolate and coffee in Bryant Park is wonderful.
Quaint and Cute in the Heart of NYC
Olivia P. Feb 19, 2013
What a pleasant alternative to the chaos that is Rockefeller Center around the Holidays! Bryant Park ice skating has half as many people and probably twice as much charm. Sure, the big Christmas tree isn't 13450607 stories tall (it's gotta be at least 3 for sure), but the rink is a great spot to unwind amidst the bustle of the greatest city in the world. For the less adventurous members of the group, Bryant Park also has some shops around the rink. From specialty coffee to delicious cookies, or gizmos and gadgets that make the perfect stocking stuffers, the Shops at Bryant Park are a great place to find things you never thought you were looking for. Waltz on in to one of their bath and beauty shops and you can even get your hands scrubbed with oatmeal or coconut oil! Whether you're wandering around NYC without a clear destination or you're looking for a great place to skate, stop by Bryant Park for a great afternoon!
Timing is everything
Isabel U. Jan 9, 2013
The Bryant Park skating rink is by far the most charming of the various Manhattan park rinks. This less known rink is a great getaway from the busy streets . Located in the middle of the gorgeous park and directly behind the public library there are places to shop and eat nearby. Many good spots to visit within 5 minutes walking distance in Bryant Park. However, choose the time you visit wisely. It is a very affordable and adorable place to skate which attracts a lot of families, tourists, and even schools outings. Great place to bring a group of good friends, a family, but avoid bringing a first date.
Break the ice... On the Ice
Sean C. Dec 17, 2012
This place is an absolutely perfect get away from the hustle and bustle of downtown Manhattan. Overlooking a super affordable ice-skating rink is a full blown giant Christmas tree of which both natives and tourists can enjoy. Around the rink there is an awesome cocktail lounge littered with both wealthy executives and ordinary tourists. This place also makes a great date spot with countless shops, cheap ice-skating, and great atmosphere and music. Bryant Park is a fun and interactive way to break the ice... on the ice.
A good midtown park
Risa C. Dec 8, 2012
If I could give this a place 2.5 stars that would actually be actual rating but I'll give this place the benefit of the doubt for the diversity of the events they host. Well known for being the host of NY fashion week (although it was moved to Lincoln Center) at the bare minimum it's a nice place to sit down during the summer and eat lunch. They also host movie nights in the warmer months, and during the winter they have a holiday market with different festive themed vendors, and free ice skating which is a good cheap alternative to Rockefeller Center. I wouldn't say go out of your way to visit it, but if you're heading to a specific event like movie night or ice skating its worth the trip.
A Park is A Park is A Park
Jaclyn W. Dec 4, 2012
Bryant Park has it's perks. It's great if you work in the area and need somewhere to sit and eat lunch. It's also great if you're a tourist and love shopping at holiday fairs. It's not so great, if you don't like Midtown, crowds, obnoxiously slow walkers and bars that force you to go to dirty bathrooms in the middle of a park. Although it is a New York staple like many of the other parks in the city (primarily because we are so used to gray sidewalks), it's no Central Park. It's small and always too crowded. There's nowhere to really sit and unwind. Architecturally speaking, it is gorgeous especially the view of the New York Public Library and the skating rink, which is put up in winter. Basically the only time I come to Bryant is when it's during the holidays. I am sucker for lights on trees for some unknown reason, but I will not step foot into the holiday bizarre because of the sheer madness of the crowds. I'm a fan, however, of watching older men play each other in chess as if I'm watching some kind of famous movie clip. Go for a stroll here if parks are your thing. It's a lot cleaner and safer than some of the downtown parks. It's also heavily monitored by cops, so you won't really find too many drug deals going on in this area. Great for both kids and adults.
Wonderful oasis just behind the City Library. Great Holiday Fair!!!
Michele P. Nov 30, 2012
Somewhere to get a bite to eat and sit outside. The Library is right in front of it and it's where they filmed Ghost busters. Plus the Library always has an interesting exhibit. Clean and safe.
Really nice
Chris K. Nov 20, 2012
Though a small park compared to Central and Prospect, Bryant Park is a lovely little chunk of New York City romance that can charm even the most jaded of metropolitans. With its lush greenery, laid-back outdoor seating, proximity to the library, and creepy old carousel (easily creepier than the one at Brooklyn Bridge Park), Bryant Park remains a great place for young and old city-dwellers alike to take a load off, crack a good book, and sip an iced coffee. While it, much like many other outdoor areas New York, is a little plagued by pigeons and squirrels, it remains an adorable stop on any visitor or native's daily journey.
Love Bryant Park!
Chelsea D. Oct 1, 2012
I used to work right by here so, whenever it was nice, my co-workers and I would head here to sit outside for lunch. There's a great sandwhich place called Wichcraft that we would order from, but there are plenty of other places around there, too. During the summer, Bryant Park offers free yoga and outdoor movies at night. In the winter, there is free ice skating. There's always something to do here & it's great for people watching.
If midtown is your thing
David G. Sep 29, 2012
Bryant park is a great spot if midtown is your thing. Personally, I don't enjoy the hustle and bustle of midtown as much as I enjoy the "tranquility" of the other boroughs. However Bryant parks has it's perks... To start, it's a great after work drink spot. If you're wearing jeans and flip flops you can have a drink here with your buddy that has to wear a 3 piece suit to work. The bar accommodates everyone. It's also a nice spot for people watching. Either at the outdoor bar or sitting at one of the benches using the city's free wifi, you won't ever be in any kind of shortage for people watching. Other things Bryant Park is good for - Free Ice Skating in the Winter - Fashion Week - Summertime outdoor movies
I love Bryant Park!
Sara G. Sep 6, 2012
Truly a great, great park in both the winter and summer. During the work week you get a lot of office-types taking advantage of warm weather on their lunch hour. But on weekends and holidays, it's all types including tourists. If I recall, the Thanksgiving Day Parade also goes right past the park which means if you wait until the parade is over, the streets are still blocked off for hours after the parade....making it very surreal to be able to visit the park and walk the streets of New York sans traffic. In addition to typical street vendors, if you want classy food for lunch, you can find it here. And as overpriced as they may be, the crafts also sold in the park are often unique and if nothing else, fun to look at.
Park with Wi-Fi etc.
Lauren A. Aug 16, 2012
Once a haven for misfits, Bryant Park has really done a 180 and become one of NYC's true gems. Featuring multiple restaurants and bars along with old fashioned movies during the summer and ice skating in the winter (including a makeshift lodge) all while surrounded by iconic urban skyscrapers makes Bryant Park truly unique. Check out the 'wichcraft kiosk for creative sandwiches or the Southwest Porch (which offers 'wichcraft's menu in addition to their own). Bocce players can be found on the northwest side and chess players along the north side. Wi-Fi accessibility also increases the value of the area as it's certainly nice to be able to "plug in" outdoors.
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