Top 10 Off-The-Beaten Path Areas to Visit in Central Park

Have you ever taken the path less traveled through Central Park? In the past 5 years the number of tourists and residents who visit Central Park has increased from 35 million people to 42 million. If you are in search of a little peace and quiet we have assembled a list of 10 places to visit in Central Park that are off the beaten path.

1. Cop Cot

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Located right in the entrance at Central Park South and 6th Avenue. Cop Cot is one of the older structures in Central Park; it is a reproduction of one of the original wooden shelters that were common in the park in the late 1860s. Cop Cot means “little house on the crest of the hill” in Scottish. It is sheltered by trees and offers a shady, semi-private spot for viewing Central Park.

2. Wagner Cove

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Wagner Cove is one of Central Park’s lesser-known treasures. This small location on the edge of The Lake is punctuated by a rustic shelter with two wooden benches. Wagner Cove is home to trees and flowers and is adorned by mid-size slate-gray rocks. This secluded spot is ideal for a date, a relaxed lunch, or quiet contemplation. This oasis is just west of Cherry Hill and East of the 72nd Street and Central Park West entrance to the park.

3. The Charles B. Stover Bench in Shakespeare Garden

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This bench is also knows as the whispering bench. The Bench is located in the middle of The Shakesperare Garden, on the west side of the park between 79th-80th street. The bench is named for Charles B. Stover, and is a 20-foot, curled granite piece that doubles as a memorial for Stover (former New York City Parks Commissioner). It was dedicated back in 1936.

4. Arthur Ross Pinetum

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This area is located on the west side near 85th street, just south of the Reservoir. It is a small arboretum that is home to the largest collection of pine trees in the Park. There is no fence around the area which includes a small playground and workout area, which is enjoyed by adults as well as children. The area also includes picnic tables and open lawns, which makes it a great spot for picnicking.

5. Albert Bertel Thorvaldsen Sculpture

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Originally placed just north of 59th Street between 6th and 7th Avenues. It was later relocated to 97th Street near Fifth Avenue, and was moved again in 1940 to a newly landscaped triangular knoll when a road was built connecting the 97th Transverse to 96th Street. The statue is surrounded by benches and offers a quick great escape from the hustle and bustle of the city.

6. Bank Rock Bay

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This area is west of the Ramble and is located on the west side of the park between 77th and 78 th street. The area was recently restored as apart of a larger effort to secure the Lake’s eroding shoreline. This rustic area has become a popular bird-watching area. It includes a rustic bridge and paths.

7. The Pool

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The pool is not a swimming pool, it is one of the man made lakes in Central Park. It is located on the west side off of Central Park West and 100th Street. The pool is home to a pond full of ducks, turtles, and weeping willows. There are benches and a number of man made water falls in the area.

8. Summit Rock

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Located on the West Side of the park between 82nd and 84th Street, at 141.8 feet, Summit Rock is the highest natural elevation in Central Park. There is a rustic stone “amphitheater” with benches overlooking the wooded slopes to the south and east. Summit Rock was the site of Seneca Village in the 19th century.

9. The Lock and the Ravine

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Located in the area known as the North Woods, the Loch was included in the original plan for Central Park. The Central Park Loch extends from 102nd to 106th Street from the West side of the park to the East side of the park. Noted as a great spot for bird watching, the Loch was intended to be a larger lake at the time of its construction, but has, over time, reverted back into a stream. Offering visitors a place of peace and tranquility in the busy Park, the Loch and the Ravine is bordered by Huddlestone Arch to the north and Glen Span Arch to the south.

10. Fort Clinton

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Located on the East side of the park, between 106th and 107th street up on a hill over looking the Harlem Meer. The British built a fortification here in 1776, and in 1812 New Yorkers built a fortification in the same spot and named it Fort Clinton in honor of DeWitt Clinton, then mayor of New York. Today it is home to a scenic overlook with rustic fencing, benches, and a flag pole and two cannons that were reinstalled, after being in storage for 40 years.

These are some of our favorite secret of the beaten path spots in Central Park. What are some of yours?

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