Things to do in Bryant Park

Bryant Park

Bryant Park is located in Midtown Manhattan, on the two blocks surrounded by the Avenue of the Americas, Fifth Avenue, West 42nd Street, and West 40th Street.

What you can do here:

1.Petanque

A man playing petanque in Bryant park
A man playing petanque in Bryant park

It’s not Bocce, it’s petanque! On the west side of the park, there’s a petanque area, and during summer you will meet the great people of La Boule Newyorkaise, a club that’s promoting (for free) the sport. Take half an hour, and learn that sport that’s a culture in France. You’ll miss the classical drink (Pastis) that should go with it, but that can’t stop you from having great fun.

2.Table Tennis, ping pong

A man plays table tennis in Bryant Park
A man plays table tennis in Bryant Park

3.The movies in the park on Monday

The movies in Bryant Park are a mass event
The movies in Bryant Park are a mass event

In the summer months, Bryant Park and its sponsors install a large screen at the west side of the lawn, where on Mondays, you can watch a movie. While the movie doesn’t start till 8:30 or later, make sure you get there earlier. Bring a picnic, a blanket, and a drink. Ideal moments to forget the week work has only started, with friends!

4.Shakespeare

Central Park is not the only place in New York City where you can watch a Shakespeare play in the open air. Bryant park has its own variant. Shakespeare in Bryant Park brings several plays over the course of the summer.

Bryant Park Carousel
The carousel in Bryant Park – childhood memories

If you bring the kids, the Carousel should be on the planning. Located on the south side of the park, the cari

6.Get a wafel (yep, that’s not a waffle)

Wafels & Dinges kiosk
Wafels & Dinges kiosk

The only real Belgian Wafels & Dinges has since 2015 a fixed location on the corner of 42nd Street and Avenue of the Americas.

7.Golf

Putting greens in Bryant Park
Putting greens in Bryant Park

Need to work on the short game, but stuck in the city? No worries: there’s a putting green on the southwest side of the park. Putters and balls are ready for you during the summer months. If you miss the 19th hole, you can grab a cold one on the southwest terrace here!

8.Read a book

Library - Bryant Park
Library – Bryant Park

This is one of the quiet spaces in Manhattan, so ending up here with a book is not such a bad choice. Forgot your book? There’s a part in the park that has some books from the library ready for you!

9.Enjoy the free wi-fi

If you can work anytime, anywhere, why not in Bryant Park?
If you can work anytime, anywhere, why not in Bryant Park?

Do you remember the times before Starbucks made wi-fi free? Bryant Park was the place where I stayed in touch with the world while I was here, before I moved to NYC. Summer or winter: you can find a rather reliable signal here.

10.Play Chess

An intense game of chess
An intense game of chess

At the 40th street side of the park, you can meet chess players. Some beginners, and a lot of very experienced players. Need to train the brain before getting back to your office? This is where!

Bryant Park hosts accordion players from around the world during the summer.
Bryant Park hosts Accordeon players from around the world during the summer.

Bonus: Having a (REAL!) drink

The terrace at the library side of Bryant Park is one of the few locations in New York where you can have a real drink, outside, on the ground floor, with a nice view.


Extra bonus: clean bathrooms!

When in midtown, and nature calls: the bathrooms on 42nd street, halfway between Fifth Avenue and the Avenue of the Americas are among the cleanest public restrooms in New York City

Koen Blanquart - Things to do in Bryant Park New York
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