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Springtime and Social Distancing: Get Some Fresh Air at a Spacious NYC Park

Social distancing can still be (cautiously) practiced outdoors

March 18, 2020 by Maeri Ferguson
A tree in front of a lake on a sunny day
Credit: Declan Van Welie

If you're looking to get some fresh air while social distancing, NYC Parks, with vast open spaces and woodsy trails, will be your best bet. Enjoy springtime without worrying about crowds at these five spots across the city.

Prospect Park, Brooklyn

With its large, open greens, hidden trails and endless loops of walking and biking paths, Prospect Park has more than 500 acres to explore. Bring a blanket and a picnic for one, or lose yourself on a hike.


Van Cortlandt Park, Bronx

Five different hiking trails, a large freshwater lake and dense oak forests make this huge Bronx park a tranquil setting for nature and wildlife lovers. Social distancing and bird watching amidst Tibbets Brook and more than 1000 acres? A perfect match.

Central Park, Manhattan

It might seem obvious, but Central Park is the perfect setting for some outdoor alone time. Walking paths and historical monuments, shady trees and grassy hills, 36 bridges and arches and nearly 50 fountains mean no two visits to Manhattan's beloved green treasure are ever alike.



Flushing Meadows Corona Park, Queens

Though the name might be off-putting, with over 1200 acres and the city's largest lake, Flushing Meadows Corona Park is ideal for getting outside and keeping your distance. Plus, as the former site of the 1964 World's Fair, there are fascinating hidden gems all across the park, from artistic murals to retro structures.

Photo taken from the top of a grassy hill with the Manhattan skyline in the background.
Credit: Daniel Avila/NYC Parks, via nycgovparks.org

Sunset Park, Brooklyn

You won't find better views of the city than atop Sunset Park's steep hills. Admire Manhattan from afar as you wander the green fields of one of Brooklyn's most breathtaking parks. No matter what time of year, the sunsets from Sunset Park are life-affirming.


Getting outside is crucial for maintaining a clear head and stimulating your creativity. As always, know before you go by checking the NYC Parks website for updates on closures and programming.