The sun is shining and the temperature is rising. Now that one of the most brutal winters on record is finally a distant memory, it is time to bust out your summer wardrobe and enjoy the beautiful weather. Here is a quick list of some of our favorite summer activities in the New York area.
Take a hike!
Way back in February we suggested you take advantage of some of New York’s more snowy activities, and now that summer is upon us, it’s time to hit those hiking trails. If you want to get out there but aren’t quite sure where to go, check out HikeHudsonValley.com to find the trail that’s right for you. With over 50 hikes to choose from, the site allows users to search for their perfect trail. You can sort by level of scenery, difficulty, and length.
Two of our favorites happen to be within a couple miles of one another: Bull Hill (Mt. Taurus, pictured above) and Breakneck Ridge. On weekends the Hudson train line out of Grand Central stops at “Breakneck Ridge,” only 0.25 miles from the trailhead. But be careful, Breakneck is true to its name. It’s a tough hike. For the less experience hiker, Bull Hill makes for a great starting point.
Central Park, with a side of Central Park.
Life can get pretty hectic in New York, and it’s all too easy to forget to enjoy one of the city’s greatest treasures: Central Park. Trust us, there’s no better place to spend a sunny Saturday than on a blanket with friends, enjoying your favorite food and drinks. Where should you land? Central Park makes it easy on you by laying out the “7 Best Picnic Sports in Central Park” on its website. Try ‘em all. Sheep Meadow is our personal favorite. After your picnic, head over to Loeb Boathouse to rent a rowboat and relax on the water. Then, after a long day of laying and rowing, give your muscles a good stretch during an outdoor a yoga class. Check out the park’s yoga schedule here.
Get in the water!
One of the best places to be in the summer is on a boat with the sun shining and the water at your fingertips. You don’t even need to leave NYC to enjoy this. You can actually go kayaking for free here. Yes, FREE kayaking. You can enjoy NYC’s waterfront without having to drop a dime. Manhattan Community Boathouse has all you need. After some boating, quench your thirst aboard The Frying Pan. It’s like a giant outdoor picnic area. But on a boat. Frozen drinks, beers, and burgers galore. This is a hotspot, so we suggest heading over early to avoid a line.
Explore the city
Get outdoors and just walk/run/bike somewhere. Head somewhere you may not be that familiar with. Discover a new neighborhood. You might find yourself wandering into a farmers market (our favorite is in Union Square on Saturdays), walking the Brooklyn Bridge, biking the West Side Highway or East River, or, perhaps, stumbling into Bryant Park for a Rangers viewing party. In case you’ve been living under a rock, NY’s very own NHL team, the Rangers, are in the Stanley Cup Final. Viewing parties are generally a riot and you can be sure to find a few more around the city for the World Cup this year.
Catch a ball game
Home to two Major League Baseball teams and the Brooklyn Cyclones, New York offers many options. Both Yankee Stadium and Citi Field opened their gates in 2009. Check out these state-of-the-art ballparks with some friends on a weekend, or, even better, play hooky and catch a mid-week afternoon game (just don’t tell your boss we sent you). If ticket prices are a concern, keep in mind that prices tend to decrease significantly on game days on third party websites like Stubhub.
Interested in something a bit more casual? Head over to Brooklyn and watch the Cyclones play. After the game you can stroll the Coney Island boardwalk and cool off with some ice cream.