Little pockets of nature

Living in NYC for almost 3 months now, I already miss the beautiful and abundant natural landscape of South Africa.

The parks here sometimes have fences and signs that prevent you from sitting on the lawns. It can be a bit challenging to connect with nature directly since benches are the preferred seating option.

It feels like nature is something to look at rather than something to truly connect with. But hey, I’ve found a way around this!

If you ever visit New York and crave that feeling of grass under your feet, I’ve got a list of my favorite parks for you to check out:

1. Madison Square Park: It’s super close to where I work and the best in Flatiron! You can find shaded areas with trees where you can sit and truly connect with nature. And if you prefer benches, there are plenty available too.

2. Union Square: This park is usually buzzing with a younger crowd because of its proximity to NYU. The lawns are often open, so you can bask in the sun and enjoy nature. Sometimes there’s even free live music and people playing chess!

3. Prospect Park: Oh, this one is a gem! It’s the biggest park on my list and absolutely stunning. There are two bodies of water and free concerts on weekends. Plus, it’s located in a family-friendly neighborhood, so there’s always a lively atmosphere. If it gets crowded, just venture a bit further for a quiet space.

4. Marcus Garvey Park in Harlem: It may be small, but it’s packed with awesomeness! There’s a public pool and a concert arena. And if you take a little walk, you’ll find wonderful views of Harlem. It’s mostly a bench kind of park, but on Sundays, it’s nice and quiet.

If you’re like me, and sometimes need a break from the concrete, I hope this helps you find some nature in the city!

Azole Njengele


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