At the southernmost tip of Manhattan, Battery Park has been growing kudzu-like for the past several decades and is now really a string of eclectic park spaces that hug the waterfront from just above the original Battery Park (where the ferry terminal for the Statue of Liberty is located) all the way up to Chambers Street (21 acres in all). At the downtown-most park are a number of stirring war monuments. Walking uptown from the original battery, you’ll encounter expansive lawns, a promenade along the river that runs the length of the park, terrific playgrounds, and a yacht marina. My favorite parts are the South Cove (on the Esplanade between First and Third places), an artfully varied collection of quays, bridges, and meandering walkways with great river views; and the Irish Hunger Memorial, a grassy outcropping direct from Ireland, complete with a real Irish stone fence.
- Pauline Frommer