Where Harry met Sally, Washington Square Park is one of New York's most loved parks and has been a community meeting place and community center since it opened in 1826.
With an eclectic past as a cemetery, public gallows and military parade ground, Washington Square Park is well-known for its eccentricity and is emblematic of the Beat generation and hippie movement in bohemian Greenwich Village. Now, avant-garde street performers are a more common sight than the shifty types that plagued the park in the 1980s and Washington Square Park is once again one of the city's most popular spots for locals and tourists.
One of the most prominent features of Washington Square Park, Washington's Arch, was built in 1889, modelled after the Arc de Triomphe in Paris, to commemorate the centenary of President Washington's inauguration. Originally built in wood and rebuilt in marble in 1891, cars were allowed to drive through Washington's Arch until 1971 when the park was redesigned and closed to vehicular traffic.
Washington Square Park's previously unnamed fountain was recently refurbished and relocated to the center of the park and controversially renamed the "Tisch Fountain", after a wealthy family of NYU benefactors. While officially access to the fountain is denied and a fence has been erected as a deterrent, it hasn't stopped visitors from using the fountain for its original purpose as a wading pool.
Children's play areas, dog runs, shady greens and walking tracks draw thousands of people to park daily. Chess tables in the southwest, where Stanley Kubrick played in his youth and featured in Searching for Bobby Fischer, always attract a crowd. Nearby cafes on Bleeker Street and MacDougal Street are lovely options to relax after a stroll in the park.
Facts For Your Visit
Official Website: Washington Square ParkFee: no
Many tourist attractions are temporarily closed due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. Please verify any opening hours below with the attraction before visiting.
1 Washington Sq E
New York, NY 10011
Rhiannon K. Feb-11-2020
Washington Square Park is so iconic because of the Arch and the fountain. It's a cool place to hang out and catch up with friends. Most of the time I've... Read More
Roxana H. Jun-24-2020
Well maintained trails that connect to other trails. They provide trash cans and doggy cleanup bags along the trails. There are public restrooms as well as... Read More
Rainy and cold... any weather! This is a beautiful place to see. I love this place. In the heart of nyc and the home to so much history and important to our... Read More
Accommodations near Washington Square Park:
|Subway Line||Nearest Station||Walking Time|
|A, B, C, D, E, F or M||West 4th Street||3 minutes|
|N or R||8th Street / New York University||5 minutes|
How to get to Washington Square Park by Subway
Take the A, B, C, D, E, F or M train to West 4th Street, head northeast on 6th Avenue (Avenue of the Americas), turn left on Washington Place or take the N or R train to 8th Street / New York University, head southwest on Broadway, turn right onto Washington Place.
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