Hyde Park or Central Park? My favorite urban city parks
May 31, 2010 by apurvadesai
I just returned from a trip to New York City and had an opportunity to make it to Central Park for the second time in 3 months. These visits to Central Park reminded me how much I enjoy urban parks- they add real character to the great urban centers of the world. This has inspired a list—my favorite urban parks that I’ve been to and the reasons why…..
1. Hyde Park- London, England
I’ve never heard a greater variety of languages spoken than during a stroll through Hyde Park near the Kensington area of London. A variety of European and African languages, Arabic, Indian and other South Asian and SE Asian languages makes this the most diverse area I’ve ever been in. Fantastic!
My recent trip to Central Park in late May showcased a city buzzing with energy from beautiful summer weather. All kinds of people frequent the park: tourists, mothers with children, young couples, bankers in suits—what an urban paradise and a great place for people watching. I had a little catnap on the lawn in Central Park this most recent trip; certainly a great setting for a refreshing snooze.
Grant Park near Chicago’s Lakefront is now known as the site of Barack Obama’s election night celebration in 2008. But for me, it takes me back to my years of living in Chicago and playing 16 inch softball in Grant Park—a type of softball played without gloves only in Chicago. Most notably, I remember my team playing Oprah Winfrey’s studio team Harpo Studios (Oprah didn’t show up unfortunately). Harpo clobbered us—some real sluggers on her team.
Vancouver, British Columbia in Canada is one of the most beautiful cities I’ve ever been to. Stanley Park is its signature urban park and offers fantastic views of the bay and skyline and city. It’s know for its seawall wall, totem poles, as well as a forest with some magnificent trees. Great place!
The English Garden in Munich is memorable to me for a few reasons. First, it has numerous outdoor beer gardens to partake in the traditional German refreshment, second, it’s sprawling landscape is perfect for bike rides and is one of the few urban parks where I’ve actually explored it via bike and finally, it does have nudist sections of the park (but you really don’t want to see these people participating in the nudist practice, if you get my drift 🙂 )
I currently live in the Bay Area near San Francisco and one always overlooks their hometown attractions. But Golden Gate Park in San Francisco is a fantastic park—some of my favorites of the park include the Japanese Tea Garden and Botanical Gardens.