My boyfriend and I are visiting ny and really want to explore Central Park. Is it worth it to rent a bike and explore on our own to cover as much ground as possible? If so, how long should we rent for? We saw some rentals for 2 or 4 hours but not sure if 4 hours is too long or 2 is too short?
The longer the better! Although don't rent from the guys standing outside the park as they will charge far more than the competitors!!!!! If its a nice day then you can easily spend 4 hours riding around. I would recommend checking out places online where you can get good deals for all day (http://rentbikenyc.net/product/nyc-bike-rentals/). Make sure you hit up some hot spots The Central Park Boathouse, Central Park Carousel, Conservatory Garden. Enjoy!
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A friend and I just did this and it was lots of fun! I would suggest renting from Citi Bikes which have locations all over Manhattan and one right at 59th Street at the entrance to Central Park. There are people all over hocking bike rentals, but we rented from Citi so that if we had a problem (flat tire, wreck) we had a company to call.
If you're looking to be thorough, four hours may not even be enough. After all, the park covers 843 acres.
Between the various athletic venues, gardens, art pieces, monuments and memorials, and the zoo, it's easy to spend an entire day there. Not only is there a great deal to see in the park itself, the Central Park is immediately surrounded by a dozen museums and galleries. Amongst these are the American Museum of Natural History, the Hayden Planetarium, the Museum of the City of New York, the Jewish Museum, the Neue Gallery, El Museo del Barrio and its galleries, and of course, the Guggenheim.
If you're coming in warm weather you'll want to picnic on the Great Lawn or near Strawberry Fields.
My advice would be to get a good map, and make a vague plan as to what you'd wish to see. That should give you a good idea as to how much ground you'll wish to cover. Should four hours not seem enough time, remember that the majority of sites in the he park are located in its southern half. Therefore, even if you give up the bike you can still cover a great deal on foot. You can even take a walking tour, or a horse drawn carriage.
Finally, when you go get a good bicycle lock and use it.
If you shop around you can get a good deal for 4 hours and that way you can stop at the boathouse for a drink or lunch and have a more leusurely trip was my experience.
much easier to explore and truly get around by walking. Its not as exhausting as one might think and you can see so much more on foot!