Battery Park

This historic park on Manhattan's southern tip hosts a number of memorials and a rather special carousel.

TravelCurious Tip

If you’re in New York for the Fourth of July fireworks display, Battery Park is a great place to watch them from

Battery Park skirts the southern edge of Manhattan, offering a rare oasis of open, green space in the otherwise crowded area. It was here that the Dutch first settled in 1623, establishing a battery of cannons to defend their fledgling settlement of New Amsterdam. The name of the city may have changed, but not that of the park — though sadly the cannons are no more.

To this day Battery Park remains a point of access for boats, ferrying people to and from Ellis Island and the Statue of Liberty. Though you don’t need to leave the park to enjoy the Statue of Liberty — the view from the park, with its beautiful waterfront and flower gardens, is already spectacular.

Speak, Memory

Battery Park is a public art museum, landscaped garden and historic centre, all in one. It holds several memorials, all of which warrant a visit. The Holocaust Memorial was completed in 1989 and holds various permanent and temporary exhibitions, alongside a 375-seat theatre which hosts films, readings and lectures to highlight the richness of Jewish culture and ideas. Besides that, there is the Irish Hunger Memorial, and the Hope Garden Memorial to AIDS victims, among other thoughtful tributes.

The Seaglass Carousel

In the past, the Battery Park was the first home of the New York Aquarium. The Seaglass carousel was designed with this history in mind. Its structure was inspired by the chambered nautilus, and this spiralling pavilion of glass and steel brings art, architecture, music and, of course, fun, to children and adults alike. Naturally, the traditional wooden horses have made way for iridescent fish.

Nearby Attractions

See all attractions in New York
New York Stock Exchange
The world's most valuable stock exchange, trading billions of dollars daily.
Trinity Church
A venerable church in the Wall Street area, with a turbulent history and reported land holdings of over $2 billion.
Charging Bull
A guerilla installation following the 1987 stock market crash, the Charging Bull remains in the financial district as a symbol of energy, strength and unpredictability.
Bowling Green
Small park where a statue of George III used to reign over Lower Manhattan
Fraunces Tavern
The place where George Washington gave his farewell address after the Revolutionary War
Castle Clinton
19th century fort in Battery Park

Related Tours

Democracy and Hope: the Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island Tour
See New York through a different perspective in a tour which takes you out to the islands in Upper Bay. With visits to both the State of Liberty and Ellis Island, you will be able to see New York from the perspective of so many of the immigrants who helped grow the wealth and history of the United States. 

  • See the breathtaking Statue of Liberty
  • Appreciate the contribution of American immigrants visiting Ellis Island
  • Go around the historic Castle Clinton
Lady Liberty

You will begin your tour at Castle Clinton, a former Fort in Battery Park, where you will board the ferry to the famous Liberty Island. Along the way, you will learn about the remarkable history of the Statue of Liberty, as well as its significance to modern America. From here you will also be able to enjoy a breathtaking view over the Manhattan skylines and harbor. 

Boarding at Liberty Island, you will hear all about the fascinating history of the Liberty figure, and how this 100th birthday gift to America from France was shipped from Paris to New York, and finally unveiled after 10 years of construction in 1886. You will also pay a visit to the fascinating Pedestal Museum, where you will be able to venture to the top of Lady Liberty’s pedestal for a perfect view over the harbor. 

Built on Immigration

It is estimated that forty percent of the entire US population can trace at least one relative's arrival to the US, through the port of New York and Ellis Island. At Ellis Island you will discover the many extraordinary stories of families journeying to New York City since the earliest days of the United States founding. At the museum, your expert local guide will talk you through some of the exhibits on display. You will also have time to properly enjoy the museum at your own pace, as you immerse yourself in a similar journey to that of a newly arrived person. You will be able to grab a bite to eat on the island, or alternatively, you may purchase some snacks on the ferry back to Manhattan.

Private Walking Tour of Hamilton's New York
The history of Hamilton and several Founding Father's New York holds many stories. As one of the oldest European-founded cities in North America, it is a great place to see important places for revolutionary American history. A former base of the British in the New World, it became the headquarters of the Crown Forces in the Revolutionary War. Avid musical fans will recall that New York City was also the capital of the nascent USA before it "was traded down the river" by Alexander Hamilton in a shrewd negotiation with James Madison and Thomas Jefferson. Journey with your guide through history to see places where, if events had turned out differently, the USA you know today would not exist (dare we mention "the room where it [may have] happened"?). 

  • Walk where slaves were punished and liberty poles put up in City Hall Park
  • See George Washington’s pew in St Paul’s Chapel
  • Spend time where the Bill of Rights was written at the Federal Hall National Memorial
  •  Visit Alexander Hamilton’s grave at Trinity Church
  • Stop by the original national banks and learn about Hamilton's role in establishing the US credit system
  •  See where a mob tore down George III on Bowling Green
  • Experience the feelings of a successful revolution at Fraunces Tavern Museum where you can imagine revolutionary brothers making declarations about "not throwing away their shots"
  • Learn about how the British left New York in Battery Park

A New Nation

Outside New York City Hall is City Hall Park. Now a common meeting place for the city’s inhabitants, it was historically the site of brutality: slaves suspected of starting fires in 1741 were burnt alive here. 25 years later, the first of five liberty poles were erected. Ten years later—though in the same spot, the Declaration of Independence was read aloud to George Washington and the Continental Army. Hear your guide tell you the history of the place before you set off together down Broadway to St Paul’s Chapel. 

Built in 1766, and with King George III’s coat of arms still present on the balcony, this Episcopalian chapel is done in a Georgian architectural style. The place where George Washington worshipped after his inauguration, his pew is still there beneath an 18th century painting of the Great Seal of the United States. 

Stepping through the Past

Moving towards Federal Hall and Trinity Church, your guide will tell you about the role that New York played during the Revolutionary War. As you walk through streets of lower Manhattan that burnt down following the retreat of Continental troops— an event which remains slightly controversial to this day— you will learn how Washington tried to prevent the British taking the city in 1776, escaping disaster across the East River in Brooklyn before being forced to retreat from Manhattan. 

While the place is now covered by the marble Federal Hall National Memorial, your guide will be able to help you imagine the building it replaced. As the original Capitol Building of the USA, it hosted the Stamp Act Congress of 1765, the Continental Congress and the First Congress, including the writing of the Bill of Rights. From there, it is a short walk to Trinity Church where George Washington was a regular worshipper. Be sure to venture to the left of the church to see the grave of Founding Father Alexander Hamilton; a man who played a key role in America’s economic path and is the namesake of the 11 Tony Award winning Broadway musical.

Into the City’s Historic Heart

Passing the site of the Alexander MacComb House, the second presidential mansion of the USA where George Washington lived in 1790, your guide will take you into the heart of the New York Financial District; and the old colonial city. Stopping at Bowling Green, your guide will talk about how, in 1776, a crowd tore down a statue of George III to covert it into bullets for the Continental Army— leaving marks which can still be seen today. Walking within the heart of the old Dutch City, you will also venture down Broad Street – built on the site of a filled-in Dutch canal – to Fraunces Tavern where George Washington dismissed his officers in 1783.

As you near the southern tip of Manhattan, your guide will take you past the Alexander Hamilton US Custom House and tell you the story of Fort George (known as Fort Amsterdam before 1664), which used to stand on the site. Lastly, you will visit Battery Park, which played host to the British Army's 'Evacuation Day' of 1783 as the "world turned upside down." 


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