With a rich heritage that dates back to the late 19th century, Prospect Park is one of the largest and most important green spaces in New York City. Besides serving as a quiet refuge for residents of Brooklyn, this park is also home to world-class attractions, such as a zoo and a botanical garden. As one of the premier art museums in NYC, the Brooklyn Museum sits right on the edge of Prospect Park. Click to book your Prospect Park walking tour.
Park Layout and Features
Opened in 1935, the Prospect Park Zoo is one of the largest zoos in the NYC metropolitan area. This sanctuary is home to more than 650 animals from over 150 species. The World of Animals and Animal Lifestyles museum are some of the zoo’s main highlights.
A stroll along the extensive network of the park’s trails will surely lead to encounters with free-roaming creatures. For example, Prospect Park Lake supports a diverse ecosystem of waterfowl and other small mammals. Occupying about 60 acres, it’s actually the only remaining freshwater lake in Brooklyn.
Constructed in the Neoclassical style in the early 20th century, the Boathouse on the Lullwater of the Lake is one of the most prominent landmarks in Prospect Park. As you explore the green grounds, you’ll also see other interesting memorials, monuments, and installations that have deep historic meanings.
For example, the Lafayette memorial pays tribute to Marquis de la Fayette, the French general who actively led the American Revolution with George Washington. Dedicated in 1921, the War Memorial at the park honors the men and women who served in the United States during World War I. The Picnic House and Litchfield Villa also tend to catch the attention of visitors.
Visiting Prospect Park
Having a total area of approximately 530 acres, Prospect Park defines the borders of several major neighborhoods in Brooklyn. Lined with charming terraced homes, Park Slope is a primarily residential district that marks some of the boundaries of this large green space.
The northern tip of the park is defined by Grand Army Plaza, which includes the iconic Soldiers’ and Sailors’ Arch and other commemorative installations. This famous plaza has an NYC subway station that’s situated along the 2 and 3 lines. Other subway stops that are located at the flanks of Prospect Park include 15 St-Prospect Park, Parkside Avenue, and Eastern Parkway Brooklyn Museum.
Several buses that are operated by the Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA) also encircle the busy avenues and streets around the park. For example, you can easily hop on or off a bus on Flatbush Avenue, which cuts right through the heart of the Botanic Garden.
Car parking on the actual park’s grounds is limited, but you might find some space in adjacent neighborhoods, such as Windsor Terrace and Prospect Lefferts Gardens.
Click here to visit Prospect Park official website.