How is it that summer always seems to fade away much too fast?
Somewhere between the outdoor concerts, strolling through the parks, and late-night restaurant bites, the season seems to slip away. When mid-summer days begin to blur together, take advantage of the many wonderful Greenwich Village parks and add a picnic to your summer bucket list.
Where to find take out delights for a perfect Picnic in Greenwich Village
Delectable, yet simple treats help make up the ideal picnic fare. Nibble on the likes of deli meats, gourmet cheeses, sweet fruits and crispy vegetables that’ll help satisfy your appetite. Here’s where you’ll find the goods to fill your basket:
Agata & Valentina
64 University Place
A visit to Agata & Valentina will sweep you away from the bustling streets of the Big Apple and transport you to the sparkling Sicilian shores of the Mediterranean Sea. A family-owned and operated business with direct ties to Sicily and Balducci’s (NYC’s first Italian specialty food store), Agata & Valentina knows Italian food. If you’re looking to add a sweet treat, to your picnic, stop by Amorino right next door at 60 University Place for gelato and a tasty dessert.
254 Bleecker Street
A picnic in New York City wouldn’t be complete without gourmet cheese from a Greenwich Village staple: Murray’s Cheese.
For over 75 years, the folks at Murray’s Cheese have been passionate about a few things: Greenwich Village, their customers, and – you guessed it – cheese.
The team at Murray’s travels the globe on a regular basis, looking for new and superb artisan cheese to bring back to their customers here in the Village. A world of savory cheese dishes awaits you at Murray’s – from mac ‘n cheese to fondue and everything in between.
Murray’s delightful dishes are crafted with in-house recipes, assuring you’ll have some of the best tasting cheeses in the world filling your picnic basket.
424 6th Avenue
Add a unique taste to your Greenwich picnic and pay a visit to Citarella – a gourmet market specializing in an abundance of seafood, fresh produce, cheese, prepared foods, baked goods and much more.
Citarella is perfect for the New York City picnicker, as it is right across the street from the beautiful Jefferson Market Garden. Not to mention, it’s a short, three block walk from the Washington Square Hotel.
103 Waverly Place
For those who are more comfortable sitting in chairs instead of the grass, or prefer the cooling breeze from the air conditioner, join us at North Square Restaurant.
Our own restaurant brings you fine cuisine inspired from cultures around the world, created with ingredients sourced from our rooftop garden. Our bountiful rooftop garden is in its sixth season of bringing the freshest produce right to our guest’s table.
If you’re still longing for more of a picnic feel, you can always order food to-go and enjoy your meal right across the street among the acres of grass and shade in Washington Square Park. North Square is also available for delivery on Postmates during lunch hours, a service that will deliver lunch to you wherever you are picnicking.
Finding the Perfect Picnic Spot
Now that you have your picnic basket filled with delicious and tantalizing bites, it’s time to start scouting for that perfect picnic spot. Here are a few of the great places the Village has in store for you:
Washington Square Park
Just shy of 10 acres with prime picnic areas, you’ll be sure to find a shaded and comfortable spot perfect for your picnic. There aren’t many better places to enjoy a meal outdoors than at this iconic park.
Explore the Washington Square Arch – a must for tourists and locals – and cool off by dipping your toes in the vast fountain, where children can be seen filled with joy as the water rains down on them.
The fountains produce a calming, rippling sound that’ll put you at ease in the afternoon sun. While you’re there, be sure to stroll around to see the many talented artists, who are scattered around bringing entertainment for all to enjoy.
Jefferson Market Garden
Priding itself on fostering community, the Jefferson Market Garden is a favorite among the Greenwich Village locals where they enjoy a beautiful place to relax. Lush grass, freshly bloomed flowers, and resting ponds fill the exquisite area right next to the historic Jefferson Market Library – one of the city’s most elegant, architectural landmarks.
After enjoying your picnic, take a minute to learn about the Jefferson Market’s rich history, which includes the old Jefferson Market Library, designed by one of Central Park’s master planners and even a women’s detention center that stood eleven stories tall in 1931.
Abingdon Square & Christopher Park
Although separated from one another by a few blocks, these two parks have a few things in common. Both plaza-like parks provide adequate seating, lined with benches for your picnic party. Winding walks bordered with shrubs and flowers leave this area feeling quaint with an abundance of shade, allowing you to enjoy their history from the 17th and 18th centuries.
Christopher Park was originally an operational tobacco farm from 1633 to 1638, while Abingdon Park was a piece of property gifted to the daughter of the British Navy’s Vice Admiral as a wedding gift. Monuments paying homage to the Civil War and World War I are also set within the old, cast-iron fences of both parks, along with more commemorations to New York’s most pivotal movements in history.
Just take a short walk
All within walking distance of the Washington Square Hotel, these parks and markets not only convenient in proximity but also offer you some of Greenwich Village’s finest relaxation points.
If you’re elsewhere in the city and looking to experience what the Village has to offer, the Christopher Street, West 4th Street – Washington Square and 8th Street subway stations are right here, making these spots a hop, skip, and a jump away from anywhere in Manhattan. Enjoy your Greenwich Village picnic – bon appetit!