Places to visit & explore on the Upper West Side of Manhattan?
September 2, 2016 7:10 PM   Subscribe

Friend and I are doing some photography on the UWS tomorrow and as much as part of the fun is aimlessly wandering I was hoping someone here might recommend some interesting locations to hit up, neat buildings we might be able to enter, small parks or public spaces worth exploring. Really anything that might interest a couple of urban explorers.
posted by dr handsome to Travel & Transportation around New York, NY (10 answers total) 5 users marked this as a favorite
 
So, all of my suggestions are going to technically be in Morningside Heights, the neighborhood just north of the UWS, but they're worth checking out!

Columbia University (116th and Broadway) is a great place to check out some interesting architecture and to people watch. This self-guided walking tour would probably be handy for learning about the neighborhood. The main campus was designed by Mead, McKim, & White and is quite distinct from the rest of Manhattan. Classes start on Tuesday so expect the area to be bustling as long as the rain holds off.

President Ulysses S. Grant and his wife Julia are buried in the largest mausoleum in North America. It's a tiny national park located at 122nd St. and Riverside Drive between Riverside Park and Sakura Park. The visitor's center is open 9-5 and the mausoleum itself can be entered every other hour. It's well worth a look!

Tom's Restaurant provided the exterior for Seinfeld's Monk's Cafe. It's at 112th St. and Broadway.

The unfinished yet still enormous and magnificent Cathedral Church of St. John the Divine is at 112th St. and Amsterdam Avenue. If you walk east on 112th from Tom's, make sure you check out Book Culture. It's a wonderful book store but may be too crowded because of the aforementioned impending classes.

Enjoy your exploration!
posted by scottdavidsanders at 8:39 PM on September 2, 2016 [6 favorites]


I just walked through to get to the subway but St Nicholas Park about 136th was charming. Along the river seemed like it'd be interesting. The 79th st Boat Basin should be worth a look.
posted by sammyo at 8:45 PM on September 2, 2016 [1 favorite]


Joan of Arc statue.

Firemen's Memorial

The landmarked Church of Note Dame at 114th St & Morningside Dr has one of the more striking Catholic Church interiors in the city.
posted by Jahaza at 9:41 PM on September 2, 2016 [1 favorite]


If you're interested in architecture beyond the obviously monumental, walking up West End Ave. might be of interest. Lots of nice old pre-war co-ops with odd details.
posted by praemunire at 12:25 AM on September 3, 2016 [1 favorite]


Depending on your definition of interesting, my kid who lives on W104th says the cats of the bodegas in the UWS are striking.
posted by yes I said yes I will Yes at 4:48 AM on September 3, 2016


We just got a new pier in Riverside Park at West 79th.
posted by roomthreeseventeen at 6:03 AM on September 3, 2016


I hope I'm not too late for a couple of additions:

The Amiable Child monument is a tiny but moving spot in Riverside Park worth finding.

Dublin House is a lovely old Irish bar with a lot of history, especially nice before peak hours for an early Guinness (look for the neon harp) and near Zabar's if you need a snack.

Pomander Walk is a small curiosity worth a peek.

Have a great day!
posted by rafaella gabriela sarsaparilla at 6:23 AM on September 3, 2016


Also check out the website Atlas Obscura. Lots of suggestions on random things you would otherwise overlook.
posted by greta simone at 9:20 AM on September 3, 2016


At Broadway and 101st is the last wood framed building in Manhattan, it's on the corner.
posted by parmanparman at 9:26 AM on September 3, 2016


It's actually at Broadway and 100th--what is now the Metro Diner, so you have to look up to see the wood framing. But it's not the last wood-framed building in Manhattan, just one of very few. There are some in the Village.
posted by praemunire at 10:24 AM on September 3, 2016


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