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The Ramble

Updated: October 3, 2021

Between 73rd and 78th streets, located just north of The Lake and south of The Great Lawn, The Ramble is a 38-acre get-away from the hustle and bustle of the city. One of the main features of Central Park, it was also one of the first parts of the park to be built. With winding, shaded pathways, man-made streams, and beautiful wildly-landscaped flora and fauna, this is a place you want to get “lost” in. Don’t worry, there are plenty of signs along the paths to help you find your way.

Olmstead called this oasis a “wild garden.” As natural as it looks, there isn’t much natural about it. Besides the Manhattan bedrock on which it sits, and perhaps the most endearing and unique feature of The Ramble, every plant was a deliberate part of the landscape. Some trees are native, like American sycamore, a variety of oaks (white, black, red, scarlet, and willow), and Hackberry. Others are non-native trees, like Kentucky coffee, Yellowwood, Black cherry and Black locust. Some of the more aggressive species have taken over in some parts of the park, and require continue upkeep.  The oldest plants to be found are no older than 1869, when the first trees were planted.

Central Park is on the Atlantic Flyway (spring/fall migration route), making it one of the best places to bird watch. Boasting over 230 species of birds, 40 of which are here year-long, this is an ideal place for professional bird watchers and novice alike. Come with your cameras and binoculars to spot a few of the 20 species of warblers The Ramble has to offer.

What you won’t find in this part of the park: trash bins. There’s a “carry in, carry out” policy, with bins located at the entrance of The Ramble. It’s a courtesy to the environment and Central Park Conservancy staff, who tend to the maintenance of the park.

+++If you join our Central Park (Middle Section) walking tour, you will see it with your own eyes!+++


Written by Lori

About The Author

Stephen Pickhardt

Stephen is the CEO of Free Tours by Foot and has overseen the transformation of a local walking tour company into a global tour community and traveler’s advice platform. He has personally led thousands of group tours in the US and Europe, and is an expert in trip planning and sightseeing, with a focus on budget travelers. Stephen has been published and featured in dozens of publications including The Wall Street Journal, BBC, Yahoo,, and more.
Updated: October 3rd, 2021
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