The Best Central Park Tours in NYC

Travelers say our Central Park tour was the “highlight” of their visit and “an absolute must do.” New Yorkers regularly tell us, “I thought I knew this park but you’ve shown me things I never knew existed.” It’s true that we offer Central Park tours at the most beautiful time of day. Sunset is romantic and the park is always beautiful. More than that though, we pride ourselves on really showing people something special. Yes, you will see movie locations. Yes, you will see all the places you were told you had to see but we’ll also show you the hidden gems most people don’t know about and tell you the park’s history as if it were front page news — complete with all the juicy gossip.

  • Tours last approximately two and a half hours, covering more of the park than most Central Park tours.
  • Each tour is planned to perfectly coincide with the sunset and leaves in the late afternoon
  • Rated with an average of five stars on TripAdvisor, Yelp, and Facebook.
  • Awarded TripAdvisor’s prestigious Certificate of Excellence every year since 2013.

Locations

Don’t forget to bring your camera. You’ll need it to take your own photos of these locations from the actual tour:

Shakespeare Garden
Shakespeare Garden: A secluded garden for star-crossed lovers.
Bethesda Fountain
Bethesda Fountain: The famous sculpture Angel of Water has touched tourists and New Yorkers alike for decades.
The Carousel
Carousel: Some of the oldest carousel horses in the world.
Tavern on the Green
Tavern on the Green: Learn about the once popular restaurant’s rebellious past and dubious future.
Bow Bridge
Bow Bridge: Arguably the park’s most romantic bridge, featured heavily in films and on TV.
Heckscher Ballfield
Heckscher Ballfield: You just might spot a celebrity playing on their league!
Strawberry Fields
Strawberry Fields: A John Lennon memorial. You’ll see his old apartment on the tour too.
The Mall
The Mall: Central Park’s elegant elm lined promenade.
The Ramble
The Ramble: A quiet woodland where twisting paths meander through lush wild greenery.

But that’s not all. Our Central Park tours take you to Belvedere Castle, one of the park’s highest points, frequented by meteorologists and birdwatchers. You’ll visit some lovable residents of The Central Park Zoo. Plus you’ll see the famous Great Lawn, The Central Park Zoo, the statue of Balto, Sheep Meadow, the ice skating rink used in the movie Serendipity and much more. Though our locations may change seasonally, we typically visit at least 27 destinations on a tour.

Guides

Matthew Falber

 
Matt Falber

You might have seen Matt talking on the Travel Channel where he is a regular contributor sharing history on “Mysteries of the Museum” or “Monumental Mysteries.” Matt serves as lead historian for Central Park Sunset Tours and heads our continued educational training. All those hours of examining old plans, reports, and news articles put him in a prime position to start the non-profit, Central Park Arch Project in order to advocate for the use of historical safety measures to improve the park’s transportation infrastructure.

 

Heather Shimmin

 
Heather Shimmin

Though she’s a tried-and-true New Yorker, Heather has a soft spot in her heart for all things British. She has a BFA in photography and an MA from NYU London where she studied adaptive reuse and historic gardens and landscapes, including the historic British gardens that would have influenced Central Park’s designers in their study abroad. Heather is also fascinated with New York City’s rooftops. You can find some of her favorites in the “Roof Explorer’s Guide,” along with her photographs of them.

 

Kelsey Pressnall


 
Kelsey Pressnall

Whether it’s a park in Kansas, the mountains of Colorado, a hiking trail in West Virginia, or New York City’s Central Park, Kelsey finds joy in connecting with natural beauty. Her pursuit of theatre has taken her across the country and allowed her to revel in the beautiful scenery each place has to offer. Kelsey received an exemplary rating from the city of New York honoring her in-depth knowledge of its rich history. She is the newest addition to our Central Park tour team but has already left a lasting mark on our guests and now keeps our team up to date on the latest goings-on in the park.

 

Testimonials

  • 5 star ratingThe best way to tour Central Park All right, I'll admit it: Despite having been to NYC a few times, I had never visited Central Park. I mean, the place is huge, so where would I even start? Enter TripAdvisor and the many recommendations for Central Park Sunset Tours. Matt was an excellent tour guide -- super knowledgeable about every aspect of the history of the park, and friendly to boot. There is so much ground (literally) to cover within a couple of hours, but Matt hits all the highlights, and you definitely get your steps for the day in at a nice clip of a pace, even with a pit stop for coffee at Tavern on the Green's takeout window. Highly recommended.

    crispyteriyaki Avatar
    crispyteriyaki
    11/30/2017

    An amazing tour of Central Park to cap off our mini-vacation to NYC. Wyatt was a great tour guide. Highly recommended!

    Michelle Ross Venturini
    10/15/2017
  • 5 star ratingFantastic and informative I am a long-time New Yorker who took the tour with two friends from Mexico. Matt, our tour guide, was amazing! He is incredibly knowledgable about the park - its history, place in NYC and popular culture. It was so exciting to learn so much about the city where I've lived for my whole adult life. The tour takes you to so many special spots - it was an amazing way to spend a few hours. Lots of walking - believe their email when they say to wear comfortable shoes! Worth every step!

    Jessica B
    8/12/2019

    5 star ratingBe prepared for the walk. Especially on a hot summer day it's kind of exhausting. But we had so much fun. Our tour guide was Matt, he was really nice and very knowledgable. Definitely recommend the tour.

    Jamila S. Avatar
    Jamila S.
    7/13/2014
  • 4 star ratingI have been to Central Park hundreds of times and every time I go I see something that I have never seen before and know something new.  Matt is a great tour guide.  The day I did the tour it was raining and we were not able to see the sunset but it was worth taking the tour of Central Park.

    Antonietta R. Avatar
    Antonietta R.
    9/17/2014

    5 star ratingGreat tour. I’ve lived in NY for over 20 years and spent a LOT of time in the park and our tour guide still showed me places and told me lots of facts and trivia about the park that I didn’t know. He timed it perfectly so we saw sunset from Bow Bridge. I recommend highly.

    Marty K Avatar
    Marty K
    5/02/2015
  • Wonderful informative tour of the park. So happy we decided to do this and not try to walk alone. Would have never seen or learned so much. Thank you!

    Allison Pruitt Jones Avatar
    Allison Pruitt Jones
    11/21/2017

    5 star ratingNice, informative tour Great overview of the park, with lots of history. The guide was friendly and knowledgeable. Having a small group was very nice. It covers a lot of ground, so if you are looking for a leisurely stroll through the park, this isn't it, but you can always go back to favorite spots.

    AZDave11 Avatar
    AZDave11
    9/12/2018
  • 4 star ratingNice walking tour. Guide was very informative and passionate about parks. She gave us a good history lesson about Central Park. I plan to repeat this tour in the future.

    Christopher L. Avatar
    Christopher L.
    8/10/2015

    5 star ratingSaw all the spots I wanted to see, our tour guide Matthew was very knowledgable and he gave us enough time to enjoy each spot!

    Camille R. Avatar
    Camille R.
    10/29/2014
  • 5 star ratingEven though I've lived in NYC (Manhattan) for 31 years, I found the Sunset tour as led by Matt very educational, and interesting. I went to parts of the park I'd never visited before, and I learned lots of history about the making of the park and what it was like to visit in the 19th century. Could I have read that in some book? Sure! But I wouldn't and didn't, and it's more memorable when you are actually there. My FitBit loved how much walking I did that day, so comfortable shoes are a must! Tour included a brief pitstop, which was much appreciated. I would definitely recommend this for native NY'ers and visitors. Many of the stops included park benches as well. Matt crammed alot into this tour.

    Eleanor K. Avatar
    Eleanor K.
    9/24/2016

    5 star ratingI cannot speak highly enough of this lovely tour and it's knowledgable guide! As a local, I have been on my fair share of tourist activities when hosting out of town guests. This was by far the best NYC tour I have been on to date. The guide was incredibly well organized and friendly and had a very engaging and thoughtfully planned stroll through Central Park. There were ample opportunities to rest, if desired, and I was amazed by the guide's ability to answer off the cuff questions. I wish I would have taken this tour sooner, as I now see Central Park in an entirely new light. Take this tour! And bring a camera for the sunset 🙂

    Trip T. Avatar
    Trip T.
    6/10/2019
  • 4 star ratingGreat tour. I've lived in NY for over 20 years and spent a LOT of time in the park and our tour guide Ryan still showed me places and told me lots of facts and trivia about the park that I didn't know. He timed it perfectly so we saw sunset from Bow Bridge. I recommend highly.

    Marty K. Avatar
    Marty K.
    6/30/2012

    5 star ratingJust had a fantastic tour around Central Park with Matt , what a fantastic guide , very knowledgeable, friendly and funny . The tour lasted over 2 hours but the time just flew, for a young man matts knowledge is-exceptional, we could have listed to him all day. Great view and places of the park that if we were visiting on our own we would have missed.... please book a tour and if you get Matt you will be in for a great time

    Mel and Joe White, UK Avatar
    Mel and Joe White, UK
    11/13/2017
  • 5 star ratingLoved this tour! Our tour guide Matt was knowledge and kept the tour moving at a great pace. We covered so many of the beautiful highlights of Central Park. I definitely recommend this tour!

    Marcia M. Avatar
    Marcia M.
    5/07/2015

    5 star ratingAwesome tour for newbies and NYers alike! Although I live in New York and have been to Central Park many times, I recently went on a tour when a good friend was in town from Korea. Experiencing the tour around sunset was perfect, allowing us to avoid the heat of the day. In addition, Central Park is beautiful that time of day. Our guide was very knowledgeable with tons of historical facts and tidbits to point out. Despite being a NYer, even I learned a number of interesting things. While it would have been easy to just wander the park ourselves, it was great to have a guide that could not only make sure we didn’t miss anything, but also to give us some historical context. I would highly recommend a Central Park Sunset Tour for anyone visiting for the first time, or for anyone who would like to know more about the park they enjoy all time!

    Luke E Avatar
    Luke E
    6/19/2012
  • If / when you are in NY you must take this tour. We just loved it

    Orit Abir-Nagar Avatar
    Orit Abir-Nagar
    10/23/2015

    5 star ratingGreat overview of Central Park Matt led our tour and it was well worthwhile. The park is vast and for first timers the tour is a great way to see and hear about the history of the park, and City. well worth the money.

    JoAlberta
    6/18/2019
  • 5 star ratingCentral Park Sunset Tours is a fabulous excursion and Heather is a wonderful guide! Whether you live in New York or visiting, this tour is a great way to develop a connection to the city and this wonderful park.
    It is a walking tour, so be prepared to walk - a lot!  Wear comfortable shoes, bring a camera and backpack. Go with the attitude of getting a little exercise and leave with new appreciation of what a true treasure this Park is to NYC (and the raccoon family that lives under the bridge (you'll have to take the tour to find out which bridge)).

    Lisa S. Avatar
    Lisa S.
    5/18/2015

    5 star ratingGreat introduction to the park Matt gave 3 of us an excellent introduction to the Park last week. First, for reasons to do with total traffic meltdown and transport failure, he thoughtfully rounded us all up. This was nobody's plan, nor is it at all customary, but it led to an understanding of how the streetlamp numbering system works in the park. Then we went on a spirited tour of the southern half of the park. His historical knowledge is extensive and he tells good stories. This was my first day in NYC and I'm so glad I did this. Thank you Matt!

    Robin A Avatar
    Robin A
    10/25/2018
  • 5 star ratingThe Sunset Tour in Central Park 10/22/18 It was very interesting and professional tour with guide Matt.
    He knows everything about Central Park, he walked us through the areas we never been before. He gave us a history of everything we saw during our walking (about 3 hours).
    If you live in NYC or just visiting , this tour should be on the list of a " must to do" thinks.
    Thank you, Matt.

    yh123az Avatar
    yh123az
    10/25/2018

    5 star ratingWonderful Highlights of Central Park with Matt Easy to find meeting site. Matt is a wonderful guide with amazing knowledge of and love for the Park that shine through the entire activity. Easy walking, total duration just right for any participant. Learned lots and enjoyed the Park so much more with Matt as our guide. Perfect time of day for this excursion. Recommended!

    Al J
    6/28/2019
  • 5 star ratingGreat way to learn about the park history and see parts you maybe wouldn't have thought to go, a beautiful and fun experience. I highly recommend on your next trip to NYC or staycation you consider booking a tour! It's about three hours but leisurely walking and extremely knowledgeable and personable guide. Wish I remembered the young guy's name, but he was awesome. One of my favorite memories of the city was this tour.

    Christina F. Avatar
    Christina F.
    12/16/2017

    4 star ratingLots of information.
    This was an enjoyable tour and we learned so much about the park's history and architecture. Great way to watch the sunset.

    Mimi W. Avatar
    Mimi W.
    8/25/2016
  • 5 star ratingIt doesn't get any better Outstanding tour with very knowledgeable guide, a don't miss experience.

    Stevebeat1 Avatar
    Stevebeat1
    10/06/2011

    5 star ratingIf you're visiting New York, you HAVE to take this tour of Central Park. Our guide, Kelsey, was absolutely amazing. She's funny, witty and, most of all, she knows her Central Park inside out. She answered all of our questions, showed us all the places where movies had been made and places that locals might not even know about. We really enjoyed every minute of it. Oh, don't forget to bring your camera. It was one of the highlights of our trip to NYC. Thanks again Kelsey! We had a great time!

    Claude G. Avatar
    Claude G.
    8/03/2018
  • 5 star ratingLovely, tour! Best of NYC 🙂 I cannot speak highly enough of this lovely tour and it's knowledgable guide! As a local, I have been on my fair share of tourist activities when hosting out of town guests. This was by far the best NYC tour I have been on to date. The guide was incredibly well organized and friendly and had a very engaging and thoughtfully planned stroll through Central Park. There were ample opportunities to rest, if desired, and I was amazed by the guide's ability to answer off the cuff questions. I wish I would have taken this tour sooner, as I now see Central Park in an entirely new light. Take this tour! And bring a camera for the sunset 🙂 More

    TravelTripsYay
    6/10/2019

    5 star ratingLOVED IT My fiancée Liz and I decided to do this tour. And SO GLAD WE DID. Our tour guide was so phenomenal. Kelsey guided us through the park as though she was an old time friend giving us nuggets of history. Nothing seemed scripted or rehearsed or overly didactic. I would HIGHLY recommend this tour and recommending Kelsey as your guide.

    Jakewilliamson5 Avatar
    Jakewilliamson5
    7/25/2018
  • 5 star ratingGreat tour! Matt was a FANTASTIC tour guide. The tour was loaded with great New York and Manhattan history and information! The walk had a depth of character with the late evening into dusk and twilight hours between the city skyline and the greenery of the city.
    I highly recommend this tour!!

    Genette A Avatar
    Genette A
    9/17/2018

    5 star ratingSunset Central Park Tour We took the sunset Central Park tour with Matt. Matt did a great job and you can tell he is knowledgeable about the park and the city both past and present. I would definitely recommend this tour.

    Stacy A Avatar
    Stacy A
    12/02/2018
  • 5 star ratingWeekend Getaway On October 27, 2017, we decided to join the Sunset Tour of Central Park with Matthew. Matthew did and amazing job explaining all the history of Central Park in a 2.5 hour span. The pace was perfect and we covered a lot of grounds with some amazing stories about Central Park. Matthew was great at the details of the history and fully explained certain people that shaped the park. I would highly suggest the tour of the Central Park and try to get Matthew - great guy

    lew43026 Avatar
    lew43026
    11/04/2017

    5 star ratingMatthew did a great job of giving the history of the park, the reasons that the design ended-up the way it did, some of the architecture in the park. It was well presented, interesting, and enjoyable. We would highly recommend it.

    Ray M. Avatar
    Ray M.
    9/26/2016
  • 5 star ratingHighly recommend!! What a great tour! Even if you’re a New Yorker you’ll love this tour and learn things you never knew! And if you’re visiting, you definitely need to take this tour! Our tour guide was Matt and he’s so knowledgeable and personable! Can’t wait to try the night tour!

    pbaynton Avatar
    pbaynton
    5/26/2019

    5 star ratingHighly recommend I have only seen a small part of the park before and wasn't that impressed, but once away from the outskirts and deeper into the park with Matt I saw the beauty, it was lovely. Very interesting, informative and active, really enjoyed it.

    SophieG1 Avatar
    SophieG1
    11/22/2018
  • 5 star ratingAn absolute must do!!! My husband and I took the Central Park Sunset Tour, wanting to learn about the park. We had never visited there before. WOW! Our tour guide was amazing. She was so knowledgeable about all things in and related to the park. We were in a small group of 10. The pace was fast. She kept the group moving. There were photo ops and rest stops. The park is beautiful and it was great to learn about the cool historical sites within. I would definitely recommend this tour. Fantastic!!

    DreamTraveler365 Avatar
    DreamTraveler365
    7/05/2018

    5 star ratingFascinating I had an excellent evening tour towards the end of July with Central Park After Dark. I honestly did not expect to learn as much as I did! I knew it would be scenic, but our tour guide, Matthew, was so knowledgeable about so much of the history behind the stunning visuals. The nighttime elements of seeing all the historic landmarks made it even that more fascinating. Matthew as well was very charming and informing and made the evening just wonderful for our group. I hope to take another one of the listed tours soon!

    Taylor H
    8/05/2019
  • Been to Central Park many times in a past. An organized tour with a very knowledgeable tour guide made our experience very unique.

    Ellen A Kaplan Avatar
    Ellen A Kaplan
    11/12/2016

    5 star ratingWonderful! Our guide, was knowledgeable and friendly. I’ve been in Central Park many times but learned so much more about it: about how it got there and why; about the architecture and all the contributors; historical facts and interesting stories. Definitely would recommend this tour.

    Marie Van Duyne Avatar
    Marie Van Duyne
    11/21/2013
  • 5 star ratingSunset Tour This was a highlight of our trip in NY and highly recommend this tour for anyone that is interested in the history and hidden gems of Central Park. Matt has done his research and it shows through this tour. More

    HaleyW926
    7/10/2019

    5 star ratingSunset tour is a great way to spend a relaxing yet energized late afternoon in New York. The tour takes you to well known park attractions as well as hidden jems of it. The guide (Matt was great!) will tell you must-know facts as well as waggish details from history, New York politics and so forth.
    Be prepared for intensely paced walking for solid 2 hours. Though you have breaks and stops, and there is plenty of shade and benches, so you will never feel exhausted, but rather relaxed and inspired.

    Alfie P. Avatar
    Alfie P.
    6/15/2012


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