Conservatory Water, New York City

4.4
Water Body · Hidden Gem · Nature / Park
Conservatory Water is a pond located in a natural hollow within Central Park in Manhattan, New York City. It is located west of Fifth Avenue, centered opposite East 74th Street. The pond is surrounded by several landscaped hills, including Pilgrim Hill dotted by groves of Yoshino cherry trees and Pug Hill, resulting in a somewhat manicured park landscape, planned in deferential reference to the estate plantings of the owners of the mansions that once lined the adjacent stretch of Fifth Avenue.

Conservatory Water is named for a glass-house for tropical plants and was intended to be entered from Fifth Avenue by a grand stair. The shore of Conservatory Water contains the Kerbs Memorial Boathouse, where patrons can rent and navigate radio-controlled model boats, as well as bronze sculptures.

The water was supplied from the Ramble and Lake, the site of the historic Sawkill stream, which once flowed through here on its way to the East River. When Central Park was built in the mid-19th century, hardy water lilies were naturalized in the bottom mud and tender ones were wintered over in the park's conservatory. Later, the naturalistic water lily pond was reshaped as a model boat pond.
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Conservatory Water reviews

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TripAdvisor traveler rating 4.0
58 reviews
Google
4.6
TripAdvisor
  • We came upon this beautiful pond in Central Park and it was so lovely . We sat on a bench and enjoyed watching the kids operate remote control sail boat on the pond which can be rented for $12 for...  more »
  • It's hard to beat the entertainment value at $11/half hour. My kids and I had so much fun the first day, we went back for more the next day which was even more fun as there was more wind! These boats....  more »
Google
  • Lovely little pond with model sailboats that can be rented. Just a very peaceful, pretty place. Just north is the Alice in Wonderland statue.
  • Delightful, relaxing place. Midday during the week is the best time to go, but it's not too hectic during the weekend. Saturday mornings are reserved for the Central Park Model Yacht Club, you can watch them race their beautiful boats. All other times you can give a go yourself with a half-hour rental.

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