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A Walk at Sunset from the South Village to the Battery Park Esplanade, with Detours

This walk from the South Village to the Battery Park Esplanade to watch the sunset over the Hudson River is much longer than it needs to be, but sometimes diversions and meanderings are a necessary part of the journey.

The beginning: South Village. Macdougal Street near Houston Street. 6:26 p.m.


King Street, looking west. The Charlton-King-Vandam Historic District. 6:30 p.m.

Varick Street, walking south, with the Woolworth Building in the distance. 6:37 p.m.

For example, I could have headed west to the river via Houston Street, but no, I felt like meandering through the pretty Charlton-King-Vandam Historic District and down Varick through Tribeca and then around the old warehouses of the Lower West Side. I seized the moment to make use of the pedestrian overpass near Varick and Laight Streets, the one that allows pedestrians to maneuver the Holland Tunnel without getting run over. While I walked to the river, One World Trade Center frequently remained in view to the south.

Pedestrian overpass near Varick and Laight Streets. 6:45 p.m.


View from pedestrian overpass near Varick and Laight Streets. 6:48 p.m.

I even made a whimsical decision at one point to climb up a back stairway at the Borough of Manhattan Community College to check out the views of downtown, but I briefly got trapped and had to back-track my steps.

Greenwich St. at Beach Street, limo. 7:02 p.m.


Detour: Borough of Manhattan Community College. Looking south to 1 World Trade Center 7:06 p.m.


Chambers Street walkway over West Street. 7:18 p.m.

Oh, well. I still made it to Battery Park City and the Hudson River in time for the sunset. We don't want to get to the theater too early, do we?

View of the Hudson River and New Jersey skyline from Nelson A. Rockefeller Park, Battery Park City. 7:21 p.m.


Cue the sunset.
Views of Hudson River and New Jersey from Battery Park City. (Below, a Mallard duck swimming south). 7:28 p.m.

The Battery Park Esplanade, resplendent with public art and seasonal landscaping, is varied and intriguing enough for a substantial walk.

Jumping jacks and running. The sun has set on the Hudson River. 7:42 p.m.


Marina, World Financial Center. 7:43 p.m.


Marina, World Financial Center, with masted ship. 7:50 p.m.


Battery Park Esplanade with moon. 8 p.m.

The walk, however, will likely give way to frequent stops in order to sit for a moment to take in the scenery or to lean against a riverfront railing to drink in the setting sun, the waters and the sky.

South Cove. last natural light of evening. 8:15 p.m.

All walks should have a meaningful ending. It may not even be the planned destination. You'll know it when it happens. Then it's time to go home.

The end: Battery Park, night. Statue of Liberty. 8:17 p.m.


Images by Walking Off the Big Apple from the evening of April 13, 2013 from 6:26 p.m. to 8:17 p.m. By the way, some talk yesterday that NYC would enjoy the effects of the Northern Lights, the result of a solar flare, prompted this walk in the first place. Though disappointed not to see any evidence of the rare electric green neon sky of a geomagnetic storm, I was happy enough with this rather everyday Hudson River sunset.

Note on the map: The map shows a long walk of over 3 miles beginning in Washington Square Park in Greenwich Village and ending at Robert F. Wagner, Jr. Park in Battery Park, but feel free to cut to the chase and find a more direct path. The 4, 5 trains at Bowling Green provide the means to return from whence one came without walking the whole way back. The place markers on the map note the locations of the pictures shown here.



View A Sunset Walk from the South Village to the Battery Park Esplanade in a larger map

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