Battery Park Highlights | TopView Sightseeing

Battery Park

Location: At the southern tip of Manhattan Island in New York City facing New York Harbor.

Located at the southern tip of Manhattan with ready access to the harbor and the Hudson River, Battery Park New York is where the history of the city began. The area’s strategic location was recognized by Native Americans and Dutch settlers, who called it Capske Hook (from Kapsee, an Indian term for rocky ledge). Near this point, the colonists of the Dutch West India Company began the settlement of New Amsterdam in 1625. As the colony grew and its commerce expanded, piers, wharves, and slips rose along the coastline. The Dutch constructed Fort Amsterdam as early as 1626, and around 1683, the first of a series of gun batteries was constructed around the shore.

With its fine promenade and magnificent vista of the harbor, the Battery Park NYC became a popular place for New Yorkers to visit in the early 18th century. Its development as a public park owes to its enlargement through the landfill. Between 1808 and 1811, a new circular fort was erected and was renamed Castle Clinton (for Governor De Witt Clinton). The fort was later renamed Castle Garden and provided the setting for countless receptions, demonstrations, and performances for more than thirty years. General Lafayette was welcomed there in 1824, Inventor Samuel F.B. Morse demonstrated his “wireless telegraph” in 1842, and singer Jenny Lind made her American debut in 1850. From 1855 to 1890 the building was used as the federal immigration center for the east coast, processing approximately eight million immigrants (pre-Ellis Island). In 1890, Castle Garden became the home of the New York Aquarium until 1941 when it was moved to Coney Island.

Portions of Battery Park, New York were closed from 1940 to 1952, while the Brooklyn-Battery Tunnel and the Battery Park Underpass were built beneath it. Although construction was delayed by World War II, New Yorkers were delighted with the dramatically transformed park that had been expanded by two acres. Castle Clinton (as it was then known) was ceded to the U.S. Department of the Interior in 1950 and designated a national monument. Today the site houses the ticket office for the Statue of Liberty. Castle Clinton receives over 3 million annual visitors making it one of the most visited National Park Service sites in the country. The fort originally built to keep people out now welcomes visitors from all over the world! Within the Park there is a Battery Park playground for kids of all ages!

Wondering what Battery Park City is? It is a mainly residential 92-acre planned community on the west side of the southern tip of the island of Manhattan of which more than one-third of the development is parkland. The land upon which it is built was created by land reclamation on the Hudson River using over 3 million cubic yards (2.3×106 m3) of soil and rock excavated during the construction of the original World Trade Center and certain other construction projects. The neighborhood, which is the site of Brookfield Place (formerly the World Financial Center), along with numerous buildings designed for housing, commercial, and retail, is named for adjacent Battery Park.

You can visit Battery Park on our Downtown tour, stop #12 Battery Park. The pier for the Liberty Cruise is nearby at the World Financial Terminal and it is also where our fabulous Brooklyn tour starts and ends!


Get to Battery Park with our
All City Pass NYC (48 hours)
UP TO 47% OFF  DEAL ENDS: 10/19/18 at 11:59PM.
$55 $65
Kids (age 4-12)
$45 $55
Total: $0
Please select number of adults or kids

This page was edited by Steven Thomas