At first glance, New York offers little respite in the way of battling July heat. After all, it’s not as though local pools exist on every corner. But even as temperatures hit their all time highs, city dwellers have more choices than simply jetting indoors to a movie or restaurant. Especially in Battery Park, a neighborhood on the perimeter of both the Hudson and East Rivers, there’s no shortage of water-based fun to get you through the sweltering summer, and all just steps from Wagner Battery Park. Beat the heat with these riverfront activities.
Batten Down the Hatches: Learn to sail at the Manhattan Sailing School’s intensive summer program. The school, based at Battery Park City’s North Cove Marina, offers sailing terminology, rigging, docking, navigating and more, all squeezed into two 10-hour days, every weekend over the summer. For those who prefer a more relaxed pace, the school offers five-week evening courses spread over a series of three-hour lessons. For those who complete the basic program, Manhattan Sailing School offers more advanced courses in navigation and racing. Graduates can also join the Manhattan Sailing Club, which offers access to the club’s fleet of vessels.
Paddle, Paddle: Kayaking is a great way for all people to enjoy the water. It caters to both the young and old, as well as boating experts and novices, alike. The Downtown Boathouse at Pier 26 in Battery Park offers free sit-on-top kayaks for public use in protected Hudson River embayments from May to October. The instructors give a brief tutorial and provide all necessary safety equipment as well as changing rooms, lockers and locks, bike locks, sun block and first aid equipment.
Sprinkler Yourself: Teardrop Park is one of the city’s best water play areas for soaking up some sprinkle fun – city style. Located just behind a Battery Park high-rise building, this playground can be tricky to find. But once you do, you may never want to leave. The park features a super long slide, which dumps kids into a massive sandbox. But come summer, the main attraction is the water play area, where sprinkles shoot up and douse everything in its vicinity.
Swimming: OK so it’s not exactly outdoors, but Asphalt Green in Battery Park offers an olympic sized indoor pool for instructional and leisure swimming. This nonprofit organization is dedicated to assisting individuals of all ages and backgrounds to achieve health through sports and fitness. That means a day pass gives you and your little ones access to a health club and pool if you can’t possibly take being outside a minute longer.