Lonely Planet Writer

Love NYC? Glimpse never-before-seen views of New York from Governors Island

Sights like the Statue of Liberty and New York Harbor are instantly recognisable to people who have been to the city – and many who haven’t – but now, travellers can get a never-before-seen view of the iconic sights from Governors Island.

The island was closed to the public for much of its history as it operated as a military base for the US Army and the Coast Guard. Now, one portion of the island is run by the National Parks Service as the Governors Island National Monument, which contains Fort Jay and Castle Williams. The City of New York is now responsible for the rest of the island, much of which has become a public park.

A new feature, which opened on 19 July, is called The Hills. The newly constructed topography rises 70-metres above sea level, allow visitors to get a 360-degree view that includes the skylines of Manhattan and Brooklyn.

Perhaps even more exciting is the addition of Slide Hill, a hill with four slides, including the longest slide in New York City at 57-feet long and three stories tall. Another  hill – called Outlook Hill – features a winding path up to an viewing point where visitors can see New York Harbour.


The island has been undergoing reconstruction efforts since 2012 and the first 30 acres of the park opened to the public in 2014, featuring seating, water features and public art.