Part of Queens’ charm is the outstanding landscape that surrounds us. From sandy shores to hills and meadows, Queens is some beautiful countryside. And our parks are the prettiest of them all. Acres of green, manicured and preserved stretches of land to enjoy abound on this place we call home. Here are the best:
2021: Queens Voted Fort Totten Park Best Park!
Fort Totten Park
Totten Ave & 15 Rd, Bayside
(718) 352-4793 – nycgovparks.org
At first glance, Fort Totten Park seems like one of New York City’s more overlooked parks due to its location along the Cross Island Parkway and Long Island Sound. But locals know it to be a place for relaxation, recreation and special events (does the “Iron Throne” from Game of Thrones ring a bell?) Fort Totten is a go-to destination for swimmers, athletes, sunbathers and bird enthusiasts who gather in the winter to watch migrating waterfowl rest before their long journey south. The park is also situated along a pristine Civil War fortress where visitors can spend hours getting a glimpse into the past by exploring the fortress and its surrounding buildings.
2020: Queens Voted Juniper Valley Park Best Park!
Juniper Valley Park
Lutheran Ave & 71st St, Middle Village
(718) 520-5900 – nycgovparks.org
One of Queens’ most beloved parks, Juniper Valley Park is an integral part of its Middle Village neighborhood. Locals come to spend time with old friends and neighbors while groups gather to take full advantage of the tennis, handball and basketball courts. A shuffleboard court is much beloved by the area’s older members and the bocce courts are always busy, a legacy of the neighborhood’s active Italian community.
2019: Queens Voted Flushing Meadows-Corona Park Best Park!
Flushing Meadows-Corona Park
(718) 760-6565 – www.nycgovparks.org/parks/flushing-meadows-corona-park
The site of two 20th century World’s Fairs attended by millions of people, Flushing Meadows Corona Park continues to draw and delight visitors. As the largest park in Queens, it offers plenty of space for whatever your recreational desires may be–baseball, soccer, tennis, cricket, et cetera. Lots more too, including a stunning recreation complex, a zoo, an art museum, a botanical garden, a science museum, and a baseball stadium. Explore one of the park’s six playgrounds, take a stroll along the Flushing Bay Promenade, or launch your model airplane. Flushing Meadows Corona Park has room for all your active pursuits!
2018: Queens Voted Forest Park Best Park!
Myrtle Ave., Union Turnpike,
Park Lane South bet. Brooklyn-Queens County Line and Park Lane
A mix of natural treasures and man-made prizes, Forest Park is 500+ acres of options for visitors. With a “knob and kettle” terrain (a series of small hills) and 165 acres of trees, the park is an agrarian delight. Park goers interested in exploring Forest Park’s natural settings firsthand often travel to its eastern portion, which abounds in hiking trails and bridle paths. Horses can be hired from a private stable in order to cover more ground from a higher perspective. Heading west, Forest Park transforms into an athlete’s playground.
2017: Queens Voted Juniper Valley Park Best Park!
Juniper Valley Park
Lutheran Ave & 71st St, Middle Village, NY 11379/ (212) 639-9675
It’s a grand walk in the park. There are a lot of places in Queens to enjoy nature, but Juniper Valley Park, which spans over 55 acres and includes seven baseball fields, a running track, several courts and more, takes the cake. The park has been around since well before 1940, so it has a fine amount of history to it. Add the ideal location of Middle Village, and it’s a great place to spend your time.