For many residents of New York City's five boroughs, quarantine has meant either going stir-crazy indoors or making their nearest park their new home.
Brooklynites might not have easy access to the more famous Central Park, but that doesn't mean they can't enjoy the outdoors: The borough is home to over 40 parks, both big and small, for longtime residents and newcomers alike to soak up the sun.
Filled with history, sports amenities, and lots of space to get some much-needed fresh air, Brooklyn's 2.5 million residents have been turning to these parks to help maintain their sanity when self-quarantining gets rough. Below, we've listed our nine favorite parks in Brooklyn to help us get through the summer.
Bedford-Stuyvesant isn't known for their nature, but the tiny-yet-mighty Herbert Von King gives its residents a great little slice of the outdoors. A dog run, a baseball field, amphitheater, and plenty of space to barbecue make Herbert Von King one of the neighborhood's best attractions.
Bushwick might not get the same Manhattan views as its waterside peers, but that doesn't mean they have to miss out on beautiful parks. Located in the heart of the neighborhood, Maria Hernandez Park maintains a slice of Bushwick's history as a sprawling farmland. Filled with trees, play areas, dog runs, and more, this park is a hotspot for the neighborhood's rich culture.
The site of Domino Park comes with a prosperous history. In 1856, the Domino Sugar Refinery was the world's largest sugar refinery, playing a major role in the development in Williamsburg. Now, neighborhood residents enjoy the elevated walkways and boardwalk that give way to picture-perfect views of Manhattan. Complete with sand volleyball, plenty of seating to sunbathe, and a taco stand, Domino Park is a perfect blend of the great outdoors with city living.
A recent addition to Brooklyn's parks, WNYC Transmitter Park opened in 2012 to add even more beautiful outdoor space to the Greenpoint community. Bordering the East River, this park is open for fishing, recreation, and children's areas. It might be small, but it's a well-kept secret spot for a dose of outdoor bliss.
Brooklyn's first-ever park is booming with history. Rolling slopes, massive trees, and various events year-round bring even more life to Fort Greene Park's rich revolution-era legacy.
Brooklyn Bridge Park might be a common go-to for tourists and wedding photoshoots, but even if you're a local, the views at this DUMBO park don't ever get old. Besides stunning panoramas of the East River, you can also find a rollerskating rink, the historic Jane's Carousel, and award-winning concessions.
For many Brooklynites, Owl's Head is too far of a trek away to make it a regular spot, but Bay Ridge residents flock to this local waterside park by the numbers. Whether you're looking for beautiful views, a picnic, a bike ride, or playgrounds for little ones, Owl's Head has it all.
Tucked away in the quaint border of Greenpoint and Williamsburg, McCarren Park is a favorite destination of families born in the neighborhood and young renters alike. Here, you'll find courts and fields for endless games of tennis, soccer, and basketball, as well as a skatepark that stays lit after dark.
1. Prospect Park
Our No. 1 spot is pretty obvious: spanning 586 acres, Prospect Park is the best place to sprawl in the grass in Brooklyn and escape the borough's bustle. Sprawling with trees and a manmade watercourse, you'll also find an ice rink, a band shell, a carousel, various sports amenities—plus hundreds of Brooklynites soaking up the great outdoors.