Quiet Places in the City

Sometimes a quiet place or a taste of nature is just what our soul needs …

“Be still, and know that I am God.” — Psalm 46:10


  • Ford Foundation: A tropical rain forest in a three-story atrium. There are benches throughout. Enter on 43rd St. between 1st and 2nd Avenues, south side of the street, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday through Friday.
  • St. Bart’s Chapel: A beautiful and quiet chapel in the center of midtown. Enter to the right of the sanctuary entrance (a separate door) on Park Avenue between 51st and 50th Streets, east side of the street. 8 a.m. to 6 p.m., daily.
  • Museum of Modern Art Sculpture Garden: A quiet outdoor space protected from street noise with seating amongst world class sculptures. Free access if your company belongs to the Corporate Membership list, which contributes $15,000 annually. To see if your company is included go to the following link: www.moma.org/support/corporate/corporate_roster.html. If your company is a Corporate Member at this level (search the three top lists on this web page), you gain admittance to the museum by showing your corporate ID at the information desk in the lobby. There is no wait here; do not wait in the general admission line. Your corporate ID will also gain admittance for up to four other people. Open every day except Tuesdays, 10:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m., open until 8 p.m. on Fridays.
  • West 49th Street Pocket Park: One of the nicer pocket parks, with two waterfalls, tables and chairs. This space is midway between 6th and 7th Avenues on the south side of the street.


  • Jefferson Market Garden: A lush garden open during the summer from noon to 6 p.m., weather permitting, with several wooden benches tucked away in the foliage. Enter on Greenwich Avenue near where 6th Avenue and W. 10th St intersect. Closed on Mondays and when it is raining.
  • General Seminary Garden: A huge garden with lawn chairs scattered thoughout the grounds. Enter on W. 21st Street, south side of the street, between 9th and 10th Avenues. Bring a photo ID for signing in at the administration desk. Open Monday through Friday from 10 a.m to 5 p.m. and Saturday/Sunday from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Closed during rainy weather. Call 212-243-5150 for more information. You do not have to be associated with the seminary to use the garden.

If you have any feedback about these spots or would like to share your favorite quiet place in the city, email Lourine at [email protected]

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