Family-oriented neighborhood adjacent to Central Park.
Welcome to Upper West Side
The Upper West Side is a family-oriented Manhattan neighborhood with trees lining relaxed residential streets. The neighborhood is sandwiched between Riverside Park’s greenspace along the Hudson River to the east and iconic Central Park to the west. The Upper West Side is dotted with dependable local businesses and has a more low-key neighborhood vibe than some of Manhattan’s more bustling areas.
The Upper West Side features attractive historic architecture, such as the luxurious 1930s co-op buildings fronting Central Park and grand early 20th-century mansions along Riverside Drive. Other streets in the Upper West Side offer elegant brownstones and pretty brick apartment buildings.
What to Love
- Family-oriented neighborhood
- Relaxed residential vibe
- Central Park and Riverside Park
- Hidden gem neighborhood businesses
People & Lifestyle
The Upper West Side is typically the neighborhood of choice for movies and television shows that depict daily life in Manhattan. From Seinfeld to Gossip Girl, this homey neighborhood has been home to countless iconic fictional New Yorkers. This is unsurprising given how many authors, filmmakers, and other creative types have chosen to live in this culturally stimulating but laid-back neighborhood. Other real-life residents include professors from nearby Columbia University and Barnard College.
Dining, Entertainment & Shopping
There are hidden gems all over the Upper West Side, and everyone in the neighborhood adopts their own dependable regular spots. Glitzy French-American bistro Café Luxembourg
is a standout of the upscale end of the Upper West Side dining scene. The menu includes an impeccable French onion soup among its appetizers and a signature Luxemburger and delicious yellowfin tuna burger, both of which have won rave reviews. Elegant entrees include duck confit cassoulet, pan-roasted Faroe Island salmon, and dry-aged NY strip steak. Café Luxembourg’s sophisticated renditions of French and American classics are served in a stylish space with many celebrities among its clientele.
offers elevated Southern cuisine alongside an extensive selection of house pickles. Hearty specialties include buttermilk fried chicken served on a biscuit sandwich drizzled with clover honey and topped with hot sour pickles. This lively Zagat-rated spot also has a great choice of craft beers. Sister restaurant Mason Pickle
specializes in delicious French dip sandwiches and handcrafted cocktails. The wide-ranging menu blends classic American fare with classy European bistro panache.
Upper West Side residents know the neighborhood is full of hidden gem local businesses, some of which have been here for over a century. Gourmet grocery store Fairway Market features a great selection of grab-and-go prepared foods and baked goods alongside an extensive selection of organic produce and premium quality meat, seafood, and cheese.
While many spots across NYC offer great bagels, Absolute Bagels
boasts some of Manhattan’s very best. Whether you opt for a simple cream cheese topping, reliable favorites like salmon or whitefish, or the distinctively sweet egg bagel, the options in this laidback store are hard to beat. Jewish deli Barney Greengrass
has been an Upper West Side institution since 1908. Generations of New Yorkers can attest that the smoked fish platters, gourmet deli sandwiches, and potato latkes at Barney Greengrass are some of the tastiest eats you’ll find anywhere in Manhattan.
Things to Do
The sprawling greenspace of Central Park
is the most filmed and famous park on the planet. Spanning 843 acres, this iconic park features beautiful landscaping, lakes, lawns, wooded areas, and countless attractions. Highlights include the winding walking paths of the 38-acre Ramble
woodland, the picturesque 1860s Belvedere Castle
, winter ice skating at Wollman Rink
, and animal exhibits at Central Park Zoo
. Verdant areas such as Sheep Meadow, Strawberry Fields, and the Great Lawn are the perfect places to while away a sunny afternoon.
While most of NYC’s premier museums are located on Museum Mile at the Upper East Side end of Central Park, the major cultural attractions of the American Museum of Natural History
and the Lincoln Center for Performing Arts
are both Upper West Side landmarks. On the opposite side of the neighborhood, Riverside Park
extends over more than 253 acres along four miles of the Hudson River waterfront. The park features spectacular views over the Hudson along with beautifully landscaped areas and lots of sports courts and fields. The Manhattan Waterfront Greenway bicycle trail runs through Riverside Park, and a 110-slip public marina provides access for boating and recreation on the river.
Schools in the Upper West Side are operated by the New York City Department of Education.