There are many lovely spots to choose from for a wedding ceremony in Central Park. Some of the more popular places that we recommend for weddings are discussed in more detail below. There are just a few photographs of each location here on the website, with lots more on the Blog, Facebook and Instagram.
We can arrange a wedding ceremony in almost any area of Central Park, not just these listed below. We can obtain an event permit for lots of places in Central Park, and if you want to hold a ceremony in a lesser-known location that the Conservancy does not issue permits for, then if you have a small group then a permit will not be needed. Please email me if you have a particular location in mind that is not listed here.
Each location has a guest limit specific to its size and area. The locations have varying degrees of privacy. Some offer more spectacular views as a background to your wedding. Some may be more difficult to get to or be on uneven ground, some have seating, some don’t. You will want to take all these factors into account when choosing your location, and of course, which one you just happen to prefer the look of. Keep in mind that you will be able to take photographs at many of these locations, not just the one you hold the ceremony in. Click the links to read about each area, and send me an email for more information if you need to.
We can discuss your needs and provide you with more in-depth descriptions of any of these locations, or many other locations not listed here. We can obtain your event permit for whichever location you choose. For a detailed consultation and to discuss locations in more detail (non-binding and free of charge), please send us an email.
The Shakespeare Garden is a lovely four-acre flower garden, so named because the flowers in it are all mentioned in Shakespeare's plays and poems. These English flowers are at their best during the Spring and Summer. The garden is on a steep slope, having several paved pathways and some rustic wooden benches. The garden makes for very beautiful pictures, with all the flowers, but there is some traffic noise from one of the roads that runs through the park.
At the top of the garden, there is a large stone bench in the shade, and at the bottom of the garden, there is a wooden platform with a bench, and steps leading up to it, both are lovely spots for a small wedding. This location is close to Belvedere Castle. The maximum guests allowed for an event permit issued for a wedding here is 25 people.
The Ladies' Pavilion is a beautiful cast-iron structure by the Lake. It is a very popular wedding location, and my personal favorite, it is where I got married. It has the perfect iconic backdrop of the Lake, the trees, and the New York skyscrapers in the background. The closest entrance to the Ladies' Pavilion is the one by John Lennon's old home, the Dakota, at Central Park West and 72nd Street, so most people attending a wedding here would walk through Strawberry Fields on the way.
The roof can protect a small group from any light rain and it has benches. It is accessed by walking down a short paved path so provides some privacy, but it is in a busy area. The Ladies’ Pavilion is is a short walk alongside the Lake from Bethesda Fountain and Bow Bridge. The maximum guests allowed for an event permit issued for a wedding here is 25 people.
Wagner Cove is an excellent location for a small wedding. It is tucked away into a shady corner of the Lake, right on the water. It is a very popular wedding ceremony location and perhaps the most private. The steps that lead to it from the main pathway on Cherry Hill are hidden between trees. The steps can get slippy in wet weather and the ground around it is a little uneven.
Wagner Cove features a rustic wood shelter with seats on either side, useful to cover the couple and officiant in case of any light rain or bright sunshine. The closest park entrance to Wagner Cove is at Central Park West and 72nd Street. This location is within close walking distance of many of the iconic photograph locations within the park. The maximum guests allowed for an event permit issued for a wedding here is 25 people.
Bow Bridge is quite possibly Central Park's most well-known muse for photographers. You might recognize it from its starring role in many movies and television shows. The view from the bridge is so iconic to Central Park, with the Manhattan skyline towering above the trees behind the water.
It is certainly not the most private spot in the Park for a wedding, but would provide a striking view. Even with an event permit, people may still pass by your wedding ceremony if you hold it on this bridge, and it would not be appropriate for a large group. This beautiful bridge spans the Lake's narrowest point and links Cherry Hill to the sprawling woodland of the Ramble. The bridge is named for its shape – reminiscent of a violin's bow. The maximum guests allowed for an event permit issued for a wedding here is 25 people.
The Conservatory Gardens are divided into three smaller gardens, each with a distinct style; Italian, French and English. When applying for an event permit, couples need to choose one of these gardens. The Gardens' main entrance is on Fifth Avenue between 104th and 105th Streets, through the ornate and beautiful Vanderbilt Gate. Because the Conservatory Gardens are quite far North, it is a quieter setting for a wedding, but that does mean that it is a long walk through Central Park to get to the more well-known places if you would like photographs taken there.
This is generally where larger weddings take place in Central Park, because there are bigger spaces here. You would be among more locals than tourists in this area. Please note that the Central Park Conservancy charges a higher fee for a permit to be married in the Conservatory Gardens than all the other locations. The maximum guests allowed for an event permit issued for a wedding here is 100 people.
These four pictures show a little of the Conservatory Gardens. Check this page of the Central Park wedding blog for more photos of the Conservatory Gardens or email me for any advice on this location.
Belvedere Castle caps Vista Rock, a high natural elevation. Because of this it provides the best and highest views of Central Park and its cityscape. The castle was built in 1869 as one of Central Park's many whimsical structures intended as a lookout to the reservoir to the north (now the Great Lawn) and the Ramble to the south.
This location is very close to the Shakespeare Garden and Turtle Pond. It is right in the middle of Central Park, so it would require a fifteen minute walk to get to Bethesda Terrace from here. The Castle Terrace has two small covered areas which would protect your group from any light rain but it can get windy up there. The maximum guests allowed for an event permit issued for a wedding here is 25 people.
These four pictures show a little of Belvedere Castle Terrace. Check this page of the Central Park wedding blog for more photos of Belvedere Castle Terrace or email me for any advice on this location.
Cop Cot is Central Park's largest wooden rustic structure. Many couples like it because it is keeping with the rustic feel of an outdoors wedding. It suits a fairly large wedding party and it is great for couples who want a little shade from the sunshine in the Summer, and a space that is somewhat enclosed to give a little privacy. It has plenty of benches and is a very short walk from the entrance to Central Park, up a steep hill. The roof would not provide shelter from any rain. In the Summer it is covered in foliage, but in the Winter it is bare.
Cop Cot is very close to the South end of Central Park, so keep that in mind when considering where else you might like to take photos. You would have to walk along the Mall to get to the Middle of Central Park from here, which gives the opportunity for nice photographs along the way. The maximum guests allowed for an event permit issued for a wedding here is 50 people.
Bethesda Terrace is right in the middle of Central Park, and is possibly the busiest spot, right at the end of the Mall. The beautiful carvings in the sandstone represent the four seasons and the times of the day.
Underneath the Terrace is the best place for a wedding ceremony in the event of heavy rain. A couple can stand under the arches under cover, with the Fountain and Lake in the background. The ceiling is covered with magnificently patterned tiles made in England. Musicians can be found under there come rain or shine. The light, the carvings and the steps all present opportunities for some great photographs. The maximum guests allowed for an event permit issued for a wedding here is 25 people.
These four pictures show a little of under Bethesda Terrace. Check this page of the Central Park wedding blog for more photos of underneath Bethesda Terrace or email me for any advice on this location.
Bethesda Fountain is the focus of Bethesda Terrace. It is one of the best-known spots in Central Park with the famous Angel of the Waters statue on the top. It is in a central location down beautiful stone steps from a road. These stone steps provide an excellent grand entrance for a bride, or a great location for a photograph of your group.
Because of its fame it is a very busy spot. We can obtain permits for weddings here, but it would still remain a thoroughfare for the public, so passers by may well stop and congratulate you. It is the least private spot for a wedding but photos from a wedding here would show the most famous symbols of Central Park. The maximum guests allowed for an event permit issued for a wedding here is 25 people.
These four pictures show a little of Bethesda Terrace and Fountain. Check this page of the Central Park wedding blog for more photos of Bethesda Terrace and Fountain or email me for any advice on this location.
Cherry Hill is in the middle of Central Park, a gentle slope which overlooks the Lake and Bow Bridge. It has lots of tree covering, and is a large open space, so it is well suited for large wedding groups. There are no boundaries to the area though, and it does not offer any privacy, so a wedding here is a gathering on a hill, albeit one with incredible views.
The trees and flowers make it a lovely spot, with a decorative fountain at the top of the hill. It is close to Wagner Cove and Bethesda Terrace, so it would not require too much walking to get to all the major sights, but it is a lawn with trees, so has no cover, so would not be good for wet weather. The maximum guests allowed for an event permit issued for a wedding here is 100 people.
Gapstow Bridge is in the South-East corner of Central Park, but guests would need to walk around the Pond to get to the bridge. It is a very well-known spot and quite a busy one. The backdrop to the bridge is the trees with the famous buildings of Central Park South.
Couples can get married on the stone bridge itself, or on a small patch of grass near to the Pond, with the bridge in the background. It can only accommodate a small group, but is a lovely place for photographs. In the Winter, it is minutes from the Wollman ice rink and in the Summer, the fun fair is on that site. The maximum guests allowed for an event permit issued for a wedding here is 25 people.
We can arrange a wedding ceremony in almost any area of Central Park, not just these listed above. The Central Park Conservancy will issue a permit for most locations in Central Park, but there are a few lesser-known areas that are more off the beaten track where permits are not issued. Please email me if you have a particular location in mind that is not listed here, or if you would like to discuss any of these locations in greater detail.