As one of New York’s most frequented landmarks, Union Square is a stop on most hop-on hop-off bus tours, which allow visitors to explore at their own pace without the hassle of navigating. Walking tours offer an in-depth look at the area’s history and architecture and often include Gramercy Park, Madison Square Park, and the Flatiron District.
Food tours reveal Union Square’s hidden gems and popular establishments and typically include a range of food tastings. In addition to the area’s famous pizza joints, the year-round farmers market is a popular stop on Union Square food tours.
Things to Know Before You Go
Union Square is a must for people watchers and history buffs.
Public restrooms are located on the northeast side of the park.
The area offers plenty of food options, from takeaway cafés to upscale restaurants.
Wear comfortable walking shoes, as the park and surrounding neighborhoods are best explored on foot.
Visit the MTA’s website for updates on subway detours and schedule changes.
How to Get There
Union Square is easily accessible using New York City’s comprehensive public transit system. Subway trains 4, 5, 6, N, Q, R, W, and L all stop at Union Square, unless specified otherwise by the Metropolitan Transit Authority. If traveling by car, a garage is located on 14th Street between 5th Avenue and University Place, and street parking is metered.
When to Get There
Union Square is busiest May to September, when locals and visitors take to the park’s green spaces and benches to eat, chat, and people watch. On Mondays, Wednesdays, Fridays, and Saturdays, the park teems with shoppers at the Union Square Greenmarket, where small vendors sell fresh cheese, bread, produce, baked goods, and flowers. The annual Holiday Market, from mid-November to late December, offers a range of unique gifts made by local artisans and food vendors.
Lunch at the Farmers Market
The longest-standing farmers market in the city, Union Square Greenmarket offers plenty of options for lunch in the park. It can be overwhelming to navigate the 70 or so vendors that set up shop every Monday, Wednesday, Friday, and Saturday. Here’s a sample of treats to pick up for your picnic lunch (varies seasonally): sourdough baguettes, fresh creamy goat cheese, homemade fig jam, heirloom tomatoes, sweet berries, and local wine.
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