Ms. Toody Goo Shoes

Ms. Toody Goo Shoes

I want to go everywhere I haven't been, and back to everywhere I have been.

Tuesday, August 24, 2021

THE BELVEDERE AND TURTLE POND: MORE FROM CENTRAL PARK

 
 
Turtle Pond and Belvedere Castle are two must-see spots to visit in Central Park, New York | Ms. Toody Goo Shoes

 

 
The great thing about Central Park in New York City
is that there's always something new to see,
no matter how many times you go.
 
 I can barely wrap my head around the fact 
that in all the time I lived in the city, 
I don't remember seeing Belvedere Castle.
It's kind of hard to miss,
as it is an imposing structure, perched on top of a cliff,
and is the second highest point in Central Park. 
 
Turtle Pond and Belvedere Castle are two must-see spots to visit in Central Park, New York | Ms. Toody Goo Shoes
 

 
Although I went to Central Park all the time,
it was to seek out my friends.......not interesting landmarks.
I'd sun bathe with pals in the Sheep Meadow.......
cheer on my company's team at the softball fields.......
or picnic on the Great Lawn while enjoying 
 Philharmonic in the Park

A few weeks ago, when I went in search of  
Belvedere Castle, Turtle Pond, and  Shakespeare Garden,   
I had a vague idea of where they were,
but honestly, I was  just winging it, 
hoping to spot it, when........
Oh, HEY, there! 

Turtle Pond and Belvedere Castle are two must-see spots to visit in Central Park, New York | Ms. Toody Goo Shoes

 
I was so busy taking pictures,
that had I not looked down in the nick of time,
I'd have fallen right into Turtle Pond
That would have been a heck of a way to find it!
(Okay, a little poetic license there.......
I was in no danger of falling in).
 
Turtle Pond and Belvedere Castle are two must-see spots to visit in Central Park, New York | Ms. Toody Goo Shoes
  
 
The two-acre pond was constructed in 1937.
It is a popular area for relaxing, picnicking, and, yes....... 
turtle watching.  
 
Turtle Pond and Belvedere Castle are two must-see spots to visit in Central Park, New York | Ms. Toody Goo Shoes
 
Turtle Pond is the year-round home to five species of turtles.
The most common is the red-eared slider,
distinguished by red marks near their ears. 
Look, he's wearing a turtle neck, lol!
 
Turtle Pond and Belvedere Castle are two must-see spots to visit in Central Park, New York | Ms. Toody Goo Shoes


Believe it or not, most of the turtle life came from 
people releasing their pets into the pond. 
Who knew so many people had turtles as pets?
And why were they dumping them?
And how did they know to release them into that pond?
Seriously, what came first.......
the name Turtle Pond, or the turtles in it?
Methinks too much.


Just off the path, I stepped onto a small viewing platform.
 
Turtle Pond and Belvedere Castle are two must-see spots to visit in Central Park, New York | Ms. Toody Goo Shoes
Turtle Pond and Belvedere Castle are two must-see spots to visit in Central Park, New York | Ms. Toody Goo Shoes


From the platform, I spotted a large, flat rock
straight across the pond
(it's almost in the center of the photo, below).
Of course, I had to go check it out.
 
Turtle Pond and Belvedere Castle are two must-see spots to visit in Central Park, New York | Ms. Toody Goo Shoes
 
 
There were people hanging out on the rock,
and turtles were climbing all over it........
It was so cool!
I walked out almost to the edge.......
But, I kid you not.......at this point, 
me falling into the pond was a definite possibility.
Someone must have just polished that rock with Pledge,
and the soles of my shoes had no traction.
I thought it best to keep my distance from the edge 
to avoid going kerplunk, and becoming turtle food.
 Turtle Pond and Belvedere Castle are two must-see spots to visit in Central Park, New York | Ms. Toody Goo Shoes
 
 
Turtles weren't the only species in the pond.
 There were ducks, and surprisingly, a Great Egret,
which is not native  to the area.
That's the cool thing about Central Park.......
it attracts wildlife tourists, as well as humans!

Turtle Pond and Belvedere Castle are two must-see spots to visit in Central Park, New York | Ms. Toody Goo Shoes
 
 
Enough about the pond.
Time to move on to The Belvedere,
which refers to the entire structure that houses 
the castle, two wooden pavilions, and a plaza.
 
It is perched dramatically on a cliff,
called Vista Rock.  
 
Turtle Pond and Belvedere Castle are two must-see spots to visit in Central Park, New York | Ms. Toody Goo Shoes

Turtle Pond and Belvedere Castle are two must-see spots to visit in Central Park, New York | Ms. Toody Goo Shoes


Turtle Pond and Belvedere Castle are two must-see spots to visit in Central Park, New York | Ms. Toody Goo Shoes
 

 
The castle was completed in 1872.
Lest you think that Belvedere  was named after 
that famous mister who went to college,
um, no. 

Perhaps you know that Belvedere 
means "beautiful view" in Italian. 
I did not. 
I thought  Junior Goo Shoes might know that,
 after taking three years of Italian in high school.
He did not.
Apparently, the only thing he learned was,
"Mi dispiace, professoressa!"
(I'm sorry, teacher!)
Don't ask.
 
Turtle Pond and Belvedere Castle are two must-see spots to visit in Central Park, New York | Ms. Toody Goo Shoes
 


Belvedere Castle
was constructed strictly as a place 
to enjoy the gorgeous vistas of the park.
 And, si, professoressa, it does deliver.

Turtle Pond and Belvedere Castle are two must-see spots to visit in Central Park, New York | Ms. Toody Goo Shoes

 
From the adjacent terrace and pavilions, 
views of the Great Lawn, Turtle Pond, The Ramble
and the cityscape beyond the park are splendido!
   Turtle Pond and Belvedere Castle are two must-see spots to visit in Central Park, New York | Ms. Toody Goo Shoes
 


Belvedere Castle has another important function.
Since 1919, it has been been used 
as a meteorological observatory.
Whenever Al Roker reports that 
"The temperature in Central Park is  blankety-blank degrees,"
 it's taken from the top tower of Belvedere Castle.
Go know!

Turtle Pond and Belvedere Castle are two must-see spots to visit in Central Park, New York | Ms. Toody Goo Shoes

I had a great afternoon exploring this
new-to-me area of Central Park.

If you stuck with me for this entire post,
mille grazie!
(thanks a million!)
 
Till next time........
 

 
Turtle Pond and Belvedere Castle are two must-see spots to visit in Central Park, New York | Ms. Toody Goo Shoes




 


LINKING WITH:

Our World Tuesday
 



21 comments:

  1. Like you, I’ve been to Central Park many times but not only have I never seen this, but I didn’t know it existed. Thank you for this eye opener Amy. I’ll be sure to seek it out next time we’re in the ‘hood.

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  2. Amy, so amazing! How could anyone miss this spectacular castle..LOL Love that you have shared this beautiful building. Turtle pond is pretty awesome. I love watching the turtles. Thanks for sharing. Central park is full of surprises.

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  3. How fun is that Turtle pond and the story of how it became a turtle pond. Who knew so many people abandon Turtle pets there. The castle is gorgeous and the park is so so beautiful. I wish I lived closer to come and visit these places with you. What a beautiful way to spend a day. xoxo Kris

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  4. What a beautiful castle! That turtle pond is pretty neat too. We have lots of turtle around us and did keep one as a pet for a few years. They are not nearly as easy to take care of as one might think.

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  5. What I find most amazing, Amy, despite the fact that you only just discovered Belvedere Castle, is the fact that much of this area looks like it would not be out of place in a major European city. People releasing pet turtles into the wild is a huge problem in some areas, where they interfere drastically with native species and outcompete them for food and other resources. I am happy to hear that you did not go for an unanticipated swim with them, however. Lovely series of pictures and an entertaining narrative. Thanks!

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  6. Thank you again for another great post about what to explore in New York City. Having been there several times I love knowing about places to explore other than the usual tourist areas. Great pictures! Great post!

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  7. These two spots I've never seen in the park. I didn't know any of that info about the castle and the turtle pond is great. There is so much to see in the park. I will have to visit them maybe in the fall. Thanks for sharing all of these place in the park Amy!

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  8. I was wondering why it was built and if anyone lived there and I didn't even have to ask -- you told! I love that there are five species of turtles living there. What a beautiful spot.

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  9. Isn't it amazing that there are so many hidden gems in that one park? Like you, I've been there many times and never knew it existed. It's a beautiful structure, I can't believe I've missed it all this time. Thanks for sharing!

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  10. What a beautiful and interesting place to visit, Amy! Here in Tulsa we have Swan Lake. I go there to take photos. There are ducks and a big flat rock in the center of the lake for the turtles.
    Brenda

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  11. Wow, Amy. All the times I visited Central Park and never knew that was there. Thanks for sharing. Laura

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  12. Oh, Amy. I'm so glad you posted this. I don't know if we will ever get to NYC...but I really enjoy your 'EYE" and your photos. One of the reasons people dump turtles is it is a really stinky mess to keep water turtles in a tank...and feeding them live bug, gold, fish, etc, is also stinky. Plus, they aren't exactly personality loaded, LOL. Hugs, really enjoyed your travels...more, more, more!! Sandi

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  13. I so much want to travel to NYC to see this!

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  14. Very cool castle and lovely views.

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  15. Central Park is such a marvel. You got some great pictures.

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  16. What a lovely post.
    Through your photographs I certainly enjoyed my visit to the park and castle.
    Many thanks.

    All the best Jan

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  17. Wow, so very beautiful. Thanks for sharing this. Very nice.

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  18. What a great photo-essay. I have a book about Central Park in my 'to read' pile - I dont think I have any real idea about just how big the park is.

    Cheers - Stewart M - Melbourne

    PS: sorry about the long time between comments, but being in lock down is not good for me!

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  19. I was there till the end it was most interesting. Everyone loves a turtle pond don't they! Thank you for my wander with you.
    Wren x

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