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Top Rated Attractions in New York

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American Museum of Natural History

The American Museum of Natural History is a popular attraction and one of the largest natural history museums in the world. The museum houses a vast collection of artifacts, displays and exhibits, all geared to reveal secrets of the beautiful natural world. The visit begins with skeletons and live-size replicas of elephants, dinosaurs and other extinct creatures, which welcome you as you enter the main hall. Other points of interest include the Hall of Human Biology and Evolution, the Hall of Meteorites, a vast collection of gemstones, an IMAX theater and the Rose Center for Earth and Space planetarium shows (at extra cost), as well as a research library. The museum offers a number of specially customized public and group tours as well as educational programs and trips, enabling visitors to explore the exhibits in detail. Please note, there are separate entry fees for certain exhibitions and programs, the IMAX theater and shows at the Rose Center for Earth and Space. Please check the website for more details.

Sands Point Preserve

The Sands Point Preserve makes full use of its 216 acres: landscaped gardens lead to tangles of trees, meadows become cliffs overlooking beaches, vines of honeysuckles and other flowers surround a freshwater pond, and a castle sits on sweeping lawns. Explore Long Island history by touring the elegant gray-stone Hempstead House or the French eclectic Falaise, after exploring the natural beauty of this diverse environment on 6 marked trails. Educational visits are welcomed, and festivals or special events often take advantage of the spectacular scenery. See website for details.

Planting Fields & Coe Hall

A splendid public Arboretum and a beautiful historic site, the Planting Fields Arboretum State Historic Park encompasses nearly 500 acres of landscaped grounds. Follow picturesque paths past greenhouses and lawns, through formal gardens, woodland, and exquisite plant collections. The property was originally a Gold Coast estate and several of the historic buildings remain, including a Tudor Revival mansion known as Coe Hall, a 65-room structure which may be toured throughout the spring, summer, and fall seasons. Educational programs for all ages, musical and artistic events, plant shows, wedding photography, and school programs utilize this marvelous resource. See website for visiting and membership details.

Wave Hill

Located on 28 acres (11 hectares) of beautiful gardens and woodlands, this non-profit cultural institution overlooks the Hudson River. Wave Hill is dedicated to exploring the interaction between human beings and the natural environment. It maintains four historic buildings and five greenhouses and has won many awards for its gardens. Its Arts Program presents the work of contemporary artists and landscape professionals. Partake in educational, horticultural and art programs that are held at the cultural center from time to time. Come enjoy the feast of nature in its own arms.

Flushing Meadows Corona Park

At over 897 acres (363 hectares), the Flushing Meadows Corona Park is Queens' largest and New York City's fourth-largest. It is the site of two former world's fairs, one in 1939 and the other in 1964, as well as the home to the famous symbol of the 1964 Fair: the Unisphere. While its immaculate pastures are home to several public facilities such as the Shea Stadium, the home of the mighty New York Mets, the USTA National Tennis Center, along with the New York Hall of Science, the Queens Museum of Art, the Arthur Ashe Stadium, Citi Field and the Louis Armstrong Stadium are definitely Flushing Meadow's most noticeable sights. The park really comes to life during the American Open, when it receives its highest number of attendees.

Prospect Park

This beautiful Brooklyn park was created by the same architects responsible for the splendid Central Park in Manhattan. Unlike its more famous cousin in Manhattan, Prospect Park sits pretty amidst a primarily residential area and is not surrounded by skyscrapers. Many Olmsted fans dub this 526 acre (212.87 hectare) park his crowning achievement. It features horseback riding, ice skating, tennis, paddle boats and a carousel, as well as the Prospect Park Wildlife Center. There is a band shell for concerts, and Prospect Lake is often teeming with ducks, geese and swans.

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