Fall Fun: Hiking, Exploring, and So Much More
There's no better place to enjoy fall in all the five boroughs than in The New York Botanical Garden's Native Forest!
The New York Times says the Forest's "lush offerings remain a secret awaiting discovery by many visitors." Escape the hustle and bustle and stroll through 50-acres of trees--some of which are older than the United States--and get lost amid the colorful splendor. A canopy of brilliant yellow, orange, mahogany, burgundy, and ochre flank quiet trails. Chuckling streams make their way to the beautiful Bronx River. Sit and contemplate the placid waters from the stunning vantage point of Sweetgum Trail, or as they cascade over a waterfall from the 19th-century Hester Bridge.
On most Saturdays bring your binoculars and join longtime tour leader Debbie Becker, as she leads a dedicated bird-watching tour through the Forest. It's prime time for spotting migratory birds in New York City; there have even been a few endangered Eastern blue birds (the state bird of New York) spotted recently. Tour or no tour, keep your eyes open, and you just might catch sight of one of the Forest's shyer neighbors; one of several species of owl or a hunting red-tailed hawk.
The Bridge Trail offers a convenient path by which to continue your urban hike. On the other side of the Bronx River, wander up a small bluff, turn right at the closed-for-the-season Peggy Rockefeller Rose Garden and head for the stunning Maple Collection, a multi-hued autumnal delight.For Families:
Garden exploration with an educational bent is just a short hike away from the Forest in the Everett Children's Adventure Garden. Children of all ages are invited to help in sort seeds, investigate the variety of the Garden's leaves by making crayon rubbings, and explore their environs with a fun and educational scavenger hunt.