A Saturday Stroll at Wave Hill

I’ve titled this post “A Saturday Stroll,” but it took a little more effort to get to our destination, Wave Hill. We decided on Saturday to go somewhere we’ve never been before, but we didn’t want to travel too far. Ultimately, we set our sights on Wave Hill. Wave Hill is a public garden located in the Bronx community of Riverdale. Although it is located in New York City, it is not directly accessible by subway. Instead, we set out on the Metro North Railroad. If I’d read Wave Hill’s website carefully, we would have known that a shuttle van picks visitors up at the train station; instead, we walked to the garden’s entrance. It was a fairly steep uphill trek of a little over half a mile – although doable, I’d likely wait for the shuttle on a return visit. The road was narrow, and much of it didn’t have sidewalks.

Our uphill efforts were rewarded when we arrived at Wave Hill’s entrance. The gardens are beautiful! Wave Hill started out as a wealthy family’s private home, and it has an interesting history. As a child, Theodore Roosevelt stayed at Wave Hill with his family, and later the famous American author Mark Twain leased the estate. In 1960, the owners deeded Wave Hill to the city, and it eventually opened as a public garden and cultural center.

Almost immediately we came across the flower gardens, which are beautiful at this time of year. The vibrant colors were the first things that drew my attention, but then I noticed the butterflies! There were gorgeous Monarch butterflies everywhere I looked. I can’t even count the number of butterfly photographs I took while we were there, but it was a wonderful experience to see them.

The was such a variety of flowers blooming, and plenty of bees collecting pollen as well. If you enjoy macro photography, this is the place for you.

Nearby, we found the greenhouses. More treasures are located inside, particularly cacti and succulents.

We meander down various paths to other parts of the gardens. Dodging a water sprinkler, we arrive at the arbors. Although I expected to see grape vines, I was fascinated to find squash and gourds hanging from above as well.

Let’s explore further. At the end of another path we found Wave Hill House, the estate’s former mansion, now home to the cafe.

There were paths to walk through the shaded woods. Along the edge of the woods stood these evergreen trees, showcasing the range of colors and textures provided by nature. There were so many shades of green!

Coming through on the other side of the shaded woods, we climbed back up the hill to experience the views of the Hudson River and steep cliffs of the Palisades in New Jersey. Across the wide expanse of lawn we discover pairs of wooden chairs, perfectly situated to appreciate the gardens and river views. We had to stop for a while and take everything in.

Just when we thought we had exhausted all paths, we discovered Glyndor House, another large house on the property that is now home to the Glyndor Gallery. The current exhibition is titled “Call and Response,” and includes art responsive to the gallery’s location in the midst of Wave Hill. Here are just a few of the art installations we enjoyed at the Glyndor Gallery.

Lynn Koble, Tell-Tale, 2017
Daniel A. Bruce, Wanderfolk Whirligig, Fall, Winter, Summer, Spring, 2017
Steven Millar, Many-eyed object, 2017
Tai Hwa Guo, The Floristry in Wave Hill, 2017

 

Jung Eun Park, Denizens, 2017
Amie Cunat, Arbor in Tar and Charcoal Gray, 2017

From there it was time to take our walk back to the train station. This time, the walk went much quicker, as it was all downhill.

Want to visit Wave Hill and see the gardens for yourself? If traveling by public transportation, you’ll be glad to know that I discovered (after our trip, of course) that Wave Hill runs a free shuttle van between the gardens and the train station, as well as to the West 242nd Street subway station (1 train). Details about travel to Wave Hill, as well as directions for those traveling by car, are available here.

I think our stroll at Wave Hill is a good one for Jo’s Monday Walks. Have you checked out Jo’s blog? I recommend it!

22 thoughts on “A Saturday Stroll at Wave Hill

  1. What a wonderful day out, Susan! The weather looked perfect, the flowers buzzing with life and beauty, and an art exhibition on top of that. 🙂 🙂 Thank you so much for the recommendation. Another lovely walk I’m happy to share.

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  2. You temptme yet again to move to NYC, not a desire I ever thought I’d feel. This garden is beautiful in so many ways, with far more blooming than I’d have expected in autumn – more than in our spring, although I haven’t visited gardens, only bush: and beach of course where I don’t really expect much in the way of flowers! Amongst the sculptures, I’m taken with the look-through circles.

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    1. I love living in New York City, but I also appreciate that it offers a lot that we don’t expect. Sometimes I need the quiet green of nature to recharge my batteries, and there is definitely a lot of that if you know where to look. The area where this garden is located doesn’t even feel like the city, even though it’s within the boundaries of the Bronx. It’s a lot like the Queens farm that I wrote about a few months ago. Your favorite of the art installations is mine as well – I was quite drawn to the mirrored sculptures among the green plants!

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  3. Nice and peaceful area. Thanks for the info on how to get there by public transportation . Great that you got the nycid card. I’ve used it for so many museums in the city . I wish they would add more museums to it though.

    Liked by 1 person

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