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Wave Hill

Wave Hill

West 249th Street (at Independence Avenue), Bronx

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Occupying 28 acres in the north Bronx, miles from the bustle for which New York City is best known, Wave Hill is a public garden and cultural center that endeavours to explore the connection between human and environment through programs in the arts, education and horticulture. The calendar of events and activities at Wave Hill is extraordinarily diverse, including programs in beekeeping, birding, cooking, gardening and nature writing; numerous art classes and workshops; a horticultural lecture series; and regular nature walks. Wave Hill continues to grow its role as a major center for environmental and cultural enrichment, an oasis of sorts in one of the world’s major urban centers.

The Wave Hill House and surrounding estate was originally established in 1843 as a country home for jurist William Lewis Morris, and in later decades hosted such major American personae as Theodore Roosevelt, Mark Twain, and Thomas Henry Huxley. Famed for its breathtaking view of the Hudson River and Palisades, the property changed ownership numerous times over the first century of its existence. In 1960, Wave Hill became a public facility after being donated by its last private owners to the City of New York.

Wave Hill’s Gardens contain many attractions, including a flower garden, conservatory, wild garden, 10 acres of second-growth forest, and a number of pergolas framing spectacular natural vistas. The Winter Workspace Program provides residencies for artists to create new works or develop ongoing projects; studios are often open to the public, and tours offer a glimpse into the artistic process. Exhibitions at the Glyndor Gallery focus on the work of artists that deal with natural themes, some of which was produced during winter residencies.

Wave Hill Information

  • Public Transportation: Fair (accessible via combo of subway/Metro North and Wave Hill’s free van service, which picks up at stations once an hour)
  • Handicapped Accessibility: Good
  • Performances/Programs: Events include concerts, art exhibits, workshops, cooking demonstrations, tours, and lectures. Wave Hill is a 28-acre public garden and features extensive gardens, woodlands, a conservatory and a greenhouse
  • Ticket Prices: Wave Hill admission $2–$6. Free admission for children under 6. Tickets for events vary, but tickets are often discounted for students and seniors
  • Free Days: Admission is free on Tuesday (all day on non-peak months; 9 a.m.–noon peak months May–June, Sept.–Oct.). Free admission from 
9 a.m.–noon on Saturday
  • Membership: Membership begins at $40 for individuals. Discounts are available to seniors ($35), senior couples ($60) and families ($75). Benefits include unlimited free admission, two guest passes, reciprocal benefits at 200+ gardens around the country, discounts on concerts/lectures/workshops, a 10% Wave Hill shop and café discount, an invite to the annual member picnic, and invites to art openings.