Formerly a private estate with panoramic views of the Hudson River and the Palisades, Wave Hill has, at various times in its history, been home to a British U.N. ambassador, Mark Twain, and Theodore Roosevelt. Set in a stunningly bucolic neighborhood that doesn’t look anything like you’d expect from the Bronx, its 28 gorgeous acres were bequeathed to the city of New York for use as a public garden that is now one of the most beautiful spots in the city. It’s a wonderful place to commune with nature, both along wooded paths and in beautifully manicured herb and flower gardens, where all of the plants are clearly labeled by careful horticulturists. Benches are positioned throughout the property for quiet contemplation and spectacular views. It's a great spot for taking in the Hudson River vibe without having to rent a car and travel to Westchester to visit the Rockefeller estate; in 2004, a 28-acre public garden and cultural center opened, making it even more attractive and accessible. Programs range from horticulture and environmental education to landscape history and forestry to dance performances and concerts.