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The Great Outdoors In and Around NYC

- Pauline

Palisades Interstate Park

Summer is officially here, which means vacation season is in full swing for most people. I like travelling in the summer too, but prices for everything are higher, so it can inhibit many travel plans. I have to admit that the higher costs have squashed some of my own in the past, but I refuse to surrender my wanderlust hopes altogether. At the same time, I don’t want to drown in debt. So, while I am in the midst of putting together and pruning down some possible big trips for this year and next year, I have some ideas for day trips to explore natural beauties which are closer to home. There are lots of things to do in New York City, but the idea of not getting away from the never-ending traffic, noise, and the baking concrete on days when you can cook an egg on the sidewalk is inconceivable to me. Here are some travel ideas, so please feel free to take advantage of them, if you want to!

If you love nature and want to explore parks beyond Central Park and Fort Tryon Park in Manhattan, check out Palisades Interstate Park, which is part of 100,000 acres of parklands and historic sites and shared between New York and New Jersey. Palisades Interstate Park in New Jersey consists of 2,500 acres of gorgeous hiking and ski trails, trees, and more. Visitors will feel that they are far away from away the chaos and humidity of New York City. I must give honorable mention to Marine Park in Brooklyn and Pelham Bay Park in the Bronx, which will make people forget about their everyday, hectic lives for a morning, afternoon, or a whole day.

Beaches are usually crowded on most summer days, but Fort Tilden in Queens may provide some relief from large crowds of sunbathers. Once named the best kept secret beach in New York City, it was re-opened after being heavily damaged by Hurricane Sandy in 2012. Now that more people outside of the Rockaways have been made aware of Fort Tilden, make sure to check out the beach in the middle of the week or early in the morning while the weather is still pleasant, if you are able to.

There are so many other well kept secrets close to home for everyone, so do your research and make the best of public transportation and a car if you have access to one. You don’t need a boatload of money to get away from the dog days of summer, so take advantage of the longer, sunny days while you can. I guarantee that you will not be disappointed!

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