Wave Hill:  Beauty and Tranquility At Discounted Prices

Wave Hill provides truly stunning views of the Hudson River and
New Jersey's dramatic cliffs, a 28-acre beautiful botanical gardens, a beautiful home that now houses an art gallery, cafe, and super gift shop, a vast array of excellent public programs, gardening workshops, and concerts for all ages. If you've never visited, well, you must. You'll never believe that you're in the Bronx!

The Wave Hill house (pictured at the right) has had its share of famous inhabitants and visitors. It was built in 1843 by William Lewis Morris. William Henry Appleton later purchased it in 1866-1903 and enlarged it. The house has been visited by Thomas Henry Huxley (helped publicize Charles Darwin's idea of evolution), rented by Theodore Roosevelt's family for the summers of 1870 and 1871, leased by Mark Twain from 1901-1903, and lived in by conductor Arturo Toscanini from 1942 to 1945 and visited by this website's author too many times to list! Oh, if only the walls could truly talk! Wave Hill's mission statement tells it all: "Wave Hill is a 28-acre public garden and cultural center in the Bronx overlooking the Hudson River and Palisades. Its mission is to celebrate the artistry and legacy of its gardens and landscapes, to preserve its magnificent views, and to explore human connections to the natural world through programs in horticulture, education and the arts." Wave Hill offers :
  • A Spectacular Flower Garden
  • Pergola and Vistas
  • Plant Conservatory
  • Wild Garden (stunning)
  • Alpine House
  • A Woodland
  • Notable Trees
  • Dry and Herb Gardens
  • And too much more to list!
Click here for a list of garden tours and walks!


Wave Hill is one of the places that is difficult to describe. Once you go, 'you get it.' So, I am including this video so you can a small sense of the place to entice you to go! You won't be sorry!


  • In desperate need of some tranquility? Bring a good book or The New York Times and park yourself on one of the Adirondack chairs overlooking the Hudson. Enjoy your favorite beverage and...Ahh!

  • Bring your own lunch, snacks and beverages to save time and money. Enjoy the new picnic area.

  • Wear very comfortable shoes.

  • Bring a hat, sunglasses, and sun screen for the summer. You’ll be outside a lot. During other seasons, dress warmly, you'll be right on the water and so it's colder than most places.

  • Unlike most tourist attractions, Wave Hill offers a small Cafe that offers lovely sandwiches, salads, coffees, and drinks. The food is quite good.

  • Check the Wave Hill activities calendar before you go. If you can, make your visit coincide with many of their fantastic programs including children's craft programs, concerts, yoga, botanical and garden walks, herb workshops, cooking demonstrations, Sunday brunch, and much, much more! My co-worker just visited with her 4 year old son and 2 year old daughter and it proved to be a great day for all!


With so much to see and enjoy in New York City, you'd be crazy to pay full price. Save by following my simple tips below and use the found money for something else!
  • Free on Tuesdays during off-peak months (November–April, July & August).

  • Free on Tuesdays, 9:00 am to noon during peak months (May, June, September, October).

  • Free every Saturday, 9:00 am to noon, year-round.

  • Use your Cool Culture Card (www.coolculture.org) for free admission all the time!

  • If you show your New York Pass, admission is FREE! Save 5% Off Any New York Pass! Just Use Coupon Code: nyp5pc2007. Want to read my analysis of the 3 major discount cards? Click here.

  • Use your Wave Hill membership card and gain free admission all the time. An individual membership is just $45, senior membership is $35, senior couple is $60, and a family membership is $75 (Family Memberships at the other gardens are more expensive). Memberships are 100% tax deductible and include even more perks like free parking passes, discounts at the gift shop and dining area, free guest passes, discounts on concerts, lectures and workshops, special “Members Only” events and sales, admission to the summer member picnic, and too much more to list. Membership is a bargain considering how many sites accept its membership card.

  • Wave Hill membership has reciprocal memberships with the New York Botanical Garden (Bronx) and the Brooklyn Botanical Gardens and lots of other gardens throughout the U.S. Beginning January 2014, Wave Hill offers 50% off admission to members of reciprocal gardens located within the 5 boroughs of New York City. Members of reciprocal gardens located outside of New York City will receive free admission. Log on to ahs.org to see more.

  • Register your e-mail for free with Goldstar as they very often have discounted tickets!

  • Members of the Brooklyn Botanical Garden, Wave Hill, or any of the 2010 American Horticultural Society Reciprocal Admissions Program (www.ahs.org) enjoy free admission all the time. BEFORE you visit, log on to see if your hometown botanical garden is a member! There are lots of members all over the United States. You’ll save big!


Adults: $8.00
Students: $4.00
Children (6 plus): $2.00
Children under 6: Free


It is located between west 249th Street and Independence Avenue in the borough of the Bronx. Its phone number is 718-549-3200.


It is open Tuesday through Sunday; closed on Mondays except on Memorial Day, Labor Day, Columbus Day and Labor Day and Veterans Day. It is closed on New Year's Day, Thanksgiving and Christmas.


On-site parking is available at $8 per vehicle. Use your member's parking pass and park for free!) Nearby off-site parking is free with continuous, complimentary shuttle van service.

Metro-North Railroad
Take the Metro-North Railroad to the Riverdale Station. The free van meets northbound trains at 45 minutes past the hour, from 9:45 am to 4:45 pm. It returns visitors to the Riverdale station departing the front gate at 20 minutes past the hour, from 12:20 pm to 5:20 pm.

Take the #1 subway to West 242nd. The free van picks up visitors at the terminus of the #1 subway train hourly at 10 minutes past the hour, from 9:10 am to 4:10 pm. The free van returns visitors to the terminus of the #1 subway train departing the front gate on the hour, from noon until 5:00 pm. You'll find the van on the west side of Broadway directly in front of Burger King.

Take the Bx7 or Bx10 bus to West 252nd Street. Cross over the bridge, walk two blocks down West 252nd Street, turn left on Independence Avenue, and proceed one long block to the front gate at West 249th Street. It's just a five minute walk...promise.

Express Bus
Pick up a express bus from Manhattan's east or west sides for $6.50 one way. Take the BxM1 or BxM2 bus to West 252nd Street. Cross over the bridge, walk two blocks down West 252nd Street, turn left on Independence Avenue, and proceed one long block to the front gate at West 249th Street. It's just a five minute walk! Log on to www.mta.com to check the BxM2 and BxM1 bus schedules.


When you venture out for a day at the gardens, be sure to pack the essentials. This will help to enhance your day! Be prepared by checking out my tips in the "what to place in your backpack" section of my packing list! You'll be glad you did!


When traveling with children, check out my best tips for keeping crankiness to a minimum and for ensuring safety too! Click here and scroll down to the very bottom of the page.

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