I had a milestone mama moment one recent Wednesday morning when I decided to take advantage of the New York Botanical Garden’s free day and trek up to the Bronx with Augusten. And by trek I mean:
1. strap his 30 pound self into the baby carrier on my front and strap my 20 pound backpack full of supplies on my back
2. carpool with Via to Grand Central Station (totally worth it for the $5 ride, though)
3. buy MetroNorth train tickets ($13.50 roundtrip for off-peak hours), show up at track 113, just to realize that I’m supposed to be at track 13, and dashing across the station in just the knick of time to catch the Harlem Line Northbound train to the Botanical Garden stop (right in front of the main gate, thank goodness)
4. …unleashing Augusten from the carrier and chasing him around (I do mean this literally) for the entire afternoon
Exhausting? Yes. So much fun? Absolutely!
The main reason I wanted to get up there (besides getting in my 10,000 steps, obviously) was to see the Chihuly exhibit. Artist Dale Chihuly showcases his glass sculptures around the grounds of the gardens, and their vibrant colors and funky shapes enhance the garden viewing experience tenfold. It’s like a museum visit + garden exploration all in one day!
Of course, we had to stop by a few other staples while we were there, such as the rose garden and wooded hiking trails. Little man had the best time touching, smelling, and even tasting(?!?!) everything he could put his tiny fingers on. I sure was grateful to hop on the trolley midway around the garden to complete our day!
The NYBG is free every Wednesday, as well as every Saturday morning from 9 to 10am (other times it’s $23 for adults). I’d 100% suggest getting there before October to experience Chihuly–although the gardens is still technically in NYC, it really feels like you’re on a magical weekend getaway, and with MetroNorth right across the street, getting there couldn’t be more simple! Trust me, if I could do it with a toddler, you’ll find it easy breezy, lemon squeezy;-)
There’s a few cafes/food trucks onsite, but also feel free to pack a lunch, as they have plenty of picnic areas to use. Here’s to using your city this summer! xo!