As a nexus of commerce, history, and culture, New York City has no shortage of sites worth visiting. Though they aren’t iconic like the Statue of Liberty, and less traveled-by and touristy than the Freedom Tower, among NYC landmarks, these destinations are among the most underrated.
MoMath – The Museum of Mathematics
The Museum of Mathematics provides a rich sensory experience, showcasing the creative aspects of math as a discipline. MoMath opened in 2012, following the closure of the Long Island Goudreau Museum of Mathematics. The interactive museum is dedicated to a subject that is often discussed, though rarely represented via visual display. Instead of boring visitors with complex formulas and algebraic mumbo-jumbo, MoMath offers a sensory experience of what mathematical abstractions look like in real life. The space is as intellectually stimulating as it is visually mesmerizing.
Frick Bowling Alley
Who knew the Frick had a hidden bowling alley? Built in 1914, the bowling alley is closed off to public because it only has one exit (which is against city fire codes). This gem of NYC features mahogany paneled walls, maple and pine bowling lanes, and a gravity-driven ball return system that is reminiscent of a marble run.
New York Academy of Medicine Rare Book Library
This hidden library of everything physiological contains centuries worth of knowledge about the human body. Created during the mid-1800s as a centralized resource base for NYC doctors, most of the items in the Library’s sprawling catalogue date back to the 15th – 18th centuries. Among the rich leather volumes and brittle papers are rare works by Sigmund Freud, historic works on disease and obstetrics, and famously, a pair of prototype dentures made of real teeth.
Fort Greene Park
Fort Greene Park is considered to be Brooklyn’s First Park. Located at the edge of Downtown Brooklyn, the history of the lush, 30-acre park dates back to its use as a Continental Army post during the Revolutionary War. As both the formal burial site of nearly 12,000 American soldiers and a bustling green space for residents of surrounding neighborhoods, Fort Greene Park may be the closest thing to “sacred space” among the chaos of New York City.
New York Botanical Garden
Incorporated by New York State legislature over 100 years ago, The New York Botanical Garden is a major horticultural institution. Founded in 1891, the garden is home to the only freshwater river in the city (the Bronx River), the largest pressed plant herbarium collection in the western hemisphere, and a renowned botanical research center.
City Hall Station, which first opened for public use on October 27, 1904, was New York City’s first subway station. Although subway service to this historic station was discontinued in 1945, interested visitors can still lose themselves in the fine architectural details and glossy aesthetic which adorn the City Hall station. Although the City has stopped offering tours of the historic station due to budget constraints, 6-train riders can still catch a glimpse in passing of the grand tunnel and elegant chandeliers.