Birding

Marine Park

 
 

Exploring New York highlights cool spots around the city that are worth checking out. Where in the city do you go to feel like you’ve escaped the city? Let us know in the comments.

Last week, we explored Marine Park in Brooklyn for something distinctly different and we weren’t disappointed. The largest park in Brooklyn is located nearly as far south as you can go in the borough before Flatbush Avenue crosses the bridge into the Rockaways, Queens. In other words, it’s coastal!

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We started our journey by entering at the Seba Playground Skatepark on Gerritsen Avenue. and followed a path into the woods past the Radio Control Society of Marine Park. What’s that you ask? A model airplane flying club, complete with model-sized landing strip. It was a Sunday morning, so we got to see quite a few impressive model planes zipping around over the course of our hike.

We didn’t run into anyone on the trails in this part of the park, but we passed quite a few quiet fishermen at the water’s edge. The trails here were muddy and the coastline looked like it would have been unpassable at high tide, but even though our feet got a little wet it was cool to explore a NYC place with so few other people.

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Next we headed to the Salt Marsh Nature Center on Avenue U and Burnett Ave. This is at the northernmost end of the park and across the street from a boat & bike rental spot (if you’re looking to get even closer to the water). There is a beautiful stone patio & wall overlooking the water behind the Nature Center, complete with free scopes to watch the birds and wildlife. We saw gray heron, egrets, green herons, a variety of ducks, fish jumping, and an amazing amount of Monarch butterflies!

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We followed the Marine Park Salt Marsh Nature Trail loop. It’s an easy walk along a gravel path with beautiful views of the salt marsh. Not much shade though, so bring a hat and sunscreen on sunny days!

Overall, this was a beautiful place within the city limits. It can be hard to get to without a car and/or some patience, but if you’re looking for something decidedly different than what you’d expect to find in NYC, check out Marine Park.

Cost: Free!

Where: 3301 Avenue U, Brooklyn, NY 11234 - 53 minute bus ride from Our Place

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