Forever Wild:
Nature in New York City

You don't need to leave the City to get a taste of the wilderness—nature is all around you! So get on the subway or bus and come explore New York City in a whole new way.

Kids meet toad in Forest Park, Queens photograph

The Forever Wild Program is an initiative of the New York City Department of Parks & Recreation to protect and preserve the most ecologically valuable lands within the five boroughs. There are 135 Parks, with over 12,300 acres of natural areas, that are part of the Forever Wild program, which host towering forests, vibrant wetlands, and expansive meadows. These vital open spaces are home to thousands of critters, including flying squirrels, bald eagles, and fascinating rare plants. They also give New Yorkers and visitors the chance to walk in the woods, paddle a stream, or observe wildlife with family and friends

Download the Forever Wild brochure (PDF).


There are Forever Wild Nature Preserves in every borough. Almost every site is accessible by public transit, and many have trails, nature centers, and public facilities. Check out the sites above to find trail maps, driving and public transit directions, and descriptions of the preserves.

Discover all the sites

Keeping it Wild!

Get involved with the Forever Wild Program and connect with the nature of New York City. Feel the soil, learn about native plants and animals, and volunteer to help keep these areas Forever Wild!

New York State Department of State has provided funding for the Forever Wild Program under Title 11 of the Environmental Protection Fund.

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