Although called the forgotten borough, Staten Island is rich in history. Snug Harbor Cultural Center and Botanical Garden is one of many reasons to take the free ferry ride to Manhattan’s lesser-known neighbor. Snug Harbor is a renovated 83 acres of land, including a 19th century home converted into an art center, museums, theatre, and an assembly of botanical gardens. The area began life as a haven for sailors returning from the ocean. As a result, it remained a self-sufficient community for many years.
Snug Harbor Cultural Center
Housed here is also the New York Chinese Scholar’s Garden, the only authentic classical Chinese garden built in the United States. It’s also one of the few Scholar Gardens in the world open to the public. This peaceful space was formulated by a team of Chinese artisans who spent time living on the Snug Harbor grounds. Its architecture and design are rooted in Buddhist, Taoist, and Confucian tradition. Every aspect was carefully planned with shapes and symbols of varied significance.