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Fern Glen-Cary Institute

Millbrook (Dutchess County)

Why we love it

There’s no better place to introduce young people to the Hudson Valley’s natural world — so much of it is packed into this 2-acre space, including a wetland, a creek and woods, all filled with native plants and animals (lots of turtles, frogs and birds). The institute’s informative guide to the Fern Glen provides you with plenty of knowledge to pass on to your kids, while a number of boardwalks will turn the short walk into an adventure for them. For an added treat, bring snacks and enjoy a siesta on the deck overlooking Wappinger Creek.

More to explore

If your children have additional staying power, hike the institute’s 1.25-mile Wappinger Creek Trail. It passes through a meadow and woods before following the stream.


  • Superb collection of native plant and animal species
  • Small enough to interest young children without tiring them out

Directions, hours, etc.: