Pleasantville (Westchester County)
Why we love it
Its carriage trails are akin to those at Acadia National Park, but you don’t have to drive all the way to Maine before lacing up your running shoes. Both were created for John D. Rockefeller. These 45 miles of beautifully maintained trails pass cow-dotted pastures, circle serene Swan Lake and cross the stone spans along the 13 Bridges Trail. Routes accommodate all skill levels — some hilly, others relatively flat. A special treat: Run to the Stone Barns Center for Food & Agriculture (on the preserve’s western side) and halt for a snack at the Blue Hill Café, run by the acclaimed farm-to-table restaurant.
More to explore
Trails in the preserve’s Rockwood Hall section (reached via the Old Croton Aqueduct Trail and a bridge crossing Route 9) afford magnificent Hudson River views. For another glimpse of the Rockefellers’ lifestyle, tour Kykuit, their family home with magnificent gardens. Also check out Union Church of Pocantico Hills, famed for its Matisse and Chagall windows.
- 45 miles of well-maintained carriage trails
- Beautiful scenery
Directions, hours, etc.: https://parks.ny.gov/PARKS/59