Life gets crazy and around this time of year especially. It seems like every weekend there is another barbeque or event that we have to go to or make an appearance at. Sometimes it feels good to take a mental vacation for a few hours- leave the phone in the car and get back to basics. What better place to do that than at some of the wonderful parks here around WNY! We all know of the bigger ones but there are so many that we put together a solid 4 that should keep you busy- at least for the month of July! Here are some great options when you are craving some one on one time with nature:
1: Reinstein Woods- Located in Cheektowaga NY
Reinstein is beautiful. It has so many lakes and ponds that are all over the place- and streams that follow it too. With trails that are winding and vary on difficulty level it is a perfect activity to do with a serious hiker or a young child. It is a very quiet, serene place that not too many people know about. It even has a place for kids to play with wood branches and learn about nature known as the Nature-Play area. Reinstein is also full of history and they want to tell you about it! The history trail goes through the history of the park and the history of WNY. Reinstein is located right next to Stiglmeier Park which is also an amazing stop.
2: Knox Farm- Located in East Aurora
Knox Farm is hidden gem. It is the former estate owned by the Knox Family from Buffalo. Over 600 acres in size, it truly is just amazing to walk through. Pulling into it makes you feel like you’re almost stepping back in time. Looking out into it feels like you’re not even in New York anymore. It is absolutely gorgeous and I would highly encourage everyone to go at least a few times during the year. In the fall the leaves make it look even more stunning than usual. There are several things you can do at Knox Farm and horseback riding is most definitely an option throughout the park. There are acres of habitats, wetlands, grasslands and wooded areas. So really- there is no shortage of areas to explore. Knox Farm also hosts a variety of events for the community- visit their website and you can learn all about them.
3: Tifft Nature Preserve- Buffalo, NY
Tifft is like the little slice of paradise in the middle of the city. Standing in the middle of the park you forget you’re in Buffalo. It is a 264 acre piece of land that is dedicated to the safety and preservation of wildlife in Buffalo. It has one of the most interesting back stories of most parks. At one point it was a massive dairy farm owned by George Tifft. Later it became a transshipment center for coal and iron ore and then finally during the 1950s, became a dump. That’s right- it was a dump! In the 1970’s Tifft started to get cleaned up a bit. They decided to enclose the 2 million cubic feet of solid municipal waste in clay and then cover it with soil from other places in the preserve. They then widened the ponds and added more wildlife to it. Since then it has become a department under the Buffalo Museum of Science. It is a beautiful place to just walk through. There are lots of information signs throughout it as well that explain exactly what you are looking at.
4: Buckhorn Park- Grand Island NY
If you are looking for a place to kayak this is a very good contender. Buckhorn is located right on the north side of the Island and it is very easy to miss. It is probably one of the most hidden parks on the list and is very much a hidden gem. There are trails that will take you right by the water and trails that will take you into deep wooded areas looking up at massive, old oak trees. It’s a great place to go on a hot summer day because nearly all of the trails are shady and covered so you will be that way too. There is so much to explore there too. It is very quiet and peaceful and a great place to visit to clear your head and de-stress.
We all hope you enjoy your exploration of some of these beautiful places. Make some time for yourself and go walk around and enjoy some of the amazing wildlife and trails that we are so lucky to have. Let us know which one your favorite is!! Happy July everyone!! If you would like to explore some houses around the area as well- let us know! We are opening doors all over WNY and we want to help you open yours. Just give us a call at 768-1177!