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Jamaica Bay Park
Jamaica Bay Park

You've wandered Central Park's Bramble and picnicked on Prospect Park's Great Lawn. But this city might surprise you yet, thanks to new and undiscovered nature reserves in unlikely places. Our picks for what to do while the weather still allows:

Staten Island may be home to New York's biggest garbage dump, but never have you seen one so beautiful. The famous Freshkills Landfill is being transformed into a massive nature reserve, and while it's not yet open to the public, there's a "Sneak Peak" this Sunday, complete with kayak and walking tours, kite flying, bird-watching and more.

For an even bigger expanse of natural beauty, head to Queens to check out Jamaica Bay's 9,155 square acres (that's half the size of Manhattan), which are filled with quiet beaches and lush wetlands. Walk or bike along the trails, and make sure to bring your binoculars--ducks, mute swans and snow geese are among the many animals to be spotted.

For adventure closer to town, hop a tram (or the F train) over to Roosevelt Island and stroll through the newly opened Southpoint Park, which boasts one of the city's most spectacular skyline views.

Concrete jungle? We think not.

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