Cultural & Historic Sites
The Sands Point Park and Preserve features three castle-like mansions; Hempstead House, Castle Gould, and Falaise. Falaise, built by Harry S. Guggenheim, is open to the public and has many distinctive architectural features including thickly mortared walls, steeply pitched tile roofs and a round tower that echoes a medieval fortress. Furnished with antiques dating back to the 16th century, Falaise also boasts paintings from the Renaissance, and several important pieces of modern art.
But maybe the outdoors is more your thing. The Sands Point Park and Preserve has wooded hiking grounds as well as trails that lead down to its beach on the Long Island Sound - perfect for a leisurely stroll, or for cross-country skiing on a winter day. And all activities including tours of Falaise are open to the public.
Sagamore Hill National Historic Site
From 1902 to 1908, when Theodore Roosevelt served as the 26th President of the United States, this was the "Summer White House." He lived there until his death in 1919, and it remains just as it was when he was in residence--moose heads and all. The grounds include an Audubon Center and songbird sanctuary. History buff or not, the Roosevelt home is not to be missed. And because the National Parks Service manages it, you don't have to travel all the way to Yellowstone to see a real life ranger. Sagamore Hill National Historic Site
Old Westbury Gardens
This elegant estate, which features a 44-room English manor house and traditional, formal gardens sprawling over 200 acres, was built by financier John S. Phipps and his wife, Margarita Grace Phipps, in 1906. The spectacular estate has been featured in over 25 movies including North by Northwest and Love Story and in dozens of television shows including Sex and the City and The Gilded Age. The public is welcome to explore both Westbury House, furnished with priceless antiques and decorative artwork, and the grounds which include sweeping lawns, wooded paths, and some of the most beautiful formal gardens in the world. Old Westbury Gardens hosts a wide variety of events including concerts, auto shows, a Scottish cultural festival, teas and tours, family programs, and much more.
Old Bethpage Village Restoration
Step back in time and experience life in a recreated mid-19th-century American village. The 209-acre Old Bethpage Village Restoration includes 51 historic buildings such as an inn, a store and a church. All were transported from other areas of Long Island. Treasured for its accurate depictions of pre Civil War life, actors in period costume bring the village to life with craft demonstrations and farm work. Throughout the year, Old Bethpage hosts special events including the Long Island Fair, A Haunted Long Island 1880 Halloween and holiday Candlelight Evenings.
Museum Row, located in Garden City, is a one-stop destination for some of Long Island's best museums. Here, you'll find the Long Island Children's Museum, the Nassau County Firefighter's Museum, and the Cradle of Aviation Museum. All within a short distance of the Nassau County Veterans Coliseum, and walking distance of each other. The museums of Museum Row are forever growing and changing—with fascinating exhibits and events. Come explore all that Museum Row has to offer.
Long Island Children's Museum welcomes over 265,000 children annually to enjoy fun and educational experiences. It's no wonder. With all the hands-on exhibits, discovery takes on a whole new meaning.
The Cradle of Aviation Museum chronicles Long Island's long history and major role in aviation and aerospace. From Charles Lindbergh to Neil Armstrong, all the important contributions that Long Island has made are brought to life here. The museum features aircraft used during the early development of flight (including a sister ship of Charles Lindbergh's "Spirit of St. Louis"), as well as aircraft, from World Wars I & II, all the way up through the lunar landing and beyond.
Also located at the Cradle of Aviation Museum is the IMAX theatre. Take in the IMAX Experience® at the Leroy R. & Rose W. Grumman IMAX® Dome, where you'll enjoy a unique experience of motion, sound and sight. Go places you never thought possible without ever leaving your seat.
Nunley's Carousel, first located on the Brooklyn waterfront, and later in Baldwin, Long Island, now has a permanent home on Museum Row. In danger of being auctioned off in pieces, Nassau County stepped in, saved and restored it to its former glory. The carousel's 41 horses and one lion have been delighting visitors since 1912. And now will entertain more for generations to come. Come grab a brass ring for a free ride.
The Nassau County Firefighters Museum and Education Center is a nearly 10,000 square foot interactive facility where you can experience and trace the history of firefighting in Nassau County. Call 911, crawl low in smoke, stop-drop-roll, plan your escape and explore fire trucks from every era. For young kids, "Eddie D", the talking robot Dalmation rides his own miniature fire truck and plays a fire prevention game called "What's Hot and What's Not." It's not just an opportunity to learn how to protect yourself, your family and your property from all the hazards that fires create, it's fun, too.