Natural salt marsh next to old growth forest
There is a natural salt marsh next to the old growth forest of Inwood Park. The view of Henry Hudson Bridge and the extreme tides that make it seem like a bay one hour and a mudflat the next is extraordinary. Many birds congregate, as do people, to simply watch the light change in the sky. If you walk to the end of the park, where the Harlem River feeds into the Hudson, you can see tidal flows bumping up against the mud at the right tide. A magical place.
The salt marsh is rounded into the park. Next to it is old growth forest and dramatic cliffs and caves. Also the rock that perhaps apocryphally marks the spot where Manhattan was sold to the colonists. Walking around to the Hudson it is easy to feel one is truly in the country.
To get there, go to Inwood Park - the tip top of Manhattan. Just keep walking north until you cant anymore. The large trees, the water, the tides, the birds all matter. There was at some point a plan for a cull of ducks and geese, but I think they may have been called off due to mass protest. We all really love this place. It is truly a peoples park, and the last sliver of wild in Manhattan. (September 2012)