Visitor Center

About The Preserve

Rockefeller State Park Preserve is unique among public parks and preserves.  Located just 30 miles from New York City, the magnificent landscape features 55 miles of carriage roads that traverse acres of woodlands, fields, wetlands, bridges, and waterways, with beautiful views of the Hudson River. The carriage roads were designed by John D. Rockefeller, Jr., incorporating the work and philopsophy of Frederick Law Olmstead, who designed Central Park.  Junior’s vision was to preserve the natural beauty of the area while providing an open welcoming and healing environment to be enjoyed by everyone.  Since 1983, 1,600 acres of this land have been deeded to the state of New York as a gift from the Rockefeller family.  

The carriage roads provide unique access to this tranquil natural environment and are ideal for walking, hiking, jogging, horseback riding, carriage driving, and cross-country skiing.  Visitors also enjoy bird watching, photograhpy, and fishing in swan Lake and the Pocantico River. 

For spectacular views, visit the grounds of Rockwood Hall, designed by Frederick Law Olmstead.  This site is where the 220 room home of  William Rockefeller once stood overlooking the Hudson River. 

The Visitor’s Center, opened in 1994, was designed by New York architect LoYi Chan, and containes changing exhibits of artistic, historic, and natural interest.

Permits are available for horseback riding and carriage driving. Fishing with a state license is permitted during bass and trout season only.

FACTS ABOUT THE PRESERVE

  • 55 miles of carriage roads
  • 33 stone and wooden bridges
  • 1st triple-arch stone bridge in America
  • 22-acre Swan Lake
  • 65% of the road system is in woodland areas
  • 180 species of birds (National Audubon Society "Important Bird Area")
  • 2,500+ tree peonies can be seen in the Japanese Peony Garden in early May
  • Pocantico River is a Grade B trout stream