The Queens Zoo and Art Museum Are Worth a Trip

The Queens Zoo and Art Museum Are Worth a Trip
Julie Larson Maher

I'm always so relentlessly Manhattan-centric, as if nothing else exists in New York, but a recent train voyage to Queens proved my self-imposed limitations have been a bit silly.

First off, The Queens Zoo is an enjoyable open-air experience where the bison, pumas, and Andean bears look positively comfy and the goats and pigs love you for life if you allow them to lick some 50-cent feed off your hand (though I didn't; squeamish).

Best of all is the Aviary, set in a geodesic dome built by Buckminster Fuller for the 1964 World's Fair, where it was the Winston Churchill Pavilion.

Now it's an airy, tree-filled home to all sorts of wacky winged creatures, and as you walk the long, high ramp through it, the feeling is very Discovery Channel meets Lost Horizon.

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Walking distance from the zoo is the Queens Museum of Art, where there's an exhibit of old World's Fair memorabilia, plus the longtime big attraction--a panoramic recreation of the five boroughs which painstakingly uses 895,000 little buildings to eye-poppingly visualize our city's terrain.

By finally going back to Queens, I managed to see the whole city.

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