2022 Public Tours of Untermyer Gardens
We offer guided tours for adults and families on Sundays from April through October. Tickets must be purchased in advance to ensure that there is a spot available. We also offer private guided tours – more information on our Private Tours page.
- Much of the garden slopes towards the Hudson River, which provides beautiful views along our tour paths, but requires walking uphill to return to the garden entrance. Be sure that you are wearing appropriate shoes and clothing for climbing stairs and walking along uneven gravel or chip pathways.
- Tours cover uneven ground (except the Easy Walking Tour) so wear sturdy shoes.
- We recommend that you bring water and wear a hat and sunscreen.
- Tickets must be purchased in advance.
- Tours will meet at the guard booth near the Cola Community Center.
- Your guide will have a check-in list of people for your tour, there is no need to print a copy of your receipt.
- For a less physically challenging guided tour, we offer an Easy Walking Tour on several Saturdays during the summer (the final one for this year is on September 10).
- To view all available tours and events by date, see our Calendar.
2022 Tours for Adults
NEW this year!
History Tours are divided into Part 1 and Part 2,
to showcase our newly renovated garden areas.
This 75-minute tour highlights the history of the estate from its origin in 1862, through each of its three owners, emphasizing its world famous heyday in the Untermyer years, its dramatic decline after 1940, and the remarkable restoration efforts that have been ongoing from 2010 to the present day. There will be an emphasis on Samuel Untermyer and his wife and their place in early 20th century history as well as discussion of the remarkable architecture of the gardens. There will be some limited discussion of the horticulture but the magnificent plantings will mostly speak for themselves.
Part 1: These tours cover the Walled Garden, its Lower Terrace and the Vista to the columns at the bottom. Part 1 is about 1/2 mile long and has a 112-foot change in elevation.
Part 2: These tours cover the Color Garden remnants, the Vegetable Garden and Orchard, the Rhododendron Walk and Ruin Garden, the Carriage Trail to the Circular Fountain and the Temple of Love and Rock and Stream Garden. Part 2 tours are moderately strenuous and cover about 1 mile and a 182-foot change in elevation.
Part 1 History Tour: $12 per participant, Sundays at 11:00 a.m.,
Dates: April 24, May 22, June 19, July 17, July 31, August 28,
September 18, October 23
Part 2 History Tour: $12 per participant, Sundays at 11:00 a.m.
Dates: May 1, June 12, July 3, August 14, September 4, October 2
Seasonal Highlights Garden Tour: This 75-minute tour focuses on the lavish plantings of the garden, including the architecture, elements of garden design in general and of Untermyer Gardens in particular, and identification and discussion of numerous plants and plant combinations.
Garden Tour: $12 per participant, Sundays at 11:00 a.m.,
Dates: May 15, May 29, June 26, July 24, August 21,
September 25, October 16
President's Tour: Stephen F. Byrns, who is an architect and the founder and President of the Untermyer Gardens Conservancy leads this monthly 90-minute tour. He is a fount of in-depth knowledge on the history of the property, on Samuel Untermyer and his historical milieu, on the architecture, especially the Indo-Persian Walled Garden and on his vision for the future of this Landmark restoration. This tour will feature the Walled Garden, its Lower Terrace and Vista, the Color Garden remnants, the Temple of Love and the Rock and Stream Garden.
President’s Tour, $25 per participant, Sundays at 11:00 a.m.,
Dates: May 8, June 5, July 10, August 7, September 11, October 9
Specialty Tours: We offer occasional tours on special topics such as Trees of Untermyer Gardens, Plant Geek, and Children's Sketching. Find more information about these tours by clicking the tour title in the table to the right, or in our Workshops & Classes menu.
Private tours: 90-minute private tours are available with a focus on history or horticulture and can be tailored to your group's interests and needs. Please find details on our Private Tours page.
2022 Tours for Families
Our 60-minute kid-friendly Family Adventure Tours take place on Sundays at 10AM from May through September. Our guides will engage your kids in a lively exchange about plants, mythology, architecture, sculpture and ruins. Choose from three tours offered in rotation: Walled Garden, Vista through the Ruin Garden, and Temple of Love through the Dell. These tours are intended for children aged 7-12 who must be accompanied by at least one adult. Cost: $12 per child (10 maximum); adults (and children under two) are free so long as they accompany a child.
Walled Garden: Learn about Artemis, Medusa and the sphinx, why the Walled Garden is built like a fortress and the ancient symbolism of its four canals. Learn about the secret histories of plants: trees from the weeping beech to the monkey puzzle tree, aquatic plants like papyrus and lotus and their place in Egyptian history and then we can stop to smell the roses. Spend a moment finding the mosaic sea creatures on the bottom of an abandoned swimming pool. (This tour is stroller-friendly)
Walled Garden Family Adventure Tour, $12 per child,
Sundays at 10:00 a.m.
Dates (click the date to purchase tickets): May 1, May 22, June 19,
July 10, August 7, August 28, September 18
Vista and Ruin Garden: Count the steps on the Vista while peeking at the old Color Gardens. Learn about the ancient Roman columns and how they were made. Identify the geometric shapes of the new Ornamental Vegetable Garden. Admire the ancient oaks in the Rhododendron Walk---alive, decaying and dead. Explore the Ruin Garden, with its hidden alley, secret grotto, graffiti covered walls and restored unicorn. (This tour is not stroller accessible)
Vista and Ruin Garden Family Adventure Tour, $12 per child, Sundays at 10:00 a.m.
Dates: May 8, May 29, June 26, July 17, August 14, September 4, September 25
Temple of Love and Dell: The Temple of Love is a feast for the eye with multiple water courses and rock formations. Many weeping plants echo this form. Walk through the tulip forest and see the giant twin tulips. See the restored Dell fountain and learn about the Old Croton Aqueduct weir. Climb back up to see the ruined Sundial Garden site and the Rock and Stream Garden with its Mughal throne surrounded by water and the anthropomorphic spruces. (This tour is not stroller accessible)
Temple of Love and Dell Family Adventure Tour, $12 per child, Sundays at 10:00 a.m.
Dates: May 15, June 5, July 3, July 24, August 21, September 11
October Tours - Click on the tour title to purchase tickets
The Walled Garden
Persian style gardens and canals surrounded by Greek architecture, adorned with intricate mosaic panels, and punctuated with Paul Manship sculpture.
Descending 135 steps from the Walled Garden, past the ruins of the Color Gardens, leading to ancient Roman columns that frame views of the Hudson River.
The Temple of Love
A romantic, naturalistic rock outcropping with cantilevered terraces, winding steps and water courses, originally subtended by pools and streams.