The American Museum of Natural History, just a short stroll from the Upper West Side condos for sale at The Astor, is not only one of the most important museums of its kind; it’s a place that has become part of the identity of the city. Generations of young New Yorkers have grown up learning about dinosaurs, giant squids and animal dioramas, and that never-ending sense of the magic of discovering the wonders of the natural world right here in the city will make this museum a favorite neighborhood destination for the whole family.

Step into the Hayden Planetarium, and you arrive at an intersection of science and technology that makes the mysteries of the universe more tangible and electrifyingly alive. Dark Universe, a film experience that plays inside the domed ceiling of the planetarium, is a rich sensory exploration of the origins of the universe and its greatest mysteries: from the Big Bang to dark matter. Time Out New York notes that here you can “Learn how dark matter (a.k.a. invisible matter) and dark energy (the force that accelerates the universe's expansion) shape outer space and follow scientists on their journey to unearth cosmological mysteries.”

The 3D screening of Oceans: Our Blue Planet, in which filmmakers and scientists use technological developments to discover things about the ocean, is another immersive film experience not to be missed. Go inside the minds of dolphins or watch an octopus disguise herself in shells to hide from a predatory shark. Here you can see up close how the mysteries of the oceans are almost as vast as those of outer space.

Tyrannosaurus rex—enormous and incomparably ferocious—has been brought to life in the exhibit T. rex: The Ultimate Predator. It features an actual T. rex skeleton, about which the New York Times points out, "Though T. rex galumphed in what is now western North America, it has a New York pedigree, too; it was curators at this museum who first discovered this massive predator, and brought its bones from Hell Creek, Mont., to Central Park West. (‘The prize fighter of antiquity,’ tooted this newspaper when the skeleton first went on display in 1906.)" This anecdote is a testament to the many ways the museum has brought the frontiers of natural science to the city, and T. rex is right at home here just moments away from the Upper West Side condos at The Astor.

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