New York state, named after England's 17th century Duke of York is nicknamed the "Empire State" for its national and global significance. It is located in the northeast and shares borders with Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Connecticut, Massachusetts, Vermont, and Canada.
The state is rather unique because its largest city, New York City, tends to steal away the limelight from the rest of the state. New York residents tend to either be "from the city" or from upstate New York (even if they are from the soutwestern corner). Of course, the city does have its amazing influence on culture, the arts, business, journalism, and the like. And time outdoors is perfectly achievable, thanks to the continueing conservation of Central Park.
The Big Apple is packed with excitement, history, and millions of people, but the rest of New York state is sprawling with refreshing forests, farms, mountains, and lakes. It is home to the nation's first official state park, famously known as Niagara Falls. Nowadays there are 178 state parks around the state, including the mountainous Adirondack Park, with 2,000 miles of hiking and biking trails and 1,500 miles of rivers and streams.
Throughout these parks are hordes of magnificent wildflowers and trees. Keep an eye out for flowers like wild irises, sky blue asters, bergamot, and marsh marigolds, and look for trees like the chestnut, eastern cottonwood, the yellow birch, and the sycamore tree.
The sugar maple is the state's official tree. Fun fact: Maple tree seeds are edible but bitter, and can be boiled and ground up into an exotic variety of coffee. New York's state bird is the eastern bluebird and its state flower is the fragrant rose. Send your favorite New Yorker a Brighten Your Day rose bouquet from KaBloom!