With its historic buildings, weave of natural and man-made spaces, Cayuga Lake views, and two spectacular gorges, the campus of this private university is considered one of the most beautiful in the country. Founded in 1865, Cornell is a mixture of modern structures and ivy-covered 19th-century buildings. Wear your walking shoes; there is almost no public parking near the campus center. Free 75-minute tours of the campus leave daily from Day Hall, at Tower Road and East
Four miles of trails lead through the 220-acre Sapsucker Woods Sanctuary, part of the Cornell Lab of Ornithology. Bird artist Louis Agassiz Fuertes named the woods after two yellow-bellied sapsuckers he had spotted in the area. A computer touch screen leads you through interpretive displays. The visitor center is open weekdays 8–5 (until 4 on Friday), Saturday 9:30–4, and Sunday 11–4. 159 Sapsucker Woods Rd., 14850. 607/254–2473 or 800/843–2473. www.birds.cornell.edu.
Cornell University's I.M. Pei–designed Herbert F. Johnson Museum of Art houses more than 30,000 works of art: American and European impressionist paintings, some contemporary pieces, and an extensive collection of Asian art and artifacts. But the most stunning sight here may well be the unforgettable views of Cayuga Lake. The museum is open 10–5 Tuesday through Sunday; entry is free. University Ave., 14853. 607/255–6464. www.museum.cornell.edu.