7. Meadow Lake and Willow Lake

Meadow Lake in Flushing Meadows Corona Park

Manmade Meadow Lake and Willow Lake were created for the 1939 World’s Fair by diverting the Flushing River and leveling the Corona ash dump. Gates were added to control the tides and capture stormwater, according to the New York World. At 95 acres, Meadow Lake is the largest fishable freshwater body of water in New York City. You can find freshwater eels, shad, white perch, and many more species of fish within. In 2005, the New York Times reported that the lake also included the voracious snakehead fish, a creature the newspaper described as “nightmarish.” Meadow Lake was also part of the city’s plans for the 2012 Olympics bid.