To the immediate west of the World Trade Center Site  is the World Financial Center. Though badly damaged during the September 11 attacks, it has since been restored to its former self: ultramodern office towers of glass and chrome, complete with shops and restaurants, an outdoor plaza, and the Winter Garden—a glass-domed public space with enormous palm trees imported from the Mojave Desert. Both the plaza and the Winter Garden overlook the Hudson River, and the Winter Garden is the site of frequent free concerts.
Stretching south and north of the World Financial Center is a breezy esplanade and park offering great river views. Along the way are playful sculptures, inviting benches, and playgrounds. At the southern end of the esplanade is Battery Park City, largely built on landfill excavated during the construction of the World Trade Center.
The Museum of Jewish Heritage (36 Battery Pl., at First Pl., Battery Park City, 646/437-4202, www.mjhnyc.org , 10 a.m.–5:45 p.m. Sun.–Thurs., 10 a.m.–5 p.m. Fri., adults $12, seniors $10, students $7) overlooking the Hudson River is a freestanding hexagonal building symbolic of the Star of David. Opened in 1997, the museum features thousands of moving photographs, cultural artifacts, and archival films documenting both the inconceivable inhumanity of the Holocaust and the resilience of the Jewish community.