Tottenville is the most southern part of New York State, New York City and the borough of Staten Island. And as such - the first thing you see getting off the train is water!
Arthur Kill is a strait separating Staten Island from New Jersey and once you get off the train you see its waters together with the New Jersey Shore and the town of Perth Amboy right across from the Staten Island. It takes around 40 minutes by train and 30 minutes of the ferry ride to get here from Manhattan, but it does worth it. The Tottenville neighborhood looks pretty rural with the old police / fire alarm attached to a wooden pole, wooden mostly one family houses and lots of trees and grass.
There is also a small Tottenville Shore Park not far from the train station.
Somebody brought in an old couch and it looks like some people are having fun out there in the Shore Park. But rather than that, there is not much to see as the park is really small.
The whole neighborhood looks like a park and it is a nice 10 minute walk from the train station to the Conference House Park, during which you can see how the people live there.
All the houses are not like each other, decorated with thousands of flowers and statues.
But keep your eyes open and don't miss the entrance to the park as the first one is almost hidden and is marked by a small sign "Rutan-Felch & Biddle Houses".
This is where you leave the road and get into the park. The mentioned above houses seem pretty old and abandoned.
There are no signs describing those houses and people who lived there. The road goes on after the old houses and there is a forest on both sides. A storm has taken down a huge oak on the left and it is hard to imagine the strength of nature, raged here.
Once you get to fork, keep right towards a shore line.
The right path will bring you to a picturesque meadow where the Conference House and pavilion stand.
Some people are fishing on the shore, although it is said that one should not eat too much of the seafood caught here, so it is more like a sport rather than a food source.
The visitor center is situated on the opposite from the pavilion side of the park, close to the road. There are guided tours available that would describe in details the history of the place the country.
The Conference House was built in the end of 17th century. It was also known as the Bentley Manor by the name of the ship owned by the first settler - Captain Christopher Billop.
Its current name, Conference House, the building gained after the piece conference held there in 1776 in an attempt to end the American Revolution, when Lord Howe met Benjamin Franklin, John Adams and Edward Rutledge. The meeting lasted for 3 hours, but the parties did not agree and the war had to continue.
There is a Colonial Herb Garden next to the Conference House and an old well