When people think of New York they think of New York City. Manhattan has all of its skyscrapers, museums, theaters, and dining, but New York has so much more to offer! What many may not know is that New York City is a very tiny portion of the entire state of New York. Upstate New York is full of several amazing travel destinations for the whole family. Here are my top reasons why Upstate New York is an amazing travel destination.
There are several historical sites in Upstate NY. Many battles of the American Revolution were fought in New York State. You can visit sites like Saratoga, Ticonderoga, and Troy, including many historic farms and trails where soldiers marched. You can also visit Fort Ontario, an important historic site that was named for its location overlooking Lake Ontario.
There are also several historic sites for Native Americans. You can visit the Buffalo History Museum or Crailo State Historic Site to learn about the tribes that once lived and settled in these areas. Founded to preserve and share the culture and the history of the Seneca and other Iroquois Nations, the Seneca Iroquois National Museum would be another great place to visit. In addition to the exhibits, the museum also features a gift shop that sells handmade items like baskets, jewelry, feather ornaments, and traditional corn husk dolls.
Additionally, you can check out the Baseball Hall of Fame in Cooperstown, the Boxing Hall of Fame, the Catskill Fly Fishing Center and Museum, visit the historic home of Harriet Tubman in Auburn, visit the childhood home of Susan B. Anthony where the famous suffragette lived with her family between the ages of 13 and 19, or learn about the history of racing at the National Museum of Racing and Hall of Fame, set right across the street from the Saratoga Race Course.
When you visit Upstate New York, you have several adventure areas to choose from. From the Finger Lakes to Lake George, you will always have something to do for the whole family. Places like Lake George offer tubing, swimming, boating, hiking, and fishing just to name a few things. Other lake areas also offer the same in the way of fun like ziplining and horseback riding.
Just outside of New York City you will find the Hudson Valley Region that offers small towns with breweries, food trucks, theaters, and more outdoor activities. In the fall, there is apple and pumpkin picking as well.
You can also visit one of the most unique halls of fame in the world in Rochester, the National Toy Hall of Fame. It’s a collection of the best toys of all time and children are more than welcome here. In fact, the entire museum also serves as a children’s play area! No matter what your family loves to do, Upstate New York has so many options.
One of the most famous waterfalls in the world, Niagara Falls is where the United States meets Canada. Not only can you get on a ferry called the Maid of the Mist and sail near the bottom of the falls, you can find scenic overlooks where you can take pictures. I have yet to visit, but it’s on my bucket list!
While at the falls, you can make an entire day out of it. Visit Fort Niagara built in 1726, with one of its structures holding the honor of being the oldest building on the Great Lakes. Additionally, there’s ample shopping and dining, mini golf, arcades, and other fun things for kids to do. For the adults, there are casinos near the falls where you can enjoy an adult night of cocktails and games. With hiking trails that descend the falls and trails that give you a great vantage point, Niagara has something for everyone and is one of the best travel destinations in Upstate New York.
Hang out in Nature
Hands down, some of the best nature in America is in Upstate New York. No matter the season, there is an outdoor activity you can do to bring you closer to nature. In the fall, there is hiking and bike riding as well as awesome food festivals. The winter gives you some of the best skiing on the East Coast, and the spring and summer bring you to the lakes to soak up the sun.
Upstate New York is an amazing travel destination and should definitely be on your travel list!