One person did refer to it as “the pretty backyard of New York City”, but Hudson Valley can be as distracting as the city itself.
There’s a thriving art scene, a food scene and there are fields and orchards, What’s not to like? Hudson Valley is a family-friendly destination that can be enjoyed through the year. Home to the Culinary Institute of America this region has some of the best restaurants outside of New York City. The fresh outdoors lend itself to fresh produce from farms that make for an interesting craft beer selection.
When you are looking for adventure in the great outdoors, fine dining, or something fun for the whole family, you’ll always find things to do in the Hudson Valley.
Hudson Valley was the first wine producing region in the United States. So many of these family-owned wineries are generations old. The Hudson Valley Wine and Craft Beverage trail map has breweries, distilleries, vineyards and cideries to choose from. The meadery, Helderberg Meadworks, is the only meadery in the upper Hudson Valley region but is not included on the trail map. All the artisanal beverages of the region are locally grown and sourced.
As famous as the region is for its vineyards, Hudson Valley is also famous for apples, garlic, and cheese. The annual garlic festival occurs once a year in Saugerties, keeping all vampires at bay. There are many farmers markets where local produce can be sampled. We have a list of Westchester farmers markets that are open for the season. The harvest season is great for hayrides and corn mazes.
The Storm King Art Center is an outdoor sculpture park connecting art, nature and people, that is you. 2020 marks the 60th year of this park that urges you to experience the art with the Hudson Valley landscape as one. Different times of the year not just have different exhibits but different colors of Hudson Valley in the background too.
Hudson Valley is home to notable authors, inventors, military leaders, industrialists and even presidents. Like Franklin D. Roosevelt Presidential Home, Library and Museum where President FDR lived and hosted royalty during WW1. President Martin Van Buren is from Hudson Valley and George Washington made this his headquarters during the Revolutionary War. History buffs (and students) stroll through the many museums of the region.
Walk the longest, elevated pedestrian bridge in the world to take in views of the Hudson River Valley. Located 212 feet above the water the walkway is 1.28 meters long. The river is also where many of the region's attractions like the Hudson-Athens Lighthouse is located and accessible via the Hudson River Cruises.
Hudson Valley is where the Appalachian Trail starts. So this is the place for your adventure fix. There is hiking, rafting, kayaking, ziplining and even indoor rock climbing for adventure seekers. The popular Bear Mountain State Park hike is in Rockland County. There are PGA tours for golf enthusiasts. In the winter, there are destination ski resorts.
There are an abundance of antique shops making this an antiquing hotspot in New York. Rhinebeck is a historic town where many of the best antique shops are located to shop or browse. There are also craft shops and even premium shopping destinations like Woodbury Common mall.
Serving dishes that are locally sourced, the many farm-to-table restaurants are NY centric with their food, wine and craft beverage selections. Many of the small restaurants serve gourmet food that could very well be created by the hands of one the chefs from the Culinary Institute of America. So make it a point to visit every small and unassuming restaurant because their ever-evolving menus are sure to be a treat.