The East End is a great place to escape in the summer, especially during the big holiday weekends. Personally, my idea of relaxing over Independence Day was spontaneously heading upstate to enjoy some country living. My outing included all-terrain vehicle riding, hiking trails, laying riverside, stumbling upon an old chalet with a “Gone Hunting” sign and, of course, watching fireworks over the mountains.
If you’re looking to get out of town and explore the greater state of New York, here are some recommended places to check out for your next adventure.
If you’re looking for a real adventure, and something for your bucket list, Hunter Mountain, which is only 2.5 hours from NYC, is the longest, highest, and fastest zipline in North America.
Waterfalls are something we Long Islanders don’t see a lot of, so if you’re looking to take the drive, it should be worth it. Rainbow Falls in Watkins Glen State Park, about 4.5 hours from New York City, has 19 waterfalls to explore. The best part is you can walk through them all, walking behind one while glancing at another.
Trade in Belmont Stakes for the Saratoga Race Course, only a three-hour drive from the city, in Saratoga Springs. The course holds an opening weekend July 20 to 23 to commence 40 days of racing.
Howe Caverns is only approximately three hours from NYC and happens to be the largest cave open to the public in the Northeast. Tours are held daily, each one starting 156 feet below the Earth’s surface. Try the Lantern Tour or the Traditional Tour, which includes a boat ride.
Whitewater Challengers, as the name suggests, holds river rafting in the Adirondacks, four hours away from NYC. The 15-mile long tour takes you through class III-IV rapids. If that’s not enough of a thrill, enjoy their aerial zip course or paintball games.
Adirondack ATV Tours, also four hours from NYC and close to Lake George, have all-terrain vehicle tours and Polaris Slingshot rentals, brand new for 2018.
Panama Rocks Scenic Park is nearly seven hours away, but for a weekend, it’s an adventurous steal. The half-mile long ridge holds hidden caves, crevices, and passageways. There’s good ol’ fashioned Ax Throwing and even a Wild America Nature Festival coming up on July 28 and 29.
Let the adventure begin. If you have recommendations, find me on social media or send me an email. I might go explore it next!