From the bustling metropolis of New York City to the state’s majestic lakes and mountains, New York has plenty to offer lovers of the outdoors. Although autumn is perhaps the most captivating time to enjoy the state’s natural scenery, each season in New York has a unique charm.
In July, you can celebrate Independence Day with spectacular fireworks displays. November’s Thanksgiving Day Parade is your chance to enjoy larger-than-life floats in one of the world’s most entertaining, family-friendly festivals.
Read on to learn five of the state’s most popular and memorable outdoor activities:
Best Things To Do Outdoors in NYC
1. Fall Foliage Tours
A trip through the Hudson River Valley with wine tastings and a sumptuous buffet is a festive way to enjoy the colors of autumn. Alternatively, upstate driving tours offer panoramic views of New York’s Adirondack Mountains, the Vermont Green Mountains, and the White Mountains in New Hampshire.
2. New York Winery and Cider Tours
If you’re a wine fan – or if you just want to sample some of the world’s finest vintages – then the Dutchess Wine Trail will deliver. Located in the eastern part of the state, the Dutchess Wine Trail is an opportunity for couples, families and wine enthusiasts to learn the process of cultivating this centuries-old beverage.
Alternatively, the Cayuga Lake Wine Trail in the Finger Lakes is also home to rousing wine tours. This is a great way to enjoy the colors of autumn and sample gourmet cuisine.
Hard cider is part of New York history, and you can experience this cultural staple by visiting one of many cider mills and family-owned apple farms. If you’re a fan of cider and craft beer, then the Harbor Island International Beer Festival in Mamaroneck should definitely make your itinerary.
3. Hiking in New York’s Parks
The fall foliage season is an ideal time to cruise through New York’s scenic parks. The trails at the Mohonk Preserve are perfect for both leisure hikers and for those who enjoy outdoor exercise in natural surroundings.
Horseback riding and jogging are favorite activities at the Mohonk Preserve. The Appalachian Mountain Club also maintains trails at Fire Island and the Harriman State Park.
4. Halloween Celebrations
No venue offers a better way to celebrate Halloween than the annual Spooky Fest in Rockville Centre. The event features a Not-So-Spooky Walk in the Woods for younger children, but adults and teens can take the Scary Walk through the haunted woods and zombie maze.
Queens Farm Fall Festival features the Amazing Maize Maze, live music and food. If you’re after a family-friendly event, then check out the Rise of the Jack O’ Lanterns at Old Westbury Gardens, which features more than 5,000 carved pumpkins.
5. Central Park Tours
Central Park is a favorite destination for visitors to New York, and there’s no better time to enjoy this landmark than in the autumn months. Walking tours offer a memorable way to see all of Central Park’s attractions. Photographers will enjoy the landscape’s lakes and bridges, and movie buffs can experience the filming sites of Hollywood blockbusters such as Ghostbusters and Home Alone 2.
New York may be famous for Broadway performance art and international cuisine, but the state offers plenty of exciting opportunities for nature lovers, as well. Whether you visit The Big Apple or take a more scenic route, consider adding one of these five outdoor attractions to your vacation itinerary.