Things to Do

Local Winter Getaways: New York offers museums, outdoor adventures, more

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PHOTO BY ISTOCK

This article originally appeared on ILOVENY.com/blog.

Plan a winter getaway in New York to take advantage of world-class museums, thrilling outdoor adventures, and so much more! You won’t have to travel far to find a suitable and unique diversion, whether you’re looking to go cross-country skiing amid outdoor sculptures, drink locally made craft beer by a fire, or visit a hidden gem attraction or a natural (winter) wonder.

Follow these tips to help protect your safety and that of local communities as you travel in New York:

  • Maintain six feet of distance from others not in your party.
  • Wear a mask or facial covering—it’s required at all attractions, shops, restaurants, etc., and when unable to maintain social distancing anywhere in New York State, including outdoors. Masks and facial coverings should cover both the nose and mouth.
  • Purchase tickets and make reservations in advance. A pre-purchased timed ticket is required at many attractions and strongly recommended at many others as capacity is limited to enable social distancing. Advance reservations are also required for members at many attractions.
  • If an attraction is crowded or sold out, don’t worry—there are thousands of great places to visit in New York State! We’ve highlighted just a few here, but you can find many more by checking the “Things to Do” section of our website. Download the I LOVE NY app to find places nearby while you’re on the go.
  • Please refer to each venue’s website and call ahead before making plans and setting out for the day as amenities and availability may change.
  • Be advised that New York has a travel advisory in effect, which requires travelers from non-contiguous states to quarantine for 14 days upon entering New York State. This includes New Yorkers who have traveled out of state. Travelers may undergo COVID testing to test out. For more details, see the guidelines for the travel advisory here.
  • Don’t travel if anyone in your party feels ill or has been exposed to someone who tested positive for COVID-19.

Ready to go? Choose a region to explore curated staycation ideas.

Central New York

  • Northeast Classic Car Museum – Fans of early 20th century automobiles will love this institution, one of the largest car museums in the Northeast. The museum houses the most complete collection of cars made in New York State, including many models from the Syracuse-based Franklin Automobile Company, known for its innovations in car manufacturing in the early 1900s. Other exhibits include vehicles from the pre-war and post-war eras, all displayed in showroom condition.
    More information:
    iloveny.com/listing/northeast-classic-car-museum/2930.
  • Chittenango Landing Canal Boat Museum – Once an important waterway connecting New York City all the way to the Great Lakes, today the Erie Canal offers illuminating looks at history. At this museum, which features the only recovered historic dry dock in New York State along the canal, learn about how boats were built and repaired along this key route. It’s located inside Old Erie Canal State Historic Park, which has a 36-mile trail along the remains of the Old Erie Canal, with landmarks such as historic bridges and small aqueducts along the way. The park also offers outdoor recreation, including fishing, bicycling, hiking, and in winter, snowmobiling.
    More information: iloveny.com/listing/chittenango-landing-canal-boat-museum/1667.
  • Schoharie Crossing State Historic Site – See the incredible ruins of the Schoharie Aqueduct at this site dedicated to the preservation and interpretation of the Erie Canal. The visitor center, open by appointment only, features the Pathway to Empire exhibit, tracing the history of the canal and its impact on the growth of New York State and the United States. Outside, the grounds offer opportunities for hiking, biking, cross-country skiing, and snowshoeing with up-close views of the Erie Canal. 
    More information:
    iloveny.com/listing/schoharie-crossing-state-historic-site/3350.
  • Fenimore Art Museum – Housed in a gorgeous property overlooking Otsego Lake in a house once owned by famed American novelist James Fenimore Cooper, this museum is a must-visit for American folk art fans. It is also home to the Thaw Collection of American Indian Art, which spans more than 1,000 years of art history and which has traveled to renowned institutions such as The Met for special exhibitions. 
    More information:
    iloveny.com/listing/fenimore-art-museum/1997.

Click here for more New York destinations (by region).

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