Berkeley, California (EastBayDaily) — New York City may be the most popular travel destination in the US, but just north of the Big Apple lay the rustic charms of the Hudson River Valley. The area is where New Yorkers go for a weekend getaway, and a place tourists tend to overlook. To help travelers explore the area, Nikki Goth Itoi—seasoned traveler and author of Moon Hudson River Valley—offers her suggestions for the top hidden gems to visit when exploring the Hudson River Valley. The author’s favorites include:
Stone Barns Center for Food and Agriculture: Although not exactly hidden, this 80-acre center adjoining the Rockefeller State Park Preserve in Westchester County remains in many ways a well-kept secret. Visitors can pick up fresh veggies at the farmers market, attend a gardening lecture, enroll children in summer camps, and learn what it takes to operate a sustainable farm.
Croton Gorge County Park: On a summer day, park at the base of the New Croton Dam and cool off in the mist from the falls. This is a great place to pick up the Old Croton Aqueduct trail for a jog or mountain bike ride.
Go-Go Pops: Stop in for a handmade icy treat nestled among the antique shops on Cold Spring’s Main Street.
Bellvale Farms Creamery: Locals enjoy 50 flavors of homemade ice cream and valley views from this hilltop stand located between Warwick and Greenwood Lake.
Walkway over the Hudson: More than a mile long, this new state historic park connects the city of Poughkeepsie with the town of Highland in Ulster County on the other side of the river. A converted railroad bridge, it’s now the longest elevated pedestrian bridge in the world. Enjoy the best river views the region has to offer.
Wild Hive Café: Begin or end a day on the Dutchess County Wine Trail at this wholesome bakery/café in Clinton Corners. Tasty breads are made from organic grains that are grown and milled nearby.
The Rhinecliff: Travelers can stop in for dinner or drinks, or stay the night in a beautifully restored riverside mansion that was built in 1854.
Saugerties Lighthouse: Hike a riverside trail to a historic lighthouse. If visitors plan ahead, they can even stay overnight in a rustic and secluded bed-and-breakfast setting.
New York Zipline Adventure Tours at Hunter Mountain: Skiers know Hunter Mountain for its slopes, but in summer, hidden in the treetops of this Catskill resort is a 4.6-mile zipline that holds distinction as the longest and highest course in North America.
Old Rhinebeck Aerodrome: For good old-fashioned family fun, get tickets to watch the antique planes put on a daring show in this outdoor aviation museum near the Village of Rhinebeck. The Book Cove: Book lovers can browse the vast collection of local titles at this independent bookstore in the center of Pawling.
Harney and Sons Tea Shop: Try a cup of the daily brew after a stroll on the Millerton rail trail or between visits to the local antique shops.
For more information on the Hudson River Valley, or more detailed travel tips and advice on planning a trip to the Hudson River Valley, visit the Moon Travel Guides website.
About Moon Travel Guides & Moon.com Moon Travel Guides make independent travel and outdoor exploration fun and accessible. With expert writers delivering a mix of honest insight, first-rate strategic advice, and an essential dose of humor, Moon guidebooks ensure that travelers have an uncommon and entirely satisfying travel experience. Moon not only guides, Moon inspires. Based in Berkeley, Calif., Moon is published by Avalon Travel, a member of the Perseus Books Group. Visit Moon at http://www.moon.com.
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