You don’t have to get too far outside of New York City to experience the peace and tranquility that connecting with nature offers. In fact, just 30 miles north along the Hudson River (and inland towards the Catskill Mountains), lies an idyllic getaway for those looking for a safe respite from the chaos of the Big Apple.
Charming small towns, postcard-perfect state parks, quintessential farms, outdoor museums, wineries galore — there’s plenty of exploration and excitement if you’re on the hunt to try something new.
As summer nears to an end and the changing colors of fall foliage paint the landscape of Central New York, there is no place better than the Hudson Valley to enjoy the season’s most vibrant view. So if you’re in New York’s Tri-state area (or just looking for new getaways to explore along the East Coast), we’ve outlined the best things to do in the Hudson Valley for a quick socially distanced weekend getaway.
In most cases, travelers to Hudson Valley are staying in hotels (or Airbnbs) spread out throughout Orange, Westchester, Rockland and Putnam County, since the region is spread out, and often the attractions are a bit of a drive from one another. For travelers who want to visit the region, it’s important to have a car, or be prepared to shell out lots of money on Lyft or Uber. Silvercar by Audi is perhaps one of the best options for your Hudson Valley roadtrip, with three New York City in-town locations, as it is Audi’s premium rental car service.
With its Contactless Rental and Delivery to You service, you’ll be on the road in no time. The touchless offerings minimize human interaction and its 19-step vehicle cleaning process will make you feel more comfortable in getting behind the wheel. Silvercar by Audi brings and retrieves the vehicle from your preferred location at the end of the rental.
Once you arrive, your home away from home awaits you just off of I-287. Nestled in the famous Hudson River Valley, The TIME Nyack offers some of the region’s most scenic (and socially distanced) accommodations for those who don’t want the typical crowds of a chain hotel. Transformed from a historic factory warehouse, The TIME Nyack is the only upscale, boutique hotel with loft-style accommodations in Rockland County. With 133 guest rooms, seven suites, a pool deck and outdoor lounge, the hotel boasts awe-inspiring view of the spectacular Hudson River. Located within close traveling distance to Manhattan, The TIME Nyack makes for a unique and convenient weekend getaway.
After you get settled, the first thing on the agenda is food, of course. With its location situated on a 45-acre private mountain — perfect for social distancing — Mt. Fuji Steakhouse restaurant is just a 15 minute drive away in Hillburn, New York, and is an architectural splendor. This iconic landmark restaurant is a family owned (for over 50 years), Japanese restaurant offering delicious hibachi, sushi and traditional cuisine. But what’s even better than the food is the service, though the food itself will leave you wanting more!
The Hudson Valley has no shortage of options as you embark on your first full day in the region, with some of the most recognizable landmarks in New York, including The Storm King Arts Center, Walkway Over the Hudson, Lyndhurst Mansion and more.
You’ll start your day with a trip north of Nyack to the 500-acre world-renowned outdoor sculpture park that you may remember from Netflix’s Master of None — The Storm King Arts Center in Windsor. You can spend an entire day walking through the park, taking Instagram-worthy shots, and inspiring more than 100 works of art from artists such as Calder, Sol LeWitt, and Richard Serra to Mark di Suvero.
After all that walking, you guessed it — you’re going to walk some more. You’ll keep heading up north towards Poughkeepsie to visit the 1.28-mile-long Walkway Over the Hudson, which is a must-visit attraction in Hudson Valley for incredible views of the river. So whether you’re setting up your next shot for the ‘gram, looking to burn off that nice Japanese dinner you had the night before, or trying to soak in some peaceful scenic views, this needs to be included on your must-do list.
And while there’s nothing like a brisk stroll, you can head back down to Westchester County for a next-level leaf peeping opportunity: a helicopter tour soaring over the Hudson Valley. This bird’s-eye view of Westchester County’s colorful foliage is made during a Wings Air helicopter ride.
In recent years, Westchester has emerged as a hub for craft beverage enthusiasts in New York state. Hot spots include River Outpost Brewing located in Peekskill, Wolf & Warrior in White Plains, Decadent Ales in Mamaroneck Sing Sing Kill in Ossining and Captain Lawrence Brewing Company in Elmsford for those looking to taste test a few drinks before dinner.
After all that excitement (and exercise) you’ll want to freshen up, rest and eat. For a taste of luxury (literally) you’ll head 25 minutes North to Peekskill to visit The Abbey Inn & Spa’s farm-to-table restaurant, Apropos. The restaurant delights with a Mediterranean-inspired menu that celebrates the bounty of the Hudson Valley.
And now, it’s time to rest for the adventure that awaits for day 3!
Did you really go to the Hudson Valley, if you didn’t visit Bear Mountain? You’ll want to start your morning at the Bear Mountain recreation area around 7am (because any time other than that will be too hot) and head southbound to the summit of Bear Mountain, taking in the incredible views along the way from various overlooks. Bear Mountain State Park is located in the Hudson Highlands, on the western side of the Hudson River — and let’s just say, you’ll be sweaty — but you’ll thank us later!
Bear Mountain should take you a few hours to loop before hitting the showers, and heading food before hitting the road. If you’re looking for some healthy fuel — smoothies, juices and protein bowls — Bari Nyack will do just the trick. It’s a local favorite in “downtown Nyack” and perfect for an in and out meal that you can drink (or eat) on your drive home.