Looking for a New York weekend trip getaway away from the hustle and bustle of city living? As a New Yorker, I make sure to make time for a few NYC weekend getaways per year. This way, I can reconnect with nature, relax in a charming small town, or just catch a different cultural experience. There are several beautiful destinations within a few hours of New York City to choose from. Here are our top favorite New York weekend getaways, from a quick jaunt to the Hudson Valley by train to a long weekend road trip to Bar Harbor, Maine.
Getting Around During Your NYC Weekend Getaway
Getting out of New York City can be tricky if you don’t own a car. But worry not, there are different ways to get around. From trains to buses to car rentals — here is how to get away from NYC and around the numerous gems this northeastern USA region has to offer.
Trains to Take for Your New York City Getaways
The Metro-North and Amtrak are wonderful options to help you plan getaways from NYC. These trains will take you to several of the below vacation destinations such as Beacon, Cold Spring, and Hudson.
Buses to Ride for an Easy New York Weekend Trip
There are different bus companies that can take you to several small towns around Upstate New York. Check Wanderu for different routes and bus companies. Here are just a few:
- Trailways (Geneva, Buffalo, Lake Placid, Lake George, Ithaca, etc.)
- Greyhound (Mostly to the bigger cities in New York)
- Jitney (Hamptons, Montauk, etc)
Unfortunately, we live in one of the least walkable countries in the world. But, there are several New York getaway destinations where you can still get around on foot. Charming lake towns like Skaneateles and are perfectly walkable. However, for a long weekend trip, it’s important to plan the logistics for things like grocery shopping and outdoor adventures. On the other hand, places like Nantucket are walkable but also offer e-bike rentals.
Car Rental Road Trips Out of NYC
This is, of course, the best way to get around during a weekend getaway from NYC. With a car, you can venture all around to explore the best NY small towns, stunning waterfalls in New York, drive to different nearby attractions in Upstate New York like gemstone mines and swimming holes — all on your own schedule. OR! Consider a long-term rental to a farther place and lower the daily rate. Remember that if you use a credit card like Chase Sapphire, it includes car rental insurance.
30+ Best Weekend Getaways From NYC
We have broken this list down to region and distance so that it can fit the needs of every traveler’s itinerary and transportation modes. If you can squeeze a long weekend getaway from NYC, we’ve also included locations 5+ hours away. Conversely, if you’re looking for something a lot closer, then choose one of the destinations closer to NYC on the map. If you have any questions, let us know in the comments below. Happy travels!
Let’s start with the Adirondacks. One of our favorite destinations in New York for the outdoors all year round. In the winter, the Adirondacks become a winter wonderland with frozen lakes, snowmobiling, skiing, and snowshoeing. There are also beautiful lodges and cabins up in the mountains or lakeside vacation homes which you can rent and enjoy some of the best cross country skiing in the Adirondacks. In the summer, with the long sunny days, the things to do are endless. Here are a few NYC weekend trip ideas for a beautiful trip to the Adirondacks!
Lake George, New York
The Adirondacks are upstate New York’s center for outdoor recreation, and Lake George is the Heart of the Adirondacks. The town of Lake George sits about 200 miles north of New York City. The town shares its name with the lake on which it rests. This lake, nicknamed the “Queen of American Lakes” is the perfect spot for a classic New York lakeside adventure. Kayak, canoe, or paddleboard here, and also enjoy glorious sunsets from the shore.
If lake life isn’t your preferred recreation, head for the hills. The Adirondack High Peaks are all around, challenging hikers to summit them. Try for the Lake George 12ster, or enjoy shorter paths with beautiful payoffs. Our favorite is Shelving Rock Summit, a 3.4 miles hike that leads to a gorgeous view of Lake George below.
Lake Placid, New York
Located about 290 miles from New York City, Lake Placid is the perfect picture of quintessential Adirondack mountain life. In fact, this Olympic town sits right at the base of Whiteface Mountain. If you’re going during the warmer months, dedicate some time to hike up Whiteface Mountain. In the winter, you can snowboard/ski down its epic slopes.
While enjoying one of your New York getaways to Lake Placid, make sure to spend a day exploring Ausable Chasm. Adrenaline junkies will love rappelling, ziplining, and walking the high Riverwalk. Those looking for a relaxing stop will love the views of the Grand Canyon of the Adirondacks.
At the end of a day outdoors, you’ll want the perfect place to rest up for the next day of exploration. Cozy Whiteface Lodge will keep you close to the mountains, and the Golden Arrow Lakeside Resort provides a private beach area for guests against Mirror Lake.
Saranac Lake, New York
Also about 300 miles from New York City, Saranac Lake has a charming downtown full of boutiques, cafes, art galleries, and museums. No matter what time of year you visit, there is plenty to do. Enjoy:
- First Night Saranac Lake on New Year’s Eve
- Winter Carnival and Snowshoe Fest in the early months of the year
- Plein Air Festival in August, where artists have four and a half days to paint outside against different landscapes
- Third Thursday Art Walks throughout the summer
- Gorgeous views of fall foliage in the dense forests surrounding the town.
Stay at Hotel Saranac, built in 1927. In addition, if traveling with children, check out this lake cabin rental. Saranac Lake has plenty for little ones to do and enjoy, and this large space is perfect for the whole family.
Saratoga Springs, New York
Want to extend your trip on the way back to New York City to or from Lake George? Simply stop off Highway 87 to Saratoga Springs, only about twenty-seven miles away from your destination.
There’s certainly enough to do in Saratoga Springs to warrant more weekend getaways from NYC. The luxurious Adelphi Hotel will take you back in time with its art deco-esque decor. You can enjoy the hotel’s spa here as well, and on-site restaurants (pictured above).
There is also the rejuvenating Saratoga Springs Spa State Park to soak in natural mineral baths, Yaddo Gardens, the Saratoga Winery, and the Saratoga Farmer’s Market. Visitors can also charter a cruise at the Adirondack Cruise and Charter Company, or take part in a floating classroom experience. Additionally, the National Museum of Racing and Hall of Fame is also located here in Saratoga Springs. The Saratoga Race Course is a popular spot to visit during the summer as well.
For foodies who love flavorful cuisine and a good cocktail, grabbing dinner Boca Bistro is a must; it is one of the best restaurants in Upstate New York! Finally, Caffe Lena is a true hidden gem. Catch live music or take music classes here, at the longest continuously operating folk music venue in the United States.
Bonus: If you do stay at the Adelphi Hotel, ask about a gift certificate to the Roosevelt Spa & Baths!
Phoenicia, New York
The Catskills are a great spot for anyone looking for affordable, cultural, and also refreshing weekend trips from NYC. Just 125 miles from New York, Phoenicia is a great small town to start. This town is nestled in the mountains along Esopus Creek. Experience the landscape in a unique way by tubing down the creek for miles, enjoying a different perspective on the majestic mountain views.
Don’t forget to visit Phoenicia Arts and Antiques, discover the Empire State Railway Museum, or hike in Panther or Wittenberg Mountains. Finally, set up your basecamp at the Phoenicia Lodge (pictured above) or this cozy home rental to stay close to the wonderful nature surrounding you.
Woodstock, New York
With just over 100 miles to drive, Woodstock, NY is one of the best day trips from NYC. Due to its proximity to Phoenicia (under a half-hour drive), you could combine both destinations into one weekend trip from NYC.
Woodstock still celebrates its 1960’s hippie vibe from around the time of the Woodstock festival, which happened nearby. When you visit, you’ll see evidence of this influence all over town, from live music to interesting art galleries and shops. All this and more is within walking distance of the Twin Gables of Woodstock guesthouse, where you can enjoy complimentary breakfast, tea, and coffee, and also stroll through their secret garden.
Don’t forget to stop by Kaaterskill Falls for a refreshing swim. It is one of the best waterfalls in the United States to visit! For a dip in a crystalline swimming hole, check out Peekamoose Blue Hole during the off-season!
New Paltz, New York
If you love the arts, good food, and the outdoors, then one of the best weekend trips from NYC is New Paltz, just 90 miles of NYC. Here, you can enjoy some of the best hikes near NYC, eat at the many restaurants in town, and tour historic homes from the 17th century on Huguenot Street. As this town is known for it’s art scene due to New Paltz University, don’t forget to stop by the DM Weil Gallery and Samuel Dorskey Museum of Art.
New Paltz is also the perfect launching pad point for several outdoor activities. Be sure to check out the waterfalls at Minnewaska State Park Preserve, or try out the Lemon Squeeze Trail near Mohonk Mountain House. For a hike less trotted with epic views, consider Artist’s Rock. We highly recommend this massive Victorian castle resort as the best place to stay while visiting New Paltz.
THE HUDSON VALLEY
Beacon, New York
Looking for a quick getaway from NYC? Beacon, New York is just a mere 65 miles from New York City! Resting right at the base of the tallest point in the Hudson Highlands, you’ll feel you’ve left the big city behind after just a bit of driving or an easy train ride that drops you off minutes from the downtown Beacon.
Explore by hiking Mt. Beacon’s trail, visiting Hudson Beach Glass Inc., or spend the day at Dia:Beacon – one of the best art museums in New York State. You’ll also enjoy seeing Fishkill Creek as it runs along town and through Beacon Falls. The Roundhouse is our favorite place to stay and eat in Beacon, but Beacon Hermitage Bed and Breakfast is another wonderful choice.
Cold Spring, New York
Just forty-five minutes north of Beacon, or sixty miles from New York if you travel directly, is Cold Spring, New York. Since the two destinations are so close, you may want to consider combining both places into one ultimate New York getaway.
Cold Spring’s downtown area sits right on the Hudson River, with green parks, unique shops, and 19th-century buildings. Hiking in this area is fabulous, with trails in Bear Mountain, Hudson Highlands State Park Preserve, Breakneck Ridge, and Bull Hill. Rent a cute cottage to stay near the trails for plenty of outdoor adventures.
Bonus: Nearby is Red Hook, New York where you can go blueberry picking!
Hudson, New York
Hudson is like the Brooklyn of Upstate New York. Located in the far northern pockets of the Hudson Valley, the town of Hudson is just 45 minutes south of Albany. For many, this historic port town is often regarded as overpriced and a little snobby. And for others, Hudson offers a sweet and artistic respite from the toils of living in NYC. Hudson is just a two-hour train ride from NYC and the Amtrak leaves you right in the downtown area. So consider checking it out for a weekend or an NYC day trip to see where you fall along that love/hate line!
Hudson is a super walkable town, so visitors can hop off the Amtrak train and stroll through the downtown restaurant scene along Warren Street (Hudson’s main street). Stop at Hudson Wine Merchants for wine tasting and WM Farmer and Sons for steaks and seafood.
For art lovers, Hudson offers museums and several galleries such as Basilica Hudson, a nonprofit arts and culture center in a reclaimed industrial factory. You can also visit the nearby town of Athens, just a short ferry ride away from downtown Hudson.
THE FINGER LAKES
The Finger Lakes is one of our favorite places to visit in Upstate New York. So much so, that we dedicated an entire travel guide to the best things to do in the Finger Lakes. This vast region expands through a large portion of Upstate New York and includes eleven long and narrow lakes (shaped like fingers). Along those lakes, you’ll find some of the cutest lake towns in New York.
When choosing where to stay in the Finger Lakes, we recommend picking one town/lake region and saving the rest for other long weekends. Don’t get carried away by Finger Lakes FOMO (fear of missing out) and try fitting everything in one trip. There’s just too much to see and do! But this abundance of fun activities is what makes the Finger Lakes area so special.
Skaneateles, New York
Located on the clear shores of Skaneateles Lake, the town of Skaneateles is one of the cutest hidden gem towns to visit in Upstate New York. Here you can meet friendly locals, grab delicious food, explore the walkable streets, head into the outdoors, and shop at tons of boutiques. Skaneateles is just an hour away from major cities like Syracuse and Ithaca and yet it remains relatively underrated.
Wake up to beautiful views of the lake by staying at a waterfront spa resort and later take a guided boat tour with dinner, or rent a personal watercraft. Skaneateles Lake is also famous in the region for having some of the clearest and cleanest water in the entire state of New York (pictured above).
There are a number of historic sites here too. You can view Hazelhurst, a beautiful yellow mansion on the lake. Or, see the James and Lydia Canning Fuller House (built in 1815), which was once a part of the Underground Railroad. To continue learning about Black American history, head to Auburn (10 minutes away) to visit Harriet Tubman’s home, and learn more about this special American heroine.
After a day of exploring and shopping, grab dinner and a cocktail at Elephant and Dove (truly some of the tastiest food in the region with healthy options). For a relaxing stay, consider staying at Mirbeau Inn & Spa where you and your other half can enjoy a number of rejuvenating spa treatments together. And for a classic bed and breakfast, consider resting at Sherwood Inn, established in 1807.
Ithaca, New York
Ithaca New York is one of our favorite places to visit in Upstate New York. It has everything: wonderful people, delicious food, vineyards, culture, and plenty of outdoor activities. Located at the base of Cayuga Lake, you can spend your days on the water, strolling downtown shops, immersed in nature, or following the Cayuga Wine Trail. If you love cider, don’t miss the Finger Lakes Cider House (just 25 minutes driving) or Painted Bar Stables for some incredible horseback riding into the Finger Lakes National Forest.
About 220 miles north of New York City, you’ll be able to find some distinctive stays here, including glamping in the New York mountains like Fire Lights Camp. Regular camping is available as well, at gorgeous locations like Robert H. Truman State Park.
Watkins Glen, New York
A New York getaway trip to Watkins Glen will surely leave you wanting more upstate New York vacations. Located on Seneca Lake, 5 hours north of NYC, you’ll have a bit of a drive, so plan accordingly and consider spending a long weekend exploring the town and region.
Wine Country: Most famously, Watkins Glen is at the foot of some of the best wineries in the Finger Lakes. So if you’re a wine lover, this region is a must-visit. Consider going on one of the many Finger Lakes wine tasting tours.
Outdoors: And of course, another highlight of the area is the majestic Watkins Glen State Park (pictured above). Where you can hike through the gorges to see natural pools and beautiful waterfalls. You can also enjoy Seneca Lake by renting your own boat or paddling the day away.
Finally, while in Watkins Glen, stay right on its waters, by reserving a room at Watkins Glen Harbor Hotel.
The Berkshires not only provide that small-town feeling, but they also offer many artistic and cultural activities. You can come here year-round. However, if you love foliage sights then make sure to visit the Berkshires in the fall (pictured above). Just 140 miles from New York City, don’t miss the following things to do:
- Visit the Massachusetts Museum of Contemporary Art
- See a show at Shakespeare and Company (in Lenox)
- Sample offerings from local orchards
- Drive to Bish Bash Falls, near the border of New York state is one of the best New York waterfalls to visit in the area
There are some interesting places to stay in the Berkshires, like Blantyre, in Lenox. This Tudor-style mansion built in 1902 offers 110 acres of gorgeous landscapes in which to stroll, as well as delicious cuisine and a spa to promote guests’ wellness.
Cape Cod, Massachusetts
250 miles from New York is another one of our best weekend trips from NYC. This classic getaway to Cape Cod offers 560 miles of coastline. You’ll love the nautical feel as you visit Skaket Beach, take an oyster bed tour, and tour small locally owned farms.
Check out the Winstead Inn for a rejuvenating stay. You’ll love soaking in the saltwater pool, and walking the inn’s gardens. The quaint rooms are cozy, and guests receive access to a private beach in addition to their stay.
Martha’s Vineyard, Massachusetts
If you’d like to extend your Cape Cod trip, or simply spend a weekend getaway from New York here, take a ferry across the waters to Martha’s Vineyard. The tiny island has beautiful beaches, perfect for a relaxing day soaking up the sunshine. Catch beautiful views at Aquinnah Cliffs, a colorful swatch of complex cliffs against rolling waves.
Our Martha’s Vineyard favorite? The Aquinnah Cliffs – pictured above.
From New York City, you can take a one-hour flight for about $130 round trip to the more exclusive and isolated island of Nantucket (in the vicinity of Martha’s Vineyard and Cape Cod). This short and affordable flight makes Nantucket one of the easiest NYC weekend getaways! However, if you’re already in the area, you can take a ferry across the ocean and directly into the town of Nantucket.
This small town was founded in the 1600s. Today, you can still see the clapboard houses built one hundred years later in the 1700s. Walk the cobblestone sidewalks to shop at high-end boutiques, get lunch at special eateries like Straight Wharf, and learn some local history at the important Whaling Museum. If you love festivals, check out the Nantucket Daffodil Festival (in April), Nantucket Wine Festival (in May), or the Nantucket Book Festival (in June).
And if it’s your first time in Nantucket, please don’t make these Nantucket travel mistakes such as thinking Nantucket can be a budget destination or missing out on a bike rental!
Another great destination, located along Cape Cod National Seashore, is Provincetown Massachusetts. The drive should take around five and a half hours, depending on traffic conditions. However, the last hour or so will provide wonderful views as you near Provincetown. Once there, enjoy a day at the beach or visit the Pilgrim Monument.
We love relaxing at Carpe Diem Guesthouse and Spa, an adults-only hotel located very close to the beach. The Brass Key Guesthouse is another great adults-only option, with an outdoor pool and cozy fireplace in some rooms.
Take a quick two-hour drive or train ride from NYC to visit Philadelphia. The city of brotherly love has so much to do, that we dedicated an entire guide to visiting Philly for a day trip from NYC:
- Historical sites and museums
- Old City, known for boutique shopping
- Reading Terminal Market, a local public market
- The Mural Arts Philadelphia Tour
- Rittenhouse Square Park
We recommend staying in the Old City area, where you will get to experience the historic vibe yourself. Penn’s View Hotel Philadelphia has an on-site wine cellar and is within a very short walking distance of nearby historic sites, like Independence Hall. We stayed at the Rittenhouse House Hotel which was perfectly located within walking distance of several things to see and do.
Jim Thorpe, Pennsylvania (Poconos)
Head about two and a half hours from New York is the charming town of Jim Thorpe in the Poconos. This region is known for its mountains, scenic wonders, and 150 lakes. Jim Thorpe is one of the many sweet little towns hidden in the hills of this region. The town is popular in winter for skiers, and popular in the summer months for hikers and white water rafters.
One of the best places to stay here is the Harry Packer Mansion Inn, in the historic center of town. The 19th century constructed Inn at Jim Thorpe is another great option, located only twenty minutes from popular Blue Mountain.
A trip to Long Island is one of the easiest weekend getaway trips from NYC. There are so many cute Long Island small towns to visit year-round just a train ride away. If you have a car, Long Island also offers several beautiful outdoor opportunities and a lovely wine country to explore. Here are just a few of our top favorite Long Island getaways.
Montauk, Long Island
Montauk is one of the best Long Island towns to visit from NYC. While it is only around 100 miles away, the drive time may take you 3+ hours from NYC with traffic. So consider taking the LIRR train from Penn Station which can take you directly into Montauk in under three hours and without the traffic. The ride (whether by train or driving) is well worth it.
Visit Montauk to experience the Hamptons area but in a completely different way, since this section of Long Island is much more natural. Enjoy the ocean by surfing, visiting Ditch Plains beach area, or climbing the Montauk Point Lighthouse in Montauk Point State Park. Grab lunch or dinner at Harvest on Fort Pond. And spend the night at the majestic Montauk Manor.
Greenport, Long Island
One of our favorite weekend trips from NYC is the historic port town of Greenport. This hidden gem is reachable by train as the LIRR stops right in the downtown area. Next to the LIRR station is the ferry to Shelter Island. Two for one! The perfect combination for a lovely weekend in Long Island Wine Country.
Spend your days exploring Greenport’s downtown area on foot by visiting the East End Seaport Maritime Museum, doing some antique or boutique shopping, and eating at the various restaurants. We actually created our own foodie tasting tour stopping at the various restaurants. We loved the stuffed clams at Crabby Jerry‘s! For delicious macaroons and refreshing herbal-infused teas, go to Special Effects Salon. Order the lavender macaroon!
If you have a car, head to one of the wineries/vineyards like Kontokosta Winery. Couple your wine tasting with a stop at Lavender by the Bay to check out the lavender fields and stock up on some of the special lavender honey.
Spend your nights at the Stirling House Bed and Breakfast Greenport which offers a full gourmet breakfast each morning. The front terrace overlooks the water. For beautiful ocean views, consider the Harbor Knoll Bed and Breakfast. And if you want your own private beach, check out Sound View for onsite access to refreshing salt air and ocean activities.
Shelter Island, Long Island
Board a ferry for a short ride from Greenport to Shelter Island. The island has a number of historical buildings to check out, as well as wonderful natural attractions to discover. For example, you can explore over 2300 acres of forest, marsh, and tidal creeks in Mashomack Preserve.
Stay at Seven, less than three miles from the preserve. It’s also only 1,500 feet from the beach. You’ll love this boutique hotel with its own garden and art gallery.
East Hampton, Long Island
When visiting East Hampton, be sure to visit LongHouse Reserve. This 16-acre reserve has an impressive sculpture garden, as well as the historic LongHouse you can explore. You’ll love the nightlife here, too, especially at the Stephen Talkhouse. Famous artists have performed here, like Billy Joel and Bon Jovi.
After a night out, rest your head at East Hampton Art House Bed and Breakfast. You’ll receive beach passes during your stay, and enjoy a central location in the artistic center of town- Clearwater Beach.
Newport, Rhode Island
Head northeast just under four hours from NYC along the coast to Newport, Rhode Island. Far from being only a tourist trap, Newport has many great local spots, like 22 Bowen’s Wine Bar and Grille in Bowen’s Wharf.
Enjoy the ocean by relaxing at the beach or donning a wetsuit to take advantage of the chilly waters. You can also stroll the Cliff Walk path, which leads past gorgeous mansions set against the oceanfront. One of these mansions, Rosecliff, was inspired by the Palace of Versailles. Many movies have been filmed here, including The Great Gatsby and 27 Dresses.
Stowe is a fantastic place for a rustic retreat from the modern city- located about six hours away. While visiting, stay at the Trapp Family Lodge, an Austrian-inspired retreat owned by the von Trapp family featured in the musical The Sound of Music). You can also stay at the Stoweflake Mountain Resort and Spa.
While in Stowe, try a Water and Wine Tour. You’ll be able to canoe, kayak, or paddleboard beautiful lakes and rivers to your favorite nearby winery for tastings. Tours like this one often offer discounts depending on where you stay, so make sure to inquire when you’re booking your accommodation.
When visiting this small town in Vermont, plan about five hours of travel between NYC and Woodstock. Perfect for a long weekend trip from NYC any time of the year. The fall in Woodstock is our favorite as well as when Woodstock is a winter wonderland.
Once in Woodstock, check in at 506 On the River Inn Woodstock, This gorgeous hotel has panoramic views of beautiful Vermont countryside. Another marvelous option in town is The Woodstocker B&B, an adults-only option for your NYC weekend getaways.
Our favorite things to do in Woodstock are:
- Strolling the cute downtown
- Sipping at nearby Long Trail Brewery
- Hiking the section of Appalachian Trail that runs through town
- Tasting years of local history at Sugarbush Farm
Surprisingly, this stop in Vermont has so much to offer! So, make sure to include it in any of your weekend trip plans.
Head to Portland, ME for another New York weekend trip. As Maine’s largest city, this bustling seaport and harbor have many things to do. First, visit Old Port, the historic district of downtown. Here you’ll find shops, restaurants, and places to stay like Portland Harbor Hotel. The Portland Regency Hotel and Spa is also an excellent choice.
During your trip, take a cruise on Casco Bay, tour lighthouses, and visit the Portland Observatory. This signal station built around 1807 is the only remaining station of its kind left in the United States. Also, visit nearby Cape Elizabeth, see important work at the Portland Museum of Art, and take a brewery tour. And of course, don’t forget to try the lobster.
Bar Harbor + Acadia National Park (Long Weekend)
Located almost ten hours away from New York City, a trip to Bar Harbor is best done over a long weekend. And also, as the gateway to Acadia National Park, you’ll want all the additional time here you can get.
Located among the seemingly barren mountains of Mount Desert Island, the village of Bar Harbor has much to offer. In fact, this area has been the main tourist attraction for over one hundred years. Experience some of its history by exploring the West Street Historic District and the Harbor Lane-Eden Street Historic District. Or, stop at the Abbe Museum inside Acadia, which is dedicated to the history of the Wabanaki people who once lived here.
To best explore the natural wonders around you, hike the trails at Acadia. Cadillac Mountain is one of the most popular hikes, leading to a summit over 1500 feet. The views here are miraculous, looking down on Bar Harbor, the islands nearby, and the sparkling bay below. You can also see the park offshore via boat tours and cruises. Whatever you decide to do, make sure to have a backup plan. The park can get busy, and parking lots may fill up quickly.
No matter how close you are to the Big Apple, New York weekend getaways are a needed respite from the grind of the day-to-day. Try out one of these fantastic weekend trips from NYC soon- you won’t be disappointed.