25 Little Oasis Among These Small Towns in New York

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New York is famous for its busy cities and iconic landmarks, but there is a whole other side to the state that often goes unnoticed. These little havens are full of charm, history, and natural beauty, perfect for a weekend getaway or a leisurely day trip. Here are 25 small towns in New York that are worth exploring.

Cold Spring

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Just a short trip from NYC, Cold Spring is a charming little town right on the Hudson River. It has a cute Main Street with antique shops and cafes, perfect for a lazy day out. Plus, if you are into hiking, the nearby Hudson Highlands offer some great trails with amazing views.


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If you love being by the water, you will adore Skaneateles. The lake is incredibly clear and great for swimming or boating. The town has a quaint, old-timey feel with plenty of unique shops and art galleries to explore. Moreover, the waterfront dining is top-notch—imagine enjoying a delicious meal with a stunning lake view.


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This small, historic village is full of charm with its well-preserved 19th-century buildings and scenic spot-on Cayuga Lake. It is home to the Inns of Aurora, which are really fancy places to stay. The village also has the beautiful Wells College campus and the nearby Long Point Winery.


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Baseball fans will love this town because of the Baseball Hall of Fame. It is full of interesting history and cool stuff about the sport. But Cooperstown is not just about baseball. It is by the beautiful Otsego Lake, and it has some great museums, like the Fenimore Art Museum and the Farmers’ Museum.


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Although the famous 1969 music festival was held in nearby Bethel, Woodstock has long been a haven for artists and musicians. The vibrant arts scene is reflected in its galleries, music venues, and annual events like the Woodstock Film Festival. The nearby Catskill Mountains offer ample opportunities for outdoor activities.


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Rhinebeck is a live town with lots of lovely places to eat and shop from. If you are a person for antiques, you will love it here. Also, if you happen to visit the town during the Dutchess County Fair, you are in for a treat. You will likely see one of the biggest fairs around. 

Saratoga Springs

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Saratoga Springs is best known for horse racing, and their amazingly fun nightlife. The Saratoga Race Course is one of the oldest in the country. And the mineral springs of the town have been attracting visitors ever since the 19th century. You will love the downtown area that is packed with shops, restaurants, and bars.


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People have been loving Beacon for the brilliant art and culture it showcases. A must visit is the Dia: Beacon, which is a contemporary art museum in an old Nabisco factory. Also, Beacon Main Street is where you go for the extensive galleries, eateries, and shops. The town is surrounded by nature, with hiking trails on Mount Beacon.


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Greenport is a coastal village, and it is all about the sea. It has a history going back centuries to fishing and whaling. And naturally, it has become a favorite for many fresh seafood. You must visit the charming old carousel by the water and take a boat ride to explore the area. Plus, there are some great wineries if you like some.

Seneca Falls

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Seneca Falls is a historic town known as the birthplace of the Women’s Rights Movement. It was because of the Seneca Falls Convention of 1848. If you are one of us, you must visit where it all started, that is The Women’s Rights National Historical Park and the National Women’s Hall of Fame. Seneca Falls is also in the middle of the Finger Lakes, so there are wineries and beautiful scenery to enjoy.


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Earlier Hudson used to be a busy port for whaling and industry, but now it is a place all about brilliant antiques, art, and food. Warren Street, the main street, is lined with antique shops, art galleries, and restaurants. The town also has events like the Hudson Valley Bounty Chili Fest and the Hudson Valley Pride Parade.

Sleepy Hollow

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Made famous by Washington Irving’s “The Legend of Sleepy Hollow,” this village has a mix of history, culture, and natural beauty. You can explore historic sites like the Sleepy Hollow Cemetery and Philipsburg Manor and enjoy outdoor activities along the Hudson River. The town really celebrates Halloween with events and tours that play up its spooky reputation.

Lake Placid

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Known for hosting the Winter Olympics twice, Lake Placid is great for outdoor activities like skiing, hiking, and ice skating. You can visit the Olympic facilities in the town, like the Olympic Jumping Complex and the Olympic Sports Complex. The downtown area has shops, restaurants, and the Lake Placid Center for the Arts.

Old Forge

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If you love the great outdoors, Old Forge is the place for you. It’s right in the heart of the Adirondacks, so there are endless trails for hiking and lakes for paddling. In the summer, the Enchanted Forest Water Safari is a fun spot for the whole family. And in the winter, it’s all about snow sports, with great skiing and snowboarding nearby.


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Lewiston is a charming village with a rich history, and some breathtakingly beautiful views of the river. You will also love their art culture. The village also holds the Lewiston Art Festival and the Niagara Falls Jazz Festival every year, which bring in artists and musicians from all over the world. 

Alexandria Bay

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If you are someone who loves fishing, boating and all things river, Alexandria Bay is a must visit. Situated just beside the St. Lawrence River, this little town is known for Boldt Castle, a big mansion on Heart Island that you can get to by boat. You can also take boat tours of the Thousand Islands and visit the Antique Boat Museum in Clayton.


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Tarrytown is a town of rich history and stunning viewpoints like Lyndhurst Mansion and the famous Sleepy Hollow Cemetery. People who have visited this town have loved the Tarrytown Music Hall for the good music and loving ambience. The views of the Hudson River are especially beautiful in the fall when the leaves change color.

Sackets Harbor

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This historic village was an important one during the War of 1812. That is a reason for their tall and well-kept military buildings. If you want to know about its history and culture, do visit the Sackets Harbor Battlefield State Historic Site that tells the story of the village. For shops, restaurants, and the marina, walk to the downtown area. 

East Aurora

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East Aurora is a town often called a paradise for anyone who loves arts and crafts. All thanks to the Roycroft Campus, that has been a very important place in the Arts and Crafts Movement. The main street is full of character, with great places to shop and eat. The Knox Farm State Park is a beautiful place for a walk or a horseback ride.


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Known for its winter sports, Ellicottville is a paradise for skiers and snowboarders, with two major resorts to choose from. But it’s not just a winter destination – there are loads of activities all year round, from golfing to mountain biking. And the town itself is lively, with lots of shops, restaurants, and bars to keep you entertained.

Sag Harbor

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Sag Harbor has a rich history of sailing and a lively arts culture you will love. The whaling museum is a must-see, and so is the Old Whalers Church which is one of the most beautiful historic buildings around. The harbor is lovely, with some great beaches nearby for a relaxing day by the sea.


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Nyack is right beside the west bank of the Hudson River. It is known for the lovely artsy vibe, Victorian homes, and the beautiful Nyack Beach State Park. You must visit the super fun street fairs like the Nyack Street Fair and the Nyack Famous Street Fair when you are around. You will love the local arts and crafts here.


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A small hamlet in the Catskill Mountains, Phoenicia is a haven for outdoor activities. You can go tubing on Esopus Creek, hike in the mountains, or just relax in one of the town’s cozy cafes. The town has a laid-back atmosphere, with local shops, eateries, and the Phoenicia International Festival of the Voice.


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Still to be found by the travelers, the Chautauqua town is like a little utopia, with almost all the focus on learning and culture. The Chautauqua Institution is known for hosting many different events, from lectures to concerts to workshops. And all of this in a beautiful lakeside setting. It is a great place to expand your mind and enjoy some top-notch entertainment.


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Known for its vibrant arts community and historic Main Street, Rosendale is a small town with a big personality. Or that is how we see it. The Rosendale Trestle, part of the Wallkill Valley Rail Trail, offers some amazing panoramic views of the town and the surrounding countryside. The town hosts events like the Rosendale Street Festival and the International Pickle Festival.


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