Hudson Valley Road Trip
Hit the Hudson Valley highlights. If you haven’t crossed these places off your bucket list, you haven’t seen the Valley. There are literally thousands of attractions, destinations and events to cover throughout the year in our region, but here are a few of the “must sees” that we’re known for.
Hudson Valley Road Trip Day 1
Start your trip in Tarrytown at Lyndhurst, the 1838 Gothic Revival mansion with expansive views of the river. Once owned by railroad magnate Jay Gould, it shows how the very wealthy lived during the Gilded Age.
Nearby is the more modest, but utterly charming home of American writer Washington Irving, Sunnyside. The cozy riverside “snuggery” was designed by Irving along with its gardens.
Hudson Valley Road Trip Day 2
Cross the Tappan Zee Bridge and stop in Nyack-on-Hudson, a wonderful walking village with shops and a wide range of restaurants that makes lunch a snap.
4. Bear Mountain State Park
Go north to Bear Mountain State Park. With walking trails, a beautiful carousel, and a zoo with native animals tucked into the mountain, there are glorious views of the Hudson.
Hudson Valley Road Trip Day 3
Cross the river to Boscobel in Garrison. Completed in 1808, the neoclassical mansion features decorative arts from the federal Period. But don’t miss the fragrant rose gardens with their riot of color against the butter yellow colored house. In summer, the New York Shakespeare Festival produces several plays on the grounds.
6. Cold Spring
A few miles north is the charming village of Cold Spring with its hillside main street sloping down the Hudson River and a beautiful gazebo for watching the passing water craft and admiring the scenery.
7. Bear Mountain Inn
Re-cross the Bear Mountain Bridge to the Bear Mountain Inn for a delicious farm-to-table dinner and a peaceful night’s sleep. The recently renovated, iconic 1915 log and stone hostelry actually has three farm-to-table restaurants and is a sentimental favorite of many who have visited the region.
Hudson Valley Road Trip Day 4
8. Storm King Art Center
Next morning, head over to Storm King Art Center, the 500-acre internationally renowned outdoor sculpture park and museum. You’ll find over 100 masterworks set into the landscape; world-renowned sculptors like Calder, Stella, and Noguchi have placed there works here, enhanced by the dramatic rolling hills and mountain backdrop.
9. West Point
Nearby is the United States Military Academy at West Point, the oldest academy in America. A one-hour tour gives the highlights of both the gorgeous campus and its history. See the million-dollar view at Trophy Point and the Cadet Chapel with the largest pipe organ in the U.S.
Hudson Valley Road Trip Day 5
10. Hyde Park
Winding your way up Route 9 to Hyde Park, the huge complex on the Franklin D. Roosevelt estate will immerse you in the history of both Eleanor and Franklin. Consisting of the mansion, museum, and private quarters of the two, there are hours to be spent here learning about one of America’s most famous presidents and the first lady. Visit the rose gardens where they are buried, and marvel at the spectacular foliage surrounding the estate as well as across the river.
11. Beekman Arms
The evening can be spent at the Beekman Arms in Rhinebeck, America’s oldest continuously operated inn. Built in 1766, the inn has an excellent restaurant, or a short walk to a large selection of village restaurants. Adventurous tastes might also want to dine at the Culinary Institute of America, probably America’s best-known school for chefs.
Hudson Valley Road Trip Day 6
Next day, a must-see is Olana, the 1870 Moorish-style villa of Hudson River painter Frederic Church. Looking much as it did when Church and his family lived there, the house has eclectic furnishings gathered by the family on their trips abroad. The wide galleries give the same views of the river valley that Church portrayed in his paintings.
Just north is the village of Hudson, an antique lover’s mecca. Long known for its wide variety of shops selling vintage wares, there are also numerous restaurants up and down Warren Street, perfect for a delicious lunch.