6 Ways to Discover Upstate New York

Upstate New York
– As in NOT New York City –

Elmira College
Elmira College

Well, let’s just be honest … Upstate New York has been living in the shadow of New York City for quite awhile now. It’s hard to compete with 8.3 million people, Broadway shows and the Statue of Liberty!

But …. Let’s slow it down a bit and head to the north and west of New York STATE … and see if there’s anything worth checking out! If you ever drive to NYC there is a good chance that you will drive through New York State and there are some pretty awesome things to see along the way!

Jess, Barney and I headed to Elmira, NY to visit a friend who we taught english with in China.

Here’s what we discovered:

Wine-Tasting … mmmm
New York is home to some huge wineries and all of them want you to try their wine. The Finger Lakes have tons of wineries! So get some friends together, book a limo or cab and taste your way through Upstate New York. 

Wine Tasting

Visit a Small Town
There are tons of cool little towns in New York. They all have a unique culture and atmosphere that is worth checking out. There’s an interesting blend of cultures in small town New York. People have the efficient business culture of New York City, but it is combined with the down-to-earth mentality found in small town america.
Some places to start with: Cold SpringAuroraCorning, or Skaneateles 

Niagara Falls
Niagara Falls separates the United States and Canada and it is undoubtedly an impressive site. If you have time (and your passport), swing on over to the Canadian side … it’s just better.

Niagara Falls - US side

The Finger Lakes
A group of 11 huge & narrow lakes make for a great place to go swimming, boating, kayaking, wine tasting or sailing! These lakes are a popular tourist destination and beautifully portray the outdoors of Upstate New York.
Random Suggestion:  Rent a cabin on the Lake, swim during the day and go wine tasting in the evenings. 

River

Glass Blowing in Corning
The Corning Museum of Glass is awesome! You can see over 3,500 years of glass blowing history along with some really cool shows. Corning Glass is a massive glass business in the United States and the museum shows the fascinating process of shaping and working with glass.
It costs $18-25 and kids (under 17) are free. You can see actual demonstrations and shows of real glass blowing and they even give you the opportunity to blow your own glass … it’s a pretty cool experience!

glass, blowing, corning, museum
cool, glass, display, corning, museum, beautiful

Watkins Glen
Watkins Glen State Park is as good as it gets for camping and hiking. If you are the outdoors type, plan on spending a night or two immersed in Watkins Glen … you will be surrounded by lakes, mountains and forests worthy of any outdoor enthusiast. 

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