New York’s Catskill Mountains, otherwise known as the Catskills, is known for its tranquil forests, rich wildlife, beautiful hiking trails and world-class ski resorts, making it a popular destination at which to escape from the grind of city life. From activities to fill your days with to the finest of accommodation, this guide will tell you all you need to know when planning a weekend in the Catskills.
Where to Stay
When it comes to accommodation types in the Catskills, there is plenty to choose from. The area has become a hot spot for boutique hotels, such as the bohemian-chic Hotel Dylan and the pop culture-inspired Roxbury, which has recently garnered international attention. For those traveling as a family, an all-inclusive resort may make more sense, as they will offer everything from meals to accommodation to events and activities. The colonial-style Winter Clove Inn has a wide range of on-site facilities, while the Villa Roma Resort and its sprawling grounds has always been a firm family favorite. The Catskills are also home to a number of different farms, many of them offering a farm stay experience, in which you can spend your weekend helping out on the farm, while also engaging in relaxing activities.
Things to Do
There are miles upon miles of trails through the Catskill Mountains, and numerous ways in which to explore them, whether on foot, by bike, or on horseback. The Catskill Mountain Railroad will also provide you with some spectacular views, while the famous Catskill Preserve is where you can hike to the tops of mountains, and splash around in sparkling lakes. For those wanting to soak up some art and culture, there are some fantastic museums worth visiting, such as the Bethel Woods Center for the Arts and the Fort Delaware Museum of Colonial History. It is also worth stopping by at the Catskill Fly Fishing Center, where you can learn some fly-tying, or dropping a line for a couple of hours in Willowemoc Creek.
Where to Eat
While the cuisine in the Catskills never used to be much to shout home about, this has been changing thanks to graduates of the nearby Culinary Institute of America setting up shop in the area. This, combined with the recent initiative to use more fresh and local produce, has resulted in a tantalizing array of dining options. Table on Ten is a restaurant that makes good use of nearby farms, with everything from housemade granola to freshly picked arugula. Another New York gem located in the Catskills is the Stamford Smokehouse, which is usually a wholesale supplier, but, on the weekends, they serve up some of the tastiest smoked meat in town, with absolutely every morsel made in house.
Just 100 miles from New York City, the Catskills are easy to access, and with such a wide range of unique features, will appeal to just about everyone looking for a break from the city. With extraordinary natural beauty, innovative restaurants, and a relaxing, peaceful ambiance, the Catskills are definitely worth considering for your next weekend getaway.