New York City. The city that never sleeps and that is also one of the best winter destinations in the US. Millions of people travel to New York specifically to explore the city properly. To take in that feeling of being inside a slot machine game with the constant flashing of lights from the billboards of Times Square.
Just 2 1/2 hours from the city lie the Catskill Mountains. With an area of around 5900 mi2 it's the perfect getaway from the bustling of the city. Whether you are into hiking, biking, fishing, camping, or even wine, this area truly has it all which makes it one of the best day trips from New York City. Oh, and did I mention that it is right next to Woodstock. Yes, that's right. The Woodstock. A cute, hippie town and the location of the original Woodstock festival.
Gertrude's Nose Trail
Located in Minnewaska State Park Preserve, 2 hours outside of New York City, is a 7-mile loop. It is a popular spot for hikers, with amazing forested scenery, an outcropping of rocks with cool air rising from deep within the ground and of course the cliffs and ledges with views of the rock formation known as Gertrude's Nose. It's a moderate hike with lots of beautiful nature, thus a perfect weekend getaway from NYC. Though it's heavily trafficked the best time of year to visit is fall, where you can see incredible vistas of golds, reds, and oranges as the fall foliage is shown to full effect.
This short trip of only 1-mile to the base of the falls is on all the lists you will find online as one of the best hikes in the Catskills. From the top of the falls to the base is 260-feet, a two-tier waterfall that is tallest in the state. It's a steep trail, making it a moderate level so make sure you come prepared for the climb with proper hiking shoes as well as a sturdy set of hiking poles.
Rock Climbing in the Shawanagunks
For the rock climbers out there Mohonk Preserve, in the “Gunks” is the place to go. Located 1 hour 45 minutes outside of New York City it's where all the hardcore climbers in the tristate area go climbing.If you are new to climbing there are guides and even a climbing school. Heading out for a day of climbing, make sure to check the Mohonk Preserve website as they occasionally close due to Peregrine Falcon nesting. Even if you are not into climbing, Mohonk Preserve has a lot of hiking and biking trails available as well and is one of the top-rated day trips from New York City.
Point Pleasant - Jenkinson's Boardwalk
By far my favorite beach and boardwalk is Point Pleasant - which makes it one of the best NYC day trips. A quieter, more family-friendly boardwalk, Jenkinson's Boardwalk offers the same carnival-style games and treats as some of the wilder boardwalks along the shore. And it is only a 1 1/2 hour drive from New York City.
Again, 2 1/2 hours outside the city is Hunter Mountain. This is by far the most popular mountain for city-goers. It can get a bit busy, so be aware. Maybe go during the week, just to get the most enjoyment. Hunter also has a 1,600-foot vertical drop, but boasts 67 trails and 4 terrain parks with 320 skiable acres. It's no west coast mountain but it's a great way to get outside in the winter.
Day trips from NYC - the best weekend getaways from New York City
February 12, 2021