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Things to do in Woodstock, NY

NY State has so many beautiful places, right? I feel so fortunate to live in a city like New York and, at the same time, having the opportunity to explore the state. Before I moved to the city, I never thought the state had so many cute towns and unique activities. Every time we have an opportunity, my husband and I explore some areas (we love the Hudson Valley!). Last week, we spent a long weekend in Woodstock. The choice of the town was not on purpose – in fact, I was looking for a cozy and beautiful Airbnb and we really loved one that was located in Woodstock. And we couldn’t be happier with our choice! Our main goal with this trip was to relax – that’s why we paid extra attention to our Airbnb – and also doing some activities. We were lucky to have the last chance to see the Fall foliage as well. Now, let’s check my recommendations:

Airbnb

This Airbnb was perfect. Check-in and check-out were easy and the bungalow is an 8-minute drive from Woodstock. It is clean, cozy, modern, bright, with a complete kitchen. We were surrounded by nature – and it was even more special because of the foliage. I love the fact that there was an outdoor area with a grill, sofas, and tree swing. It was literally a dream!

Transportation

  • Rent a car.
  • Rent a car.
  • Rent a car.

I can’t tell this enough. Yes, we have MetroNorth and Amtrack, but once you get to your destination, you will be limited. Train rides are perfect for a one-day getaway, when you do few things and can count on taxi and Ubers (which are usually limited in these areas). But if you are planning to spend more days, renting a car is the best way to explore the area.

Restaurants

Pub

It was kind of hard to find restaurants with Dine-in options – a lot of them are only offering takeout and delivery. PUB is located on the “main” street of Woodstock and offers a selection of plates that are popular in… pubs, of course! So, expect things like sandwiches, burgers, nachos, fish & chips. We got the Fish & Chips – the fish was fresh and we really loved the fries – and also a Veggie Burger. Actually, we got back there on our last day again and we had a special of the day (grilled fish with mashed potatoes – this was just PERFECT!) and the Lamb Burger. They have a great selection of beers ($6 for a beer? I’m totally in!) and cocktails.

Silvia

A follower recommended this restaurant and she said that was the best in town. And we had such a great time! The environment is cozy and elegant, perfect for a date, and they have a New American menu. Make sure to order the Mulled Wine if you go there on a cold night. For appetizers, we got the Naan Bread and the Korean Beef – love the size of these plates! For main dishes, we got the Smoked Beets and the Pork Chop. The staff was very friendly too! Don’t forget to make a reservation!

Cucina

Italian restaurant, beautiful location, cozy, elegant, perfect for a date too – but I also saw families having dinner together! Here, of course, the best options are pasta and pizzas. My recommendation is the Rigatoni with sausage sauce – the sauce was perfectly balanced and the pasta was al dente. Also, we got a pizza with fig, apples, goat cheese, and truffle oil. I love the contrast between sweet and savory! Oh, they also serve bread, warm and fresh!

Garden Cafe

 

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We bought our lunch one day from this place (takeout only). It is a Vegan restaurant and they have so many options! I got a Crusted Tofu with Polent and Avocado Mousse, so creative, so delicious! And Thiago got the TLT sandwich (like a Vegan BLT), with bacon tempeh.

Catskill Mountain Pizza

 

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We ordered a pizza from this place, which is famous in town. Besides pizza – which is so delicious and has a fair price – they offer Italian pasta, fresh salads, hot and cold sandwiches.

Things to do

Ashokan Reservoir

I saw this on the map and I wanted to check it out. The resulting body of water is the oldest New York City-owned reservoir in the Catskill Mountains, being placed into service as long ago as 1915. The reservoir is one of NYC’s largest according to its surface area and volume. At full capacity, the reservoir can hold 122.9 billion US gallons (465,000,000 m3) of water, has a 255-square-mile (408 km2) drainage basin, and is over 180 feet (54.9 m) deep at its deepest point, making it the city’s deepest reservoir.

Go to the parking area that is on the map at the end of the post and you can have a great view of the water, the woods, and the mountains. It is stunning! Plus, on your way, you will get to see beautiful views!

Overlook Mountain Trail

You can’t travel to the Hudson Valley and skipping hiking! This is one of the famous hiking trails in the area. 2,5 miles climbing and climbing. It took us 2 hours to get to the top – and, of course, we stopped to take some pictures. Because it snowed one day before, the contrast between the white and the Fall colors was just perfect! Before getting to the top, you will pass the Overlook Mountain House ruins, which is used to be a hotel for 300 guests! It was built in 1833 and it was destroyed by fire in 1875. Then, it was rebuilt and burned down again in 1923. The architect Frank P. Amato was hired to redesign and rebuild it, but the design was never completely built, as the hotel’s elevation and lack of rail transportation made it difficult for customers to reach the place.

Also, once you get to the top, you can climb the Fire Tower. “This is the newest of the five towers left in the Catskill Park, having been at its present location since only 1950. However, the tower itself is much older as it was originally constructed in 1927 on Gallis Hill, just west of Kingston.“ (DEC page states). You want to see the view from the top, trust me! And don’t forget to follow the “Scenic Views” sign for… scenic views. Trust me, is worth it.

Things you need to know:

  • There are bathrooms at the parking space and at the top;
  • You will find tables at the top if you wanna have a picnic;
  • Basics: wear appropriate clothes, comfortable shoes and bring water!

Rail Explorers Tour

Ok, this was the thing I was most excited about it! It is a Rail Bike tour through the historic Ulster & Delaware Railroad as you travel alongside the Esopus Creek through the beautiful woods of the Catskill Mountains. Guys, IT IS SO COOL – because it is so unique and different. You pedal these vehicles along the railroad tracks while you enjoy beautiful views. I can’t wait to go again, maybe in the summer. Here are some tips:

  • Make your reservation in advance – they sell out quickly!
  • Tours run from May to November;
  • Reserve 2 hours and a half for the experience;
  • Arrive 15 minutes before for check-in and instructions;
  • All the rail explorers leave at the same time, with a tour guide in the lead and a tour guide in the last explorer. The group spreads out along the track so that there is up to 500ft between you and the explorers ahead and behind. This allows each group to enjoy the freedom of the outdoors and the magic of the railroad at their own pace and in their own space.
  • They offer Tandem Rail Explorer (2 seats) or Quad Rail Explorer (4 seats).
  • Price: $40 on average per person.

The inspiration to start Rail Explorers originally came from a scene in a Korean soap opera. Back in September of 2012, Mary Joy Lu (who started Rail Explorers with her husband Alex Catchpoole) was watching one of her favorite K-Dramas and became intrigued when she saw a strange contraption being pedaled along the railroad tracks. Mary got so excited by the rail bike that within 10 days she was on a plane to South Korea to meet with the designer and manufacturer of the vehicles. The business started in 2015 and this was the first time these rail bikes had been seen anywhere in the world outside of South Korea.

Shopping & More

Candlestock – When I saw this store, I knew it: it is my store! I’m obsessed with candles I’ve never visited a store like this. All candles! So many options!

Bread Alone – a famous bakery in town – the sourdough is delicious! They also have a lot of pastries and cakes plus a lunch menu.

 

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The Tea Shop –  as the name suggests, you will find teas, mugs and other stuff related!

And that’s a wrap! Do you have more tips on things to do in Woodstock and the area? Comment below! Also, the last tip: if you have a chance, drive through Ohayo Mountain Road – that’s where I took the feature picture!

1 Comment

  • Jackrabbit Limo LLC
    June 4, 2021 at 2:45 am

    Perfect blog for adventure freak!. The adventure of traveling is incomplete without a limo car. We provide the best limo car services in southampton, NY.

    Reply

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