Eight of the Best Day Trips From New York City

New York City is a feast for the senses, but when you've had your fill of the Big Apple, many of the Empire State's attractions are within easy reach. Whether you're a cooped-up Gothamite or passing through town and looking for an excursion, these day trips are sure to soothe any city-weary soul. Expect coastal enclaves, modish galleries and nature galore.

Outdoor art galleries, farm-to-fork fine-dining and walks on the wild side

Cold Spring


Quaint stores and farm-to-table eats are the pot of gold at the end of a journey north along the Hudson River. The easiest way to reach Cold Spring? Take the Metro-North Hudson train departing from Grand Central; the line hugs the banks of the river. On arrival, stretch your legs out and breathe in a few lungfuls of country air in the 15-acre Stonecrop Gardens - more adventurous folk can opt for a kayak tour with Hudson River Expeditions. Don't leave without lapping up one of Moo Moo's Creamery's ice cream cones, with almost 100 different flavours on rotation. Our order? Butter Pecan and Graham Cracker. If you can time your train ride back to Manhattan in line with the sunset, you've hit the visual jackpot.

Bear Mountain State Park

Orange County

If you grew up in New York City or the surrounding suburbs, it's likely you've either hiked Bear Mountain or know at least ten people who have. A hotspot for New Yorkers wanting to get in touch with their wild side, this national park stretching across Rockland and Orange counties is threaded with paths for hiking (the Appalachian Trail crosses through), biking, cross-country skiing and sledging, and plays host to attractions that run the gamut from a bird sanctuary to an Oktoberfest knees-up. Bring a picnic and a good camera - the views here are especially beautiful in autumn.

Blue Hill at Stone Barns


Hankering after a taste of the real Empire State? Look no further than Blue Hill Farm. World-famed for its high-end farm-to-table fare that makes the most of produce from the Hudson Valley , this place draws NYC locals and visitors upriver to its smallholding just outside Sleepy Hollow. Dining isn't the only draw; the on-site market is packed with homemade preserves, toiletries and kitchenwares - bring a tote to haul back any goodies you pick up after your meal.

Sannino Vineyard

North Fork

A two-hour drive from Manhattan, Sannino Vineyard scratches that itch for those who want to go to California's Napa Valley or Portugal's Douro Region. Located on Long Island's North Fork, it's the perfect getaway for those who've had their fill of the Hamptons. Opt for a wine tasting - there's a bed and breakfast on-site, so your day trip can easily turn into an overnight jaunt.

Storm King Art Center


A hotspot for New Yorkers looking to decompress, Storm King Art Center is 500-acre expanse of undulating countryside flecked with gargantuan sculptures and installations - it's among the US's largest collection of contemporary outdoor art. Backdropped by Storm King Mountain, this is a place where the bond between art, nature and people reigns supreme. Expect to see pieces by the likes of Alexander Calder, SolLeWitt, Roy Lichtenstein and Maya Lin. Don't feel like walking? Bikes are available for rent.



A quick Metro-North ride from Grand Central Station will whisk you to this chocolate-box town that gazes over Long Island Sound from Westchester County. Larchmont is famed for the striated rocks, scenic vistas and winding pathways of Manor Park - take a walk before heading inland to local restaurants and shops. Get your fill of wholesome fare at Stan'z Café before picking out your future waterfront mansion on the waterfront. This is suburban living at its best.

Rockaway Beach


Although technically in NYC, Queens' Rockaway Beach (yes, the one the Ramones sang about) could easily fool visitors into thinking they'd made it to the Hamptons - minus the deep drive into Long Island. Simply take the A train or avail of New York's ferry services to reach this expansive beach. It draws a whole host of sunbathers and surfers, so people-watching here is second to none. Grab a bite from one of the many food trucks and prepare to be entertained.

Noguchi Museum


It's hard to believe that the Noguchi Museum is in NYC. Located in Queens' Long Island City, its serene outdoor sculpture garden incorporates elements of Japanese and American culture and serves as a homage to sculptor Isamu Noguchi's roots. Just 10 minutes drive from here is Casa Enrique, one of New York's best spots for traditional, Michelin-starred Mexican food - a perfect way to end your day.

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