Norbert Figueroa a RoamRight Blog Author

Great Places To Visit In Upstate New York

Get out of the city and explore the rest of beautiful New York state with these travel tips!

Image source: Flickr - RCSJ

Everyone knows New York City, the city that never sleeps; full of entertainment, shopping, and attractions. But, did you know that New York City is just a very tiny part of the state of New York? New Yorkers refer to everything above (and outside) NYC as upstate New York – which technically counts for most of the state. 

It’s time we start exploring more of New York outside of NYC, so here are some really good recommendations on places you can visit in Upstate New York.

Howe Caverns

You can explore a 6 million years old cave nearly 160 feet below the surface with a guided tour. There you will see all forms of cave formations like stalagmites, stalactites and chambers, as you travel via boat on an underground waterway.  For those of you with a more old-fashioned explorer spirit, you can explore the cave with the use of an old lantern, instead of a flashlight.  And for those of you who crave more adrenaline, you can go spelunking, with gear provided and led by experienced cave explorers; or you could go zip lining when you reach back the surface or go hiking and mountain climbing along the trails. 

Note: For some of these activities to be covered by travel insurance, you'll need a RoamRight Adventure plan.


The Adirondack Park covers a great deal of New York. Spanning more than 6 million acres, this “forever wild” park is larger than Yellowstone, Yosemite and the Grand Canyon. In it you’ll find the Adirondacks Mountains, hundreds of lakes and streams and countless hiking trails for nature aficionados. No large cities exist within its borders, but you can still find small lodgings and restaurants in the towns and villages around the park. It is best to visit during summer for the good weather or during fall to witness nature’s wonders as it changes in red hues and yellow tones.

Saratoga Springs

This 19th century town is well known for its horseracing track, but Saratoga Springs is much more than that. Its downtown area is full of activities during the summer, several museums (including one for horseracing), relics of its former health spas and the Saratoga Performing Arts Center. Not to miss are the Saratoga Automobile Museum and the New York State Military Museum, hosted in a former armory.

Lake Placid

Opposite to Saratoga, Lake Placid is both a summer and winter destination. The lake is best visited during the summer, but the village of Lake Placid shines for its winter sports. This town has hosted the Winter Olympic games twice (1932 and 1980), and still today you can visit the Olympic sites and practice some of the winter sports and activities that made this village famous. You can ski at Whiteface Mountain during the winter, or play golf in the summer in one of the oldest golf courses in the US – built in 1898.

Thousand Islands

Along the St. Lawrence Seaway, at the point where the St. Lawrence River meets Lake Ontario, you’ll find the Thousand Islands region. Given the proximity to Canada; this area is promoted by both New York and Canada. The region features cruises, private boating, festivals, restaurants, lodging and a wide variety of shopping. You can also participate in activities like diving, kayaking, and visiting historic places.

Ausable Chasm

Often referred as the “Grand Canyon’s little brother,” Ausable Chasm is considered one of the top 10 natural wonders in the US. It has stunning sand rock formations and world-class rapids for whitewater rafting and tube rafting. Hiking is another favorite activity here as you can hike through the gorge to see up close the fascinating rock formations.

Fort Ticonderoga

Fort Ticonderoga is an 18th century French fort located just outside of Ticonderoga Town. There you’ll have the opportunity to visit the barracks, storeroom, and powder magazine, among other spaces in the fort.  It makes a nice visit for fort and history enthusiasts.  The fort opens between May and October, but during the summer you can see the live reenactments of military and pioneer tasks and activities. 

Now, are you ready to experience Upstate New York?

Note: Available plans and coverages may have changed since this blog was published.


About the Author

Norbert Figueroa

Norbert Figueroa, a RoamRight Blog Author Norbert Figueroa is an architect who hit the pause button on his career in 2011 to do a round the world trip. He's been blogging for over three years at, where he shares his travel experiences, budget travel tips, and a good dose of world architecture. From hiking Mount Kilimanjaro to diving with great white sharks, he is always on the search of adrenaline and adventure. Norbert is originally from Puerto Rico and he is currently based in Milan, Italy... when not roaming around the world, that is. He has traveled to more than 80 countries in 5 continents and his goal is to travel to all 193 U.N. recognized countries. Follow Norbert on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Google Plus.

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