3 must see cities in the Adirondack Park, New York State

Adirondack Guide Boat by Mwanner at en.wikipedia via Wikimedia Commons

The largest park in the US mainland is Adirondack Park in Upstate, New York. It comprises 6.1 million acres of both public and private lands. Within those millions of acres are many excellent places to visit. If you’re planning a trip to the Adirondack Park region, try one of these popular places. You won’t be sorry you did.

1. Old Forge.
Old Forge is right in the middle of everything in the Adirondacks – literally. It’s located in the center of the Adirondack Mountains. From beautiful Old Forge, you have access to the best the region has to offer.

If you want to take in the beauty of the Old Forge area, you can do it by water, by land or by air. A trip on the lakes and rivers in a tour or cruise boat, a scenic eco-tour through the wilderness on a train, or a breathtaking open view from a mountain chairlift are just a few of the ways you can see it all.

If you want to be more active New York’s largest theme park, Enchanted Forest/Water Safari, is open during the warmer months with 31 water rides and over 50 rides and attractions.

Camping, canoeing, kayaking, river rafting, fishing and ice fishing, golfing, mountain biking, hiking, horseback riding, ice skating, skiing, snowmobiling and even good old fashioned snowshoeing are the popular seasonal activities in Old Forge. Skiers won’t want to miss the annual Snodeo held early in December each year and for something a little different, there’s an annual go-kart race each September.

There are also accommodations to fit any visitor’s needs. Campers can chose to rough it in a tent or rent a full-featured camping cabin. Full-service lodges like Adirondack Lodge – Old Forge can give visitors a taste of the woods, The Waters Edge Inn and Conference Center offer more sophisticated lodging, and dozens various cozy inns, B&B’s, and motels are available for travelers.

2. Lake Placid

Lake Placid has been home to the Winter Olympics twice – once in 1932 and again in 1980. You don’t need to be an Olympic athlete to appreciate all it has to offer, though.

You’ll want to spend most of your time outdoors sailing, canoeing, kayaking, whitewater rafting, or water skiing on the lakes and rivers during the warmer months. Off the water, there are plenty of beautiful hiking and mountain biking trails with lots of places to set up camp along the way.

When the weather turns cold skiing and cross country skiing are front and center in Lake Placid, but those who don’t want to ski will find a warm welcome in the lodges, restaurants and shopping villages.

Lodges and inns abound in Lake Placid for travelers to stay. There are also many condo/townhouse rentals, B&B’s, cabin rentals and motels.
If you visit in October, you can attend the annual two-day Flaming Leaves Festival with its blues bands, great BBQ, and plenty of beer. There are kids activities and festival goers can ride the ski chair lift to get the best view of the fall foliage.

3. Saranac Lake

Saranac Lake offers access to all of the exciting outdoor activities that both Old Forge and Lake Placid have to offer, but it also has the distinction of being the historical, cultural and artistic hub of the Adirondacks.

The Pendragon Theater is the only year round professional theater in the region. For those who like music, the local music scene is alive and well in the pubs and during the summer the music takes to the streets during the Third Thursday art walks downtown.

The last weekend of September, 30 local artists open their homes and studios for the annual Artists at Work Studio Tour. All year, visitors can attend art and cultural events and workshops at the Blueseed Studios.

Saranac Lake is also known for its wellness centers. There are various types of massage and body work centers around the region where visitors can come to be pampered exclusively or simply receive a deep tissue massage or practice yoga after a long day of a strenuous, physical activity.

Relaxing, rejuvenating B&B’s like the Mountain Shadows Bed & Breakfast are the perfect place to stay in a place like Saranac Lake, but there are also hotels, motels, cottages and cabins for visitors to rest their heads at night.