We’re certainly not knocking the Big Apple, but sometimes even the most steadfast urbanite just needs a change of scenery. Looking to escape the concrete jungle? The Empire State has plenty of epic spots for a quick jaunt. Whether you’re seeking outdoor adventure or relaxation, we’ve got your covered. From Beacon to Windham, these are the best weekend getaways from NYC.
Some 120 miles from the Big Apple lies Montauk, an unabashed summer hotspot. (Take the LIRR all the way out east, and when the train rolls into its final station stop, you’ve arrived at the “End of the World.”) Once there, stroll along miles of sandy beaches and take a surf lesson at Ditch Plains. The new Gurney’s Montauk Yacht Club & Resort is situated on an idyllic lake and flaunts 107 luxury waterfront rooms. Craving a little R&R? Get a rubdown at the Seawater Spa. Uber-trendy Surf Lodge hosts a slew of summer concerts as well as wellness events. The more campy Ruschmeyer's is also a popular pick.
Just 90 minutes by car or Metro-North from NYC, Beacon is an easy day trip. Although there’s more than enough to warrant a weekend jaunt. The vibrant art community and influx of Brooklyn transplants have transformed it into a bonafide hipster haven. After checking into your accommodations (we’d recommend The Roundhouse), head to Dia:Beacon. Housed in a former Nabisco printing factory built in 1929, the museum boasts unique exhibitions and an impressive collection of works on long-term display—notably sculptures by Donald Judd and light installations by Dan Flavin. Then lace up your hiking boots for a trek to the top of Mt. Beacon for far-reaching vistas.
Amtrak provides daily service between Penn Station and Hudson. The journey from Penn Station takes about two hours. The slower pace and laid-back vibe are a welcome reprieve from the bustling streets, crammed subways, and endless concrete. Warren Street, the pedestrian-friendly main drag, is the place to be. That’s where you’ll find The Hudson Milliner, a boutique guesthouse with four stylish suites. Next door is the Rivertown Lodge, formerly an old-school movie theatre. Both offer easy access to the many historic buildings, galleries, and stores in downtown. One of the coolest retail concepts is Flowerkraut, which specializes in floral design and local gifts, such as candles and scratch-made sauerkraut.
Billed as the “un-hamptons weekend getaway,” Greenport is a historic seaport on the North Fork of Long Island with a quiet, small-town feel and plenty of maritime activities. Main Street is lined with shops and family-owned eateries like Bruce & Son. Book a table for brunch and order the grass-fed local beef burger. Wondering where to stay? Sound View is a 1950s motel turned chic boutique hotel featuring 55 seaside rooms with nautical undertones and patios overlooking the private beach. It’s also home to The Halyard. The menu is a love letter to the North Fork, or, perhaps, more accurately its foragers, farmers, and fishermen.
Windham may be two hours from New York City (depending on traffic), but this quaint town in the Catskill Mountains feels like a world away. Scenic landscapes, rugged peaks, and outdoor pursuits lure greenery-starved travelers. Both nature and design lovers can agree that the new Eastwind Hotel & Bar is a welcome addition. It's as well located for exploring the myriad ski trails, bike paths, and terrain parks as it is a pleasant place to stay in and get cozy. Rooms and suites are the epitome of rustic chic. If you really want to up the romance, opt for an evening in one of the A-frame glamping cabins.