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Get to know the state: The Marvels Of New York State | When to Visit | Destination Highlights | Top Things To Do

Getting to and around New York State: Flights | Getting Around

Essential information: Essential Travel Info | Top Tips

Itinerary Ideas, imagery, training & key contacts: Suggested itineraries | Imagery | Training Requests | Key Contacts

Sunset over Taughannock Falls, New York State
Ponquogue Beach, Hampton Bays, Long Island - ILoveNY
Boldt Castle, Alexandria Bay, Thousand Island Region - ILoveNY

The Marvels Of New York State

New York State is a premier holiday destination with world-class attractions, picturesque natural beauty, locally sourced cuisine and a booming craft beverage scene, an array of accommodations, and iconic, year-round festivals and events.

Its 11 diverse regions feature some of the world’s top ranked beaches; two out of America’s top three favourite state parks; breathtaking Niagara Falls; more ski areas then any other state; one of the nation’s longest foliage seasons; multiple Halls of Fame; the largest publicly protected area in the contiguous United States; and the country’s longest multi-use trail. Add in the state’s unique museums, historic landmarks, cultural sites, charming small towns, and urban playgrounds, and it’s no wonder New York has been consistently chosen as a top getaway by travel publications and experts. New York State is perfect for every season.

When To Visit

There’s always something happening in New York: food festivals, live music, and more! To discover all the best events going on in New York State, click here. To learn more about visiting by season, read below…

Jones Beach State Park, Long Island - ILoveNY

Summer

Summer in New York State invites outdoor enthusiasts to explore its national parks, indulge in hiking, cycling, and ziplining adventures, and discover the charm of its wineries, waterfalls, and festivals. With temperatures reaching up to 30+°C, the weather promises ideal conditions for enjoying the abundance of outdoor activities available throughout the state. Hot temperatures are pretty much guaranteed during July and August.

John Boyd Thacher State Park atop the Helderberg Escarpment, Albany County - ILoveNY

Autumn

Autumn, spanning from early September to mid-October, beckons with nature hikes, Halloween festivities in Tarrytown’s gothic ambience, and visits to cideries/breweries. Pack layers – lightweight jumpers, trousers – as early fall promises pleasant weather, while late fall signals temperature drops. Early autumn is the perfect time to experience New York with temperatures lying in a comfortable range between 18-25°C without the high humidity of the summer months.

Gore Mountain torch light parade and fireworks, North Creek - ILoveNY

Winter

Winter in New York State is synonymous with ski adventures, ice skating, and festive Christmas shopping jaunts to NYC. Yet, holiday cheer permeates the entire state, with Seneca Falls drawing crowds for its connection to “It’s a Wonderful Life.” Don’t miss the iconic Christmas tree at Rockefeller Center – an essential holiday experience! Deep in winter, January is the coldest month of the year in New York with daily highs averaging at 4°C. It will be cold. Wrap up and expect snow at certain times.

New York State Capitol Building, Saratoga - ILoveNY

Spring

In spring, New York State bursts to life with vibrant blooms, maple sugaring farms, and cultural experiences at museums and galleries. Prepare for variable temperatures by bringing layers – lightweight jumpers, trousers, and more. By April, spring envelops New York, with temperatures typically peaking around 16°C on average, beckoning residents and visitors alike to embrace the season’s renewal and abundance of activities.

Destination Highlights

Montauk Lighthouse, Montauk Point State Park in Long Island Region - ILoveNY
Buttermilk Falls State Park, Ithaca - ILoveNY
Aerial view, Thousand Islands region - ILoveNY

State Parks and Historic Sites

From the sandy shores of Long Island to mighty Niagara Falls, New York State is home to more than 200 state parks and historic sites, where beautiful views and outdoor adventures await. In 2024, New York State Parks and Historic Sites celebrates its Centennial, commemorating the 100th anniversary of the founding of its parks and sites system.

Whether you climb the lighthouse for a bird’s eye view at Rock Island Lighthouse State Park in the Thousand Islands, walk the trails and check out the waterfalls at Watkins Glen State Park in the Finger Lakes, go hot air ballooning over the “Grand Canyon of the East” at Letchworth State Park, take the ferry to Governors Island, hike the majestic Adirondack High Peaks, paddle the tropical blue waters of Green Lakes State Park, sample the healing waters of Saratoga Spa State Park, or just explore your local outdoor retreat, there’s always something new to experience.

On July 4, 2026, the United States will celebrate its 250th birthday. New York State played a pivotal role in the creation of this country as the location for key battles during the Revolutionary War and serving as the nation’s first Capital.

Washington’s Headquarters in Newburgh is the nation’s first public historic site, and the General spent more time there than any other place during the Revolution. Wander the battlefields of the Saratoga National Historical Park in Stillwater where the halting of the British in 1777 is considered the turning point of the Revolutionary War, and one of the 15 greatest battles in world history.

In Seneca Falls you’ll find the Women’s Rights National Historical Park which tells the story of the first Women’s Rights Convention, held in 1848 in the Wesleyan Chapel, and the struggle for rights and equality.

The North Creek Depot Museum in the Adirondacks is where, in 1901, Theodore Roosevelt first learned of President McKinley’s death and started his midnight ride to Buffalo to be inaugurated as president. Experience the historic moment further at the Theodore Roosevelt Inaugural National Historic Site in Buffalo through interactive exhibits.

The Sagamore Steamboat, Lake George - ILoveNY
Chittenango Falls State Park, Central New York region - ILoveNY
Hudson Valley, New York State

Literary Trails

Book lovers, pack your bags for a literary adventure in New York State! From browsing the iconic stacks of the New York Public Library, to hunting for treasures in a Catskills book village, to visiting the homes of Washington Irving, Walt Whitman, and other famous authors, get ready to write your own chapter of bookish bliss with these literary destinations in New York State.

Click your heels together three times and get ready to embark on a whimsical journey through The Land of Oz in New York State! “There’s no place like home,” and for The Wonderful Wizard of Oz author L. Frank Baum, “home” was Chittenango. Follow the yellow brick road (literally!) to the All Things Oz Museum, where you can explore original movie props, dazzling costumes, rare collectibles, Judy Garland’s autograph, and more.

Explore the Gold Coast mansions that inspired The Great Gatsby at Sands Point Preserve or see the restored Colonial fortress of the French and Indian War era at the Fort William Henry Museum, prominently featured in Last of the Mohicans

Embark on a literary pilgrimage through New York State to the places your favourite authors called home. Step inside the carefully preserved Adirondacks cottage of Treasure Island and Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde author Robert Louis Stevenson to see first-hand where he spent a winter crafting The Master of Ballantrae.

In the heart of the Bronx, you’ll find the cottage where Edgar Allan Poe spent his final years and penned many of his most enduring works including Annabel Lee, The Bells, and Eureka.

Explore The Legend of Sleepy Hollow in the Hudson Valley village where the classic American tale was set. Visit author Washington Irving’s gravesite on a free self-guided walk of Sleepy Hollow Cemetery and get a taste of mid-19th century life at the writer’s two-room Dutch stone cottage Sunnyside on the banks of the Hudson River.

Chemung County in the Finger Lakes is also known as Mark Twain Country. For 20 years, Twain and his family summered at his sister-in-law’s farm in Elmira where the “father of American literature” spent his days in his octagonal study penning some of his greatest classics. Today, you can visit the study on the campus of Elmira College and pay tribute to the famous author at his final resting place in Woodlawn Cemetery.

Fire Island National Seashore, Long Island Region - ILoveNY/Darren McGee
Adirondack Balloon Festival - ILoveNY
Ausable Chasm in Clinton County, Adirondacks region - ILoveNY/Darren McGee

Get Outdoors

Embrace the elements and a world of outdoor adventure in New York State. Magnificent natural landscapes span the Adirondack Mountains to the Finger Lakes to the pristine beaches of Long Island, and New York offers an unparalleled range of outdoor activities in these stunning settings.

Hike to a waterfall in the Hudson Valley, raft through class V rapids in the Adirondacks, glide gently through glacial lakes in a crystal kayak, sail the waves of Lake Ontario, fish for salmon in the Salmon River, or cycle across some of the 750 miles of trails on the Empire State Trail (electric bikes are readily available!) And in the winter months, ski or snowboard some of the best terrain in the nation, or snowmobile through wide-open trails in the Catskills.

Take in breathtaking views of Cayuga Lake, Letchworth State Park and beautiful waterfalls such as Buttermilk Falls and Taughannock Falls as you float peacefully in the skies from a hot air balloon!

Don’t fancy taking a flight yourself, why not visit the annual Adirondacks Balloon Festival in September which attracts more than 100,000 people over the 4 days. It’s also been named as one of the Top 100 events in North America!

There are multiple companies who offer customers of all abilities a relaxing paddle or peddle on the historic Erie Canal Waterway and Heritage Trail. Beginners and experts alike enjoy the flat, tranquil waters of the canal. The recreational kayaks, canoes, and SUPs are designed for those with little or no paddling experience.

Museum at Bethel Woods, Catskills - ILoveNY
Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York City - ILoveNY
Albany Institute of History & Art - ILoveNY

Arts And Culture

From the bright lights of Broadway to the spiralling halls of the Guggenheim, New York State’s museums, galleries, theatres, and historic sites are the best in the world and provide endless opportunities to experience art and culture in every corner of the state. Bring out your inner artist at the Fenimore Art Museum or the Rochester Contemporary Art Center, which draws visionaries from around the globe. Laugh your way through Jamestown at the National Comedy Center and with comedic legend Lucille Ball at the Lucy Desi Center for Comedy, featuring exhibits and festivals that attract top-notch funny people. Have fun with creative, interactive activities at museums like The Strong Museum of Play and the Corning Museum of Glass.

Whether you’re into Shakespeare, opera, ballet, jazz, musical theatre, or want to see the biggest names in music on tour, you’ll find it all in New York’s iconic performance spaces from Lincoln Center and Carnegie Hall to Shea’s in Buffalo and Saratoga Performing Arts Center.

Maid of the Mist, Niagara Falls - ILoveNY
Statue of Liberty, NYC - ILoveNY
National Baseball Hall of Fame & Museum in Cooperstown - ILoveNY

Top Things To Do

Unveil the splendour of New York State with must-do experiences like witnessing the majestic Niagara Falls, exploring the serene Finger Lakes, adventuring in the vast Adirondacks, and immersing in the rugged beauty of the Catskills.

  • Niagara Falls, Greater Niagara – Explore the oldest State Park in America before experiencing the Maid of the Mist
  • The Corning Museum of Glass, Finger Lakes – Explore the world’s best collection of art and historical glass
  • National Baseball Hall of Fame & Museum, Central New York – Over 38,000 artefacts honour the game’s greatest players
  • Lake Placid and Whiteface Mountain, Adirondacks – Home of the 1932 and 1980 Olympics Bobsled and Luge complex, ski jump and Olympic museum
  • Saratoga Race Course, Capital-Saratoga – Visit the third oldest racetrack in the US which is considered to be the oldest sporting venue of any kind in the country
  • Bethel Woods, Catskills – Home of the Woodstock Music Festival, it is now a world class concert venue and museum
  • Culinary Institute of America – Dine at the college’s famous, student-staffed restaurants and café or take a cooking class
  • OHEKA Castle, Long Island – The prize jewel of historic hotels in Long Island, the most sought-after getaway in the famous Gold Coast
  • Empire State Trail – Cycle or walk some of the 750-mile multi use trail spanning from New York City to the Canadian border, and from Albany to Buffalo

Flights

Hot air balloon over Finger Lakes, Letchworth State Park - ILoveNY

There are up to 350 flights per week from UK and Ireland to JFK/EWR served between the following airlines and departure points:

  • Aer Lingus – MAN, DUB and SNN
  • American Airlines / British Airways – LGW and LHR
  • Delta Airlines / Virgin Atlantic – LGW, LHR, MAN, EDI, DUB and SNN
  • JetBlue – LGW, LHR, EDI and DUB
  • Norse – LGW
  • United – LHR, EDI and DUB

New York State is served by two major hubs (JFK/EWR) and one domestic hub (LGA) but all three provide services to regional airports within New York State which include but not limited to:

  • Albany International Airport
  • Ithaca Tompkins Regional Airport
  • Stewart International Airport
  • Syracuse Hancock International Airport
  • Buffalo Niagara International Airport
  • Greater Rochester International Airport
  • Elmira/Corning Regional Airport

Travelling Throughout New York State

Penn Station NYC - Editorial Only

By car: Travelling around is very easy with car rental depots available throughout the state. The road system is excellent, from highways crossing the state to scenic byways.

By Train: New York City is a hub for trains on the east coast, with connections locally and across the USA. Amtrak offers two ‘classic’ train journeys from the new Moynihan Station in NYC, the Empire and Adirondack services. Amtrak’s Adirondack Service takes you north along the Hudson River and up to Hudson Valley to Albany the state capital, and continues through the Adirondacks and up to Montreal. From Albany, Amtrak’s Empire Service travels West through Central New York stopping at Syracuse and Rochester in the wine country of the Finger Lakes and on to Buffalo and Niagara Falls.

The Long Island Railroad (LIRR) has a regular service from New York City’s Penn Station to Long Island.

Travellers can take the Metro-North Railroad from Grand Central Station to the Hudson Valley and the Catskills.

Essential Travel Information

Kayaking along the Raquette River, Tupper Lake in Franklin County - ILoveNY
  • Local time: – 5 hours
  • Currency: US Dollar
  • Language: American English
  • Flight time: Approx. 8 hours from the UK and Ireland
  • Passport validity: Your passport must be valid for at least six months beyond your period of stay
  • Visa/ESTA: For British passport holders including children, to travel to the USA, you will need a valid ESTA and it must be approved at least 3 days before you depart. You cannot apply for an ESTA visa waiver if you have travelled to or have been in Cuba on or after 12 January 2021. You must instead apply for a US visa. For all other visa requirements, please check with the US embassy
  • Driving in New York State: Americans drive on the right hand side of the road. Car rental is available to drivers aged 18 years and older with a valid full UK driving licence, credit card and a clean driving record. Please note that it is likely that any drivers under 25 years old will be required to pay a young drivers supplement. Please check with your provider for full details
  • Alcohol: Liquor Laws are strict in the USA. If you are under 21 you will not be able to buy alcohol. Please ensure you carry valid identification documents with you to prove your age. Remember that you cannot carry alcohol in your car unless it is safely locked up in the boot
  • Sales Tax: The sales tax on most goods and services in New York is 8.875%, but there are a few exceptions, so you will need to check
  • Tipping: Tipping is essential to most American restaurants and hotels and is a more important part of US culture than in Europe. It is usual to leave between 15-25% tip at most bars, restaurants and taxis. Airport porters expect $1 per bag and hotel chambermaids $1 per person per day. Some restaurants do add an automatic service charge for groups of six or more, so check your bill carefully before tipping
  • Vaccinations: Travellers should be up to date with routine vaccination courses and boosters as recommended in the UK. Please check with your local health professional before travelling
  • Hotel check in: Please expect to provide a valid credit card upon check in for a deposit for incidentals

Top Tips

Brooklyn Bridge New York City skyline - ILoveNY

Discovering New York State’s diverse attractions and landscapes is made easier with these top tips, offering insights into navigating the bustling city of New York and exploring the scenic wonders beyond:

  • Taking a taxi or Uber from one of the International airports to Manhattan could take approximately 1.5 hours especially if you arrive in rush hour. Consider taking the train which is approximately 50 minutes from Jamaica Station (near to JFK) or approximately 30 minutes from Newark, both of which are a very affordable way to reach Manhattan
  • If you are experiencing the rest of the state after a stay in New York City, don’t pick up your car hire in the city, take the Amtrak train and pick it up in the Hudson Valley or Long Island regions, making your journey a lot less stressful
  • Why not experience Niagara Falls from the US side to avoid border controls when travelling into Canada. Niagara Falls State Park is the oldest state park in the United States and offers some of the most jaw-dropping views in the country as well as over 400 acres of lush terrain where you’ll find protected wildlife and an array of exciting activities including beautiful gardens, hiking and biking trails, and the iconic Maid of the Mist
  • Instead of New England, consider New York State to see the fall foliage. From the foothills of the Catskill Mountains to the peaks of the Adirondacks, New York is home to one of the most vivid autumns in the world. Whether you see it from a scenic roadway, from up in the air, or from a gorgeous hiking trail, the vibrant fall leaves will fill you with wonder amidst the changing seasons
  • For those looking for a city and beach trip, why not consider spending 3 nights in New York City and then head to Long Island, which offers over 100 sandy beaches, including the famous Hamptons
  • With over 50 ski areas and resorts, New York State has the most in the country, so you will have plenty of choice for all level of skiers

Itinerary Ideas, Imagery, Training & Key Contacts

Suggested Itineraries

New York State itineraries

For ideas on creating an incredible travel itinerary to discover the best of New York State, click here.

Imagery

Niagara Falls State Park from Goat Island - ILoveNY

Link to image portal required…

Training Requests

Chautauqua Institution Athenaeum Hotel - ILoveNY

Training requests to be emailed to Sharon Knight. In the meantime, why not expand your horizons via the official tourist board website.

Key Contacts

Brewery Ommegang in Cooperstown - ILoveNY

Gemma Webb – Account Director
Sharon Knight – Account Manager