This website uses Cookies to offer you an enhanced browsing experience. Find out more about how we use Cookies.

USA Radio
Saratoga, New York

Saratoga, New York: Equestrian Culture, Springs and Local Charm

By Victoria Shepherd

It was an easy drive from New York City to the charming community of Saratoga, located in the picturesque foothills of the Adirondack Mountains in upstate New York. With a couple of extra days to spare during my autumn holiday, I planned to squeeze as much as possible out of this all-season destination. The air was crisp and smelled clean. The skies were blue with just the odd cloud grazing my view of the surrounding colourful countryside.

Horses in Saratoga

Horseracing is the heart of Saratoga, and Saratoga Race Course is the place to be seen during the summer racing months. This is known as the oldest continuously operated sporting venue in the United States, and for more than 150 years, has brought the rich and famous to town. Now, not just for society’s elite, nearly 1 million people from all walks of life come to cheer here. Spectators can also enjoy a lively polo match or harness racing nearby.

Mineral Springs and Spa Relaxation

Like Bath in England, Saratoga is known worldwide for its underground mineral springs and their widely professed healing powers. Dating back to the 1700s, the 18 public mineral springs can be found throughout the city, and locals, as well as visitors, enjoy the waters regularly.

My first morning was spent at the Roosevelt Baths and Spa, part of the Gideon Putnam Resort and Spa at Saratoga Spa State Park. I’d signed up for a spa experience and looked forward to relaxing in a treatment room with a step-down bathtub that from the brochures, could have been lifted straight out of Downton Abbey. On first inspection, I thought the waters were somewhat dubious-looking. But after it was explained to me that the rather murky yellow colour is a chemical reaction between hot water and the mineral water, I decided to give it a go and lowered myself into the warm water. I lay back and enjoyed the tingling feeling of the waters as they moved around my body for 30 minutes. When I got out and dried off, I felt refreshed and sparkling clean.

After lunch in downtown Saratoga Springs, I explored Congress Park and found a few fountains to drink from, while stopping every so often to sit on a bench and watch the numerous Mallard ducks pottering around.

History and the Battles of Saratoga

Finally, I ended my day at Saratoga National Historic Park on the banks of the Hudson River in nearby Stillwater. I took a self-guided auto tour of the historic battlefield, stopped by The Nielsen House and The Great Redoubt before heading north to Victory Woods and the Saratoga Monument. Victory Woods was the last encampment site of the British Army before they surrendered to the American forces on October 17, 1777. The British army managed to hold camp for just seven days here before having to admit they were defeated. Many historians believe the Battles of Saratoga and this surrender by the British led to the overall success of the American forces in the Revolutionary War.

There you have it! This is a wonderful holiday destination that will only complement your next big city adventure. Throw a few items into your suitcase and get going.

For more information, please visit us:

Official Saratoga Travel Information

When you go

Outdoor Activities

Saratoga Spa State Park
Saratoga National Historic Park
Saratoga Race Course
Saratoga Polo Club

Polo Footage Provided by:

Junda Video Enterprises

Spa Treatments

Gideon Putnam Resort & Spa

For More Information

Saratoga County Tourism

Welcome to Visit The USA!

Now that you have registered, you can save trip ideas to your suitcase.

Start exploring

Enter your email address and we’ll send you a link to reset your password.

Please check your email.

Start exploring

The password on your account has successfully been changed. Please use your new password to login.

Start exploring

This website is set to 'allow all cookies' for the best user experience. By continuing without changing this setting, you are consenting to this. You may change your settings at any time at the bottom of this page.

More information about cookies

Cookies are very small text files that are stored on your computer when you visit some websites.

We use cookies to make our website easier for you to use. You can remove any cookies already stored on your computer, but these may prevent you from using parts of our website.

If you choose to disable non-essential cookies, the website will:

  • Allow you to log in and remember you are logged in, while in session
  • Determine your country of origin in order to serve you the most relevant version of the site

This website will not:

  • Restrict welcome messaging to the first time you visit the site
  • Track any activity on the site for analytics purposes

More information about cookies