- New York
While this wasn’t my first time in New York's Finger Lakes region, everything I did was new and exciting.
From magnificent lakes and breathtaking surroundings, to outdoor activities and world-class distilleries, this place has wiggled its way into my heart.
Early to Rise! Stand up Paddle boarding on Canandaigua Lake
After a comfortable night’s rest at The Inn on the Lake, I awoke early to a clear morning, excited to be able to walk to my first activity of the day. Canandaigua Sailboarding, located on the waters of beautiful Canandaigua Lake, offers a variety of water activities and lessons including windsurfing, kayaking and stand up paddle-boarding (SUP). I was going to try my hand at the latter. I quickly found out that stand up paddle-boarding isn’t as easy as it looks! There was lots of wobbling and I certainly got a workout, but it was a lot of fun and definitely worth a try. The view from the board was spectacular – the water was so clear I could even see to the bottom in some places.
Paddle boarding on Canandaigua Lake, New York
Apple Country Spirits Tour and Tasting
Mid-morning, feeling refreshed and ready to go, I headed to do what is another one of the favourite pastimes in the region: cider and spirit sampling! My destination was Apple Country Spirits in Williamson, New York – an establishment that has run for four generations and produces amazing fruit-based spirits. I took a tour of the orchards, picked apples and plums from the trees and learned that fruit trees can be cross-bred. With some creative mixing, you end up with things like “plum-cots” (a 50-50 plum and apricot cross), “plu-ots” (which have a higher plum-to-apricot ratio), and “apri-plums” (which have a higher apricot-to-plum ratio). I then headed back to the tasting room for a quick sample (or two).
Tastings at Apple Country Spirits, New York
Letchworth State Park and Glen Iris Inn
Next, it was time for some exercise, so I drove southwest to my next destination to witness the beauty of Letchworth State Park.
Even with all of the travelling I’ve done over the years throughout the USA, I’ve never actually been to the Grand Canyon in Arizona. Letchworth State Park, however, is known as the “Grand Canyon of the East,” so I was very excited to experience all it had to offer.
After stopping by the Humphrey Nature Center to pick up literature and maps, I set out to discover the three waterfalls located within the breathtaking scenery. The views were gorgeous – unspoiled and everlasting.
At the day’s end, feeling tired yet inspired, I had a slap up meal at the Glen Iris Inn, which used to be the country estate of William Pryor Letchworth, the Park’s namesake.
All too rapidly, my visit to the Finger Lakes of New York had come to an end and I was sorry to leave. Thankfully, there’s always another time. I can’t wait for my next chance to visit this wonderful holiday destination. Be sure you don’t miss out on it next time you step Stateside.
Fabulous views at Letchworth State Park, New York.