Exploring The Scenic Beauty: 7 Must-Do Activities Around Cayuga Lake, Ny

things to do around cayuga lake ny

Nestled among rolling hills and surrounded by vineyards, Cayuga Lake in New York is a hidden gem of scenic beauty. With its crystal-clear waters and breathtaking landscape, this picturesque destination offers an array of activities that will leave visitors in awe. Whether you're a nature enthusiast, a wine lover, or an outdoor adventure seeker, there's something for everyone around Cayuga Lake. From exploring stunning waterfalls to savoring local wine and indulging in thrilling water sports, this guide will reveal the seven must-do activities that will make your visit to Cayuga Lake an unforgettable experience. So, get ready to embark on a journey to explore the scenic beauty and discover the hidden gems that await you around Cayuga Lake.

Activity Description
Wine tasting Explore the numerous wineries around Cayuga Lake and sample the local wines.
Fishing Enjoy a day of fishing on the lake and try to catch some of the local fish species.
Hiking Discover the beautiful trails and scenic views around Cayuga Lake.
Boating Rent a boat or join a tour to explore the lake and its surroundings.
Bird watching Observe the diverse bird species that inhabit the area around Cayuga Lake.
Water sports Engage in thrilling water sports like kayaking, paddleboarding, and jet skiing.
Camping Set up camp at one of the campgrounds near Cayuga Lake for an outdoor adventure.
Visiting parks Explore the various parks and wildlife sanctuaries surrounding Cayuga Lake.
Shopping Visit the local shops and boutiques to discover unique items and souvenirs.
Dining Enjoy delicious meals at the waterfront restaurants and sample local cuisine.


Go hiking in Taughannock Falls State Park

Source: Visit Ithaca

Cayuga Lake, located in Upstate New York, is known for its natural beauty and outdoor recreational opportunities. The region around Cayuga Lake offers a variety of activities for individuals and families to enjoy. One of the most popular things to do in the area is go hiking in Taughannock Falls State Park.

Taughannock Falls State Park is located on the eastern shore of Cayuga Lake and is home to one of the tallest waterfalls east of the Rocky Mountains. The park features numerous hiking trails of varying lengths and difficulties, making it a great destination for hikers of all skill levels.

One of the most popular hiking trails in the park is the Gorge Trail, which offers stunning views of the 215-foot tall Taughannock Falls as it cascades into the gorge below. The trail is approximately 1.5 miles long and is relatively easy, making it accessible for most hikers. Along the trail, hikers will also encounter beautiful rock formations and lush vegetation, adding to the natural beauty of the area.

For those looking for a longer hike, the Rim Trail offers a more challenging option. This 4-mile loop trail takes hikers through the park's forests and offers panoramic views of Cayuga Lake. The Rim Trail is a bit more strenuous than the Gorge Trail, but the views and the sense of accomplishment make it well worth the effort.

In addition to hiking, Taughannock Falls State Park offers a range of other recreational activities. The park has a picnic area, playground, and swimming beach, making it a great spot for a day trip or a family outing. Visitors can also enjoy fishing in Cayuga Lake or explore the park's extensive network of biking trails.

If you're looking for things to do around Cayuga Lake, hiking in Taughannock Falls State Park is a must. With its scenic trails and breathtaking waterfall, the park offers a truly unique and memorable outdoor experience. Whether you're an experienced hiker or just looking for a casual stroll, Taughannock Falls State Park has something for everyone. So grab your hiking boots and take advantage of all the natural beauty the area has to offer.


Take a boat tour of Cayuga Lake

Source: Finger Lakes

If you are visiting Cayuga Lake in New York, one of the best ways to explore and appreciate its natural beauty is by taking a boat tour. A boat tour allows you to get out on the water, relax, and enjoy the scenic views. There are several boat tour options available that cater to different interests and preferences.

One popular boat tour option is a guided tour that takes you around the lake, pointing out significant landmarks and providing historical and geological information. These tours typically offer a narrated experience, where you can learn about the rich history of the area and the lake's role in the development of the region. You can also expect to see some of the lake's prominent features, such as the Cayuga Lake State Park, the Montezuma National Wildlife Refuge, and the Finger Lakes Wine Country.

For those who prefer a more leisurely and intimate experience, you can opt for a private boat tour. These tours allow you to have a personalized itinerary and the opportunity to explore specific areas of interest. Whether you want to visit secluded coves, swim in the crystal-clear water, or simply relax on the deck, a private boat tour can provide a memorable and tailored experience.

If you are more adventurous and love fishing, you can also find fishing charters available on Cayuga Lake. These tours are perfect for anglers of all skill levels, from beginners to experienced fishermen. The lake is known for its abundance of fish species, including trout, salmon, bass, and pike. A fishing charter will provide you with the necessary equipment and expertise to maximize your chances of catching the "big one" while enjoying the tranquility of the lake.

Apart from the natural beauty and recreational activities, Cayuga Lake is also home to several wineries and vineyards. Some boat tours can offer a unique experience by combining a scenic tour of the lake with a visit to a local winery. These tours allow you to enjoy the stunning views of the lake while tasting and learning about the region's renowned wines. It's a perfect way to unwind and appreciate the beauty of nature, mixed with the delight of a wine tasting experience.

No matter which boat tour option you choose, you are sure to have an enjoyable and memorable experience on Cayuga Lake. The combination of breathtaking views, rich history, outdoor activities, and local attractions make it a must-visit destination in New York. So, next time you find yourself around Cayuga Lake, make sure to take a boat tour and immerse yourself in the beauty and serenity of this remarkable natural wonder.


Explore the Cornell Botanic Gardens

Source: Unique Lodging of Ithaca
Characteristic Description
NameCornell Botanic Gardens
TypeBotanical garden in Tompkins County, New York
WebsiteGo to website
Rating / Review count4.8 / 1,422
Address124 Comstock Knoll Dr, Ithaca, NY 14850
Phone(607) 255-2400
HoursThursday - opens at 6 AM and closes at 6 PM
Friday - opens at 6 AM and closes at 6 PM
Saturday - opens at 6 AM and closes at 6 PM
Sunday - opens at 6 AM and closes at 6 PM
Monday - opens at 6 AM and closes at 6 PM
Tuesday - opens at 6 AM and closes at 6 PM
Wednesday - opens at 6 AM and closes at 6 PM

If you're visiting Cayuga Lake in New York, one of the top attractions to check out is the Cornell Botanic Gardens. Located in Ithaca, NY, the Cornell Botanic Gardens are a beautiful and serene escape from the hustle and bustle of everyday life. With over 4,000 acres of gardens, trails, and natural areas, there's something for everyone to enjoy.

One of the highlights of the Cornell Botanic Gardens is the Nevin Welcome Center and gardens. This stunning building serves as the entrance to the gardens and features a gift shop, a café, and interactive exhibits. Explore the various gardens surrounding the Welcome Center, including the Robison York State Herb Garden, which showcases a diverse collection of herbs and plants used for culinary, medicinal, and ornamental purposes.

For nature lovers, the Cascadilla Gorge Trail is a must-see. This scenic trail winds through a gorge with numerous waterfalls and provides breathtaking views of the surrounding landscape. The trail is relatively easy and suitable for all skill levels, making it a perfect activity for families or individuals looking to enjoy the outdoors.

If you're interested in learning about the local flora and fauna, be sure to visit the F.R. Newman Arboretum. This expansive area features a wide variety of trees and plants, many of which are native to the region. Take a relaxing stroll through the arboretum and learn about the different species that call Cayuga Lake home.

In addition to the gardens and trails, the Cornell Botanic Gardens also offer educational programs and events throughout the year. From workshops on gardening and herbal medicine to guided bird-watching walks, there's always something happening at the gardens. Check their website or call ahead to see what events are taking place during your visit.

Whether you're a nature enthusiast or just looking for a peaceful getaway, the Cornell Botanic Gardens is the perfect destination. Spend a day exploring the gardens, hiking the trails, and learning about the local ecosystem. Your visit to Cayuga Lake won't be complete without a stop at this natural oasis.


Visit the Cayuga Lake Wine Trail for wine tasting

Source: Finger Lakes Wine Country

Cayuga Lake, located in the Finger Lakes region of New York, offers a charming escape for those seeking a getaway filled with natural beauty and outdoor activities. While the lake itself provides opportunities for fishing, boating, and swimming, one of the most popular attractions in the area is the Cayuga Lake Wine Trail. Wine aficionados and enthusiasts flock to this region to explore the many wineries that dot the landscape surrounding the lake.

The Cayuga Lake Wine Trail consists of over 14 wineries, each with its own unique charm and specialty. From boutique wineries to larger, more established ones, there is something for every palate and preference. The wineries offer guided tours, wine tastings, and often host special events throughout the year. Visitors can sample a wide variety of wines, ranging from crisp whites and fruity rosés to bold reds and sparkling varieties.

One of the highlights of the Cayuga Lake Wine Trail is the picturesque scenery that surrounds the wineries. The vineyards are nestled amidst rolling hills, offering breathtaking views of the lake and its surrounding landscapes. Visitors can take leisurely walks through the vineyards, soaking in the serenity and beauty of the area. Many wineries also have outdoor seating areas where visitors can relax and enjoy a glass of their favorite wine while taking in the scenery.

In addition to wine tasting, the Cayuga Lake Wine Trail offers a variety of events and experiences throughout the year. From wine and food pairing dinners to harvest festivals and wine-themed workshops, there is always something happening on the trail. These events provide a unique opportunity to learn about the wine-making process, meet the winemakers, and gain a deeper appreciation for the art of winemaking.

For those looking to extend their visit, there are several accommodations available in the area, ranging from cozy bed and breakfasts to luxury resorts. Many of these establishments offer packages that include wine tastings and tours, allowing visitors to fully immerse themselves in the wine trail experience. Some are even located on vineyard properties, offering guests the chance to wake up surrounded by rows of grapevines.

Whether you're a wine connoisseur or simply looking to enjoy a day of relaxation and scenery, a visit to the Cayuga Lake Wine Trail is sure to delight. With its beautiful landscapes, diverse selection of wineries, and range of events and experiences, it's no wonder that this region has become a popular destination for wine lovers from near and far. So, raise a glass and toast to the beauty and bounty of the Cayuga Lake Wine Trail.


Go camping in Cayuga Lake State Park

Source: The Dyrt
Characteristic Description
NameCayuga Lake State Park
TypeState park in Seneca County, New York
WebsiteGo to website
Rating / Review count4.4 / 990
Address2678 Lower Lake Rd, Seneca Falls, NY 13148
Phone(315) 568-5163
HoursThursday - opens at 6 AM and closes at 6 PM
Friday - opens at 6 AM and closes at 6 PM
Saturday - opens at 6 AM and closes at 6 PM
Sunday - opens at 6 AM and closes at 6 PM
Monday - opens at 6 AM and closes at 6 PM
Tuesday - opens at 6 AM and closes at 6 PM
Wednesday - opens at 6 AM and closes at 6 PM

If you're looking for a serene and peaceful getaway, then Cayuga Lake in New York is the perfect destination for you. With its stunning views and tranquil surroundings, you can immerse yourself in nature and enjoy a wide range of activities. One of the best things to do around Cayuga Lake is to go camping in Cayuga Lake State Park.

Cayuga Lake State Park is located on the eastern shore of Cayuga Lake, providing visitors with breathtaking views of the lake and surrounding hills. This state park offers a variety of campsites, ranging from tent sites to RV sites, so you can choose the accommodation that suits your preferences. The campsites are well-maintained and equipped with amenities such as picnic tables, fire pits, and electrical hookups.

When camping in Cayuga Lake State Park, you'll have access to a wealth of outdoor activities. The lake is perfect for swimming, fishing, and boating. You can spend your days relaxing on the sandy beach, taking a refreshing dip in the lake, or casting your fishing line to catch some trout or bass. If you're an avid boater, you can rent a kayak, canoe, or paddleboard and explore the calm waters of Cayuga Lake.

Apart from water activities, the state park also offers hiking and biking trails. You can embark on a scenic hike through the lush forests, enjoy the vibrant colors of wildflowers, and spot various bird species. The trails are well-marked, making it easy for both beginner and experienced hikers to navigate through the park. If you prefer biking, you can rent a bicycle and pedal along the well-maintained paths, enjoying the cool breeze and the beautiful surroundings.

In addition to its natural beauty, Cayuga Lake State Park also has various amenities to enhance your camping experience. The park has a recreation area with volleyball courts, a playground for kids, and a large picnic area where you can enjoy a barbecue with your family and friends. There are also shower facilities and a campground store where you can purchase camping essentials and snacks.

Camping in Cayuga Lake State Park is a great way to disconnect from the busy city life and reconnect with nature. The peaceful ambiance and breathtaking scenery will leave you feeling refreshed and rejuvenated. Whether you're a nature enthusiast, an outdoor adventurer, or someone who enjoys a laid-back vacation, Cayuga Lake State Park has something for everyone. So pack up your camping gear and head to Cayuga Lake for an unforgettable camping experience surrounded by natural beauty.


Take a scenic drive along Route 90

Source: OnlyInYourState

If you're looking for a scenic drive in the beautiful Cayuga Lake region of New York, look no further than Route 90. This highway offers stunning views of the lake and surrounding countryside, making it the perfect way to spend a leisurely afternoon.

Starting in the town of Montezuma, Route 90 runs parallel to Cayuga Lake, offering breathtaking views of the water and the rolling hills that surround it. As you drive along the route, you'll have plenty of opportunities to stop and take in the beauty of the area.

One popular stop along Route 90 is Long Point State Park, which offers stunning views of Cayuga Lake. The park features picnic areas, hiking trails, and a sandy beach where you can relax and take a swim. It's the perfect spot to stretch your legs and enjoy the natural beauty of the lake.

Another must-visit attraction along Route 90 is the Montezuma National Wildlife Refuge. This 7,000-acre preserve is home to a diverse range of wildlife, including migratory birds, deer, and foxes. The refuge offers several hiking trails and observation platforms where you can catch a glimpse of the animals in their natural habitat.

If you're a history buff, be sure to stop by the town of Aurora, located along Route 90. This charming village is home to Wells College, a private liberal arts college dating back to 1868. Take a stroll through the campus and admire the historic buildings, or visit the MacKenzie-Childs farm, famous for its hand-painted ceramics and distinctive decor.

As you continue your drive along Route 90, you'll pass through several small towns and villages, each with its own unique charm. Consider stopping for a meal at one of the local restaurants or browse the boutiques and galleries for one-of-a-kind souvenirs.

As the road winds along the eastern shore of Cayuga Lake, you'll be rewarded with breathtaking views of the water and the surrounding vineyards. The Finger Lakes region is known for its wineries, and there are several located just off Route 90. Consider stopping for a wine tasting or a tour of the vineyards to complete your scenic drive.

Whether you're a nature lover, history enthusiast, or simply looking for a relaxing drive, Route 90 around Cayuga Lake has something for everyone. Take your time, enjoy the views, and make some memories along this picturesque highway.


Visit the town of Ithaca for dining and shopping

Source: Tripadvisor

Cayuga Lake, located in upstate New York, is not only a beautiful destination for outdoor activities but also offers a variety of things to do in the surrounding area. One of the must-visit places near Cayuga Lake is the town of Ithaca, which is known for its vibrant dining and shopping scene.

When it comes to dining, Ithaca offers an array of options to suit every palate. Whether you're in the mood for international cuisine, farm-to-table dishes, or classic American fare, you'll find it all in this charming town. The Commons, a pedestrian mall located in the heart of Ithaca, is a great place to start your culinary adventure. Here, you'll find a wide range of restaurants, cafes, and bars serving everything from sushi to BBQ. If you're a fan of craft beer, make sure to visit one of Ithaca's breweries, which offer a variety of locally brewed beers and often host live music events.

After indulging in a delicious meal, take some time to explore Ithaca's unique shopping scene. The town is known for its eclectic mix of boutiques, galleries, and specialty stores, making it a paradise for shoppers. The downtown area is lined with various shops selling everything from vintage clothing to handmade crafts. If you're looking for souvenirs or unique gifts, head to one of the many specialty stores that offer locally made products. And don't forget to stop by the Ithaca Farmers Market, where you can browse a wide selection of fresh produce, baked goods, and artisanal crafts.

In addition to dining and shopping, Ithaca also offers plenty of outdoor activities to enjoy. Take a stroll along the Cayuga Waterfront Trail, which offers breathtaking views of the lake and the opportunity to spot wildlife. If you're feeling adventurous, you can even rent a kayak or paddleboard to explore the lake on your own. For those interested in history, the Johnson Museum of Art and the Museum of the Earth are worth a visit. These museums showcase a diverse range of art and exhibits that provide insight into the region's geology and natural history.

No matter what your interests are, a visit to Ithaca while exploring Cayuga Lake is a must. From its diverse culinary scene to its unique shopping opportunities and outdoor activities, this charming town has something for everyone. So next time you find yourself near Cayuga Lake, make sure to plan a day trip to Ithaca and experience all that it has to offer.

Frequently asked questions

There are plenty of outdoor activities to enjoy around Cayuga Lake, NY. You can go hiking at Taughannock Falls State Park and enjoy picturesque views of the waterfall and surrounding nature. Another option is to go fishing in Cayuga Lake, which is known for its great fishing opportunities. Additionally, you can rent a kayak or paddleboard and explore the lake's calm waters.

Yes, there are several wineries and breweries near Cayuga Lake, making it a great destination for wine and beer lovers. Some popular wineries in the area include the Cayuga Lake Wine Trail, which features over a dozen wineries, and the Six Mile Creek Vineyard, known for its scenic views and award-winning wines. For beer enthusiasts, the Ithaca Beer Company offers a variety of craft beers and a taproom where you can relax and enjoy a cold brew.

There are several cultural attractions to visit around Cayuga Lake, NY. The Herbert F. Johnson Museum of Art at Cornell University features a diverse collection of artwork from different time periods and cultures. Another must-visit is the Museum of the Earth, which showcases the natural history of the region with exhibits on fossils, geology, and dinosaurs. Additionally, the town of Ithaca is known for its vibrant arts scene, with numerous galleries, theaters, and live music venues to explore.

Written by
Reviewed by
Share this post
Did this article help you?

Leave a comment