Top Natural Landscapes That You Should Visit In New York

New York City, New York

In case you didn’t know, New York is home to some of the most iconic natural attractions in the US. Better yet, the largest waterfall in the nation is located here and the views are nothing short of spectacular. Apart from waterfalls, the state boasts a wealth of jaw-dropping natural scenery, ranging from parks to canyons, mountains, forests, and iconic water bodies. 

These are among the many reasons the empire state is frequented by tourists’ all-year-round, from around the nation and the world, with the numbers peaking in the holiday season. If you decided to take a trip to New York to explore nature while having fun, this article is for you. Let’s round up a few natural landmarks you might want to check out during your New York vacay. 

1. Niagara Falls 

When most people think about the border between the US and Canada, one thing comes to mind – the mighty Niagara Falls. This iconic cascade is considered the granddaddy of natural wonders in New York and America. Composed primarily of three major waterfalls, the geological wonder is a popular destination for tourists around the globe, and it has been so for over two centuries. 

Whenever taking a trip to New York, head over toward the Canadian border and feel the thrill as the cascades fall onto the beautiful rocks beneath. If you’re the adventurous type, get closer and navigate the Niagara Gorge. Stand on this spectacular cave and get a taste of just a few strides away from the Bridal Veil Falls. 

Besides its extreme beauty, the other great thing about this popular attraction is that getting there is quite easy. Whether you’re traveling alone or in the company of loved ones, you can take a tour bus to Niagara Falls, making sure it’s guided to get the most out of your trip. It will be more convenient if you’re coming from New York City.  

Apart from the Niagara Falls, other amazing waterfalls that might fascinate you include:

  • Oriskany Falls
  • Canajoharie
  • Chittenango
  • High Falls Gorge

2. The Adirondack Mountains

For the adrenaline junkies and hiking enthusiasts, the Adirondack Mountains are another iconic natural landmark to appreciate while touring New York State. Sitting on approximately 6M acres of protected land, Adirondack is home to New York’s highest peaks. It also boasts over 2000 miles of hiking trails, so you will want to pack adequately if you enjoy hiking. 

It is composed of various mountains, including Mount Marcy and Whiteface, which promise majestic panoramic views of New York from many feet above sea level at the summit. The Whiteface Mountain also has a ski resort, which once hosted Olympic ski competitions some years back. These mountains are loved by hikers and ice-skiers alike, plus the view alone is breathtaking.

3. Riverside Park 

If you love parks, you will have an endless list of options to explore in New York. Riverside Park is one of them, located just west of Manhattan. Apart from the beautiful greenery, you will have scores of things to do here, from skating to running, biking, or just chilling at a restaurant and enjoying some snacks or drinks with a buddy. The park is also home to scores of monuments, some of which are major attractions include the: 

  • Armed Forces Plaque
  • Battle of Harlem Heights Marker
  • Chinese Tablet
  • Eleanor Roosevelt Memorial
  • Firemen’s Memorial
  • Among others 

4. Ausable Chasm 

Mothered by the Ausable River, Ausable Chasm is another great natural landscape to bequeath in NY State. It houses several natural attractions, including Elephant’s Head, Whirlpool Basin, and Grand Flume. Take a kayak or raft and navigate the gorge for an unforgettable adventure in nature. This beautiful marvel is located in the Adirondacks, where you’ll discover plenty of amazing natural scenery as we saw earlier. 

5. Thousand Islands

The Thousand Islands, an iconic archipelago, is also worth mentioning in this list. Consisting of roughly 1,800 islands it straddles the border between the US and Canada. Images of luxurious mansions, vacation cottages, and naval heritage emerge as you cruise over the wooded islands. The St. Lawrence River’s canals were formerly home to pirates, but by the end of the nineteenth century, they had been replaced with luxury holiday residences.

A guided boat excursion allows you to see fairy-tale castles erected for the wealthy and renowned of the time. Boldt Castle entices romantics with its lovely love story, while Singer Castle is said to be haunted. Fishing trips and underwater dives to look for shipwrecks are among the more daring activities you will find here. 

6. Finger Lakes

The Finger Lakes area is made up of 11 glacial lakes that provide outdoor pleasures all year. Many of New York’s beautiful state parks may be found here, with rushing waterfalls, steep gorges, sandy beaches, and lush woods. Hikers go to the Finger Lakes Trail to reconnect with nature with over 900 miles of isolated trekking. Some of the popular glacial lakes here include: 

  • Skaneateles: The crystal-clear Skaneateles Lake is only a 40-minute drive from Syracuse and is popular for boat rides and fishing outings. 
  • Keuka: This one is renowned for its unusual Y form and mild waters, which are quite attractive to swimmers during the summer. 
  • Seneca: The Seneca Lake Wine Trail is the largest in the region, with 35 wineries.

Of the 11 lakes, several of them host world-class wine trails that provide some of America’s most exquisite vintages to wine connoisseurs.

7. Lake George

Lake George dubbed the “Queen of American Lakes,” has drawn New York visitors for decades. The lake is surrounded by Adirondack nature, with its hamlet offering numerous outdoor activities alongside cultural riches. Dip your toes in the ocean or go on a riverboat excursion at Million Dollar Beach. The luxurious boats that take you around the lake provide stunning views of hidden islands and wooded mountaintops.

Hundreds of tents dot the islands, allowing you an incredible night of astronomy. Prospect Mountain Highway takes you to one of the nearby peaks overlooking Lake George’s coastlines for a birds-eye perspective.

New York State is for sure home to a wealth of natural beauty. If you’re headed there and are a bit short of ideas on attractions to visit, this piece should serve as your guide. You might have to plan a few more visits to explore these and more natural landmarks in the Empire State. 

Niagara Falls

Comments are closed.