Over the weekend, Love Exploring published an article of the 30 Most Charming Small Towns in New York, and 11 of those towns are from the Hudson Valley! The article said that New York State is often unfairly characterized only for the city, which is very true. I've spoken with people all over the world, especially in Europe, Africa, and Australia. Anytime I tell someone that I am from New York, their mind immediately goes to New York City. Some people have a hard time separating the city from the rest of the state.

Author Frances Carruthers went on to say that the State of New York is filled with an abundance of characterful small towns. "From adorable lakeside hamlets to quaint college towns brimming with history," Love Exploring ranked the most charming towns and small cities in New York.

27) New Paltz

New Paltz in Ulster County came in at number 27 out of 30 on the list. Things the article mentioned about New Paltz

  • a nature lover's paradise with its extensive hiking and biking trails.
  • The article also went on to highlight the town and Huguenot Street. Being the college town that it is, New Paltz has plenty of great art and culture.
  • Lastly, the article highlighted the Mohonk Mountain House, a beautifully preserved 265-room Victorian hotel on the shores of Mohonk Lake.

26) Goshen

Goshen in Orange County came in at 26 on the list. Things the article said about Goshen were:

  • History dating back to 1714, and the 18-century buildings that line Main Street
  • "Crowned" by the spire of the First Presbyterian Church
  • The Harness Racing Museum, which was built in an original 1913 stable and houses more than 70,000 photographs, paintings, and other artifacts.

24) Pawling

Pawling in Dutchess County made the list at 24. Things Love Exploring said about Pawling include:

  • Wide-Open Spaces located at the foothills of the Berkshires
  • The dense birch and pine forests that one can hike at the Pawling Nature reserve
  • Downtown Pawling's eclectic mix of shops, bookstores, and cafes.

21) Woodstock

Woodstock in Ulster County made the list at 21.

  • It acknowledged that the Woodstock festival did not actually take place in Woodstock but in Bethel.
  • An idyllic spot at the foot of the Catskills, Woodstock is a honeypot for free spirits with all the art galleries, independent shops, craft centers, and cafes.
  • Summer farmer's markets and Mower's Saturday/Sunday Flee Market

20) Saugerties

Saugerties in Ulster came in at 20.

  • The restored 19th-century lighthouse that was built in 1869 and was almost destroyed in the 1970s before being put on the National Register of Historic Places.
  • Esopus Bend Nature Preserve
  • Catskill Animal Sanctuary
  • Opus 40 Sculpture Park

19) Croton-on-Hudson

Croton-on-Hudson found in Westchester County came in at 19.

18) Sleepy Hollow

Sleepy Hollow in Westchester County made the list at 18.

  • Sleepy Hollow is the setting for Washington Irving's The Legend of Sleepy Hollow which features the famous Ichabod Crane and The Headless Horseman. Sleepy Hollow is well-known for its tourism, especially around Halloween.
  • The Sleepy Hollow Cemetery houses many famous graves such as Washington Irving, Andrew Carnegie, William Rockefeller and more.
  • The Halloween Parade
  • The Great Jack O'Lantern Blaze features more than 7,000 carved pumpkins that are lit up at Van Cortlandt Manor

14) Tarrytown

Tarrytown in Westchester County made the list at 14:

  • The Lyndurst Mansion, a Gothic Revival building, occupies 67 acres on the banks of the Hudson. It was famously owned by Wall Street tycoon Jay Gould in 1880, and he used it as his summer house.
  • Tarrytown itself is small yet charming: a mismatched clutch of stores, houses and coffee shops exude an artsy, community feel.

11) Cold Spring

Cold Spring in Putnam County made the list of most charming towns at No. 11.

  • Cold Spring is an "oasis of calm" surrounded by rolling hills and verdant woodlands, which are great to explore on foot or by bike.
  • The ferry can take you to Pollepel Island to visit Bannerman Castle, which was built in the early 1900s by businessman Francis Bannerman. Bannerman was inspired by the traditional Scottish Castles. Bannerman's Castle is a major tourist attraction as people can examine the ruins.

10) Kingston

Kingston in Ulster County made the list of most charming towns at No. 10.

  • Trendy cafes, independent record stores, and vintage boutiques draw in all kinds of tourists and creative types.
  • Kingston was the state's first capital in 1777 before it was relocated.
  • People can visit the old Senate House, which was the original meeting place for the original New York Senate. The building has been restored and people can visit to learn more about the state's history.

2) Hudson

Hudson in Columbia County came so close to the top spot at No. 2.

  • Hudson has been nicknamed "the Brooklyn of the Hudson Valley."
  • High-end boutique hotels
  • Zingy ice cream parlours
  • Latin American Restaurants
  • Variety of creative shops
  • The architecture of the city is filled with Victorian townhouses alongside 19th-century industrial buildings

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