Despite so much to do and see in the NYC area, many East Coast city-dwellers are looking for an escape from the day-to-day monotony of quarantine together. Relatable? You’re in luck - just 100 miles North of the Big Apple, The Catskill Mountains host the perfect getaway opportunity for you and your partner to enjoy a picturesque change in scenery.
Whether you’re looking to slow down with self care or break a sweat alongside Mother Nature, The Catskills offer an impressive mix of things to do. Accommodations vary in price, but this destination is considered to be relatively affordable, which means you can upgrade your road trip snacks.
If Airbnb is your go-to for cozy, affordable accommodations, you’ll find no shortage of hidden gems nestled among The Catskills with access to hiking trails and ski hills. From this Sunny Arts&Crafts Loft to this Cozy Woodstock Cottage, there are plenty of private options in incredible locations for less than $150/night. Plus, not a single neighbor in sight.
But, if some serious R&R is at the top of your list of priorities for your next trip, we recommend exploring The Emerson Resort & Spa. Not only do they boast an impressive Stay Safe Pledge to keep guests safe throughout the pandemic, but they’re also pup-friendly. The Emerson Resort & Spa’s selection of Stay & Play packages include midweek escapes, wine excursions, trips with your pooch, girls’ weekend getaways, and more.
FOOD & DRINK
Two words: Woodstock Brewing. Founded by two friends with a passion for beer, this Catskills brewery serves up a relaxing environment and ever-changing brews. And for those of us who want to escape NYC without escaping NYC eats, here’s a foodie roundup that will leave you drooling:
ENTERTAINMENT & ATTRACTIONS
Some visit The Catskills to hunker down in their vacation rental and enjoy woodsy amenities like hot tubs, hammocks, fireplaces, or patios. Others bring their winter sport gear, favorite hiking shoes, or yoga mats to spend as much time outdoors as possible. No matter how you choose to enjoy your escape from the city that never sleeps, you’ve got options.
Catskills hiking trails are abundant, and we rely on the AllTrails app to find the perfect trail when traveling. Their #1 rated trail in the area is Artist’s Rock, Sunset Rock, and Newman’s Ledge via Mary’s Glen Trail - a 4.6 mile moderate level hike featuring a lake and stunning views.
If you and your S.O. are looking for a thrill, The Catskills Rail Explorers - opening again in the Spring - promises a magical pedal-powered rail ride along the Ulster & Delaware Railroad and Esopus Creek.
Mountain Trails Cross Country Ski Center holds the unofficial title of “the best kept secret in The Catskills” and features 35 kilometers of quiet nature trails and varying degrees of difficulty. Snowshoe or ski your way through a winter wonderland while enjoying true peace and quiet.
SAFETY & RESTRICTIONS
The nicest thing about a Catskills getaway during a pandemic is that you can fill your trip itinerary with outings and adventures that involve minimal interaction with others. New York state requires face coverings, Airbnb offers additional information on enhanced rental cleaning policies, most restaurants and breweries offer pick-up windows and contactless options, and practically all attractions have implemented strict safety procedures to keep guests and visitors safe and healthy.
If you choose to travel during the pandemic, we highly recommend including hand sanitizer, extra masks, and an extra sprinkle of mindfulness on your packing list.