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Best New York State Parks to Visit

by Mary Melnick

Aug 5, 2022

Fillmore Glen State Park © Liz Van Steenburgh | Dreamstime.com

North America

While there are plenty of activities to do during a family trip to New York, don’t forget to explore the great outdoors at any of the state’s numerous state parks. No matter what interests your family, there is a state park perfect for you.


With the Parks Explorer mobile app, travelers can explore a list of the 180 parks New York has to offer. The app offers details of the state parks nearby, as well as amenities and operation hours for visitors. You can even find parks offering things in your family’s interest areas like parks for history buffs, those with waterfall interests and more.


State Parks for History Buffs


Glimmerglass State Park

Glimmerglass State Park encompasses the historic Hyde Hall Mansion and Hyde Hall Covered Bridge, the oldest existing covered bridge in the United States. The park is located about eight miles outside the village of Cooperstown and overlooks Otsego Lake, the “glimmerglass” of James Fenimore Cooper’s Leatherstocking Tales. The terrain is home to a wide variety of wildlife and offers an uphill trail through the forest, which offers stunning views of the lake, Beaver Pond and woodland trails filled with wildflowers, shrubs, ferns and more. Guests can explore The Hyde Hill Mansion and Covered Bridge and embark on a self-guided Beaver Pond Nature Trail tour. In winter, guests can enjoy tubing, cross-country skiing, ice skating and more.


Fillmore Glen State Park

The 941-acre park lies in the quiet village of Moravia and is named after Millard Filmore, the 13th President of the United States. Filmore was born in a log cabin nearby and the park features a replica of the cabin in his honor. The park’s hiking trails offer stunning views, five waterfalls and more. Travelers visiting from far away can camp out at one of the park’s 60 campsites, cool off in the stream-fed swimming pool and try to get the catch of the day in Owasco Lake inlet. Guests visiting during the winter can go hiking, cross-country skiing and snowmobiling.


Parks with Stunning Waterfalls


Cohoes Falls View Park

Cohoes Falls is the second-largest falls after Niagara Falls, formed by glaciers thousands of years ago. Today, the park is owned by and operated as a hydro-electric power plant. Visitors can enjoy the stunning views of the falls, as well as fishing and hiking.


Niagara Falls State Park

Although Niagara Falls State Park is a well-known state park to travelers around the world, there are some lesser-known ways to experience the park. One can’t-miss experience is a ride on the new Maid of the Mist boats. The new all-electric, zero-emission boats offer guests a quieter and greener ride while experiencing the iconic attraction. The boat tours operate seasonally from mid-May to early November.


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