A Fall Trip to Finger Lakes, New York

2020 has made traveling really difficult but this fall I was determined to get out of Ohio and see the world again! But due to the circumstances, my family decided to take a short road trip, see the fall colors, and enjoy some good drinks and incredible scenery in The Finger Lakes of New York! 

If you haven’t been to Finger Lakes… first of all, It is BEAUTIFUL! It is the perfect quick, fall getaway. And it’s only about a 4 hour drive from the Cleveland area. I went with my family and it felt great to be there with them; we needed that really badly.

portrait in vineyard

We stayed at an awesome lake house on Cayuga Lake. Cayuga and Seneca Lake are the largest and most popular of the 11 Finger Lakes. We bounced back and forth between the two during our time. It was so convenient and there were stunning views everywhere we went! We rented a house right on the water with a boat. There was a fire pit right on the water. It was right next to the State Park and we got to walk our dogs there. The park was also great; there was a beach and gazebo! We hung out in the hot tub at the house late at night and relaxed by the water after dinner.

A dock at the finger lakes new york

The Finger Lakes are known for their wineries. Because the lakes are so deep, the land around them is super lush and makes a great place for a variety of grapes to grow. The region produces the most wine in New York and has over 100 wineries, including two of the oldest wineries in the country! The wineries open pretty early, so we wanted to take advantage of our time to visit them, (they also close early). Many of the wineries are pretty close to each other so you can just drive one to the next. It’s so convenient.

dock in front of house

Since we got in early on Friday, we had most of the day to go wine tasting and check out some really cool distilleries too. We did four wineries and one distillery on the first day and did dinners and breakfast at the house. We were right on the water at almost every winery we went to. At most locations, you sit up really high and have beautiful views of the land and all the colorful trees… it’s just so gorgeous!

more wine tasting

Before we got to NY we planned out which wineries we wanted to visit. Due to Covid we made reservations at most of the places we wanted to visit. At most places you need to call in advance and make a reservation for wine tasting. Some places take walk-ins, first come first serve, but there was usually a small line waiting outside if they were at capacity.

wine tasting

We visited Foxes Run and were pleasantly surprised by how good the wines were. I say “pleasantly surprised” because… I’ve tasted wines all over the world, and love a good glass. I’ve been spoiled by trying great wines but these were surprisingly so good!

We had a great time at Antler Run Distillery. I took home a bottle of their Apple Cinnamon Whiskey… I tried a shot and it was amazing, so I couldn’t resist.

We stopped in at Belhurst Castle and Winery. This place was incredible. It’s a hotel with a winery and restaurants. I was so impressed.
At most of the places we went the non-wine drinkers could still enjoy because they served more than just wine. Most places had amazing craft beers or a full bar too.

wine tasting
wine on counter top

I ended up bringing home plenty of bottles of wine (and whiskey too!) to enjoy at home.

All in all, I’d definitely recommend Finger Lakes to anyone. It’s such a beautiful place, and so easy to just relax and enjoy. It’s not a long drive, it’s gorgeous, and there’s so much good wine and more! I really can’t wait to go back.

a lodge at finger lakes new york
picture at finger lakes new york