Escaping the bustle of New York City for a weekend is as easy as hopping on a train. Grab a paperback and a window seat for a quick jaunt. Before you know it, you’ll be pulling up to the station at one of these breezy, beautiful getaways.
Bear Mountain State Park, NY
When you hike to the top of Bear Mountain and gaze out at the rolling hills below, you’ll never guess that you’re less than two hours away from Manhattan. This beautiful state park is home to winding hiking trails and plenty of opportunity for outdoor relaxation. You can stay on site at the cozy Bear Mountain Inn, or you can book a hotel in the charming nearby town of Peekskill.
Home to a mass influx of Brooklynites who fled the city for a quieter existence, Hudson is practically a riverside arts retreat. This charming town offers antique shops, art galleries, and dozens of creative small businesses. Wander along Warren Street, the town’s main drag, to take in the many cozy historic buildings, and don’t forget to tuck into a restaurant or two for fantastic food. If you’re looking to head home with some treasures, you’re in the right place: whether you’re into one-of-a-kind art finds or gorgeous antiques, you’re sure to leave with your hands full.
Mohonk Mountain House Resort, NY
This massive Victorian castle resort is the place to be if you want to unplug for a few days. With a top notch spa, farm-to-table food, and plenty of outdoor activities like golf and mountain climbing, you can enjoy a little bit of everything here – all while gleefully ignoring your inbox. The resort is set atop a stunning glacial lake and surrounded by forest, so you’ll feel worlds away from Manhattan.
Cold Spring, NY
Cold Spring is steeped in history, and its beautiful local architecture displays as much. Like many of its neighboring small towns, Cold Spring is home to lots of art galleries and antique shops, but this community stands out among the pack for its close connection to nature. The town has plenty of greenspace along the Hudson River, and it’s a favorite among hikers for its proximity to Breakneck Ridge. (The views at the top are worth overlooking the ominous name, we promise!)
This former mill town is undergoing a rapid transformation as it grows into an artsy oasis. With a creative and friendly main street, plenty of galleries, and bars galore, you’ll find lots to do in Beacon. The town is especially known for Dia:Beacon, a contemporary art museum recognized worldwide for its modern works. (Oh, and let’s be real: Dia is an excellent Instagram backdrop thanks to its many neon installations.) If you want more of an outdoorsy experience, you can hike up Mount Beacon, which looms just over the edge of town, or hop on a boat for a tour of Bannerman Castle, a stunning abandoned structure just off the shore in the Hudson River.
Montreal, Quebec, Canada
Can a train trip to Montreal really be squeezed into a weekend? You bet – if you’re willing to make it a long weekend. Hop on the Amtrak Adirondack for a day-long adventure past gorgeous scenery – seriously, the views of Lake Champlain along the way are ridiculous – before disembarking in one of North America’s most charming cities. When you arrive, you can stroll the historic cobblestone streets, get plenty of fresh air at Mount Royal Park, and chow down on poutine. Don’t forget to bring your passport!