Located a mere two-hour drive from New York City and less than a half a day from other East Coast cities, the Catskills has long been a magnet for urbanites who crave the slower pace—and idyllic scenery—of riverside towns, mountain villages and rural hamlets. The region offers fly fishing, great hiking, an abundance of local farm stands, and, come fall, stunning foliage that’s ablaze in color.
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Paul NanniChef and co-owner of The Heron in Narrowsburg
“Marla and I use to take weekend trips with friends up to the Woodstock area when we were still living in the city—places like Bearsville, Woodstock, Saugerties, Phoencia. It was always so great to get away from the city and still not have to drive too far!”
Gerard River Grill
This Italian-influenced restaurant in Narrowsburg is a favorite among locals and chefs. Chef Manzi sources from farms nearby and uses organic meats and poultry. Ask for a table along the Delaware River and order the steak zingara.
This always-packed diner is open for all-day breakfast and lunch and draws locals and visitors with its diner classics (house-cured corned beef hash) and modern cuisine (duck and grits). Ingredients are sourced from nearby farms.
Noras Luvin Spoonful
Indulge in a brownie sundae at this 1950s-style custard stand. If you’re looking for something more filling, try the fresh-cut fries and hand-pressed burgers from a local butcher. And don’t miss their retro, hand-painted mural.
Matthew’s On Main
The sign outside this red clapboard building in Callicoon proclaims “FOOD/BAR/HAPPINESS”. And that’s exactly what you’ll get from the hearty pub meals, the soul-satisfyingly homey vibe, and the delightfully rowdy bar up front.
Sue Taylor recently re-opened this breakfast and lunch spot in Phoenicia. While newly renovated, the fluffy pancakes and signature French toast remains the same. Come early on weekends to beat the rush and looks out for celebs.
Phoenicia Market & Delicatessen
Be sure to grab sandwiches, cookies and imported snacks, like lingonberry preserves or German sausages before a hike or picnic. Margaret Nolte makes an epic roast beef sandwich, plus Scandinavian-style items like pickled herring.
Peekamoose Restaurant & Tap Room
Chef Mills, formerly of Gramercy Tavern and Le Bernardin, serves up wood-grilled steaks and wild mushroom risotto inside a converted farmhouse in Big Indian. The restaurant supports local growers and switches up its menu daily.
The Arnold House Tavern
Go back 50 years at this retro resto in the Livingston Manor Hotel. Inside’s a pool table, jukebox and a lively crowd. The comforting menu and warm vibe garners regulars, with items like smoked trout dip and the signature burger.
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The Stickett Inn owners just opened Good Food, a small gourmet shop in Barryville, where they serve Intelligentsia coffee and carry foods from local artisans and restaurants. It’s the easiest way to sample a variety of local fare
Tonjes Farm Dairy
From his subterranean cheesemaking operation built underneath a hillside in Callicoon, Tim Tonjes lives the dream by making yogurt, kefir and fresh and aged cheeses. Chefs come specifically for the Beachwood Blue Cheese.
Catskill Mountain Foundation Farm Market
Shop for local and organic produce year-round at this market in Hunter. Its selection of prepared foods, artisanal cheeses and smokehouse products is particularly impressive—snag some provisions and get ready for an epic picnic.
Steps from the Delaware River, this three-room Narrowsburg property was converted from a 1850s farmhouse by the owners of Nest, a lifestyle boutique around the corner. Ask for a room with an antique clawfoot tub.
Mohonk Mountain House
Family-owned and operated since 1869, the majestic Mohonk Mountain House in New Paltz looks like a Victorian castle and perchers over Lake Mohonk. Guests can hike the Shawangunk Ridge, go horseback riding and canoe on the lake.
This boutique inn, located in Barryville, features original details from 1893, like hardwood floors, slate chalkboards and 16-foot ceilings. Indulge with C.O. Bigelow amenities and lounge in the 1,400-square-foot lobby.
Culinary Institute of America
Sign up for a half-day cooking or baking class on campus in Hyde Park. Or sample treats at the Apple Pie Bakery Café, the final exam for C.I.A’s pastry students. Don’t miss stunning views of the Hudson River from the terrace.
Watching the cascading two-tiered waterfall, you'll understand why this site was popular with Hudson River School painters like Thomas Cole. The one-mile hike takes you past two waterfalls: Bastion Falls and Kaaterskill.
The Catskills are the birthplace of American dry-fly fishing. Try your luck on the Beaverkill, Upper Delaware, Neversink and Willowemac rivers, where pristine waters and bug life have made the region a draw for fly fishermen.
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