Things to do in Hudson Valley in Winter (Snowshoeing, Tubing, and More!).
Are you looking for fun things to do on a winter vacation in the Hudson Valley? Well, you’re in luck! We are here to provide you with a guide to Hudson Valley winter activities that will turn your upstate New York winter vacation into a fun, entertaining and adventurous time.
Don’t worry not all of our activities will be outside. We know how cold it can get in New York in the winter which means there are a vast majority of outdoor activities but fret not! This list is going to be abundant with indoor and outdoor activities for families of all ages.
The Hudson Valley region in New York State is a perfect quiet getaway spot for you and your family or friends. You can find beautiful Hudson Valley Vacation Rentals with no booking fees.
The Best Hudson Valley Towns to Visit in Winter
Hudson Valley is not always freezing in the winter. And by freezing I mean 32˚F or below. It can range from 20 – 45 degrees regularly. The warmer temperatures typically reside comfortably in the Mid-Hudson Valley region.
There can be an abundance but the last few years have been scarce. It’s hard to tell nowadays what kind of winter you will have in Hudson Valley.
If you’re looking for colder, more outdoorsy activities and sights then you should head to the town Rhinebeck, New York. Click here to view all of our Hudson Valley vacation rentals.
There are many things to do in Rhinebeck, New York in winter.
The population of this precious hamlet is less than 500 people – although the bustling sidewalks, boutiques and restaurants make it seem like it’s much busier. Rhinebeck is a town that is known as “old money Hudson Valley”.
They have a historic downtown area, shopping, coffee shops and of course delicious restaurants. It’s also Paul Rudd’s hometown…who doesn’t love Paul Rudd?
You can even visit Samuel’s Sweet Shop which is co-owned by him, Jeffrey Dean Morgan and Hilarie Burton.
Moving on let’s head to Highland, New York in winter
Highland is a sweet little town nudged into the Mid-Hudson region. If you’re looking for a less-bustling and more low-key spot to get away to then Highland is the spot for you!
Stop by Wilklow Orchards, their farmers market is open year round, and enjoy their delicious bakery! Plus, they make and sell hot Apple Cider that is beyond amazing.
They also have Rocking Horse Ranch, which has year round horseback riding, ice skating, snow tubing and horse drawn sleigh rides!
Lastly, let’s head to New Paltz, New York for some winter fun!
New Paltz is a fantastic location if you’re looking for outdoor activities in the winter. They have activities ranging from downhill skiing and snowboarding to snowshoeing and cross-country skiing.
They also have indoor ice-skating and an Olympic-sized ice rink! Don’t forget to try out one of the 22 scenic hikes in New Paltz.
But enough about these quaint winter wonderlands – let’s get into the activities!
What to do in Hudson Valley, New York in the Winter?
Some fun things to do in Hudson Valley in winter are beautiful hikes, skiing, snowboarding, sledding and ice skating. If that’s not your speed then just imagine yourself in a cabin, a fire glowing, music and a nice big mug of hot chocolate keeping your hands toasty warm.
So, it doesn’t matter if you and your party are into outdoor adventures or indoor relaxing – there is something in Hudson Valley for everyone.
Outdoor Activities You’ll Want to Experience in Hudson Winter
We’re going to start off by exploring the great outdoors of Upstate New York! So grab your winter coat, snow pants and hand warmers because we’re going to head outside for some adventurous fun!
Best Snowshoeing/Winter Hikes in Hudson Valley
Grab your boots and let’s go!
Bear Mountain State Park
Bear Mountain State Park has a large field, some shady picnic groves, and fishing access in the lake and river. They also have some great biking, cross-country skiing and of course hiking trails!
They have moderate to hard hikes, loops and hikes where you need to turn back. Their longest hike is Dunderberg, Bald Mountain and the Time Loop which is 7.4 miles. Keep in mind this one is difficult!
Bear Mountain is also an amazing place for fantastic snowshoeing!
Mount Beacon Fire Tower
Mount Beacon is the highest peak in the Hudson Highlands. It’s a great place for hiking and snowshoeing in the winter. You’ll get a view of the first electrified incline railway, old chairlift foundations, and foundations of a restaurant, casino and hotel overlooking the valley.
Once you climb the final steps of the fire tower you’ll have views spanning Albany and the New York City Skyline.
Mohonk resides on the Shawangunk Ridge which is a part of infamous Adirondack Mountains.
This area is surrounded by 70 miles of carriage roads, 40 miles of trails, and abundant beautiful overlooks. Skytop Tower Trail is a perfect 4 mile round-trip hike and it’s also great for snowshoeing!
Make sure to go all the way to the tower at the end, then it’s just 100 more steps to have fantastic views of the Taconics, the Trapps, Millbrook Mountain, Minnewaska State Park, the Hudson Highlands, the Catskills and of course the Hudson Valley!
Best Ice Skating in Hudson Valley
If hiking, hills and snowshoeing are not your game then throw on those ice skates and hit these awesome rinks.
Going back to Bear Mountain
Bear Mountain Ice Rink is an outdoor rink that is open Monday, Tuesday, Friday, Saturday and Sunday.
They are an inexpensive rink (only $5) and they have skate rentals in case you don’t have your own!
If You Want Indoors, Go to Murrays!
Murray’s Skating Center in Yonkers has been in business since 1960. The rink is newly renovated and has a new mezzanine level.
You can rent the whole rink, just enjoy public skating times or have a party or event there!
Head Out to the Natural Lake Taghkanic
Lake Taghkanic State Park is nestled right into the lush, rolling hills of Columbia County. Now, since it’s a lake, they’re not in complete control of the ice.
But, it’s the natural way to enjoy ice skating when the ice is thick enough. The ice is usually ready to skate on in January. Call the park office to check ice thickness.
Best Snowmobiling in Hudson Valley
If you’re looking for something less physically demanding yet it still carries the thrill of crisp air whipping your face then check out snowmobiling!
The state of New York has 10,500 miles of snowmobile trails so there are plenty of adventures to choose from!
Lake Taghkanic State Park…Again
Lake Taghkanic has abundant snowmobile trails. You must ride on snowmobile trails but they are open to other uses as well.
They also recommend 6–8″ of pack snow before snowmobiling is allowed.
Taconic State Park
Taconic State Park is 6000 acres of forested land and it has extensive trails. These trails give spectacular views of the Berkshires, the Catskills and Hudson Valley.
There’s also snowshoeing and cross-country skiing available!
Best Snow Tubing in Hudson Valley
If you’re looking for a fun downhill adventure but skiing isn’t your thing then go snow tubing! It’s like sledding but with lifts, tubes and all the fun you could ask for.
Snow tubing is great for the entire family – especially because you don’t need to have any special skills to do it.
Hunter Mountain, NY
Hunter Mountain has a fantastic tubing park. It has 1,000 feet of lanes, a magic carpet lift and a discount if you purchase your tickets in advance!
Make sure to check out the weather and enjoy the fun days in the cool winter air and then snacks, grilled cheese and s’mores at their snack bar!
Fahnestock Winter Park
Fahnestock Winter Park in Carmel, NY is operated by the New York State Parks system. They have cross-country skiing and snowshoe trails as well as snow tubing.
The hill is medium height so it’s good for all ages. Just keep in mind they don’t make snow so they depend on the weather, so keep an eye on it!
Mount Peter in Warwick, NY is a charming mountain with a 600 foot multi-lane tubing park. They also have a magic carpet so you don’t have to drag your tube back to the top of the hill after every run.
There is a mini-tubing park for your little ones under 42 inches tall, or they can ride on a tandem tube with an adult.
Fun Indoor Activities for Snowy Days in Hudson Valley
Now it’s time to get out of the cold weather and head indoors!
There are some great art museums in Hudson Valley. There’s a vast and diverse history of the Hudson Valley too. So use these snowy days to make sure you experience it all.
The Hudson River Museum in Yonkers is full of great art and the Planetarium.
Magazzino Italian Art museum in Cold Spring, NY is a free art museum that exhibits postwar and contemporary art
West Point Museum is just outside of the US Military Academy, West Point, and it is full of war artifacts. It is one of the best history museums in New York!
There are plenty of great places you can go to spend a dollar in Hudson Valley. Between the Palisades Center Mall in West Nyack, and Ridge Hill in Yonkers there is plenty to do!
Plus Ridge hill has Legoland, indoor skydiving, indoor rock climbing, paintball, mini golf and an indoor trampoline park! You can’t go wrong.
Speaking of Indoor Rock Climbing…
Rocking climbing is a fantastic indoor activity and it’s open year round! People of all ages and skill levels are able to partake.
Between the Cliffs at Valhalla, the Court Club, A.I.R. in Albany and Gravity Vault you have plenty of spots to choose from.
Are Trampolines More Your Speed?
I don’t know if you’ve ever had the joy of going to a trampoline park but I recommend it to everyone. It’s inexpensive, somewhat exhausting and beyond fun for the whole family.
Hudson Valley is home to Sky Zone in New Rochelle, Bounce in Poughkeepsie, Rockin’ Jump in Yonkers, and Urban Air Adventure Park in Middletown.
Winter Activities for Families with Kids in Hudson Valley
There is a large variety of activities for whole families that you can do in Hudson Valley. Some are already on this list!
Hudson Valley Winter Activities for the Whole Family
Tubing, skiing, snowboarding, snowshoeing, hiking and cross-country skiing are all great activities for the whole family.
The Mid-Hudson Children’s Museum is great for the really young ones and the Rockland Center for the Arts is a fantastic multi-arts center.
If you are looking for some great skiing options, check out our blog 10 Top Upstate New York Ski Resorts for Your Winter Vacation.
Winter Activities for Adults & Couples in Hudson Valley
Now, if this is a trip where you plan on leaving the kids behind fret not! There are plenty of great options–besides the ones already mentioned above.
Wineries and Cider Tastings
There are plenty of delicious wineries and cider breweries (or whatever you call them) in Hudson Valley. Remember, New York has it’s very own Wine Belt!
Don’t forget to stop by Magnanini Winery in Wallkill which has a tasting room Wednesday through Sunday and a Pasta Night on Friday!
Applewood Winery has delicious hard cider and mead as well as delicious wines and Bad Seed Cider Taproom in Highland is to die for!
Clubs, Bars and Music
New Paltz is the place to go for nightlife in Hudson Valley. There’s live music, dancing and delicious drinks and food. You can also just hang out and watch the game with a pint of Guinness.
Kingston is a great town full of colonial architecture along with great taverns, restaurants and bistros.
Rosendale & High Falls also has a handful of live folk music, café’s, and salsa dance classes. There’s even a jazz club which hosts some of the top jazz performers in Hudson Valley.
Hudson Valley is a Real Life Winter Wonderland
At the end of the day Hudson Valley is a fantastic place to visit in the winter time. Between the beautiful landscape, the nightlife for adults only, and the fun outdoor and indoor activities for the whole family you’re guaranteed to have a fun time.
Don’t forget to always do your research about the town you want to visit so that you can make sure everyone in your party has a vacation worth remembering.
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