15 Day Trips from NYC You Can Take This Weekend!

By Seema Nande on Mar 01, 2017
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New York can sometimes get a little too overwhelming and so a quick breather outside is always a good idea. If you wish to head out for a day or two, NYC can easily leave you spoilt for choices. Owing to its hidden islands, vineyards, spectacular hiking trails and grounds soaked in ethnic culture, weekend trips from New York have always been quite a thing. Choose your pick as we bring to you 15 day trips from NYC which you can take this weekend! All you need to do is get on the road with your car or board a train.

1. Coney Island for a dose of vitamin C

Coney Island - just a small train journey away

Image Source: Charley Lhasa/flickr.com

Wondering what could be some of the best day trips from NYC without a car? The Coney Island is your answer. Long been a favorite beach destination of New Yorkers, Coney Island is flocked by beach lovers longing for some waves and sand. Both kids and adults can have a great time here given the opportunities of beach sports, baseball arenas, and attractions like The New York Aquarium which is a very eccentric amusement park and the very popular Luna Park. Given its good connectivity by rails, it is a perfect weekend destination from New York. To reach here, you can board a subway from Manhattan.  

Distance: 14.7 mi

Time taken: 26 min by road

Must see: Coney Island Cyclone, Riegelmann Boardwalk, and Parachute Jump  

2. Wave Hill for a picturesque train ride

Wave Hill - the best fall day trip from New York

Image Source: Kristine Paulus/flickr.com

We all have those days, where all we want is to- Not drive! The Wave Hill gives you this opportunity and is best accessed by boarding a train from the Grand Central. Not only is it a scenic destination to be at, even the train journey offers some beautiful sights. The bets part of this place- you can walk on its perfectly manicured lawns. A plethora of verdant landscapes, some unmatchable view of the river Hudson and New Jersey Palisades’ cliffs, a day trip here can thoroughly rejuvenate you. 

Distance: 18 mi

Time taken: 30 minutes (by train) from Grand Central, approximately 

Must see: The Met Cloisters, New York Botanical Garden, and Manhattan Community Boathouse 


3. City Island for an unmatchable seafood indulgence 

City Island - beach getaway from New York City

Image Source: Kristine Paulus/flickr.com

Craving some delicious lobsters and other delectable seafood? The City island is where you must head to! A blessing that seems closer than anything else, this gem lies so close to NYC that you might be tempted to take a day trip here almost every day! In fact, its immediacy might make you doubt why is it even on this list. A day trip here is about experiencing something novel and unusual and the very British vibe the place offers. Fabulous beaches, lip-smacking food, lots of water activities and attractions to see, this certainly is a winner. If the top museums in New York City have failed to satisfy your curiosity head to the interesting museums of City island!

Distance: 20 mi

Time taken: 36 min by road

Must see: City Island Nautical Museum and Bartow-Pell Mansion Museum

Must Read:

4. Kykuit and its unworldly charm 

Kykuit - for a quick outing

Image Source: Wikimedia Commons

One of the most romantic road trips from NYC, Kykuit has this Victorian, old-world vibe to it. Staying true to the meaning of day trips, you can easily head back home after spending a warm romantic evening here. Given its altitude, this place beguiles you with some of the most captivating views of the river Hudson and about half of New York’s skyline. The place is bequeathed with some of the most gorgeous gardens where you can just stroll about, sit and have a blissful time. There are public tours of the house that will walk you through the charm of this Victorian Villa. 

Distance: 32.9 mi 

Time taken: 47 min by road

Must see: John D. Rockefeller Estate  

5. Oyster Bay; right here in your neighborhood 

Oyster Bay - nearest day trip destination from NYC

Image Source: Wikimedia Commons

One of the best and closest day trips from NYC, the Oyster Bay would probably take you lesser time to reach, than your workplace! Loaded with quaint villages like Bayville, Brookville, Centre Island, Cove Neck, East Hills and Farmingdale, this destination is an ideal spot to spend the day out, and perhaps have a picnic. Picturesque hamlets of Locust Valley, Bethpage, East Massapequa, East Norwich, Glen Head, Glenwood Landing, Greenvale, Hicksville and many more make for a pleasant stroll in the vicinity, while the sandy beaches on the South Shore will urge you to play a game of volleyball. Even the drive to this place is copious with panoramic vistas, making it one of the most sought-after places to visit near NYC.

Distance: 35.6 mi

Time taken: 50 min by road

Must see: Sagamore Hill, Raynham Hall Museum, and Theodore Roosevelt Memorial Park 

6. Cold Spring, N.Y. for striking stone gardens

Cold Spring - romantic day trip

Image Source: Jon Dawson/flickr.com

Open skies, verdant gardens, and lots of beautiful water bodies flowing through some of the most gorgeous stones, Cold Spring is everything you need for a quick break from the NYC hysteria! Nestled beautifully atop the Hudson Highlands are Cold Spring’s main draw- the Stonecrop Gardens, which are a must-visit while here. What’s more, this very cute village will mesmerize you with its postcard perfection!  While you can take a quick visit here anytime of the year, the fall undeniably remains to be the best time to visit Cold Spring! Fresh, cool breeze and lush vistas embrace you here like no other.

Distance: 60.5 mi

Time taken: 1 h 14 min by road

Must see: West Point Foundry, Putnam History Museum, and Foundry Cove. 

Must Read:

7. New Hope, PA to go back in time

New Hope -  a relaxing weekend

Image Source: Neil Kates /flickr.com

As if going back in time, New Hope is all things charismatically old-world. An absolute rejuvenator, this town is a blend of all things you need after a good day trip. There are cozy accommodations, delectable food restaurants and plenty of sweeping spots, where you got to stop and click pictures! The serenading nature all throughout enhances its relaxing vibe, and chances are you might not want to leave. And if you are someone who loves a little enlightening on vegetation, then this place is full of botanical gems, you might love to know about.

Distance: 69.1 mi

Time taken: 1 h 26 min by road

Must see: Delaware Canal, Bucks County Playhouse and Bowman's Hill Wildflower Preserve 

8. Peconic Bay, did we hear anyone say wine?!

Peconic Bay - A weekend cruise

Image Source: Pixabay.com

What’s not to do in the Peconic Bay?! There is boating, there is the Long Island Wine Country’s most respected vineyard, fruit farms, dairy farms, and so much more. As if the sweeping vistas of the North Fork and South Fork were not enough, Peconic offers you a ton of activities you can undertake with your family, friends or all by yourself. Given its proximity to New York, you can in fact just head for an evening cruise. There are numerous cruise and yacht enterprises here, that even cater to a bespoke requirement, making for some cherished memories. 

Distance: 77 mi

Time taken: 1 h 25 min by road

Must see: Cross Sound Ferry, Sannino Bella Vita Vineyard, and Sparkling Pointe 

9. North Fork, Long Island; for some more solitude 

North Fork

Image Source: Doug Kerr/flickr.com

We mentioned the Peconic Bay earlier on the list, lying just adjacent to it, is the North Fork, bestowing you with similar experiences yet with a bigger scope. In fact, we mean bigger on the laid-back aspects of a day trip; read breweries, vineyards, and restaurants with New Yorker chefs who moved here on the advent of something more serene. Saturated colored sceneries of the golden flora and fauna, wooden boardwalks, pristine waters and lots of boats; the quintessential "Tumblr summer" vibe is what you get to experience here. Indulge in fresh seafood and follow it up with a nap in the fields, and you are good to go. 

Distance: 82.1 mi

Time taken: 1 h 34 min by road

Must see: Bedell Cellars, Lavender By The Bay and Antique Carousel 

10. Philadelphia to experience an unmatchable melange 


Image Source: Wikimedia Commons

The largest Pennsylvanian city, Philadelphia is a must for those visiting New York and Washington DC, given its proximity to both. A superior mélange of art, food, and music has earned the city a reputation of unparalleled and very distinct culture. What is most striking about Philadelphia is this unmissable allure, complete with very old yet well-preserved buildings like the Philadelphia City Hall, Merchant Exchange Building and more. A great place to soak up some history, Philadelphia can surprise you with its potential of being an ideal destination for day trips from NYC with kids. Lots of free tours including those of some museums and historical sites, further add to the appeal of this place! 

Distance: 97.2 mi

Time taken: 1 h 50 min by road

Must see: Liberty Bell, Independence Hall, and The Franklin Institute  

11. Providence, RI where coffee lovers can rejoice

Providence - for the beautiful cherry blossom

Image Source: ForHispanos/flickr.com

If the smell of deliciously fresh ground coffee is what keeps you going, then Providence will not disappoint! While this is an ideal destination for day trips from NYC all through the year, the time of Halloween is especially when the town is very lively. Given it being as one of the oldest cities in the USA, Providence is no less of a time capsule and a beautiful juxtapose of the old and modern. This is one place, where you can also shop for some fine jewelry and silverware, so all the ladies out there can rejoice! 

Distance: 181.1 mi 

Time taken: 3 h 1 min by road

Must see: WaterFire, Roger Williams Park Zoo and RISD Museum  

12. Cape May, N.J. loaded with beach activities 

Cape May - closer to nature

Image Source: Flickr.com

If you crave some sunny weather and the inadequacy of open sky in New York is getting to you, then hit the roads and head to Cape May. The kids are especially to love this place given the number of beach activities here, and of course, there is the favorite sand castle-building scope! The best time to be in Cape May is Fourth of July when the whole city comes alive with fireworks and a very vibrant carnival. The beach town is profuse with some of the coziest beach resorts, including America's oldest ones, so checking into one can prove to be a blissful getaway.

Distance: 158 mi

Time taken: 2 h 35 min by road

Must see: Emlen Physick Estate, Cape May County Park & Zoo, and Naval Air Station Wildwood Aviation Museum 

13. Boston and its juxtaposing nerdy and sporty allure  


Image Source: LEONARDO DASILVA/flickr.com

This academic destination lures visitors by its rather chilled, laidback vibe. A place where you can observe some spectacular architecture along with unmissable ground-breaking art, Boston is enthralling. The whole vibe of the city is very young and fresh, given a large number of students’ population residing here. One of the best NYC day trip ideas for years now has been heading to Boston to catch a game of basketball. There is a lot that this oldest city in America bestows you with: Art, a very young vibe, sports and the incredible seafood are some of that lot! You cannot leave Boston without indulging in its local specialty of 'sacred cod'. Boston has for long been one of the best weekend getaways near NYC.

Distance: 215.1 mi

Time taken: 3 h 34 min by road

Must see: Freedom Trail, Faneuil Hall Marketplace, and New England Aquarium 

14. Washington DC and its eccentric capital vibe

Washington DC

Image Source: Matt Wade/flickr.com

The glorious capital, owing to its iconic landmarks and historic attractions has for long been a tourist hotspot. Not to forget, the gorgeous Cherry Blossom here, drawing people from across the globe! To reach here you have a wide variety of modes of transport including bus, train or van. You can easily accommodate some three-odd top attractions of Washington DC in a day trip here. Even just driving through the city roads, as you pass by the sights of the domed Capitol building and many others is a lovely experience. Do not miss a scrumptious meal at the Ben’s Chili Bowl!

Distance: 226.2 mi

Time taken: 3 h 46 min by road

Must see: White House, Lincoln Memorial and Washington Monument. 

15. Appalachian Trail, NY to get that adrenaline rush

Appalachian Trail for an adventurous day trip from New York 

Image Source: wikimedia.org

There is no better way to get a road trip right, than by following it up with a hike that gives you an adrenaline rush. As the name suggests this is indeed one of the most scenic trails across the USA. This is an out-and-out hiking experience. Well-marked, the trail is suitable for first-timers as well as seasoned hikers. Holding a record of the longest hiking-only footpath in the world, this trail confers you with a surreal experience, you will cherish for your life. Make sure you pack the basics of hiking, a good backpack with water, some eatables and of course lots of sunblock!

Distance: 287.5 mi

Time taken: 4 h 30 min by road

Must see: Grand Caverns, King Family Vineyards, and Chiles Peach Orchard

A day trip to any of the above destination is sure to keep you wanting for more! Book New York City Day Trips NOW!!

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