Romantic Weekend Escape in the Finger Lakes, New York

The reality of a romantic weekend is closer than you think. It’s very easy to get to this city for a little getaway not too far from home if you live near New York. The Finger Lakes region of the state is the perfect destination!  Its beautiful scenery is magnetizing and options are just right for a few days of exploring. What struck me about the town of Watkins Glen, in particular, was how perfect it is for a romantic getaway with your sweetie or even a close friend. So hop in the car and plan for a fabulous escape with a little rest, relaxation and rejuvenation.

A Romantic Weekend Escape in Watkins Glen Finger Lakes

Romantic places in New York State with a weekend trip to Watkins Glen. Take a road trip from NYC to this Finger Lakes destination. Click through to see exactly what activities make it so romantic! #FingerLakesVacations #RomanticGetawayAdvenutres

Where to Stay

We had the most delightful stay at the Watkins Glen Harbor Hotel. This beautiful hotel should surely be on any list of romantic places in New York State. It’s waterfront location makes it extra special and an attractive hotel room and comfortable bed doesn’t hurt in setting the right mood for one of the most romantic places in New York State. There were a lot of details I admired about the hotel, from coffee on each floor every morning for the guests’ convenience, to turn down service at night complete with chocolate on your pillow.

Romantic places in New York State with a weekend trip to Watkins Glen. Take a road trip from NYC to this Finger Lakes destination. Click through to see exactly what activities make it so romantic! #FingerLakesVacations #RomanticGetawayAdvenutresRomantic places in New York State with a weekend trip to Watkins Glen. Take a road trip from NYC to this Finger Lakes destination. Click through to see exactly what activities make it so romantic! #FingerLakesVacations #RomanticGetawayAdvenutres

Romantic Things to Do

Luckily there’s plenty to do in Watkins Glen by land and by sea. Here’s a few ideas to kickstart you brainstorming…

Schooner Boat Ride

You don’t have to venture far from your hotel room to find True Love with Schooner Excursions. Sure, it may be your sweetie walking by your side but it is also the name of the Schooner you can sail on for a little cruise around Seneca Lake. We experienced the sunset sail and I loved being able to photograph the warm colors in the sky during a brisk early fall day in September. (The perfect excuse to cozy up to a loved one!)

They served us a beautiful offering of grapes and cheese (which was DELICIOUS) and wine and beer were available for purchase. They’re also available for private charters if your budget allows and your want more of a private experience with your honey. Note that they function seasonly, from May to October.

Romantic places in New York State with a weekend trip to Watkins Glen. Take a road trip from NYC to this Finger Lakes destination and take a sailboat ride on a beautiful lake aboard "True Love." Click through to see exactly what activities make it so romantic! #FingerLakesVacations #RomanticGetawayAdvenutres Romantic places in New York State with a weekend trip to Watkins Glen. Take a road trip from NYC to this Finger Lakes destination. Click through to see exactly what activities make it so romantic! #FingerLakesVacations #RomanticGetawayAdvenutres Romantic places in New York State with a weekend trip to Watkins Glen. Take a road trip from NYC to this Finger Lakes destination. Click through to see exactly what activities make it so romantic! #FingerLakesVacations #RomanticGetawayAdvenutres

Atwater Winery and Vineyard

The view from this beautiful winery and vineyard is certainly worth the trip. But the delicious wine is the real bonus! Why is it called “Atwater?” Because it’s at the water, of course. If you visit and the timing is right be sure to try their mulled wine. I am not a huge fan of mulled wine but I tried there’s and was like a moth to a flame. I quickly bought some to bring home to enjoy during Thanksgiving just about two months later.

Enjoy a tasting at their beautiful bar inside and purchase a bottle (or several) to compliment a picnic you enjoy at one of the tables outside or even on the hill if you bring a blanket. For a real treat be sure to go a little early to secure a prime seat on their balcony overlooking the water; it’s the perfect spot to see the sun set over Seneca Lake.

If you’re feeling like you want to continue on the adult beverage trail, also check out this fantastic distillery, just down the road.

Romantic places in New York State with a weekend trip to Watkins Glen. Take a road trip from NYC to this Finger Lakes destination complete with Atwater winery and vineyard to enjoy. Click through to see exactly what activities make it so romantic! #FingerLakesVacations #RomanticGetawayAdvenutres Romantic places in New York State with a weekend trip to Watkins Glen. Take a road trip from NYC to this Finger Lakes destination. Click through to see exactly what activities make it so romantic! #FingerLakesVacations #RomanticGetawayAdvenutres

Waterfall Romance

The legends surrounding the beauty of Watkins Glen State Park preceded it! It blew the rumors out of the water. It truly is that beautiful. Rock formations and various waterfalls make a hike through this stunning state park incredibly enjoyable and endearing. It really helps put this city in on the map for one of the most romantic places in New York State.

Be sure to bring walking shoes, water and a camera. You’ll want to stay hydrated (no matter the season) and alert to take in every ounce of your exploration. Note that the hike is moderate and you can stay as long or as little as you like!

Romantic places in New York State with a weekend trip to Watkins Glen. Take a road trip from NYC to this Finger Lakes destination. Click through to see exactly what activities make it so romantic! #FingerLakesVacations #RomanticGetawayAdvenutresRomantic places in New York State with a weekend trip to Watkins Glen. Take a road trip from NYC to this Finger Lakes destination. Click through to see exactly what activities make it so romantic! #FingerLakesVacations #RomanticGetawayAdvenutresRomantic places in New York State with a weekend trip to Watkins Glen. Take a road trip from NYC to this Finger Lakes destination. Click through to see exactly what activities make it so romantic! #FingerLakesVacations #RomanticGetawayAdvenutres

Romantic Dinner

Head to the Wildflower Cafe and and Crooked Rooster Brewpub for dinner on North Franklin Street. It has a cozy atmosphere, delicious food, specialty cocktails and craft beer brewed specially for them, by them. Menu items range from a quinoa salad with salmon to Finger Lakes poutine, burgers, mussels, seitan tacos and homemade pizzas. There is something for everyone no matter your palate. I particularly loved their seasonal drink menu; I quickly drank my local Seneca Drums Gin, basil and blackberry cocktail.

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Fireplace Cocktail to End Any Evening Right!

Don’t forget to enjoy the evening with a drink in hand, cozy in a chair surrounding the outdoor fireplace back at the Glen Harbor Hotel. It’s the perfect way to end your evening!

Romantic places in New York State with a weekend trip to Watkins Glen. Take a road trip from NYC to this Finger Lakes destination. Click through to see exactly what activities make it so romantic including this fire pit at the Harbor Hotel! #FingerLakesVacations #RomanticGetawayAdvenutres

It is sincerely such a wonderful place to go for a couple of days and I love how accessible it is. You’ll surely be able to achieve the perfect balance of activities, rest and relaxation and the right touch of romance and quality time with a loved one.

Please note: we thankWatkins Glen Chamber of Commerce for generously hosting us. We also may make a small commission from affiliate links in this post but all opinions are ours and we bring you genuine content with real facts, photos, thoughts and recommendations. Always.

Heading to the Finger Lakes region of New York? Also check out:

Have you ever planned a romantic getaway? Tell us about it in the comments below!

Romantic places in New York State with a weekend trip to Watkins Glen. Take a road trip from NYC to this Finger Lakes destination. Click through to see exactly what activities make it so romantic! #FingerLakesVacations #RomanticGetawayAdvenutres

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8 Comments

  1. Rome
    February 9, 2018 / 4:33 am

    We have a friend over there. I’m going to make sure we take that hike next time. Just beautiful Bud.

    • February 9, 2018 / 1:50 pm

      Aw thanks! It is a GORGEOUS park and very moderate hike. I recommend it, especially for us photographers!

  2. February 11, 2018 / 4:38 pm

    This place looks lovely! I definitely miss hiking and being surrounded by nature in NYC; this might have to be a weekend adventure in the spring!

    • February 11, 2018 / 8:38 pm

      Thanks, Claire! I spend a lot of my time in NYC so I understand. 😉

  3. February 11, 2018 / 5:35 pm

    This sounds like the PERFECT weekend getaway. I’d love to do this. It’s a combination of things I really enjoy, hiking, being in nature, a good wine and food, and then a fire place…Too perfect! And this is also a program I can imagine doing with a friend. It’s romantic but not too cliché or too much. Would also be perfect to do this with a parent. Sounds like you had a wonderful time there.

    • February 11, 2018 / 8:38 pm

      Yes, I completely agree! Good to do with a friend or a romantic partner, or even a parent or sibling! 🙂 Thank you, Melanie!

  4. February 11, 2018 / 9:26 pm

    Ahhh I can’t believe I haven’t been to Watkins Glen yet! It looks so beautiful, I loove your photos as always Mikkel, they make me just wanna jump right into the picture.

    • February 11, 2018 / 11:12 pm

      Aw thank you! <3 I'd jump in the photo if I could too! Glad they inspire you to visit Watkins Glen! It's pretty amazing there!

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