Upstate New York is not just one of my favorite places in the world because it's green, gorgeous, and the perfect summer dream-land, it was also my first home ❤ I was looking over some of my favorite travel photos and I realized I've never done a travel guide for upstate! If you headed to NY this time of year in mid-feb., you would not be seeing the lush, green landscapes we're talking about, and I can't say I am much of a winter-weather woman. But, if you hop in your car headed for Rochester after May, you will nature like you've never seen before. Here's a travel guide for Geneseo and Conesus from a native upstater, so get ready to buy your tickets, because you will be sold 😘
W H A T T O S E E :
L E T C H W O R T H S T A T E P A R K :
Upstate is home to the gorgeous Letchworth State Park, which NY likes to call the "Grand Canyon of the East". It is truly phenomenal, so if you're in the Rochester/Geneseo area, take a day trip to Letchworth. If you're an adventure-camper, Letchworth has a great campground or cabins to rent out, if you're more of a glamper. Bring your water shoes, because LSP is home to hundreds of stunning waterfalls. You could spend a week hiking there and not get enough.
C O N E S U S L A K E :
Conesus Lake has the most special place in my heart because I've grown up in an old family house on the lake every summer since I was born. I'm super biased, but this is one of my favorite places in the world. If you're looking for somewhere to stay in the Geneseo area, there are gorgeous cottages to rent on the lake in the summer. It's one of the seven finger lakes, and it is surrounded by trees and beautiful green landscape for miles and miles. There's also some spots to visit for the day that provide beach access, which are perfect for summer picnics and a day with the kiddos. If you're on the lake, you HAVE to stop by Shoreless Acres country store for sweet-potato fries and a walk around the shop for some Conesus souvenirs and an upstate experience you can only get from shoreless.
M A I N S T . G E N E S E O
If you do anything in the Geneseo area, you have to stop by Main Street. This is the actual cutest Main Street you'll probably ever see. It's also another place I'm ridiculously biased to because my mom owned a flower shop on Main St. for years, so I grew up there. But besides the sentiment, Main Street Geneseo is a lovely place to spend a summer day. Favorite, must-hit-up shops:
Genesee Valley Florist [that's a fave], Cafe Shiloh, RoyalTees, and Touch of Grayce.
W H E R E T O E A T :
M A M A M I A ' S
If you're spending the day on Main St. Geneseo, you can't leave without getting the best slice of giant pizza from Mama Mia's. And you can't get a slice without Mia's famous garlic knots. Mason and I are pizza finatics, [like 50% of our relationship is built on pizza] and this is a pepperoni for your pizza passport, people.
M I N N E H A N ' S
If you're in Livingston County with kids, Minnehan's is a great place to take the fam for the day. It's a fun center with all the fun, summer-y, kiddo things like mini-golf, go-karts, and arcade games for days. If you're in the mood for a scoop or a twist cone, Minnehan's is your place.
T OM W A H L ' S
Tom Wahl's is upstate's IN-N-OUT, and my inner east-coaster actually makes me think it's a little bit better 🤷 If you head to Tom Wahl's for a burger, get a root beer float before you go, because their homemade root beer is like nothing else. TW's is a must try.
T H E B E A C H C O M B E R :
If you're looking for some summer night-life on the lake, the beachcomber is the place for you. It's pretty much exactly what you think of when you think "beachcomber". It's a bar on the lake-side, so they serve your normal bar food menu, but if you're stopping by the beachcomber for karaoke and some pool, get a side of salt-potatoes, an upstate fave.
O T H E R F A V O R I T E S :
I could talk for days about NY, but here are just a few more of my favorite highlight spots to see on your New-York vacay: