Ulster County sits in the heart of the Hudson Valley, about 90 miles north of New York City and 60 miles south of Albany. Most of the county lies within the Catskill and Shawangunk mountains. Learn more about how to get here and how to get around when visiting.
Have you ever heard of Woodstock? It’s arguably one of the most famous towns in the world — thanks to a certain iconic 1969 music festival — and it’s located right here in Ulster County. But the renowned arts colony is just one of our many communities.
For the history buffs: The “Four Corners” at John and Crown streets in Kingston is said to be the only intersection in the U.S. with stone houses dating from the mid-1600s to 1774 standing on all four corners.
Outdoor enthusiasts enjoy Ulster County’s Minnewaska State Park and Mohonk Preserve, known for offering the best hiking in New York State, from breezy walks to challenging climbs.
Ulster County attracts visitors year-round. The average yearly temperature is 53 degrees Fahrenheit, with a July high around 83 and a January low around 14. In a year, we get an average of 48 inches of rain, 47 inches of slow and 177 sunny days. Humidity is generally low, except in July and August.
Autumn is a wonderful time to visit. The Catskill Mountains are ablaze with fall color, and temperatures range from the low 60s to low 70s.
Although “the best” anything is subjective, we have an entire directory of hotels, boutique inns, bed-and-breakfasts, and resorts for you to explore, so you can find “the best” accommodation for your Ulster County escape.
There are several budget-friendly motels and campgrounds in Ulster County. Find all of our lodging options in our Where to Stay directory.
Depends on what you like — or what you’re in the mood for! Luckily we have a directory for that too, featuring everything from fine dining to local holes-in-the-wall.
Ulster County offers a variety of activities for kids of all ages — as well as those who are kids at heart. Although there are too many to list here, these are some of our favorites:
There are trails all over Ulster County fit for beginners, but one of the best is the Kingston Point Rail Trail, connecting Midtown Kingston to the city’s waterfront on Rondout Creek. This fully accessible, 1.2-mile paved trail/ linear park extends along the waterfront to Kingston Point.
Another easy hike is the Ashokan Rail Trail, a shared-use recreational trail running 11.5 miles along the northern edge of the Ashokan Reservoir, between Basin Road in West Hurley and Route 28A in Boiceville.
Find more hiking options in our Things to Do directory.
Pretty much everything in Ulster County is worth seeing or doing, in our opinion. But if we had to narrow it down, we’d say to start with these four things:
There are a number of beautiful parks with picnic areas in Ulster County. Note that most trails do not allow picnicking off trail.
The Catskills Visitor Center offers a guide to swimming holes and other places to swim in Ulster County and beyond.
Leave No Trace is a set of outdoor ethics created by the Leave No Trace Center of Outdoor Ethics promoting conservation in the outdoors. It consists of seven principles:
Please contact New York State’s Department of Environmental Conservation to find places where you may do this activity on your own.
Absolutely! Ulster County has some of the best fishing in the Northeast, and fishing is open year-round. Our lakes, streams, ponds and rivers hold an abundance of species.
In general, yes. But it is best to check with the property before you go. Walking with your furry friend on a leash is accepted on most trails. Please be sure to pick up after your pet.
Yes! The Hudson Valley LGBTQ Community Center is located in Kingston. Visitors to Ulster County will find lodging, restaurants, shopping and attractions that embrace and cater to our diversity.