Making Your Summer Tradition in Ulster County

There’s something timeless about summer. Nostalgia seems stronger during the summer months somehow. Family trips from years ago are immortalized in our memories. We get nostalgic about how things used to be, even if they were never exactly that way. Everyone shares specific summer memories even if we didn’t share them.

What better place to create your nostalgic summer escape than the very place the cinematic summer classic, “Dirty Dancing”, is based? When you talk about diving in summer lakes, hiking trails, smelling summer rain, and discovering nature, everyone knows exactly what you are talking about. It’s also why people keep returning to Ulster County and the Catskills. There’s a timeless quality to outdoor adventures and sharing nature’s beauty with family and friends. Ulster County and the Catskills remain timeless.
 You can return to Ulster and tap into a time you cherish; yet somehow find something new every time.

Paddle Into Summer

When the sun warms the waterways in Ulster County, there’s no better place to be. Kayaking or paddleboarding is a summer tradition. On the Hudson River, it becomes a transcendent one. Explore Esopus Meadows Preserve, where you can trek through a rolling forest or hug the shoreline and enjoy a beautiful day on the water. Bring a picnic to enjoy it in the pavilion beside the Hudson River Greenway Trail. Truly, a destination stop for anyone who enjoys a peaceful day on the water. Be sure to drink in the picturesque Esopus Meadows Lighthouse. Visitors will need to bring their own watercraft. You can also rent one from New Paltz Kayaking Rentals or a Day Away Kayak and Canoe Rentals

Insider tip: A day spent fishing or just dipping your toes in the water of the upper Esopus Creek is worth it. Catskill Outfitters can help you find the perfect spot.

Step Into the Catskills by Chasing Waterfalls

Ulster County is a great launching point for adventures in the Catskill Mountains. And one of our favorite adventures in the Catskills is hiking to waterfalls. There are several waterfalls to choose from in the area. One of the most famous is Awosting Falls. If you want smaller crowds, here are a few options ranging in trail difficulty:

  • Vernooy Kill Falls Trail (moderate): 1.7 miles out-and-back trail. With mill ruins on the trail and a bridge, photo ops are numerous.
  • Sam’s Point and Verkeerderkill Falls (difficult): This 6.9-mile trail isn’t the longest trail but the terrain is challenging and should only be attempted by experienced hikers. For anyone completing this hike, the view is worth it!

A Place for Everyone to Stay in Ulster County

Lodging options are plentiful in Ulster County. With an option for every budget, Ulster has exactly what you want in a place to stay to make this summer the best yet.

  • Mohonk Mountain House was voted the #1 resort in the Northeast & Mid-Atlantic. Awe-inspiring and historic, Hudson Valley’s most iconic resort is a summer tradition for countless families and vacationers.
  • Camp Kingston is a mess hall, day camp, and art space for adults. And nothing is more summer than that.
  • Hotel Dylan is the boutique, bohemian hotel you didn’t know you needed in the only place it could be: Woodstock. Peace, love, stay.

Start a New Summer Tradition in Ellenville

Ulster County’s Borsch Belt Festival, “Comedy, Cuisine, Culture in the Catskills", returns this summer, July 27 & 28, 2024. The festival celebrates the legacy of the idyllic Borscht Belt resort era, its vibrant comedic past, and its wide-ranging influence on contemporary American culture. Held in Ellenville, the heart of the renowned Borscht Belt, the festival features stand-up comedy, art, live music, film, educational programming, food, and plenty of one-liners.

Don’t tighten your Borscht Belt, get tickets now! [Ba Dum Tiss!]

Hello, Neighbor!

We’re excited to welcome Kingston Social Gallery to Ulster County! This cafe, mercantile, and gallery will fit in nicely in Kingston. Be sure to follow them on Instagram @kingstonsocialny for their latest news, offerings, and hours.