New Paltz, New York

by Andrew Perlot

A scene from Minnewaska State Park Preserve

A scene from Minnewaska State Park Preserve

When I was in college, my favorite weekend escape was to New Paltz, New York.

After a week of classes, I'd be half dead and looking for resuscitation, and I could always find it in New Paltz, a small hippy town at the edge of one of the most beautiful environments I've ever discovered.

Not far outside New Paltz is the Shawangunk Mountains, or The Gunks, as they're often called.

The Shawangunk ridge has some of the best rock climbing opportunities I've ever come across, not to mention some amazing hiking, rock scrambling, and scenic views. It is an escape I will always be grateful for.

You can visit Minnewaska State Park Preserve, Mohonk Mountain House (which is a private hotel that has extensive lands that are open to the public), or the Mohonk Preserve for some fantastic outdoor opportunities.

Come in fall for some great foliage, and grab some great apples and pears while you're there.

New Paltz itself has plenty of interesting activities, restaurants, and places to stay.

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