A stunning mountain backdrop behind fertile fields, centuries of history, and infusions of energetic college students are just a few of the seasonings that make New Paltz such a yummy place. Some say that once you’ve been here and breathed the air, you’ll always return—which is a good thing, because this artsy, active, and still surprisingly funky little burg holds way more to explore than can be seen in a day. New Paltz is a dandy destination for a car-free weekend; avid cyclists can bring the bike on the Metro-North to Poughkeepsie and take the Walkway Over the Hudson to the Hudson Valley Rail Trail, or just hop on an Adirondack Trailways bus and find yourself in a hospitable, walkable village full of independent local businesses and equally independent locals. Enjoy!
New Paltz offers a wide variety of intelligent fun. Here are some starter ideas:
CIRCLE CREATIVE COLLECTIVE is an inclusive and warm-spirited network of local artists and craftspeople who offer in-person classes and workshops in a long list of sustainability-minded traditional crafts with a focus on fiber arts. There are Open Studio days once a week and a calendar full of opportunities to make, do, learn, and connect.
HISTORIC HUGUENOT STREET is a ten-acre Historic Landmark District that has grown into a feast of vividly rendered insights into all the people who made lives here. Download the free walking tour app or book a guided tour for an inside look at the replica Esopus Munsee wigwam, reconstructed 1717 stone church, and 18th-century colonial homes. Delve into local lore.
MOUNTAIN FLOAT SPA will introduce you to the bliss and benefits of floatation therapy in spacious, expertly maintained cabins where you control the lights and music; you can also book a massage for the ultimate stress-relief package.
NEW PALTZ KAYAKING RENTALS at Sojourner Truth Park. If you’re eager to get out on the water and explore the Wallkill River, you’re going to need a kayak or canoe. Look no further than New Paltz Kayaking Rentals. They also offer kayaking tours, and bike and fishing equipment rentals. If you’re ready for adventure in New Paltz, NY, they’ve got you covered.
SAMUEL DORSKY MUSEUM OF ART at SUNY New Paltz is a major cultural resource in the Hudson Valley with six elegant galleries comprising more than 9,000 square feet of exhibition space. Each summer the Museum sponsors thematic exhibitions of work by Hudson Valley artists, featuring works by artists living in the mid-Hudson Valley region.
WALLKILL VIEW FARM Just over the bridge, west of town, the farm welcomes you to a cornucopia of fine fresh fruits and veggies, sweet baked treats, and locally-made Jane’s Ice Cream. Their garden center has everything you need for your own little farmlet, whether it’s a big yard or a container on the patio.
Discover countless unique and locally made treasures with the masterful merchants of New Paltz, who specialize in exceeding your expectations.
THE ANTIQUES BARN at Water Street Market is a treasure hunter’s dream: Two vast floors full of absolutely everything you can imagine—and some things you can’t—including glass, pottery, jewelry, kitchenware, furniture, tchotchkes, and more, gathered under one roof by over 26 dealers.
BARNER BOOKS is one of the longest-lasting bookstores in the region, a brain-boosting browser’s paradise of new, used, and rare volumes of literature for all ages—art, nonfiction, regional works, and more—amid an array of collectibles and vintage of all sorts.
CHBO DRUMS Lovers of percussion will find their bliss at CHBO Drums, where drummer, designer, and studio builder Chris Bowman sells new and vintage drums, sticks, cymbals, gongs, and more, including his own line crafted in the Solar Drum Lab, his cutting-edge studio and fabrication setup.
HANDMADE AND MORE is a New Paltz institution where you’ll find toys, clothing, home goods, and gifts curated from gifted makers far and near: elegant wearable art, whimsical, educational kid gifts that won’t break the bank, self-care goodies galore, and more.
HIMALAYAN ARTS brings you the finest lighter-than-air summer clothing, unique jewelry of turquoise and coral, bells, singing bowls, om T-shirts, hand-knotted and naturally dyed Tibetan rugs, and Buddhist religious artifacts.
HUDSON VALLEY GOLDSMITH specializes in full-service, socially responsible fine jewelry, with a workshop of top-notch goldsmiths and works from designers all over the world. They can design and handcraft any custom piece you can dream up, and repair jewelry while you watch.
KON TIKI TRADING POST is an iconic taste of Old New Paltz, with an ever-changing array of local art, along with herbs, incense, oils, clothing, accessories, tapestries, and much more, jointly curated by a world traveler and a former New Paltz stoop kid.
MAGLYN’S DREAM brings together the work of over 80 American and international artists to showcase pieces handcrafted by the finest glassblowers, potters, painters, jewelers, soapers, woodworkers, stoneworkers, and more. Here you’ll find wonderful and affordable items you never knew existed.
PEGASUS FOOTWEAR specializes in both classic and up-to-the-minute styles, with a broad selection to choose from and old-school personal service. They’ll get you properly shod for any and every occasion, and you’ll find great discounts on top-quality footwear in the outlet next door.
RHINEBECK ARTIST’S SHOP is a Best of Hudson Valley winner where you’ll find fine art materials and supplies (ask about the artists’ discount!), along with gorgeous cards, journals, gifts, and craft supplies, not to mention custom framing services.
RITUALIST is a modern witch shop, carrying everything you need to focus your energy and let the magic and healing flow, with a strong emphasis on inclusion, sustainability, and ethical practices. You’ll find apothecary goods, tarot decks, zines, altar candles, stones, and elixirs.
SALIX INTIMATES Discover a refreshingly new approach to lingerie, pairing sustainably and ethically sourced elegance in undergarments and apothecary with a welcoming and down-to-earth customer service philosophy.
The only hard part of getting a great meal in New Paltz is deciding which cuisine suits your mood.
BACCHUS RESTAURANT, BREWERY AND BILLIARDS is a New Paltz classic that’s grown its offerings without losing its gloriously laid-back vibe. Come feast on a French Dip or some Lobster Mac, have another craft beer over your game of pool, then dance the night away to a live band.
BROOKLYN CIDER HOUSE welcomes you on the grounds of Twin Star Orchards for wood-fired pizza or burgers on the pavilion, seasoned with live music and washed down with one of their award-winning hard ciders. Hit the tasting room first to find your favorite.
FUCHSIA TIKI BAR will transport you to a secret island paradise with cocktails like the Bird of Paradise or Cursed Islander—tropical delights crafted from housemade juices and syrups and the great rums of the world—and a wide variety of small bites, sushi, or fusion rolls.
GRAZERY in Water Street Market is a cafe and inventive shop offering a farm fresh menu, cheeses, charcutery, chocolate, seasonal ice cream, home goods and plants! They incorporate the finest artisanal products and fresh goodness into an exquisite array of salads, sandwiches, and more.
HUDSON VALLEY CHEESECAKE uses only the finest ingredients in their made-fresh-daily array of gourmet sweetness. Try a luscious Cheesecake-Filled Cannoli or a eesecake-Stuffed Cupcake while you mull over what kind of custom creation to order for the people you like best.
JAR’D WINE PUB is an intimate gem of a place with great mountain (sunset!) views where you can nibble tapas—charcuterie, local cheeses, pizzettes, or a bowl of today’s homemade soup—while making new friends and sipping sustainably produced wine, kombucha, or fresh-squeezed lemonade.
LOLA’S CAFE AND CATERING is a wonderful place to grab a fast, healthy lunch; their burgers, bowls, sandwiches, paninis, and salads are as nutritious as they are delicious, and their shakes (try the Chocolate Coma) are unadulterated bliss.
MAIN COURSE CATERING AND MARKETPLACE offers casual outdoor and indoor dining and takeout of their legendary housemade salads, panini sandwiches, and street food; for dinner, try the Main Course BBQ or Woodland Mushroom Strudel, accompanied by a signature cocktail.
NEW NELLY’S RESTAURANT II serves authentic, mouthwatering Dominican cuisine: roast pork, rice and beans, oxtail stew, mofongo, empanadas, and more, all of it served in affordable, generous portions and with a warm welcome.
THE PARISH RESTAURANT is the place to find expertly prepared New Orleans-style specialties like Gator Bites, pan-roasted shrimp and grits, or gumbo, followed by a juicy burger (you can get grass-fed beef or black bean), jambalaya, or smothered catfish. Oh, and stunningly shucked fresh oysters.
RŪNA is a “French(ish)” bistro where you’ll find wonderful crêpes, quiche, soups, and sandwiches, with plenty of plant-based choices. Chef-owner Clare Hussain is half Bengali and has cooked in Dublin and the UK (along with New York and San Francisco), and incorporates all of it into her creative menu.
SNUG HARBOR BAR AND GRILL is a genuine dive bar with heart, a great beer selection, smokin’ jukebox, pool table, and comfy back patio where you’re welcome to bring a slice or hot dog. On any given afternoon, you’ll be in interesting and good company; on live music nights, the fun feels like it’ll blow the roof off.
These places will pamper you like royalty in between explorations.
THE INN AT KETTLEBORO is nestled on a 12-acre orchard with spectacular views of the Shawangunk Mountains. It offers comfortably elegant furnishings, superb breakfasts and baked goods to enjoy in the spacious sunroom, and a bluestone patio for sunset drinks at day’s end.
MOHONK MOUNTAIN HOUSE is an 1869 Victorian castle surrounded by 40,000 acres of greenery overlooking a crystalline lake. A historic yet remarkably chill iconic gem with a vast array of activities, farm-to-table eats, and a state-of-the-art spa.
Agents at HUDSON VALLEY HOMES - BERKSHIRE HATHAWAY take pride in being true market experts, who transparently share that expertise with you, and good listeners, who value relationships—which is to say, your happiness—over transactions.
STEVENS REALTY GROUP will take you through every step of your real estate journey with TLC, wisdom, and local knowledge. They’ve got an extensive database of rental listings and a property management company that’s ready to help with any services you may need.
ULSTER SAVINGS BANK is a 170-year-old hometown treasure, a mutual savings bank (no stockholders to fatten), and winner of the 2019 Banky Award from the Institute for Extraordinary Banking for their top-notch philanthropy, customer service, thought leadership, internal culture, and financial literacy education.