It’s amazing how many hidden treasurers are all around us. I was reminded of one of those again when we went and visited Letchworth State Park in New York. The park is 35-miles south of Rochester and is 17-miles long with just over 14,000 acres of trees, hiking trails and is known as the Grand Canyon of the East. We packed up the SUV and headed with the fam for an afternoon of exploring this hidden gem.
We spent the afternoon soaking in the views, taking mini hikes and even retreating to a quaint little inn for an afternoon pick me up. With a $10 park fee, entering the park is easily accessible with 5-different park entrances with drivable roads, ample pull offs with photo ops and hiking trails – but if you’re just making a pit stop for an afternoon and want to catch the best sites, here are the 5 spots you must visit!
Upper Falls. Entering the park from the Castile entrance will be your quickest way to access not only the Upper Falls, but Glenn Iris Inn and Middle Falls. Right from the parking lot you catch glimpses of the Upper Falls with the railroad tracks in the distance watching over these powerful waterworks. The trail was closed so we weren’t able to get as high up as we wanted, but the views were still beautiful.
Middle Falls. You’ll catch a glimpse of these on your way to the Upper Falls, but it’s best to walk over from the Upper Falls to take in the Middle Falls, which might be even more spectacular than the Upper Falls! You’re able to walk around these falls, taking in a double rainbow, catching some of the mist and just swooning over the beauty of these falls.
Glenn Iris Inn. A short walk away from the Middle Falls you’ll find the Glen Iris Inn. Built in 1914 – this picture perfect inn overlooks the middle falls with a beautiful lookout perch. With outdoor seating and a restaurant the inn is also still serving to guests with it’s three stories and gorgeous interior architecture (the staircase was all wooden looking up all three floors!) A wedding was being set-up as we were there too and we even got to witness the first look, it was the perfect backdrop!
Inspiration Point. This came as a surprise, but needed stop. With a higher view of the middle falls, upper falls and the railroad trellis – this was definitely the show stopping view. There was also a trail that you could follow while soaking up the views of this spot the whole way!
Although the park will be closing soon in late fall, I can only imagine how beautiful these views are with the orange, red and yellows of the leaves changing with the season! We will definitely be going back to Letchworth State Park for some more hiking and taking in the beautiful works of this amazing planet!