If you’re not from the East Coast, Fall Break can bit a bit of a lonely experience– who wants to have Cornell all to themselves? If you’re on campus (with a car on-hand) and need a guide to beat the fall blues, here are the best local places to explore over this break.
1Make ‘Em Wish They Were Here: Seneca Lake Wine Trail
Let your taste in wine guide you through the Seneca Lake Wine Trail. Practice what you’ve been learning in Intro to Wines this semester, and maybe even buy some to tide you over for when classes start up again. Even though the trail starts about 40 minutes outside of Ithaca, all its wineries are close together, and offer their own gorgeous valley and lake views.There are over 35 wineries around Seneca Lake–and there are still four other Finger Lakes you could explore.
2While It’s Not Freezing: Watkins Glen State Park
Nineteen waterfalls, two-hundred foot cliffs, and dozens of trails? Watkins Glen State Park was voted the third-best State Park in the Continental US for a reason. We may boast about the gorges here in Ithaca, but they don’t compare to the natural wonders in Watkins Glen. Whether you’re camping, climbing, or exploring the trails, Watkins Glen is an amazing place to visit that’s only 45 minutes off campus.
3Check out the Corning Museum of Glass
This one’s for the Archies and art majors on campus, or really anyone who likes looking at twinkly things. At the Corning Museum of Glass, you can not only learn about glass-making also walk around and look at some amazing modern art. You can also sign up to participate in a class to learn how to make your own glass sculptures to show off to your housemates when they come back from break.
4Find Your “Destiny” in Syracuse
While we all may love Ithaca, we have to admit that the shopping scene isn’t too great. For any shop-a-holics in withdrawal, the Destiny Mall in Syracuse will be your saving grace. With over 200 retailers and three stories stocked full of sales and food court goodies, you could definitely get lost in this place for hours… while also managing to spend all the money you’ve saved up this semester.
5Peace Out in the Adirondacks
If you get sick of the Finger Lakes, try to find a new favorite among Lake Placid, Lake George, or Lake Champlain in the Adirondack Mountains of upper New York. About four hours out of Ithaca, the Adirondacks are a must for anyone who wants to discover some of the most beautiful places in New York State–or the East Coast, for that matter. With Eco Tours, hundreds of trail offerings, and white river rafting, the Adirondacks are like outdoor Ithaca on steroids.
6Niagara Falls, Eh?
Get your passport ready– Canada is only three hours away. Besides taking your next profile picture in front of the falls or adventuring down under with the Maid of the Mist, most provinces in Canada also boast a legal drinking age of 19. If you’re an undergrad looking for a fancy occasion to order your first cocktail, it’s mounty territory all the way.