The fifth largest city in the state, the Salt City offers the cultural and business advantages of a midsize city, while being surrounded by expanses of open space and wilderness - a.k.a. the best of both worlds.
Green Lakes State Park
Located just east of the city of Syracuse, Green Lakes features two glacial lakes surrounded by forest. It also offers a beach, 18-hole golf, camping, fishing, canoe/kayak rentals, and 10 miles of trails for hiking or cross country skiing. It gets its name from its vibrant blue/green color, which is due to high levels of calcium carbonate.
Everson Museum of Art
Located in southeast Downtown Syracuse, the Everson houses roughly 11,000 pieces of art, including paintings, sculpture, video, and one of the largest collections of ceramics in the country.
New York is home to over 2,000 waterfalls, several of them being right here in Central New York. Pictured is from Chittenango Falls State Park, which houses a 167-foot waterfall. Other notable waterfalls within driving distance include Taughannock Falls, Watkins Glen, Letchworth, Salmon River Falls, and many more.
Hiking in CNY
Central New York has a number of beautiful hiking trails, including Clark Reservation, Onondaga Creekwalk, Erie Canal, Three Falls Woods, Whiskey Hollow, Rand Tract Park, Baltimore Woods, Highland Forest, and many more within driving distance of Syracuse.
Beaver Lake Nature Center
Located about 15 minutes from downtown Syracuse, Beaver Lake is a 661-acre natural area that has something going on nearly every day of the wee. This is a nature lover's paradise, housing more than 200 bird species and over 800 plant varieties. There is also a 200 acre glacial lake that is a migratory stop for Canadian geese, as well as an opportunity for exploration by kayak or canoe.
Destiny USA Mall
This huge mall is the largest shopping center in the state and one of the largest in the US, and offers not only tons of your favorite stores but also more than a dozen restaurants, lots of nightlife and entertainment, discounted outlet stores, and Wonderworks - which has over 100+ hands on science exhibits plus laser tag, a ropes course, and a 6D motion ride.
There are multiple orchards where you and your family can pick your own apples! The most popular orchard is Beak and Skiff, which in addition to apple picking also has its own brewery and bakery, a treehouse for the kids that has rides and games, and hosts concerts. There are also other farms close by that offer many other fruits for you to pick, including strawberries, blueberries, and raspberries.
Syracuse and its surrounding towns have plenty of beaches, including Fair Haven, Sylvan Beach, Green Lakes, Oneida Shores, Jamesville beach, and more. Pictured is from Lake Ontario, which is about a 1 hour drive from Syracuse.
Several outdoor festivals such as the Chinese Lantern Festival, The Great New York State Fair, Taste of Syracuse, music festivals, and more take place during the summer and fall. There is also a Renaissance Faire in Sterling, NY, which is about an hour drive from Syracuse!
Located in the heart of downtown Syracuse, this theatre is not only a great place to catch a show, but it is also listed on the National Register of Historical Places. It opened in 1928, and was called "the last word in theatrical ornateness and luxuriousness." The interior of this theatre truly takes your breath away.
Central New York also houses several swimming spots underneath waterfalls! Delphi Falls, Endfield Falls, Buttermilk Falls, and Filmore Glen are just a few spots near Syracuse.
Downtown Syracuse has a bustling night life with many restaurants and bars, including Three Lives - a video game themed full service bar and arcade, Al's Wine and Whiskey Lounge, and more. There are also several places to catch a show, including Westcott theatre and Funk n' Waffles.