Late Summer Getaway to the Hudson River Valley

The marriage of Chelsea Clinton in Rhinebeck, New York brought the whole Hudson River Valley into the spotlight. We decided to make this a weekend getaway a few years ago. I do a lot of research before I visit an area especially when we are going with friends which was the case this time. We live in Connecticut so it really was an easy drive. You just go out Interstate 84 and then take Route 9 North once you get to Fishkill.

We began our weekend on Friday by having lunch at the Culinary Institute of America. This is something that you have to plan well in advance, actually months is not a bad idea. Dining here is very popular and if you don’t plan ahead you may not get the restaurant of your choice. Before you decide which one you want to dine at, be sure to check the dress code, yes some of the restaurant have a dress code.

It was August when we were there and we wanted to be able to wear casual clothes so we chose to dine at American Bounty Restaurant. It was one of the highlights of the weekend and I highly recommend that if you are going to be in Hyde Park you plan to dine here.

The Hudson River Valley offers many places to visit. We had to limit ourselves to just a few since we didn’t have that much time. Several historic mansions are perfect for a visit. We decided to limit ourselves to the Vanderbilt Mansion and the Italianate Gardens. The Mansion has a beautiful location on the Hudson River and it is quite interesting to see how the other half lived. It was very hot inside the mansion however so I would recommend a visit in the fall when heat isn’t such an issue. The gardens in August were gorgeous.

On Sunday we also visited the Samuel Morse home which was quite interesting as well. Several important homes in the area that we didn’t get to include Springwood, FDR’s home and Eleanor Roosevelt’s home Val-Kil. We opted to go to the Old Rhinebeck

Aerodrome since one of our friends is more of an airplane enthusiasts then a historic homes person.
The aerodrome is a great place for the whole family. Not only are there a lot of airplanes on the ground but your ticket gets you a seat at the air show.

If you enjoy shopping, downtown Rhinebeck is lots of fun, there are plenty of small shops to poke around in. On the way home we also stopped at the Millbrook Vineyard and took a tour through their operation. You also get to sample some of their very fine wines as well as learning about the production and bottling of wine.

The only really bad part of our weekend was my choice of where to stay. I am usually so particular about our accommodations that I can’t imagine how I went so wrong here but I did. I chose Le Chambord Inn and it was so much less than expected. We were in what can only be called a motel room not an inn and the included breakfast was uninspired to say the least.

We could have had a much better accommodation for the price we paid and been made to feel much more welcome.

The Hudson River Valley has a lot to offer any visitor in just about any season. Located just an hour north of New York City it is a little piece of heaven that several famous people obviously recognized.


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