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Charming Small Towns for the Holidays in New York State

December 3, 2018 Destination New York, Destination North America No Comments Email Email

It’s the most wonderful time of the year and with it comes the hustle and bustle of the holidays. Get away from it all in one of New York State’s charming small towns this winter. From special events and live performances to fireworks and parades, ring in the holiday season with your loved ones and check out the list below of some of the best small towns to visit in New York.


Experience Northeast’s largest free holiday festival, complete with more than 100 live performers sharing their holiday spirit at the 36th Annual Troy Victorian Stroll. Eat, drink and shop ‘til you drop as you walk through town. The celebration will be held on Sunday, December 2, and welcomes locals and visitors alike.

Rhinebeck & Kingston

An old Dutch tradition in the Hudson Valley, Sinterklass is a two-city celebration that pays tribute to the Dutch patron saint of children and sailors. The Sinterklass Celebration has deep roots going back over 300 years when the Dutch settlers arrived in Rhinebeck, New York.  The lively party starts in Kingston, where Sinterklass will have a send-off on November 24, and ends in Rhinebeck, where the crowds will celebrate his arrival on Dec. 1.  The fun holiday celebration is a rich blend of old and new in the Hudson Valley.


The village of Owego is set to sparkle this holiday season with their popular festival, Lights on the River. Taking place December 7, the event promises an array of activities for the whole family, festive decorations, live reindeer and a dazzling firework show by the riverside. Come join the fun!


Jump into the holidays with Christmas Past to Skaneateles, where Dickens Christmas comes to life every Saturday and Sunday from November 24 through December 24. Celebrating its 25th anniversary, the celebration lets the areas’ businesses give gifts to the local patrons for their continued support over the years and share the story of Charles Dickens and his cast. Don’t miss out on the wonderful food, unique shopping, live music and special events like ‘Dinner with Dickens and Friends’, which takes place at the Mirbeau Inn and Spa on December 5.

Lake Placid

Head up north to the Lake Placid Holiday Village Stroll, December 8-10, for a family and couples weekend full of events, entertainment, parties, dining specials and shopping in this fairy-tale winter wonderland. Just for kids, Santa will be making a special appearance in several locations throughout the weekend, while couples can enjoy dining specials and live entertainment into the late evening hours.

Saratoga Springs

This holiday season is packed with wonderful festivities in the small town of Saratoga Springs. Exciting events take place throughout town starting this week, including the Saratoga Holiday Craft Marketplace for unique holiday shopping, Tree Lighting Ceremony, a round-trip ride on the Train To Christmas Town and more! And if you stay through the holidays, you must catch First Night Saratoga on December 31, the largest New Year’s Eve event outside of New York City that brings live music, comedy acts, magic shows and fireworks to ring in 2019.

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