Photo by LEGOLAND New York
The Orange County village joins destinations like Manitou Springs, Colorado, and Bath in Smithsonian Magazine‘s top 15 small towns.
Small towns in the Hudson Valley give it the character and charm that’s captured the nation’s heart as of late.
With the recent opening of LEGOLAND New York, it’s Goshen’s time to shine.
In its annual roundup, Smithsonian Magazine names Goshen as one of the 15 best small towns to visit in 2021. Smithsonian‘s love letter to tight-knit communities highlighted destinations that demonstrated immense perseverance and preservation in the face of the pandemic. Now that all restrictions in New York have been lifted, travelers are flocking to America’s coziest communities. Many Hudson Valley towns draw crowds due to their bustling main streets and unique shopping trips. Smithsonian recognized Goshen as one of the region’s most priceless gems.
Part of that is due to how incredibly delicious the food is. Goshen boasts several decadent dining options, with tons of atmosphere to boot.
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The Stagecoach Inn serves spicy short rib tacos, lemon-garlic gnocchi, and other elevated comfort food in its Dobbins Tavern. Formerly an 18th century stagecoach shop, the five-star inn hosts guests in five luxurious rooms. Diners celebrating a special occasions should also take a look at Catherine’s Restaurant, an eatery with the best of both worlds: a laid-back pub and a classy white-tablecloth restaurant. Kelley Jean’s fried pickle burger earned a spot on our guide to the best burgers in the Hudson Valley, and Craft 47’s small plants menu must be explored.
Due to its prime location in Orange County, Goshen serves as a gateway to the western Hudson Valley. Breathtaking wineries, fan-favorite hiking trails, and live music venues are all just a short drive from town. Smithsonian praised the Orange County Heritage Trail as a top attraction, since walkers and cyclists can tackle 18 miles of the scenic rail trail, which connects many local villages to Goshen. Plus, visitors can explore the one-of-a-kind black dirt farming region.
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Smithsonian also drew attention to Goshen’s rich history. In 1838, the village opened its half-mile harness racing track, effectively becoming the “Trotting Capital of the World.” Visitors can explore this fascinating tradition at the Harness Racing Museum. The Hall of Fame is a great way to learn more about the sport, along the many notable figures who paid Goshen a visit.
As for the future, leading vegetarian food company Amy’s Kitchen builds a new home in Goshen. LEGOLAND New York offers stays in its LEGO-themed hotel, along with unforgettable experiences on amusement park rides. Only time can tell what this small town will do next.