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What to Do in Catskill: Here’s How to Spend a Day in This Charming Town

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This Greene County town is full of historic Hudson Valley landmarks, scrumptious upstate eateries, and a thriving craft beer scene.

Not to be confused with the Catskills region, Catskill is the darling town in Greene County that is just as much a hub for history as it is for up-and-coming restaurateurs. Like the west-of-the-river county as a whole, Catskill is charmingly low-key. While the rest of the Hudson Valley welcomes new developments, which come in the form of apartments, eateries, and hotels, the quiet town remains largely untouched. Instead, it nestles happily within the forested parks and preserves that surround it. Could it be come the next Hudson or Rhinebeck? Without a doubt. Until then, however, we’re happy to spend lazy Saturdays strolling from one attraction to the next in town.

9 a.m. – Breakfast at Ambrosia Diner

A classic Greek diner a short distance from Main Street, Ambrosia is open long hours – on Friday and Saturday! Sandwiches, pastries, and all-day breakfast make this place a must to fuel up for the long day to come.

321 West Bridge St, Catskill
518.943.1047

Summer: Sun-Thurs 7-12 a.m., Fri-Sat 7-1 a.m.
Winter: Sun-Thurs 7 a.m. – 11 p.m., Fri-Sat 7-12 p.m.

10:30 a.m. – Take a walk at RamsHorn-Livingston Sanctuary

Co-owned by Scenic Hudson and the Audubon Society of New York, this 612-acre bird sanctuary allows visitors to walk through woodland, shoreline, and tidal marsh in the hopes of spotting all manner of fowl, from herons to sparrows to a clutch of bald eagles. If you go, don’t forget to bring boots or old shoes: the trails have a habit of getting very muddy.

84 Dubois Rd, Catskill
518.325.5203

Open from dusk to dawn

12:30 p.m. – Lunch at La Casa Latina

If you’re craving delicious Mexican food, head straight to the heart of town. At La Casa Latina, feel free to munch on the tasty chips as you peruse the many choices on the menu, which range from chicken fajitas to mini chalupas and shrimp tacos.

1 Brandow Alley, Catskill
518.943.4333
Mon-Thurs 11 a.m. – 9 p.m., Fri-Sat 11 a.m. – 11 p.m.

Recent arrivals table slowly getting buried #booksellerlife

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1:30 p.m. – Shop the historic Main Street 

Catskill has one of the best shopping streets in the Hudson Valley. It’s only a compact half mile, but it boasts options to entice the most curious of customers. Stop in at Magpie Bookshop for a curated used selection, Spike’s Record Rack for ultra-cool vintage choices, Village Common Mercantile for local crafts and goods, Swamp Angel and Sister Salvage for antiques, and Kirwan’s for a variety of tabletop and board games.

3 p.m. – Visit the Thomas Cole House

The first, and, in some ways, the finest of the Hudson River School of painters, Cole colored many of the Valley’s most indelible images. In his historic house and studio visitors can learn about Cole and other School members, view important artworks, and look out onto the river. Tours are available May to October, while grounds are open year-round.

218 Spring St, Catskill
Hours for tours vary by month; grounds are open dawn to dusk 

Expressive #coxsackieny #skyandclouds #fall2018

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4:30 p.m. – Take a stroll at historic Coxsackie and waterfront

Undeveloped for many years, nearby Coxsackie has a wonderful historic district that extends right down to the river, with gorgeous homes, small stores, and a beautiful riverside park with a boat launch where a farmers’ market camps out weekly between May and October.

6:30 p.m. – Savor Polish food and live music at New York Restaurant

In this modern American eatery that has distinctly Polish twist, diners can start off strong with pierogi, kielbasa, and soft pretzels before moving on to a menu of salads, flatbreads, and hearty appetizers, all of which use locally-sourced ingredients. Many nights feature music from locals like the 3D Band and Coxsackie’s Shandy.

353 Main St, Catskill
518.943.5500

Sun 11 a.m. – 8:30 p.m., Mon, Tues, Thu 11 a.m. – 9 p.m., Fri-Sat 11 a.m. – 10 p.m.

8 p.m. – Get a drink at Crossroads

Crossroads Brewing Co. has grown dramatically since it began as a humble brewpub in nearby Athens. Down on the creek, in the former Daily Mail printing facility, you can find the brewery’s large-scale canning operation and taproom and sample one of the many IPAs, stouts, and pilsners in a friendly environment. Food trucks often serve snacks right outside.

201 Water St, Catskill
518.444.8277

Wed-Thurs 4-9 p.m., Fri 4-10 p.m., Sat 1-10 p.m., Sun 1-8 p.m. 

10 p.m. – Stay at Tiger House Inn

Just across the Rip Van Winkle Bridge, this historic inn, constructed as a hunting lodge in the Dutch Jacobian style, is one of the region’s classiest abodes. With fin-de-Siecle woodwork and stained glass windows – not to mention free WiFi and breakfast – there could be no more sumptuous place to bed down for a night in the Hudson Valley.

317 Allen St, Hudson
518.828.1321

Did we miss a spot? Let us know where to go to find the best of Catskill in the comments or by email at edit@hvmag.com.


Related: Here’s What to Do and Where to Go on a Day Trip to Troy