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Length of Stay/Ideas for family vacation in Saratoga Springs

Palm Beach Gardens
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Length of Stay/Ideas for family vacation in Saratoga Springs

I would like to know how many days/nights our family of five should stay in Saratoga Springs. It will be my husband and I and our 3 daughters (ages 12, 16 & 19). I know we want to go to the races one day, maybe visit Lake George another day, biking one day and any other suggestions would be greatly appreciated. Is there any other things to do close by that would be worth the drive for us? I already booked 6 nights at The Grand Pavilion Hotel but can cancel if that is too many nights. I would appreciate any suggestions. Thanks.

Vestal, New York
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1. Re: Length of Stay/Ideas for family vacation in Saratoga Springs

Thatcher State Park and Thompson Lake State Park about 45 minutes south, would be worthwhile. There are great views and a neat trail (Indian Ladder) at Thatcher and a nice beach area at Thompson Lake.

Fort Ticonderoga and Crown Point Historic Site (opposite end of Lake George from Lake George village) would be an interesting stop and the drive along the lake is beautiful.

The drive up to Blue Mountain Lake in the Adirondacks is beautiful and the Adirondack Museum there is excellent. There is a reasonable hike up to the top of Blue Mountain that yields stupendous views. In that same area is the Sagamore Great Camp (owned at one point by the Vanderbilts), which is an evocative stop with an informative tour. This drive would be 1.5 hours (one way) but well worth it; this is my favorite section of a beautiful region.

Many of the Hudson Valley towns to the south have pleasant downtowns (such Hudson, Rhinebeck) and there are many mansions that can be toured if that appeals.

Edited: 04 May 2016, 08:50
Saratoga Springs...
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2. Re: Length of Stay/Ideas for family vacation in Saratoga Springs

Great suggestions above from rjr! What are your interests? Hiking, history, shopping, etc...

Will you be visiting in late July or early August or late August? There are events at SPAC like the NYC ballet, Philadelphia Orchestra, and rock concerts. http://www.spac.org/events For your bike ride, consider a tour of the Saratoga National Historical Park https://www.nps.gov/sara/index.htm Also, if your kids are adventurous, consider s visit to Adirondack Extreme https://www.adirondackextreme.com There are shopping outlets nearby. http://www.factoryoutletsoflakegeorge.com Take a boat cruise on Lake George. http://www.lakegeorgesteamboat.com Or drive up Prospect Mtn lakegeorgeguide.com/regional-area-info/… Do a self-guided tour of the springs: saratoga.com/guide/health-mineral-springs.cfm Visit the geysers or take a dip in one of the pools in Spa State Park. http://www.nysparks.com/parks/saratogaspa Yaddo is a wonderful spot to visit http://www.yaddo.org The Tang Museum and the Hyde Museum are fantastic local art museums https://tang.skidmore.edu http://www.hydecollection.org If you have not visited Lake Placid, it is worth a day trip. I also love taking the ferry to Burlington for a day trip in the summer. If you are interested in hiking and/or museums, please let us know for suggestions. Have fun!

Edited: 04 May 2016, 09:35
Albany, NY
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3. Re: Length of Stay/Ideas for family vacation in Saratoga Springs

Lots to do! And great suggestions above. Here are a few more:

Moreau State Park is just north of Saratoga Springs, and while it doesn't have the views of Thacher, it has a beach area and some lovely trails around the lake and is only a few minutes north of Saratoga.

You can go tubing on the Hudson River with one of the two tubing companies in nearby Lake Lucerne (Tubbytubestubing.com or adktubing.com).

Nobody mentioned Six Flags Great Escape, but if your kids are amusement and water park fans, that is a fun day out, and is only about 15 minutes from Saratoga. And in addition to Adirondack Extreme for thrill seekers, there is a new "fierce" zipline coming to Lake George this summer. (http://www.adkeagleflyer.com/)

There are a number of places to go horseback trail riding in the Lake George/Lake Luzerne area.

In addition to Lake George village, Bolton Landing (about 10 minutes north on Lake George) has a great little village with interesting shops and one of my kids favorite candy stores.

There are lots of walks and hikes throughout the area that could keep you busy for a week. And the shops and restaurants in Saratoga Springs can keep anyone busy for a while!

Enjoy your trip!

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Albany, New York...
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4. Re: Length of Stay/Ideas for family vacation in Saratoga Springs

You can easily entertain a family for a week in the Saratoga Springs area. The suggestions listed above are great! My top pics for a family would be:

Day 1: Morning lunch at Ravenous in Saratoga, followed by a day at the Race Track. Mom can get Ice Cream in the evening while dad smokes a cigar at the place on Broadway. Then go to dinner and listen to some live music at Gaffneys (family-friendly, large patio)!

Day 2: Boat tour on Lake George, followed by mini putt and arcade in the Village of Lake George. There are plenty of places to eat up in Lake George, including a renovated A&W drive-in!

Day 3: A hike somewhere. Check out Thatcher Park, Plotters Kill Preserve, Huyck Preserve, Black or Tongue mountains. There is a bike path going from Lake George to Glens Falls.

Day 4: Great Escape amusement park (and water park!) followed by dinner in Saratoga.

Day 5: History tour! Check out the Saratoga Springs History Museum, Yaddo, Oakwood Cemetery in Troy (followed by lunch at Dinasaur BBQ in Troy), then the New York State Museum in Albany. If you end your day in Albany, grab dinner in Albany and see a show at the Palace Theater.

Day 6: Spend a day being lazy in the pools at the Saratoga Spa State Park. (Send mom off to the Lincoln baths nearby for a little pampering!) There are some nice hiking trails in this park, so you can spend an hour looking at the geysers. Spend your night at the rodeo at either the Painted Pony or Double M Ranch.

Day 7: If the weather is nice, rent a boat and take it out on Saratoga Lake and do some fishing. Or, an alternate idea: Take your kids to the Museum of Science (MiSci) in Schenectady. There are some awesome places to eat in Schenectady (you can really take your pick). Ice cream at Jumpin' Jacks in the afternoon! If it's a weekend day, check out roller skating at Guptils or an old-fashioned drive-in movie theater in Malta.

See?? It's a full week of awesome family adventure!

Saratoga Springs...
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5. Re: Length of Stay/Ideas for family vacation in Saratoga Springs

It is hardly ever mentioned by anyone that lives around here. But the battle of saratoga took place above a town called victory. It is a shame that many people do not realize that this federal park sits along the Hudson. Pick up a picnic basket and head out to the battlefield. Beautiful land where there is a tremendous chance of seeing deer and other natural wildlife. Ranked in the top 10 most significant battles in world history. Worth checking out.

Chestertown, New...
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6. Re: Length of Stay/Ideas for family vacation in Saratoga Springs

I have several other suggestions:

The Old Bryan Inn is within walking distance of The Grand Pavilion hotel and is reasonably priced good food with something for the entire family.

If you are there on a Saturday, make sure you visit the Saratoga Farmer's Market--just a block away from your hotel. There is a very good food tour that starts there every Saturday at 11. www.saratogafoodtours.com

Another thing fun for the family is ghost tours every Friday and Saturday night--also within walking distance


Saratoga Springs are a perfect place for the family. Have fun


Palm Beach Gardens
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7. Re: Length of Stay/Ideas for family vacation in Saratoga Springs

Thank you so much for all your suggestions! We will try to do as many of these things as possible. We ended up booking 5 nights at the Grand Pavilion Hotel in August so it seems like we will be very busy while we are there. Again, thank you for your help.

New York City, New...
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8. Re: Length of Stay/Ideas for family vacation in Saratoga Springs

All really great suggestions. For the local flavor: Humpty Dumpty ice cream and Shirleys for breakfast.

A visit to the State Park (Spa State Park) is always worthwhile. Golf is available at a 9 hole and 18 hole course. Also in the Park is the Victorian pool and there are spas still running that offer the mineral water that Saratoga is famous for. Explore the area near the Gideon Putnam Hotel. You can also sample some of the water from the geysers that flow freely in the Park as well. There is also a car museum in the old bottling plant.

Make sure to check out Congress Park located downtown Saratoga. Beautiful park with lots of history. Bring a small cup to sample the many natural springs in and around the Park. Look for the Million dollar staircase and Spit & Spat!

Other adventures not too far away but would be a day trip from Saratoga:

Ausable Chasms

Howe Caverns

Natural Stone Bridge and Caves

Enjoy your stay in Saratoga and upstate NY!

9. Re: Length of Stay/Ideas for family vacation in Saratoga Springs

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