Outdoor Weekend Getaway in Woodstock and the Catskills
1Get into the laid-back Catskills vibe as you browse the eclectic shops and galleries along Tinker Street and Mill Hill Road in Woodstock, such as Loominus for luxe hand-woven chenille scarves and throws, Candlestock for unique beeswax candles and a peek at its 40-year-old "drip candle mountain", and the Woodstock Artists Association Gallery & Museum.
2Head to the 2012-opened Creekside Grille at the Woodstock Golf Club to enjoy sunset cocktails overlooking the greens and a babbling creek.
3Walk across the street to the yellow-clapboard farmhouse that's now Cucina, where the modern Italian menu of fresh seasonal ingredients can be enjoyed on the atmospheric porch in summer or next to a roaring fire in winter. Dishes may include a warm asparagus, snap pea, endive, and avocado salad with truffle vinaigrette or pork tenderloin with sage, prosciutto, and semolina gnocchi.
1Enjoy breakfast at Café Mezzaluna in Saugerties, a vibrant "bistro Latino" filled with artwork and music, where great coffee complements morning specialties such as strawberry-banana pancakes. If kayaking or hiking, order sandwiches to go to tide you over during your activities. Alternatively, in Woodstock, you can enjoy excellent coffee and generously sized breakfast burritos and more at Bread Alone.
2Take advantage of the gorgeous natural surroundings: In summer or fall, hike one-mile trail (roundtrip) to Kaaterskill Falls, the highest two-tiered cascade in New York, or kayak the Hudson River with Atlantic Kayak Tours, which offers paddles for beginners to experts. In winter or early spring cross-country ski at Mountain Trails Cross Country Ski Center in Tannersville, where you can traverse 22 miles of groomed trails, or downhill ski at nearby Belleayre (55 trails and eight lifts) or Hunter (55 trails and 11 lifts) mountains. Both ski areas also offer summer adventures, including mountain biking at Belleayre and ziplining at Hunter.
3Slip in another moment of rural reverie with a 60, 75- or 90-minute warm stone massage, using heated basalt river rocks and Native American traditions, at the River Rock Health Spa.
4For dinner, reserve a table at Joshua's Cafe, where the Mediterranean-influenced menu (Greek, Moroccan, Middle Eastern) is not only flavorful, but offers plenty of vegetarian options.
5Woodstock offers an array of performance and exhibition venues, and depending on your artistic or musical interests, you can check out the schedules at the following: Woodstock Byrdcliffe Guild, where you can enjoy contemporary art exhibits and classical music performances; the Bearsville Theater, for indie and alternative music; and the Woodstock Playhouse, for summer stock musical theater. You can also scan the line-up at the Belleayre Music Festival, a summer-long concert series, or if you're visiting in late May, join the festivities at Mountain Jam, the annual four-day rock extravaganza.
6Wander over to the Woodstock's retro Colony Cafe, with its circa 1929 ballroom, for one last cocktail and/or dessert. Tip: it's cash only.
1Relax and people-watch over Sunday Brunch at Woodstock's streamside The Bear Cafe, where chef Eric Mann serves up an array of classics, from eggs benedict to Hudson Valley duck confit.
2Browse for antiques at the Saugerties Antiques Center, which has 20 vendors under one roof, or at the Antiques Barn in New Paltz.
3For one last stop, don't miss cozy gastropub The Dutch Ale House to sample from 15 craft beers on tap alongside casual grub like a bacon, egg, and cheese burger with a side of fries.