Everything You Need to Know About the Finger Lakes in the Fall

What’s your favorite season? If you love cool weather, pumpkin spice, and cozy sweaters, then fall is likely your favorite time of year. This season is a great relief from the summer heat and boasts some great things to do. Thinking about visiting the Finger Lakes in the fall? Let us help you plan with the family-friendly recommendations below. For more vacation inspiration, download our free Finger Lakes Vacation Guide! It’s filled with local insight into how to explore our area during each season! 

Download our Free Vacation Guide

Top 10 Things to Do in the Finger Lakes in the Fall 

Due to the circumstances surrounding COVID-19, some of the fall activities in the Finger Lakes may be adjusted or canceled to meet social distancing guidelines. We appreciate your understanding during this time! 

1. Fall Foliage 

The first two weeks of October are the peak time for leaf-peeping in the Finger Lakes region. You can enjoy the Finger Lakes fall foliage from the dock of your lakeside home or on an outdoor adventure. The chair lift at Bristol Mountain Fall Sky Rides is one of our favorite leaf-peeping experiences. While you’re there, you can take it to the next level by coasting through the trees on the zip line at their Aerial Adventures Park!  

2. Scenic Drives 

Explore more of our region of New York with a Finger Lakes scenic driveRoute 14S is one of our favorites! This scenic drive winds through the Seneca Lake Wine Trail and Watkins Glen State Park. Both destinations are especially beautiful in the fall!  

3. U-Pick Farms  

Nothing says “autumn” quite like the taste of a freshly baked apple pie or a spiced hot toddy. Get an unbelievably fresh taste of the flavors of fall with a u-pick experience in the Finger Lakes. Our area is home to several orchards and farms that are great for apple, grape, and pumpkin picking! 

4. Hiking Trails  

There’s no better time to explore the Finger Lakes by foot than on a crisp fall day. From picturesque gorges and waterfalls like those at Watkins Glen State Park to the gradual hiking trails of the Cummings Nature Center along Canandaigua Lake, there are trails to suit hikers of all skill levels. Along the way, take in the beautiful views of bright orange and yellow fall foliage! 

5. Wine & Grape Harvest  

Fall is one of the best seasons to visit the Finger Lakes. With more than 100 wineries throughout the region, you can taste a variety of award-winning wines during their peak harvest season. The grape harvest typically begins in the first week of September and lasts through the end of October as the different varieties ripen.  

6. Naples Grape Festival   

Located at the southern end of Canandaigua Lake, the town of Naples hosts an annual festival that celebrates the local grape harvest at the end of September. The Naples Grape Festival features live music, wine tasting, vendors, and, of course, a myriad of local grape fare. Enjoy this delicious event to kick-start the fall season! 

7. Corning Museum of Glass   

There are a variety of museums to explore throughout the Finger Lakes Region of New York. For the fall season, be sure to visit the Corning Museum of Glass for their glass harvest and glass pumpkin blowing events. 

8. Corn Mazes & Pumpkin Patches  

Pumpkin patches aren’t just for the little ones. Make a race out of a corn maze or see who can carve the best pumpkin for some fun off-lake activities during your fall stay. Many local markets now offer local wine and craft beers for a delicious fall pairing! 

9. Haunted History Trail of New York State 

The Finger Lakes has a long history of tales from the beyond. Fall is the perfect opportunity to get spooked by the history of the region. Here are a few of our favorite places to snag a scare: 

  • Haunted History Trail of New York State  
  • Mansion Mysteries at Sonnenberg Gardens 
  • Bristol Mountain’s Aerial Adventures  

10. Make Yourself at Home with Finger Lakes Premier Properties  

Need a place to stay in the Finger Lakes in the fall? Look no further than Finger Lakes Premier Properties! We offer a diverse portfolio of rental homes across the Finger Lakes region. With nearly 300 rental properties to choose from, you’re sure to find a home to fit your vacation style.  

Even better, fall kicks-off our off-season sales! Take advantage of the September Secret, when many of our homes begin to offer a one-night free special. Click here to see if your favorite home is running any special offers during your stay! 

Browse a full inventory of our Finger Lakes rental homes to start planning your trip! 

What is our September Secret?

It’s where September still feels like summer in the Finger Lakes, but offers “off season” rates. After Labor Day, vacation on your favorite Finger Lake while taking advantage of lower rates, property specials, and reduced traffic at parks, wineries, and restaurants.

Starting in September many of our homes begin to offer our ONE NIGHT FREE special. This offer is only available for select homes, so take advantage of it while availability remains.

The month of September typically features reduced traffic at favorite destinations. However, 2020 is the year of surprises so we cannot guarantee this will be true this fall.

BUT.. September is also the beginning of the wine harvest season. If you’re looking to experience Finger Lakes wine country, this is the time. During your exploration you’ll see grapes being harvested across our region in the early morning hours while it is still cool. You’ll smell the ripe grapes as you drive by vineyards and visit tasting rooms. Some wineries even offer tours of their production facility, but be sure to check ahead with COVID policies for 2020.

If you didn’t have a chance to visit the Finger Lakes this summer, don’t fear! September is still a wonderful option to take advantage of the last warm days of the year and create new adventures in the Finger Lakes.

BOOK NOW while availability remains. This secret won’t last long!

Celebrating July 4th in the Finger Lakes – 2020 Edition

Most of the annual July 4th celebrations including large events, parades, and firework displays have been canceled in the Finger Lakes region due to the COVID-19 restrictions. But that doesn’t mean we can’t still celebrate our pride for the USA.

For those seeking greater experiences, we’ve provided our recommendations for creating new patriotic traditions in the Finger Lakes.

Booking the Perfect Lake House

The dates surrounding the July 4th weekend are the most popular of the year for booking a lakefront vacation rental. With family travel plans being diverted this year because of COVID-19, you may still have a chance to secure the perfect home to enjoy a Finger Lakes Independence Day, but book soon!

The key to creating the perfect lakeside getaway is finding the home that checks all your boxes. Unlike hotels, vacation rental homes are not all created equal, but that is also part of the fun. Some families require open layouts with bedrooms on the first floor or level lakefronts for easy access for children. Many of our homes also offer virtual tours allowing you to tour the home before you book, ensuring it fits your vacation style. Identifying these needs will be key for an enjoyable getaway for everyone in your group and will also help our local vacation planners find the right home for you.

It’s all about the amenities

Get more out of your vacation by taking advantages of the additional amenities that come with most vacation homes. Many of our homes come with perks such as kayaks (non-motorized watercraft) and hot tubs. These are searchable features on our website. Some other key features include game rooms, lawn games, fire pits, and bonus lake houses. These amenities can be found in the property descriptions or the amenities section on the property pages.

More ways to get on the lake

Motorized boats are not included with any of our rentals. However, local marinas can help you get out on the lakes during your stay with rentals of boats, kayaks, and any accessory you need to enjoy the water during your stay. Like our rentals, these will also be reserved well in advance for the busy holiday weekend so please plan accordingly.

For expert help on creating the perfect Independence Day getaway, contact our local vacation planners who are familiar with all of our 280+ homes across the Finger Lakes.

Plan Ahead for Easy, Delicious, and Festive Meals

One of the best advantages of staying in a vacation home is you have a fully equipped kitchen and grill for making your favorite meals throughout your stay. But again, planning ahead is key especially with new COVID-19 guidelines in place for shopping.

In today’s digital world it is easier than ever to order groceries online and have them ready for curbside pick-up. Reduce the need to go into stores by using these methods to pick up all of the items you need for a delicious getaway. Search your route to your rental beforehand then see what options are offered or check out the list below:

  • Conesus Lake: West’s Surfine Food Mart,
  • Honeoye Lake: West Wise Honeoye
  • Canandaigua Lake: (North) Canandaigua Wegmans, Tops, Aldi’s, Walmart; (South) Rennoldson’s Market
  • Keuka Lake: (North) Tops, Morgan’s, Aldi’s, Oak Hill Bulk Goods; (East Lake) Olney Place; (South) Hammondsport Grocery
  • Seneca Lake: (North) Geneva Wegmans, Walmart, Sauder’s; (South) Top’s, Walmart
  • Cayuga Lake: (North) Waterloo Tops, Waterloo Walmart, Cayuga Corner, Sauder’s, Auburn Wegmans, Auburn Walmart; (East side) Union Springs Shurfine Supermarket, the Produce Place; (South) Ithaca Wegmans, Tops, Target, Aldi’s, Anabel’s Grocery, Green Star Food Co+op

Need some festive inspiration for what to serve through the July 4th weekend? Check out our Pinterest Board while you are creating your shopping list!

Creative Ways for a Memorable Lakeside Holiday

There is no doubt this will be one of the most memorable Independence Day’s in our Nation’s history. Make the most of social distancing by celebrating with a small group of your closest family and friends at your lake rental. Here are some of our guest’s favorite ways to celebrate at their lakefront vacation rentals:

  • Bring your favorite (most competitive) lawn game and plan a tournament
  • Create a Patriotic Picnic
  • Decorate your boat/kayak in red, white, and blue and create your own water parade
  • Patriotic Kid Crafts and Games
  • Watch a patriotic movie (Have a projector? Make an outdoor theater)
  • Create your own Finger Lakes wine/beer tasting by picking up similar styles from different tasting rooms (see below)
  • Spark up the sparklers at night
  • Lakeside campfire with s’mores

Explore the Finger Lakes Responsibly

If you choose to leave your lakeside rental this July 4th weekend and explore some of the natural wonders of our region, please plan ahead.

Parks, Trails and Waterfalls

Be aware that without the annual festivals and events, our popular parks will likely be busier than usual with locals and travelers all seeking a memorable holiday weekend. If you are staying through the week, planning on visiting these locations during a week day may be an option for less traffic. And although most parks have reopened, there are restrictions and new guidelines. Always research the venue prior to getting into the car to avoid closures.

For resources on finding trails and parks, visit:

Beverage Experience Seekers

Our region is hoping to be in Phase 3 of New York State’s reopening plan by July 4th, which includes tasting rooms across our wine trails and craft brew trail. However, each day is different and we cannot guarantee the availability of visiting tasting rooms. One thing is certain, tasting room policies, procedures and experiences will be much different this year with new protocols in place to keep staff and patrons safe.

As of right now, most tasting rooms are offering pick up and delivery options of your favorite craft drinks. While we understand it isn’t the same experience, perhaps picking up bottles of fresh vintages and enjoying them lake side may not be the worst way to savor the flavors of the Finger Lakes.

Below are links to the beverage trails for you to get the most current information on what will be available during your visit to the Finger Lakes.

Plan a Lakeside Celebration for Another Time

Without the organized parades and fireworks this year, who says you can’t create your own festive vacation on a different weekend of the summer. This will also provide you with more flexible dates with possible lower rates to get more out of your next vacation.

Don’t forget to take a peak at our specials page which includes Mini-week specials (stays of 6 days or less depending on the property) or deeper discounts on select lake homes.

If your reason for visiting the Finger Lakes includes must-have experiences such as wine tasting, museum touring, or sitting down at your favorite restaurant, stay up to date on the New York State’s Phases for reopening by visiting our COVID page.

Best Ways to Celebrate Memorial Day From Your (Vacation) Home

Each Memorial Day we recognize the bravery and sacrifice of the men and women who have served our country in grand, festive ways.. This year will look different as we all sacrifice many of our traditions and find new ways to celebrate and remember the meaning of the holiday.

New York State’s Governor Cuomo continues to urge residents across the state to minimize gatherings to 10 people or less, and practice responsible social distancing. Keep the essence of Memorial Day alive this year with some of our recommended ways to celebrate from your Finger Lakes vacation home.

Plan Ahead for a Stocked Fridge

Any vacation and celebration is largely circled around delicious dishes, recipes, and sweet treats. There is no change there for this year, except to do a little more planning ahead.

In today’s digital world it is easier than ever to order groceries online and have them ready for curbside pick-up. Reduce the need to go into stores by using these methods to pick up all of the items you need for a delicious getaway. Search your route to your rental beforehand then see what options are offered. Or click here for some local Finger Lakes resources.

While you’re preparing your shopping list, take a list at our Memorial Day Pinterest board for some savory inspiration.

One great advantage of renting a vacation rental is that your accommodations come equipped with a kitchen. All of our rental home kitchens include dinnerware, silverware, bake ware, utensils, and even a grill to accommodate your meal serving needs. However, experiencing local fare when traveling is an expected vacation experience.

Don’t worry, even though you may not be able to sit down in your favorite local diner or pub, you can still order takeout from many restaurants throughout our region. Click the links below for the local resources by lake:

Don’t forget the beverages!

Seneca Lake wine trail vacation rentals
Guest photo by Sandy B.

Our local wine trails, breweries and distilleries are also offering curbside and delivery options. Click on the link below for their resources:

Exploring the Finger Lakes

If you choose to leave your lakeside rental this Memorial Day weekend and explore some of the natural wonders of our region, please plan ahead. Perhaps this trip you forego the popular parks and instead explore some of the paths less taken.

No matter where you choose to trek, contacting the park ahead of time is recommended. Some parks have not opened this year because the trails do not allow enough space for safe social distancing. Other parks have reduced access or sometimes closed mid-day in order to eliminate overcrowding in popular settings.

For more information on where to go and the precautions parks are taking, click below.

Just Relax Lakeside

Seneca Lake vacation rental campfire
Guest photo by Tarun R.

You rented a lakeside vacation home, enjoy it! The lake itself provides plenty of entertainment for days. Take a look at the description of the vacation rental you reserved, and you may find some additional perks for added entertainment through your stay.

Many of our vacation rentals come with non-motorized watercraft including kayaks, paddle boards, canoes, etc. There is no better way to social distance than by being on the water! Better yet, pack a fishing pole and make sure your NYS Fishing License is ready for catching dinner from the lake.

Games rooms and lawn games are another feature to add some fun to stay. However, not all rentals provide these. If your family has a favorite game for some friendly competition, make sure to bring it from home.

There is no better way to end each day then to gather around a campfire as the sun sets behind the rolling hills. Most of our rentals provide fire pits, but double check. You’ll also want to buy local wood way from either a roadside stand or grocery store. Remember that shopping list, don’t forget the s’mores!

You can always relax in one of our rentals knowing we have the most dependable cleaning standards. We are confident in our services and even provide a housekeeping guarantee to ensure all of our guests feel safe and comfortable throughout their Finger Lakes vacation.

The Premier Advantage of Booking a Vacation Rental

If one thing is certain during these unprecedented times, it is that travel will look different going forward. We will be more conscious of space and human contact. Our choices of transportation, locations, and especially accommodations will have more inquisition in the planning stages of your next vacation. But yes, travel will happen.

While you are listing the needs and wants of your next getaway, a private home to host your next vacation may be key to creating the best trip yet. Here’s why staying at one of our rentals gives you a premier vacation advantage.

No Contact Check-in

From the moment you pull out of your driveway to the time you arrive at your lakefront rental, you will not come in contact with any of our staff. There is no lobby, no desk to check-in at, simply drive to your private home to check in. Key less entry systems are on all of our rentals, providing you less stress, convenience, and a safe start to your vacation.

Cleanliness Standards

The elephant in all our minds is the cleanliness of the vacation rental prior to arrival. We continue to maintain the highest housekeeping standards so that you’ll experience a sanitized, clean, and disinfected home to enjoy. We continue to use commercial grade disinfectant, and our housekeeping staff has increased their focus on “high touch” items like light switches, doorknobs, remotes, etc.  For more information on our cleaning standards, click below.

Private Spaces Inside and Out

Keuka Lake Vacation Rentals
“This house was perfect for our family! It is so beautiful inside. Everything was very clean and well kept. It felt like home. The mattresses were very comfortable, unlike some homes we have stayed at in the past. The kitchen was well stocked and had everything I needed to cook all the meals for the week. There is plenty of outside seating to accommodate all guests. We caught pike, large and smallmouth bass, and a catfish right off the dock. There were 2 kayaks that came with the property. We enjoyed the house so much we are going to book it for the same week next year. This home exceeded our expectations!”

Travel with the peace of mind knowing you don’t have to share a home with other guests or the owner of the rental like you would if you rent through VRBO/Airbnb. You’re also eliminating the contact you would have in lobbies or common areas of a hotel. The entire home is for your full enjoyment and relaxation.

In addition to the social distancing advantage, there are economic benefits of staying in a vacation rental when it comes to dining. All of our vacation homes come will fully equipped kitchens. You’ll eliminate the search for safe dining or take out and be able to cook every meal, snack, and baked dessert in the comfort of your own kitchen. If you plan ahead, you can even order all of your groceries online and pick them up curbside on your way to your rental.

Take a step outside of your rental to find your personal paradise. The only people you will be sharing the beach, porch, yard, outdoor kitchen with is the people in your group. No need to worry about crowded beaches, or your spot getting stolen from another vacationer. Some lakefront homes in our region are in close proximity to neighbors. Be sure to review the photos or ask our vacation planners if you’re looking for a secluded home, we have plenty of these too!

Entertainment is Included

Finger Lakes rentals
“We booked a Honeoye Lake home for a quiet week away. It was perfect. My favorite was taking our 2-year old son out for a paddle in the provided kayak each day. His favorite was probably the s’mores at night.” – L.B., September, 2014

One of the best benefits of staying in a vacation rental is you have the space and amenities to keep you entertained for days! Below is a list of commonly found amenities to help you enjoy your time on vacation safely.

  • Game rooms
  • Kayaks, canoes, paddle boards
  • Fire pits
  • Hot tubs
  • Fishing
  • Swimming
  • Free WiFi (for those that continue to work or school from home)

Many of our amenities are search options on our site. If you need assistance of finding the perfect home to suit the needs of your group, contact our vacation planners at 888-414-5253.

For more information on how to safely experience the Finger Lakes region through the COVID-19 changes, click here.

Search our entire vacation rental inventory by clicking book now below. No matter which rental you choose you will always receive the premier vacation rental advantage.

Coronavirus and the Finger Lakes

The safety of our guests, owners and staff has always been one of our core values.  In observance of the recommendations of the CDC, we are practicing social separation during the next 8-week Coronavirus (COVID-19) lifecycle peak, and as a company we are taking the following actions:

– Our employees are practicing safe social separation and working remotely (as appropriate).

– We continue to maintain the highest housekeeping standards so that you’ll experience a sanitized, clean, and disinfected home to enjoy. We continue to use commercial grade disinfectant, and our housekeeping staff will increase their focus on “high touch” items like light switches, doorknobs, remotes, etc. 

– We are providing specialized advice to our customers to ensure that the anticipated post-social separation pent-up demand can be accommodated. 

For Guests with a 2020 Reservation

We are closely monitoring the local and national COVID-19 situation.  We understand the uncertainty of it all. However, our region continues to be a low-risk area. 

At this time, we are recommending our guests hold off on changing their travel plans through the next 8-week COVID-19 lifecycle peak. With vacation rentals being the prefered accommodation for practicing safe distancing, we are anticipating an increase in demand and want to ensure our guests who already have reservations are able to keep their scheduled vacation.

To ensure the safety of our staff, guests, and owners, our Housekeeping Department will continue to maintain the highest housekeeping standards so that you’ll experience a sanitized, clean, and disinfected home to enjoy. We continue to use commercial grade disinfectant, and our housekeeping staff will increase their focus on “high touch” items like light switches, doorknobs, remotes, etc. We do not oursource any linens, towels, or cleaning supplies and have maintenance teams on hand around the clock to assure you have the best vacation possible.  

If you have any questions about your reservation, our Reservations Team are here to help you. Please feel free to call 888-414-5253 or email us at vacation@flpplake.com for assistance.  

Planning Your Next Finger Lakes Vacation

The Finger Lakes Region continues to be a favored “drive to” destination. Our vacation rentals offer open spaces, inhouse entertainment, and outdoor areas for families to practice safe distancing at a picturesque location.

In addition to the peaceful lakefronts, our region offers a variety of natural parks and recreation spots to create new experiences. Even though our vacation rentals offer fully equipped kitchens, we know our guests enjoy frequenting local restaurants. Fortunately, many are still offering takeout options. We are working on compiling these resources for your next visit. 

To ensure the safety of our staff, guests, and owners, when you stay in one of our vacation rentals you will have the piece of mind that:

– We offer keyless entry to a majority of our rentals. You will not need to check-in at our office or a front desk. We will provide you the keyless code prior to arrival so you can go directly to your vacation home and enter it at check-in time.

– Our Housekeeping Department will continue to maintain the highest housekeeping standards so that you’ll experience a sanitized, clean, and disinfected home to enjoy. We continue to use commercial grade disinfectant, and our housekeeping staff will increase their focus on “high touch” items like light switches, doorknobs, remotes, etc between every reservation. We do not outsource any linens, towels, or cleaning supplies and have maintenance teams on hand around the clock to assure you have the best vacation possible.

– We have a 24-hour Manager on Duty to provide assistance if needed.

– We offer and recommend Travel Protection Insurance for every new reservation.

With the current situation, we anticipate an increased demand for our vacation rentals in the near future. To ensure you and your family are able to enjoy a safe and memorable vacation at the home and dates of your choice, click here to begin planning your next stay with us. 

Finger Lakes COVID-19 Resources

For up-to-date information on the COVID-19 status, please use the resources below:

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)

Official website for New York State

Conesus Lake: Livingston County

Honeoye Lake: Ontario County

Canandaigua Lake: Ontario CountyYates County

Keuka Lake: Yates CountySteuben CountySchuyler County

Seneca Lake: Yates CountyOntario CountySchuyler CountySeneca County

Cayuga Lake: Seneca CountyCayuga CountyTompkins County

Wine Trails:

Finger Lakes Wine Country

Canandaigua Lake Wine Trail

Keuka Lake Wine Trail

Seneca Lake Wine Trail

Cayuga Lake Wine Trail

What to Do When You Vacation From Pittsburgh to the Finger Lakes

Are you looking to escape the city lifestyle for a week of relaxation? Make the trip from Pittsburgh to the Finger Lakes for a week of fresh air, nature, boating, art, food, and so much more! The Finger Lakes region is the perfect place to escape the hustle and bustle of Pittsburgh and is just a five-hour road trip away! 

For more help when it comes to planning your relaxing FLX retreat, make sure to take a look at our free Vacation Guide! We’ve created this guide so that you can cut out the stress of trip-planning and focus on the best activities. Our handy guide includes the best restaurants, attractions, outdoor activities, and entertainment in New York state! 

Download our Free Vacation Guide

Things to Do During Your Pittsburgh to Finger Lakes Getaway

The Finger Lakes’ close distance to Pennsylvania, being only about five hours away, makes it the perfect lake destination for your relaxing or adventurous getaway. Below, you’ll find some of our favorite things to do around the lakes!

Wine Trails

The Finger Lakes region is known for its abundant wine production. There are so many spectacular wineries and vineyards to explore on several different wine trails. Some wine trails to discover, include Seneca Lake Wine Trail, Cayuga Lake Wine Trail, and Keuka Lake Wine Trail.

As if all of these wine trails weren’t enough, there’s also a Finger Lakes Cheese Trail, as well as a Chocolate Trail in Corning, NY! It doesn’t get any better than that! 

Corning Museum of Glass

Art lovers and science lovers alike can agree that the Corning Museum of Glass is a must while exploring upstate New York. You can choose from a variety of activities, including touring the museum or even creating your own glass sculptures!

Corning Museum of Glass offers in-depth glass blowing demos that allow you to make your own pendants, ornaments, and more! Plus, they make perfect gifts to bring back home!

Outdoor Recreation on the Finger Lakes

There are so many fun ways to spend a day out on any of the Finger Lakes. Thrill-seekers will love jet skiing or tubing down the wispy lakes, while those looking for a peaceful morning of serenity might want to try kayaking or canoeing.

Many of our lake rentals offer complimentary watercraft, such as kayaks, canoes, and rowboats! Plus, you’ll find some vacation homes also come with their own private docks. If not, you can always find kayak rentals, boat rentals, and more from local businesses!

Relax in the Best Finger Lakes Vacation Rentals

lake effect vacation rental exterior

Stretch your legs after a road trip from Pittsburgh to the Finger Lakes, and relax in a luxury vacation rental on the lake! Our vacation rentals at Finger Lakes Premier Properties feature premium amenities like private docks, complimentary watercraft, hot tubs, game rooms, full kitchens, and more!Reserve our Lake Effect rental on Canandaigua Lake for the full lake effect. Experience ultimate relaxation when you gather the family at this four-bedroom dream home. You’ll be near so many Finger Lakes attractions, and it’s only 20 minutes from Geneva, NY. So, what are you waiting for? Check our availability and book your Finger Lakes vacation today!

browse our full list of properties

Finger Lakes Wine Varieties You Need to Try

From the rolling hills of vines to the long and wispy lakes, the Finger Lakes is one of the best New York vacation destinations. One of its most unique traits is its beautiful wine trails. You can explore the Finger Lakes wine varieties when you travel the Cayuga Lake Wine Trail, Seneca Lake Wine Trail, or Keuka Lake Wine Trail. On these trails, you’re likely to come across wine varieties like riesling, chardonnay, pinot noir, cabernet franc, French-American, and Native American varietals.

But, before you hit the trails, you can start planning your wine-lovers’ getaway with our free Vacation Guide. We’ve put together the ultimate vacation-planning tool to help you create an itinerary full of the best attractions, outdoor activities, shopping, entertainment, and restaurants in the Finger Lakes region.

Download our Free Vacation Guide

Finger Lakes Wine Varieties

European Varieties

The Finger Lakes wine country is known for its vast selection of riesling and chardonnay wine. Vitis Vinifera grapes are plentiful in the region of upstate New York and usually become dry or semi-dry wines.

European Varieties Include:

  • Cabernet Franc
  • Cabernet Sauvignon
  • Gamay
  • Lemberger
  • Merlot
  • Pinot Noir
  • Chardonnay
  • Gewurztraminer
  • Riesling

Native American Varieties

Sparkling wines are top-rated on our wine trails. If you’re familiar with the history of the Finger Lakes and the names of all of our lakes, it’s no surprise that we have fantastic Native American varietals. The majority of these wines have a strong grape flavor and aroma.

Native American Varieties Include:

  • Catawba
  • Concord
  • Isabella
  • Vincent
  • Delaware
  • Diamond
  • Niagara

French American Varieties

In contrast to the Native American types, French American varieties have less of a grape flavor. Many of the red wine varietals have a peppery flavor, while many of the white wines have a fruity flavor and floral aroma.

French American Hybrid Varieties Include:

  • Baco Noir
  • Chambourcin
  • Chancellor
  • Dechaunac
  • Marechal Foch
  • Rougeon
  • Cayuga White
  • Melody
  • Seyval Blanc
  • Vidal Blanc
  • Vignoles
  • Traminette

Wineries, Vineyards, and Tasting Rooms

Lakewood Vineyards

Lakewood Vineyards in Watkins Glen is a stand-out vineyard on the Seneca Lake Wine Trail. This family-owned business has been growing grapes along Seneca Lake since 1952. You can take a guided tour and tasting, or bring a large group to their Wine Cellar Tasting room for flights of wine. 

Fox Run Vineyards

Discover Fox Run Vineyards, an award-winning wine lovers attraction, along Seneca Lake. You can take a detailed tour of the winery and vineyards, or visit in August for the Glorious Garlic Festival for food, wine, and live music!

Un-wined in the Best Finger Lakes Vacation Rentals

vacation rental on lake with dock

Finger Lakes Premier Properties offers stunning lake homes spread throughout the Finger Lakes Region. That way, you can choose the vacation rental that best suits your style, or stay near the FLX attractions that interest you the most! Heron House is in the heart of the Seneca Lake Wine Trail and can accommodate eight people. This gorgeous home has impressive views of the lake, as well as phenomenal amenities. Tell stories around the fire pit or let the kids release their energy on the pirate ship playground. It’s the perfect setting for your family vacation. If you’re ready to book your lake-cation, check our availability and reserve your getaway today!

browse our full list of properties

Here Are the Best Things to Do in Corning, NY

Experience America’s Most Fun Small Town when you explore Corning in the southern Finger Lakes region. From glass blowing to hiking to wine tasting, there’s never a shortage of things to do in Corning, NY! But, if you do decide to venture away from this fun-filled town for a little bit (since it’s close to places like Keuka Lake or Watkins Glen), make sure to take a look at our free Vacation Guide to the Finger Lakes. It includes local favorites when it comes to the best restaurants, attractions, outdoor adventures, and wine trails along the lakes.

Download our Free Vacation Guide

Things to Do in Corning, NY

History, Art, and Culture in Corning

Corning Museum of Gass

It’s something we use every day, but do you understand what goes into the making of glass? It’s a fascinating process that you have to see for yourself! Corning Museum of Glass offers live glass demos any time or day of the week, or you can explore the art galleries that date back centuries.

Once you’re ready to try your hand at glassworking, you can make your own beautiful glass art. With a hands-on glass blowing lesson, make an intricate ornament, bead, pendant, or tumbler to remember your time in Corning. Or, give someone the perfect glass art gift!

Heritage Village

Step into history and explore the Heritage Village of the Southern Finger Lakes. The historic area all started with the Benjamin Patterson Inn in 1796 and continued to expand as several other buildings joined the village. You can take a one-hour guided tour, and discover the Browntown Schoolhouse, Cooley Blacksmith Shop, garden, general store, and more. 

Outdoor Recreation in Corning

Spencer Crest Nature Center

Looking for a little bit of fresh air and sunshine? You can explore 250 acres of natural systems and displays at Spencer Crest Nature Center. Walk the dog on some of their gorgeous hiking trails, visit the museum, or try x-country skiing in the winter months!

Food and Wine in Corning

Gaffer District

Explore downtown Corning, New York, and visit Gaffer District. This delightful area has some of the best small businesses, Instagrammable streetscapes, restaurants, and boutiques.

Chocolate Trail

The first thing you need to do in the Gaffer District for anyone with a sweet tooth is travel the Chocolate Trail. For blocks, you can encounter the most decadent and delectable chocolate in all of Corning. If your mind is limited to believing chocolate is only for eating, think again! On the Chocolate Trail, you’ll also discover chocolate soap, cigars, and mixed drinks!

There may be tons of trails to look out for in the Finger Lakes – chocolate trails, hiking trails, cheese trails, but one of the most popular Finger Lakes trails are the wine trails! Finger Lakes wine country is a must, so make sure to check out the Cayuga Lake Wine Trail, Seneca Lake Wine Trail, and Keuka Lake Wine Trail for the finest wine in New York!

Relax in a Luxury Finger Lakes Vacation Rental

Unwind after a day of exploring the charming town of Corning in a luxury Finger Lakes Vacation Rental. Our vacation homes are the best place to rest your head and recharge before a new day of lake adventures. We offer gorgeous lakefront rentals in New York that allow you to be close to the best outdoor recreation, shopping, and historic sites. So, what are you waiting for? Check our availability and start planning your dream lake-cation today!

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Philadelphia to Finger Lakes: Why This is the Getaway You Need Right Now

If you need to take a break from the daily stresses of living in a big city, make the road trip from Philadelphia to the Finger Lakes. The four-and-a-half-hour journey is worth it! Plan a trip to the Finger Lakes region in New York for a relaxing and much-needed getaway. Say goodbye to skyscrapers and hello to towering trees of green or orange. A relaxing retreat awaits by the lake!

We want to eliminate any stress that comes with planning a trip, so we’ve created a free Vacation Guide to the Finger Lakes. In the travel guide, you’ll have access to the best restaurants, outdoor activities, and breathtaking landscapes. Take a look and start planning your FLX getaway!

Download our Free Vacation Guide

Philadelphia to the Finger Lakes: Where You Need to Go

A Finger Lakes vacation is exactly what you need – fresh air, sunny skies, calm lakes, and great times. Upstate New York is not the stereotypical picture you might have of New York state. You won’t find towering buildings, chaotic traffic, and masses of people rushing from place to place.

The lakes are a place to relax and unwind before returning to reality. Here are some cool spots you should add to your itinerary!

Ithaca, NY

Experience a picturesque, college town in the Finger Lakes when you visit Ithaca, NY. This area, just south of Cayuga Lake, has so many fantastic things to do

Wine lovers should explore the longest-running wine trail in the United States, the Cayuga Lake Wine Trail, for a day of wine tasting. If you like art, the Herbert F. Johnson Museum of Art at Cornell University has artwork dating back thousands of years!

Love an outdoor adventure? Good, because Ithaca has numerous outdoor recreational areas! Ithaca Falls, Robert H. Treman State Park, and Buttermilk Falls State Park are just some of the great places to take a hike.

Watkins Glen, NY

Just below the stunning Seneca Lake is a village full of exciting attractions and beautiful scenery, Watkins Glen. One of the most prominent attractions south of Seneca Lake is Watkins Glen International. Did you know you can feel like a professional NASCAR driver and Drive the Glen? It’s a unique experience you must try!

Or, head to Watkins Glen State Park Gorge for a day of fresh air and hiking with your loved ones.

Geneva, NY

Foodies, this is for you! On the opposite end of Seneca Lake is Geneva, NY, known for its fresh farm-to-table cuisine. Expose your palate to some of the most extraordinary restaurants in the Finger Lakes like F.L.X. Table, Halsey’s Restaurant, or Beef & Brew.

Or, if you’re looking for fun for the whole family, see a show at Smith Center for the Arts. This venue puts on phenomenal theatre, music, and film events (kid-friendly shows, too!)

Unwind at the best Finger Lakes Vacation Rentals

Experience a vacation like no other when you book a luxury vacation rental on the water. Finger Lakes Premier Properties offers stunning and large lake homes, perfect for your family getaway.

sunset over Keuka Lake

Reserve our Summer Cove rental on Keuka Lake for expansive water views, a 110-foot beach, two docks, and lawn furniture for maximum relaxation!

It’s the perfect setting to gather the family and enjoy your time together with nature. Take one look at the soothing water, and forget all of your daily troubles. The ultimate stress-relieving getaway awaits in the Finger Lakes. Check our availability and book your retreat today!

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