When Is the Best Time to Visit the Finger Lakes?

One of the most common questions we get asked is, “When is the best time to visit the Finger Lakes?” The answer is, of course, right now! The Finger Lakes is one of the best vacation destinations in the United States no matter the time of year. From the snowy winters to the warm summers, there are endless opportunities for fun in every season.  

For even more help planning your trip, request our free Vacation Guide! It contains our recommendations for the best of the Finger Lakes. From wineries and restaurants to hiking trails and boat rentals, you’ll find everything you need to plan the ultimate Upstate New York getaway! 

Download our Free Vacation Guide

When Is the Best Time to Visit the Finger Lakes?

Although anytime is a great time to come, the best time to visit the Finger Lakes is late spring through summer, or May through September. It’s an outdoor wonderland, full of recreational activities and water sports for any adventure lover! 

But, if you’re pinching pennies, you should avoid the summer months. Prices may go up between June and August when the kids are out of school. Plus, local attractions may be a little crowded during the summertime as well. 

Another thing to consider: thousands of tourists flock to the Finger Lakes region in the fall, too. Keep reading and we’ll explain why in a moment.  

Why Every Season Has Its Pros 

Spend Spring in the Finger Lakes 

Spring brings blooming flowers, warmer weather, and tons of great wine and food events in the Finger Lakes! 

From the Cayuga Lake Wine Trail Bacon on the Lakein to the Seneca Lake Wine Trail Pasta & Wine Weekend, there are so many excellent opportunities to enjoy a wine tour or wine tasting, and learn more about Finger Lakes wine country. 

Enjoy a Finger Lakes Summer Vacation 

The possibilities for adventure are endless when you visit the Finger Lakes in the summer! Hiking, kayaking, canoeing, swimming, and boating are hugely popular activities during this season. Make sure to dress accordingly because mornings can be a little chilly, but the afternoons warm up to the perfect temperature in the 80s. 

Get a bird’s eye view of the lakes and book a hot air balloon ride!. White-water rafting in Letchworth State Park is another awesome activity! The Finger Lakes Wine FestivalGrassRoots Festival, and the Canandaigua Lakefront Art & Music Festival all take place during this season, as well! Make sure to plan your summer vacation several months in advance. Many people dream of a summer vacation in the Finger Lakes, and accommodations book up quickly! 

Fall in Love with the Finger Lakes 

You’ll be hard-pressed to find more gorgeous fall foliage than in the Finger Lakes! Autumn brings changing leaves, pumpkin farms, and the end of the grape-growing season.  

Visitors come from all over to see the captivating fall foliage. The colors are absolutely breathtaking! Just beware of the crowds.  

There are some fantastic fall festivals and harvest celebrations taking place during September, October, and November. Consider taking a scenic drive around the area to take in the gorgeous sights. 

Cozy up in Winter 

Whether you’re celebrating the holiday season or you’re interested in winter sports, there are so many great reasons to visit the Finger Lakes during the chilly season! Browse through the Watkins Glen Village Christmas or the Canandaigua Christkindl Market. There’s no better way to get your holiday shopping done and have a fun day! Skiing, snowboarding, and snowshoeing are all popular activities in this region, so come prepared for a fun day of adventure! 

Or, explore the Finger Lakes wine trails this winter for the region’s best ice wines. 

Cozy Up or Cool Down With Finger Lakes Premier Properties 

Are you looking for the best place to stay in the Finger Lakes? Then browse through our inventory of homes! Finger Lakes Premier Properties contains the best selection of luxury rentals in the region! From pet-friendly to lakefront and more, our homes have everything you need for an outstanding getaway. Remember, the best time to visit the Finger Lakes is right now, so check out our catalog and book today! 

Are you looking for things to do in the Finger Lakes this weekend? Follow us on Facebook! We’re always posting upcoming events and festivals in the area. 

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Use Our Packing Checklist To Make The Most Of Your Vacation

When planning a trip to the Finger Lakes and staying in a vacation rental its hard to know what you need to bring because each rental is so different from the other. Click below to download our packing checklist to help guide you when packing for your stay at a FLPP rental. This list will ensure you have everything you will need for your upcoming stay in the Finger Lakes!

Finger Lakes Premier Properties FAQ’s
  • Do you provide coffee filters for the coffee pot or Keurig in the rental? – No, you need to bring coffee filters for whatever kind of coffee machine is in the kitchen. Please refer to the photos or amenities section on your rental property page on our website so you know which kind you need to bring.
  • When is check-in and check-out time? – Summer (April – September) check-in is 4:00 pm and check-out time is 10:00 am. – Spring, Fall, Winter (October – March) check-in is 3:00 pm and check-out time is 11:00 am.
  • Are linens provided with my rental? – Sheets, pillow cases, and a comforter are provided for all beds in the home. In addition, 1 set of towels is provided for the number of occupants allowed to stay in this home. If you use more than 1 towel when you shower please bring another. Beach towels are not provided, please bring these with you as well

Download our free Vacation Guide with local insight on the best places to play, dine, and more in the Finger Lakes region! 

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

2022 Vacation rental calendars are opening! Browse which homes are available below. Don’t forget to check back weekly.

Finger Lakes Grocery Delivery services

What is one of the top advantages of staying in a vacation rental? The kitchen! Our homes come with all of the appliances you’ll need to create a delicious vacation in the Finger Lakes. From pots and pans to the dishware, our kitchens are ready for you to cook, bake, and grill away. Oh… except for the food! Get the full scoop on Finger Lakes grocery delivery services below.

Grocery Delivery & Curbside Pickup Options

When you stay in the Finger Lakes there are options for getting groceries without stepping into a local store. We’ve provided some Finger Lakes grocery delivery resources below depending on where you are staying in the region:

Conesus Lake:

Canandaigua Lake:

Keuka Lake:

Seneca Lake:

Cayuga Lake:

Roadside Stands: Throughout our region you’ll see roadside stands offering fresh seasonal vegetables, fruits, eggs, or sometimes even baked goods. Be sure to have cash on hand to drop into their honor-system registers.

Dining Curbside Pickup

In addition, most restaurants, wineries, and breweries provide curb-side pickup. If you have a favorite venue from a past trip, we highly recommend calling them ahead and ordering takeout to enjoy in the comfort of your vacation rental.

If you’re a first-time visitor, here are some links to help you find restaurant options near your rental:

  • Restaurants: Click here for our interactive map to help you find nearby restaurants to your rental. Please call ahead for information on their curbside offerings.
  • Wineries, Breweries, and Distilleries: In New York State beer is sold in groceries stores but wine and liquor are not. Click here for our interactive map to help you find nearby venues to your rental. Please call ahead for information on their curbside offerings.

Tips for Cooking at Your Rental

If this is the first time staying with us, welcome! But there are some tips for planning the ultimate vacation in a Finger Lakes Premier Property:

  1. Meal planning is EXTREMELY helpful! Grocery stores are not around every corner in our region. Make sure you have every ingredient (including spices and condiments) on your list or packed to bring. We do provide a sealed spice shaker for every reservation that includes salt, pepper, garlic salt, cayenne, curry, and paprika.
  2. Yes, we provide cooking utensils, pots, pans, bakeware, and grilling utensils. However, if there are certain kitchen tools or utensils that are must-haves for the chef in your family, bring them along!
  3. In our kitchen welcome bag we provide: 1 roll of paper towels, 2 washable dish towels, 1 small bottle of dish detergent, 1 sponge, 2 dishwasher tabs, and 1 box of laundry detergent. If you think you will need more than this, depending on the length of your stay, please plan accordingly.
  4. Staying in a pet friendly rental? Don’t forget the dog food and water bowl!

For those who are still planning their next vacation in the Finger Lakes Region of Upstate New York, click here to begin your search for the perfect home to host your next vacation.

If you need assistance with finding the right home for your next trip, contact our local vacation planners who would be happy to assist you by calling 888-414-5253 and pressing option 1.

4 Iconic Finger Lakes Wine Trails You Need to Sip Your Way Through

One of the main draws to the Finger Lakes region of New York is its award-winning wines, wineries, and vineyards. That’s why a visit to Upstate New York is not complete without a day trip around the best Finger Lakes Wine Trails! We encourage you to explore some of the several wine producing trails that offer tours and wine tastings so that you can get a true taste of the FLX! 

With so many wonderful things to do and see in the Finger Lakes wine region, we can’t possibly put it in just one blog. Unlock our free Vacation Guide to get a full list of local recommendations. From the best area restaurants to beautiful hiking trails, you’ll find everything you need to plan the ultimate Finger Lakes vacation! You’ll even get more recommendations for the best spots in Finger Lakes Wine Country. 

Download our Free Vacation Guide

Sip Your Way Through These 4 Finger Lakes Wine Trails 

The wine trails throughout the Finger Lakes are committed to providing a safe and clean space for you to enjoy, and ask that you also adhere to the policies put in place at each winery! Many of the requirements the wineries have in place are mandated by the New York State Liquor Authority and the State of New York in order to be open. 

Get a Finger Lakes Wine Trail Passport for Discounts 

Please note, due to COVID-19, our wineries are now open, but reservations are required for tasting. 

Get exclusive tastings at each stop, and a 25% savings, when you purchase their wine tasting passport. Passports are good for a year after purchase, so you can spend valuable time meeting with their tastemakers. 

The passport provides complimentary tastings at each winery and additional price discounts for the purchase of wine with the use of the passport. 

One passport is valid for one person, not valid for groups of more than eight.

1. Cayuga Lake Wine Trail 

The Cayuga Lake Wine Trail has the honor of being the first-organized and longest-running wine trail in the country! It was first established in 1983 and includes 14 dog-friendly member wineries, as well as cideries, a meadery, four distilleries, and a taproom.  

2. Keuka Lake Wine Trail 

The Keuka Lake Wine Trail may not be the longest-running, but Keuka Lake was home to the first bonded winery. This region specializes in Vinifera wines, as this area was where they were first planted.  

3. Canandaigua Lake Wine Trail 

The Canandaigua Lake Wine Trail features 30 miles of Finger Lakes wine and food experiences! Sip their world-class wines and enjoy beautiful vistas along the rolling hillsides of Canandaigua Lake. 

4. Seneca Lake Wine Trail 

Sprouting in 1986, explore the largest wine trail in the state of New York! The Seneca Lake Wine Trail features 35 wineries, a distillery, two cider producers, two breweries, and a meadery on its path. This trail is known for its hearty grapes, though the wineries on the list have won plenty of awards for the delicate Rieslings. 

Stay with Finger Lakes Premier Properties 

While exploring the Finger Lakes wine region, rest each night at one of the most stunning homes in the area. Finger Lakes Premier Properties has the best selection of socially distanced vacation rentals. We have over 260 vacation rentals on six of the 11 lakes, that are all close to the Finger Lakes wine trails. Plus, with our 24/7 customer service, you can rest knowing that you will be well taken care of! 

Check out our full selection of homes and book today! We look forward to having you. 

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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 be different just like last year as we all sacrifice many of our traditions and find new ways to celebrate and remember the meaning of the holiday.

New York State continues to urge residents and visitors to practice responsible social distancing and where a mask when not seated in public. 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 invite the extended family that couldn’t be there last year.

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 last year you may not have been able to sit down in your favorite local diner or pub, this year you can! 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 offering tastings like normal. Be sure to check their website to see the max number of people allowed in your group and whether or not you need a reservation. 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.

No matter where you choose to trek, contacting the park ahead of time is recommended. Some parks have not 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 your 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 on your 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 Best Ways to Spend Spring in the FLX

Spring is often overlooked as a time to visit the Finger Lakes, but for many travelers it’s the perfect way to cure cabin fever lingering from the long winter months. Plan a wine tour, fishing trip or weekend getaway with fewer crowds, lower rates, and our 3for2 Discounts. Our vacation rentals still feature the same great views and gorgeous sunsets, and are often equipped with cool weather activities, like billiard games and hot tubs.

In addition to spending quality time at your lakeside home, here are some suggested itineraries for your spring stay:

Canandaigua Lake

The Naples area is full of glens and gullies with beautiful waterfalls to experience – the best and easiest to access being in Grimes Glen State Park. Post hike, head into Naples for a tour of the old Witmer Wine Complex, home to Hazlitt’s Red Cat Wine Cellars. Your spring visit should include stopping at Monica’s Pies for a famous grape pie. Head north for dinner at Brew & Brats at Arbor Hill Winery and enjoy dessert back at the lake house!

Recommended Rentals: Cliffside Sunrise, Livin’ on the Edge

There’s something for everyone in Downtown Canandaigua! Spend all day discovering your new favorite shops and restaurants or plan your spring visit around one of these attractions:

  • Stop and smell the flowers at the Spring Wildflower & Orchid Show at Sonnenberg Mansion & Gardens. Celebrate the arrival of spring with guided tours, educational talks and family activities. A true history buff will want to continue onto the Granger Homestead and Carriage Museum and the Ontario County Historical Society.
  • See what New York Kitchen has going on during your stay. This culinary center is home to a tasting room, restaurant, and food truck and holds events year round, like cooking classes, Beer Bingo, comedy nights and more.
  • Let your favorite wineries come to you! Spend your evening strolling around downtown and sampling local wine and food on the Canandaigua Wine Walk.

Recommended Rental: Lake Vista


Cayuga Lake
North

A day of hiking and bird watching at Montezuma Wildlife Refuge is naturally followed by a spirit tasting at Hidden Marsh Distillery at Montezuma Winery. Bring home a bottle of your favorite to make craft cocktails next to the lake.

Recommended Rental: Cayuga Sunshine

Experience the real “Bedford Falls” – Seneca Falls is dedicated to being the inspiration for Its A Wonderful Life. This small town is also home to the Women’s Rights National Historical Park and countless museums and historic landmarks. Take a sunset walk along the canal and end the evening with small plates at 84 Fall.

Recommended Rental: Lakeview Landing

Many Cayuga Lake Wine Trail stops are clustered at the northern end of the lake – take a whole day and try them all, from Swedish Hill to Thirsty Owl. For the craft beer fan, there’s Fleur de Lis Brew Works, a French inspired beer parlor, and further south, Lost Kingdom Brewery and Firehouse Distillery, which has an actual firetruck mounted to the wall – the perfect Instagram photo op!

Recommended Rental: The French Cottage


Cayuga Lake
South

A hike to the iconic waterfall at Taughannock Falls State Park is a must for any Cayuga Lake stay. While near the town of Trumansburg, stop into Americana Vineyards and Bacchus Brewing for tastings or lunch at the Crystal Lake Cafe. Schedule your stay during Maple Weekend at Wellspring Forest Farm to take a sugar bush tour and taste local sap and syrup made right on the farm while enjoying live music and food.

Recommended Rental: A Shore Thing

Ithaca is a city like no other. Be sure to check out the Ithaca Farmers Market in the morning, then hike the roaring spring rapids of Buttermilk Falls. Head across the street to Ithaca Beer Co. for pub fare and tasty brews or over to the Commons for a unique shopping and dining experience.

Recommended Rentals: The Lily Pad

If you’re staying on the East side of Cayuga Lake, be sure to check out the village of Aurora, home to Mackenzie-Childs – take a tour of the Farmhouse and shop their collection of eclectic home décor. Get lunch at the Fargo Bar & Grill, then head up to Long Point Winery and Aurora Ale & Lager Co. for libations. End your day at Treleaven Winery for their Barrel Room Music Series or Trivia Nights.

Recommended Rental: Aurora Escape

Spring Travel Tip: April and May offer the perfect conditions to fish for Atlantic salmon, rainbow trout, brown trout, Perch, and northern pike on all the Finger Lakes and its tributaries.


Honeoye Lake

A day trip along Route 20A will bring you to Golden Oak Alpaca Farm and Store for local goods and alpaca products, Wizards of Clay for handmade artisan pottery, then land you at Noble Shepherd’s Brewery for local craft beer tastings and live music every Saturday night.

Recommended Rental: Riesling Rod & Reel

Start your Sunday with the ultimate Bloody Mary from The Honeoye Boathouse Grill. This over-the-top cocktail comes complete with a giant lobster tail and half a cheeseburger! Walk off brunch with a spring hike through Harriet Hollister Spencer State Park, offering the most breathtaking and instagrammable views of Honeoye Lake.

Recommended Rentals: Heart of Honeoye, Good Vibe Getaway


Keuka Lake

Penn Yan is filled with modern amenities and old world charm. Start your day with breakfast at the Penn Yan Diner followed by a tour of the historic Oliver House Museum. Take a stroll through Downtown and shop stores stocked with locally crafted goods, like Staving Artist Woodwork – they use the staving from wine barrels to create home décor and furniture that is uniquely Finger Lakes. Travel just outside the town’s limits for a tasting at Abandon Brewing. Take in unobstructed views of Keuka Lake for as far as the eyes can see while the trees are just starting to bud.

Recommended Rental: Crooked Lake Lodge , Sailfish Cottage

A day trip to Hammondsport, the “Coolest Small Town in America,” is a must this spring. Venture out to the Finger Lakes Boating Museum and Glenn H. Curtiss Aviation Museum before stopping into the Brewery of Broken Dreams for a tasting. If you prefer wine, no worries! Nearby wineries include Bully Hill Vineyards, Heron Hill Winery and Dr. Konstantin Frank’s Vinifera Wine Cellars. Stop into Crooked Lake Creamery for a sweet treat mid-day.

Recommended Rental: Pinot Point

Spring Travel Tip: Travel by boat once OnKeuka Water Taxi starts their Spring 2021 season!


Seneca Lake
North

Go fishing! Geneva is the “Lake Trout Capital of the World” and host to the National Lake Trout Derby on Seneca Lake – plan your stay in May to get in on the action. For excellent fishing anytime this spring, cast off the dock of your lakeside rental or charter a fishing boat for the day with an experienced guide.

Recommended Rental: Lake Orchard View

Take a day to explore walkable downtown Geneva – stop into the quirky shops that line the streets, see what’s happening at Smith Opera House, or taste your way through the diverse dining options, from English-American Beef and Brew to The Elephant Thai restaurant. Walk to downtown breweries, like Lake Drum and Twisted Rail, then cross the street and watch the sunset over Seneca Lake at the newly reconstructed waterfront park. The lake view goes on for miles!

Recommended Rental: Five Gates

You can make a day out of tasting at the northernmost Seneca Lakes wineries, including Three Brothers Estates, Zugibe Vineyards, Ravines Wine Cellars, and White Springs Winery, to name a few. Make Ventosa Vineyards your final Sunday stop for live music, crispy oven-baked pizza and gorgeous views from their Tuscan villa style patio.

Recommended Rental: Lakeside Lookout


Seneca Lake
South

Watkins Glen State Park is worth seeing in any season. Water levels may be higher than usual due to winter snow melt, creating more intense cascading waterfalls. Don’t miss the Spring Run of Rainbow Trout on Catherine Creek this spring for some of the best fishing of the year! Spend the rest of your day in downtown Watkins Glen – pick up locally roasted coffee for the morning from Seneca Sunrise Coffee or stop into Babcha’s Pierogies, a hidden gem serving meals you swear were cooked by your grandma!

Recommended Rental: Merlot Bungalow

Stretch your legs and dirty some paws with a spring hike through Finger Lakes National Forest. Nearby is a pocket of some of the Finger Lake’s best breweries – Lucky Hare, Two Goats, Grist Iron, and Scale House Brewing, all within minutes of each other and each with their own stunning views of Seneca Lake. Best of all, many of these places welcome your furry friends!

Recommended Rental: Gracie’s Place

Just west of Watkins Glen sits a 175-acre Farm Sanctuary. Opening back up in May, you can take guided tours and spend the day with happy, healthy farm animals. They also offer helpful resources for cruelty free dining during your stay.

Recommended Rental: Falling Waters

Spring Travel Tip: Available through the Seneca Lake Wine Trail, the Wine passports allow you to explore wine country during the off-season without breaking the bank. Learn more!

Spring events on Seneca Lake:  Pasta and Wine Weekend, National Lake Trout Derby, Spring Run of Rainbow Trout


For more recommendations and a complete list of all there is do in the Finger Lakes this spring, contact our local vacation planners.

3 Reasons Why You Should Book Direct This Year

Book Direct Day 2021 is February 3! It’s a day when vacation rental owners and managers from around the world promote a common message: bypass third-party channels to book your vacation directly at the source.

There’s a misconception that when guests book from a third-party site, like Airbnb and VRBO, that those companies are responsible for the rental. In reality, these sites act as a middleman while a local owner or management company oversees your stay from booking to departure. It creates confusion when policies don’t align or when guests don’t know who to call when problems arise.

Here are 3 more reasons why you should #BookDirect this year:

Save Money

Third-party sites tack on extra fees that can add up at checkout. When you book directly with a vacation rental management company, you can be certain you’re getting the lowest price guaranteed on the rental you’ve selected.

While third-party sites may display many rental options, not every owner or manager uses them. Only a fraction of our 270+ professionally managed rentals are on VRBO or Airbnb and 70% of our bookings come directly from our website or reservation agents. If you can’t find the right rental on a third-party site, contact a vacation rental management company in the area you’re traveling to see what they have available.

As an added bonus, vacation rental managers send out exclusive promotions and special discounts that can only be used when you book direct. Join our mailing list so you don’t miss an opportunity to save!

Local Experts

When you make the decision to book direct, you’re booking with a team of local experts in the hospitality and tourism industry. Our reservation agents, housekeepers, maintenance techs, marketing team, and more are all members of the local community. Our on-the-ground teams can quickly and easily respond to guest issues and requests. Plus, our local vacation planners provide the best recommendations for your trip based on their intimate knowledge of the area.

Services You Can Trust

You don’t always know what you’re getting when booking your rental on a third-party site. With numerous reports of scams and safety issues for Airbnb users, its more important than ever to know you’re renting from a reputable source. Vacation rental managers hold themselves to high standards with a focus on education, advocacy, and professional services. They elevate the industry and articulate best practices for others to follow.

With high standards and hyper-localized services, comes the ability for vacation rental managers to guarantee services many independent hosts cannot. Our team is available 24/7 for emergencies and has a fully staffed office during business hours to accommodate special requests. In addition, we have a housekeeping guarantee that promises your home will be clean upon arrival. If for some reason our services are unsatisfactory, a housekeeper will return to make it right, ensuring guests are comfortable in their rental.


To join in on #BookDirect Day, visit FLPPlake.com! Finger Lakes Premier Properties is largest, full-service vacation rental company in the Finger Lakes. Our team has been managing lakefront properties locally for 28 years.

Browse our selection of over 270 lakeside vacation rentals here or call our reservation agents for a personalized booking experience – (800) 897-8161

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.

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.

Planning a Pet Friendly Vacation

Our pets are our family.  So when we take a vacation, why wouldn’t they come along? At Finger Lakes Premier Properties, we have over 90 pet friendly vacation rentals suited for your furry, four-legged friends to join in on the family fun! Click “Pet Friendly Rentals” to see our entire pet friendly inventory.

Does pet-friendly mean cats are welcome?

Typically, “pet-friendly” equates to “dog-friendly”. Unless a listing mentions cats by name, it should not be taken for granted that felines are welcome.

What sizes/quantity of dogs are allowed?

Make sure you read each property listing carefully before booking.  Call our Reservations Department (888) 414-5253 for information on the specific property you are interested in if you do not already see it listed on the property page.

Is everything my dog needs provided?

It is your responsibility to have all the essentials you will need for your pet. The property may or may not have pet items so come prepared. Some of the items we recommend when you visit include:

  • Bed/kennel
  • Food & treats
  • Bowls for food & water
  • Toys (including water toys/fetch toys)
  • Leash
  • Collar with proper and up to date ID tags
  • Waste pick-up bags
  • Bottled water or water from home
  • Extra flea & tick protection
  • Towels & shampoo

When you stay with Finger Lakes Premier Properties, your dog(s) will receive a welcome doggy bag with a few surprises for them to enjoy during their stay.

Are all of the Wineries and Breweries pet friendly?

No, but are large amount are! The best way to find out which ones are pet friendly is by visiting the wine trail websites below for details.

Canandaigua Lake Wine Trail

Keuka Lake Wine Trail

Seneca Lake Wine Trail

Cayuga Lake Wine Trail

Finger Lakes Beer Trail

Can we take our dogs on hiking trails?

We would love that and think they would too! Click here for a list of places to go hiking.

Are there any pet friendly attractions?

4 dogs enjoying their “puppy cone” at Seneca Farms

Before you vacation make sure your dog is ready to travel. Some dogs get anxious when they are out of their normal environment. This can lead to excessive barking, whining, chewing and other undesirable behaviors. When bringing a pet, keep in mind you are responsible for the manner in which they act and any damage your pet does to the rental property.

With a little forethought, you and your K-9 kid can have a fabulous time in one of the most gorgeous areas of New York. Browse our pet friendly inventory below.

*All of our vacation homes include the peace of mind knowing there are key less check-ins to your private rental, professional housekeeping in between each reservation by our trained housekeeping team, professionally cleaned linens at our operations facility, and the security of a local 24/7 manager on duty.