Top 15 things to do near Syracuse NY – That you won’t want to miss!

January 27, 2021

Are you looking for things to do near Syracuse NY? If so, this list should give you plenty of ideas!

If you currently in Syracuse, NY – you might be on the look out for things to do near Syracuse NY! By ‘things to do near Syracuse NY’ – we mean, things within an easy drive, or things within 30 minutes or so. There are plenty of activities and day trips from Syracuse, so it’s well worth making the trip!

In fact, lots of people visit Syracuse from New York City (as a cute escape from the hustle and bustle of Manhattan) and it’s an easy trip, so it’s no wonder it’s such a popular location. There are even regular buses from the city to Syracuse, and an easy bus from Syracuse to NYC for the return journey – so it’s a great location for a quick getaway.

There are plenty of things to do in Syracuse itself – but if you’ve exhausted all the things to do in the city centre, and don’t mind exploring a little further afield – then this list will give you so many ideas!


So, here are 15 things to do near Syracuse NY…


Onondaga Lake

One of the most stunning things to do near Syracuse, NY is to pay a visit to Onondaga Lake. If you’re staying in Syracuse, then this amazing lake is just on your doorstep!

Though it’s not one of your traditional lakes, it’s one of the most interesting lakes in New York due to its high levels of ammonia and phosphorus. As these elements cause algae to bloom in mass quantities, it gives the lake a very interesting look that you won’t find anywhere else.

As this lake has a large bank, you should be able to bring a picnic here and hit the trails if you wish!

15 things to do near Syracuse NY

New York State Fairgrounds

Located on 581 State Boulevard, the New York State Fairgrounds is one of the most popular things to do near Syracuse, NY. A famous 18-day showcase of everything from agriculture to technology, this annual event at the end of the summer is a tradition that you’ll certainly want to get on board with!

However, even if you can’t visit during the main event in the summer, the New York State Fairgrounds hosts a bunch of events throughout the year, so be sure to check out their online events calendar to make sure you don’t miss out!

15 things to do near Syracuse NY.

Camillus Forest Unique Area

Located 8 miles west of the city of Syracuse is the Camillus Forest Unique Area. If you’re even remotely into the Great Outdoors, then you’ll fall in love with this area of natural beauty.

With hiking, bird watching, cross-country skiing, snowshoeing, bow hunting, and fishing at the top of the list of activities that you can do here, it’s the perfect place for people who just can’t get enough of mother nature.

One of our favorite things to do here is hiking; as there are a series of looping trails in the forest, you’ll have your work cut out trying to complete them all! 

15 things to do near Syracuse

Beaver Lake Nature Center

Another one of the best things to do near Syracuse, NY is to pay a visit to the Beaver Lake Nature Center. Just 15 minutes northwest of Syracuse, Beaver Lake Nature Center features 9 miles of trails and over 400 annual programs for visitors to enjoy.

With a rich mix of habitats that houses over 200 species of birds and 800 varieties of plants, this is a place to really get lost in nature and escape the hustle and bustle of city life. Be sure to grab a kayak or a canoe to head out on the water if you’re visiting in the summer!

15 things to do in Syracuse NY.

Fishing at Cross Lake

Another beautiful lake worth visiting near Syracuse, NY is Cross Lake. Though this lake isn’t huge, it’s home to a wide variety of fish. So, if you fancy yourself an angler, be sure to grab your rod and head on down.

As fishing is one of the top things to do near Syracuse, it’s unsurprising that fishing at Cross Lake has made it onto our list! As it’s known for producing some of the largest northern pike around, it’s well worth visiting if you want to grab your very own catch of the day.


Cicero

If you’re looking for things to do near Syracuse, then why not consider heading to the nearby town of Cicero? Whether you’re looking for some trampolining at Get Air Trampoline Park or you want to check out Cicero’s

Historical society, this place is a lovely sleepy town that offers a surprising number of fun activities for visitors.  


Oneida Lake

Next up on my list of things to do near Syracuse NY, it’s Oneida Lake! If you’re looking for one of the most beautiful lakes in New York, then you’ll want to pay a visit to Oneida Lake.

Deemed one of the best things to do near Syracuse on account of its Wild Animal Park, Amusement Park, and State Park, it’s a family-friendly area that we highly recommend putting on your list. Though we don’t recommend heading too far out into the waters due to depth concerns, it’s well worth dipping your toes in at least! 

things to do near Syracuse new york

Verona Beach at Oneida Lake

If you fancy a beach day during your time in Syracuse NY, then Verona Beach at Oneida Lake is one to check out. You can see the photo below of this lovely spot – it’s a perfect place for a picnic!

things to do near Syracuse NY.

Shopping in Fulton

Next up on my list of things to do near Syracuse NY, it’s Fulton. Though you may not have heard of Fulton, it’s home to some of the best shopping near Syracuse, NY.

Though you won’t find a ton of chain stores in Fulton, it’s packed with great village shops, thrift stores, and even kitsch jewelry stores! So, if you’re looking for some shopping that doesn’t quite follow the usual mall route, then Fulton is sure to hit the spot. 


Rosamond Gifford Zoo

If you’re hoping to catch a glimpse of elephants and penguins whilst you’re near Syracuse, then be sure to hit up the Rosamond Gifford Zoo. This lovely and well-kept zoo is perfect for a family day out and remains one of our top things to do near Syracuse, NY. 

With some truly excellent indoor and outdoor exhibits as well as amazing regional and international wildlife, the Rosamond Gifford Zoo is an absolute must-visit in our books!

15 things to do near Syracuse NY.

Indian Village

If you want to get a taste of history whilst on your next trip to New York, then why not stop by the Caughnawaga Indian Village Site? An archaeological site that was discovered in 1950 by Rev.

Thomas Grassman, this site is the only fully excavated Mohawk village in the country. Though this place used to home to an established French Jesuit mssion, it’s not a center for recreation and culture! 


Marcellus Falls

If you can’t get enough of waterfalls, then be sure to pay Marcellus Falls a visit. Located near Syracuse, NY, this stunning waterfall is one of the most stunning sites in Marcellus. In case you were wondering, this little gem is located next to an old mill, and it’s said that the old wheel is still fully functional!

Though it’s a small waterfall, the quaint mill, rocky surroundings, and gushing waterfall creates a beautiful small-town feel that’s well worth experiencing. 


Split Rock Falls

Another amazing option for things to do near Syracuse, NY is a walk near Split Rock Falls. Located near New Russia, this waterfall is decidedly grander than Marcellus Falls. This waterfall can’t be seen from the road, so you will need to put in a small walk to reach it, but the trails are well marked, so you should have no issues when trying to find it!

Just be sure to be extra cautious on your walk over, as some of the drops around the falls are a bit steep. This is such a lovely activity, it had to make our list of things to do near Syracuse NY.

15 things to do near Syracuse NY...

Timber Banks Golf Club and Marina

If you want to experience one of the best golf courses near Syracuse, NY, then Timber Banks Golf Club and Marina definitely fits the bill. As the only golf club in upstate New York that boasts a Nicklaus Design, it’s well worth a visit just for the bragging rights!

Great for players of all skill levels and always impeccably groomed, this is a high-class golf course for those that want a taste of the high life. This is such a great option for things to do near Syracuse NY, especially if you’re a big gold lover. But beginners are welcome too – you could even book yourself a beginners golf lesson!


Brewerton

If you want to visit a small town that offers a surprising number of things to do near Syracuse, then Brewerton won’t disappoint. Which is why it’s our next suggestion for things to do near Syracuse NY.

With a whole host of amazing seafood restaurants, seaway tours, and even a central museum, Brewerton has all the small-town charm you could ever ask for in one neat package!  


Big Dons Wild River Mini Golf

The final thing on our list of things to do near Syracuse, NY is Big Dons Wild River Mini Golf. Though it may be a bit of a mouthful, this place knows its stuff when it comes to the art of mini golf!

Whether you’re looking for the perfect birthday party location or just need a place to kill some time with the kids, this place is sure to be perfect. What’s more, this place is said to be just awesome for laser, so you better get practicing! This is such a great option for things to do near Syracuse NY, especially if you’re a big kid at heart!

Hopefully this list of things to do near Syracuse, NY has given you plenty of ideas!

Let us know which of these things to do near Syracuse, NY you decide to check out!

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