Are you looking for a guide to Jamestown, NY? Here are things to do, where to eat, and where to stay!

Jamestown is a gorgeous part of New York State, and it’s a perfect escape from the hustle and chaos of New York City.

If it’s a weekend break you’re looking forward to in Jamestown, you’re going to be pleasantly surprised by this little town. There are so many wonderful activities here, and my guide is the right place to start researching.

From things to do in Jamestown, to where to eat in Jamestown and where to stay in Jamestown – you’ll find it all here.

Why is Jamestown such a gorgeous place to visit?

With an engaging cityscape, amazing brick streets and numerous historical sights, Jamestown NY is a fantastic place to visit to soak up the best of New York State. 

things to do in jamestown ny

Where is Jamestown NY?

Before we get into the many things to do in Jamestown NY, let’s learn a little more about this beautiful place.

Jamestown is situated between Lake Erie (to the north) and the Allegheny National Forest (to the south). Jamestown NY is in southern Chautauqua County, New York.

Jamestown NY is 284 miles from the famous New York City, so it is possible to take a trip to Jamestown NY from the city if you’re looking for a short day trip from NYC, or a weekend away from the city!

Jamestown NY is a perfect weekend getaway idea if you live in New York State or NYC.

Things to do in Jamestown NY

OK, so now you know a little more about where to find Jamestown – here are some of the best things to do in Jamestown.

With a vibrant cultural scene and marvelous history, there are so many attractions in Jamestown NY that are worth visiting and so many great things to do in Jamestown NY!

The Lucille Ball-Desi Arnaz Center

First on my list of things to do in Jamestown NY, it’s the Lucille Ball-Desi Arnaz Center. As Jamestown, NY was the home of Lucille Ball, this city honors the legacy of “The First Couple of Comedy” with this fabulous museum.

Featuring replica sets, Lucille Ball’s Emmy awards, costumes, and more, this is a wonderful place to visit if you’re a Lucille fan or someone that’s intrigued by showbusiness.

After all, there is no business like show business, and who better to demonstrate this than Ms. Ball?

Lucille Ball Memorial Park in Jamestown NY

Next on my list of things to do in Jamestown NY, it’s a visit to Lucille Ball Memorial Park.

A lovely village park located in Lucille’s hometown, this memorial park features a public boat launch and docks, a park with a playground and picnic tables galore. It’s a beautiful spot to visit in Jamestown NY.

There’s also a great photo opportunity available here, as there’s a life-size statue of Lucille Ball within the park that serves as an eternal tribute to her memory.

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The Jamestown NY Gateway Train Station

Next on my list of things to do in Jamestown NY, it’s the Jamestown Gateway Train Station.

A historic station located in Jamestown, this building was constructed in 1931-32 and was to serve the Erie Railroad. If you’re looking for activities in Jamestown for train lovers, this is it!

Though it’s no longer a functional train station, it acts as a tribute to Jamestown’s prior transportation links and is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.

Retaining its original character, it’s yet another glimpse into Jamestown’s interesting history and a really interesting option to keep yourself entertained.

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Enjoy the outdoors in Jamestown NY

Of course I couldn’t write a list of things to do in Jamestown NY, without including the great outdoors! Jamestown NY is known for its fresh clean air thanks to its forests and parks.

Allegany State Park in Jamestown NY is the largest park in New York’s state park system and offers plenty of trails, hiking opportunities and camping spots.

If you like to birdwatch, the area’s natural beauty invites plenty of our famous feathered friends, so keep an eye out. If you love the great outdoors, Jamestown NY is a great place to visit.

Exploring the great outdoors is definitely how you should spend most of your time here, there’s an abundance of nature to be explored.

Read more about New York State: The ultimate guide to Canandaigua, NY

Fenton History Center

Next on my list, it’s Fenton History Center. With such a rich history, you’d expect Jamestown NY to deliver on the museums and artifacts.

Southern Chautauqua County’s history lives on at this dedicated historical center. History buffs certainly shouldn’t miss this one, as it beautifully outlines the history of the area.

Definitely, an option for things to do in Jamestown NY that you won’t want to miss.

Detailing history from the Underground Railroad in Chautauqua County to the women’s suffrage movement in the late 19th and early 20th centuries, it’s a great place to experience Jamestown’s historical side.

Read more about New York State: The Ultimate Guide to The Finger Lakes, NY

best things to do in jamestown ny

National Comedy Center in Jamestown NY

If you’re up for laughs, then the National Comedy Center in Jamestown NY is one of the things to do in Jamestown NY you won’t want to miss!

Located near the Chadakoin River and just two minutes from the Jamestown Gateway Railway Station, this is one place that’s dedicated to the art of comedy.

This gem in Jamestown NY, has over 50 exhibits that include various styles of comedy, it’s an amazing place to spend an afternoon and indulge in some good ol’ belly laughter.

Offering a fully immersive experience and allowing you to channel your inner comic, the museum has educational games and competitions that help you to discover how comedy is created.

Audubon Community Nature Center

Next on my list of things to do in Jamestown NY, it’s the Audubon Community Nature Center.

This place is a dedicated spot that aims to educate people about the great outdoors and empower its visitors to act in responsible, environmental ways.

Located on a 600-are wetland preserve with plenty of trails and picnic areas, it’s a great place to de-compress and enjoy Jamestown’s natural offerings.

things to do in jamestown ny

The Robert H. Jackson Center

And last on my list of things to do in Jamestown NY it’s the Robert H. Jackson Center.

This place was established to advance the legacy of the U.S Supreme Court Justice Jackson through exhibits and showcasing the relevance of his ideas for current and future generations.

First gaining recognition as a lawyer, he went on to serve as a Supreme Court Justice and Chief American Prosecutor at the Internal Military Tribunal at Nuremburg at the end of WWII.

With great guided tours, this is an excellent glimpse into the American Justice System, and a historical celebration of one of Jamestown’s finest individuals. It’s a great place to check out in Jamestown NY!

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Celoron Lighthouse

Next on our list of things to do in Jamestown, NY, it’s the Celoron Lighthouse.

There’s just something amazing about a lighthouse, they’re romantic, nostalgic, a little bit mystical – they’ve got it all.

Celoron Lighthouse is a really gorgeous one, and it’s worth a visit if you’re in Jamestown, NY. Head there for a photo opportunity, or for a romantic picnic – whatever you like.


Next up on our list fun things to do in Jamestown, it’s Pumpkintown!

This quirky suggestion for things to do in Jamestown NY is pretty seasonal (they’re only open in the fall, from September through to October). But it’s so much fun, we had to include it!

They have attractions like a giant slide and pony rides, a fun family maze, and there’s apple cider and refreshments too.

It’s a great option for all ages, so a perfect choice for families.

Read more about New York State: Top tips for visiting Watkins Glen State Park

Jamestown Bowling Co

Jamestown Bowling Co is next on our list of things to do in Jamestown NY. Bowling is one of those classic family activities – so we know you’ll love it.

If you’re visiting Jamestown NY with kids or teenagers, then bowling is always a great activity to have up your sleeve! Also great for rainy days too!

Chadakoin Park

Another lovely choice, is Chadakoin Park. If you’re after somewhere lovely to stroll around, then Chadakoin Park is it.

This huge expanse of green is located on a little way out of the town center, and it’s a lovely place to take a morning jog, or an even stroll.

If you’ve got kids, then this is also a great choice for things to do in Jamestown NY for families.

Jamestown Public Market

Jamestown Public Market is our next suggestion for fun things to do in Jamestown, NY.

If you’re a foodie, then taking a visit to Jamestown Public Market is going to give you so much foodie inspiration!

It’s especially great to visit the Jamestown NY Public Market if you’re stopping at an AirBnB and you can take lots of ingredients back with you to cook with!

Terry’s Train Shop & Hobbies

One of the most unique stores in the Jamestown area is next on our list!

Terry’s Train Shop & Hobbies is such a fun and unique shop and we think you’ll adore it (like we did!).

Even if you’re not that into trains, this is still a really cute place to visit and suss out. We doubt you’ll have ever been anywhere like it! It’s such a great pick for things to do in Jamestown NY.

Visit Chautauqua Comics

Next on our list of things to do in Jamestown NY, it’s Chautauqua Comics.

If you love comic books, then you’re going to love Chautauqua Comics. It’s the kind of cute little neighborhood store, that you’ll just fall in love with – we definitely did!

This little comic book store has so much charm, you’ll want to sit in there and read all day!

Editorial credit: Luthfi Syahwal /

Jamestown Riverwalk Bike Path

If you love biking, then our next choice for things to do in Jamestown NY should be on your list. The Riverwalk Bike Path is a great route for cycling and it’s so scenic too!

Jump on your bike and enjoy a morning cycle, and soak in all the gorgeous views!

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Jamestown River Walk

Next on our list, it’s the Jamestown River Walk.

If you don’t like cycling, or don’t have a bike, then we recommend you stroll along the Jamestown River Walk instead of the bike path!

The Jamestown River Walk is a gorgeous scenic walk that takes you right through the center of town, where you can enjoy all the beautiful local views.

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Midway State Park

Next on my list of things to do in Jamestown NY, it’s Midway State Park. Another one of Jamestown’s top family attractions has got to be the Midway State Park.

Entertaining little ones since it opened in 1898, it’s got bumper cars, Tilt-A-Whirl and endless classic games for kids to enjoy. Jamestown NY really delivers for kids, and this is a favorite!

Geared towards younger children, it’s a great family-friendly day out that’s sure to be well-remembered.

Just make sure you’re able to handle the hype that comes with a massive serving of cotton candy!

Enjoy some wildlife watching

Next up on our list of things to do in Jamestown NY, it’s wildlife watching.

When you’re somewhere as beautiful as Jamestown NY, surrounded by so much natural beauty and landscapes, you should absolutely make time for wildlife watching.

There are so many wonderful species available to see here – we think you’ll love it.

Read more about New York State: 20 beautiful waterfalls in NY (with a handy map!)

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Have a spa day at The Spencer Hotel

Our next suggestion for things to do in Jamestown NY, is taking a spa day at the Spencer Hotel and Spa.

This is such a great option for things to do in Jamestown NY, especially if you feel like you need a little pampering and luxury!

Who doesn’t love a spa day? It’s the perfect activity after you’ve been hiking or walking!

Peterson’s Candies

Last on my list of things to do in Jamestown NY, it’s Peterson’s Candies. If you have a sweet tooth – then Peterson’s Candies is going to tick all your boxes for things to do in Jamestown.

With endless delicious chocolate and candies to sample and buy – it’s amazing! It’s a great place to stop for a souvenir of Jamestown NY too!

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Paintballing in Jamestown NY

Another great option for your trip, is Paintballing! If you’re travelling with older children who tend to possess boundless energy, you might want to dedicate part of your day to exploring Splat!

Jamestown’s best paintballing spot, it’s a fantastic place to blow off some steam and get in some classic family bonding time in Jamestown NY.

Get ready to dodge that paint as you dive around obstacles and try to avoid each other! Make sure you bring some old clothes along for this one, as things are almost sure to get messy!

For the playful people who are children at heart still, this is the perfect activity to add to your list of things to do in Jamestown NY.

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Go to the movies

Next on our list of fun activities in the Jamestown area, it’s visiting the cinema!

Lakewood Cinema 8 and Dipson Cinema are probably the best cinemas in the area, and they’ll show all the recent releases throughout the year.

The cinema is a perfect choice for things to do in Jamestown NY, as it’s perfect for rainy days, and it’s a great choice for all the family too. Everyone loves the cinema!

Where to stay in Jamestown

After you’ve finished getting through all these fun things to do in Jamestown NY, you’ll want somewhere to rest your head!

If you’re wondering where to stay in Jamestown NY – the next few hotel options are the best in the area.

From quaint bed and breakfast spots to upscale hotels, an ultimate guide just isn’t an ultimate guide without suggestions on where to rest your head!

places to stay in jamestown NY

Spencer Hotel & Spa in Jamestown NY

The Spencer Hotel is our first choice of hotels in Jamestown NY. This stunning Bed & Breakfast is the perfect place to relax after a day trip.

With rustic charm and unique rooms, this inn prides itself on its individuality and welcoming vibe.

Located within walking distance of many of Jamestown NY’s finest attractions and festivals, it’s a great place to base yourself to get the best out of the city. 

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Doubletree by Hilton in Jamestown NY

Second on our list of where to stay in Jamestown NY, it’s Doubletree by Hilton.

With a great location in the heart of Jamestown, this hotel is the perfect place to base yourself if you want to be as close to the action as possible, and it’s a fantastic choice for Jamestown hotels.

Though a little pricier, it’s only 5 minutes from the Lucille Ball Desi Arnaz Museum, the National Comedy Center and the Northwest Arena.

Featuring an indoor pool, gym, restaurant and lobby bar, it’s certainly an upscale way to enjoy the city – this is a great place to visit in Jamestown NY.

La Quinta Inn & Suites

And last on my list of places to stay in Jamestown NY, it’s La Quinta Inn & Suites are a good option for hotels in Jamestown NY.

The rooms are modern and comfortable, with plenty of space too. The prices are reasonable too – and the great reviews reflect all of the above! A really good choice for where to stay in Jamestown NY!

Though there are quite a few charming places to stay around the city, these three give are spread out enough budget-wise for you to make the right call on your own accommodation! It’s a lovely place to stay in Jamestown NY.

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Holiday Inn Express & Suites Jamestown NY

Next on my list of hotels in Jamestown NY, it’s the Holiday Inn. If you’re looking to stay rested and recharge without absolutely breaking the bank, Holiday Inn Express & Suites is a great option for travelers.

With a breakfast of champions waiting for you each morning (free of charge!), it’s a cost-effective way to save on food costs during your trip whilst covering the essentials you’ll need amenity-wise. 

This is a great choice for where to stay in Jamestown NY.

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Where to eat in Jamestown, NY

As you explore Jamestown NY, you might find yourself getting more than a bit peckish. And if you’ve spent your day cramming in all the great things to do in Jamestown NY, you’ll want to fuel up!

So, take a quick look at the shortlist below for some great ideas of places to eat in Jamestown NY.

For me, finding great places to eat, makes a trip even more fun – so make sure you check out some of these places when visiting Jamestown NY.

Crown Street Roasting Company

A great local favourite in Jamestown, NY is the Crown Street Roasting Company.

Known for their amazing bagels and “Lucy Latte” (a tribute to the ever-present Lucille, of course), it’s a great spot that even grinds their coffee in-house!

With plenty of freshly baked goods and an excellent central location, it’s the perfect place to grab a bite before setting off on your Jamestown NY adventure for the day.

Elmo’s Pizza in Jamestown NY

When you’re in New York State, you’ve got to have pizza at some point! Elmo’s Pizza is definitely the place to go! I love their pizzas here, whether you dine in, or take away!

This is the kind of pizza place you’ll still be thinking about days later! This is the best pizza in Jamestown NY!

restaurants in jamestown ny

Havana Cuban Café and Pizzeria

I love this place in Jamestown NY! If you fancy some authentic Cuban cuisine, this fantastic little joint boasts a hefty menu of culinary delights.

Specializing in lunch, dinner and drinks there’s a reason this place is so popular. There’s plenty of Cuban memorabilia littered around as well, so you get a distinctly authentic feel if you choose to grab a bite here!

Forte in Jamestown NY

A recipient of TripAdvisor’s Certificate of Excellence, Forte in Jamestown NY is a cracking option for a night out in Jamestown NY.

A cocktail and wine bar, it’s great for pre-dinner drinks or a full-on steak dinner. This is such a great place to visit in Jamestown NY.

As it’s also a dance club and a rotating art gallery, it’s a two-for-one deal on food and culture here. So, why not catch yourself a double whammy in Jamestown NY and grab a bite at this place?

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Pearl City Hops

OK, if you’re in the mood for a burger… THIS is where you need to go in Jamestown NY. The burgers at Pearl City Hops are something else – with multiple toppings, sauces and flavours… It’s the best burger place in town.

Don’t believe me? Just check out the photo below! This is the ultimate place for a delicious night out in Jamestown NY.

things to do in jamestown ny list

The Pub

If you’re looking for pub grub, then you need to check out this place in Jamestown NY. A classic choice for delicious pub-style food, this place serves up all the home comforts you’d expect from a pub-style restaurant.

The reviews for this place are amazing, and locals and visitors seem to love it equally! Definitely a must-visit for Jamestown NY.

Ecklof Bakery

For sweet treats, you can’t beat Ecklof Bakery in Jamestown NY! This place is famous for it’s pink striped cookies (try them, they’re amazing!).

They also serve up lots of other delicious sweet treats, so pop in and grab some snacks, or dine in at the deli and try something of the menu. I love this place in Jamestown NY.

best food in jamestown ny

Video of Jamestown NY

I really loved watching this video of Jamestown NY – it shows you everything that Jamestown NY has to offer and it’s let’s you meet some of the local business owners in Jamestown NY too!

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How long should you stay in Jamestown NY?

Though it’s certainly a place you can explore at a leisurely pace for up to a week, you’d be best served spending around 2 or 3 days in Jamestown NY.

As there are plenty of things to do in Jamestown NY, you’ll want to give yourself enough time to do as many as possible!

With good planning, you can fit most of the best activities and things to do in Jamestown into a 48-hour itinerary.

If you’re trying to do Jamestown NY in a couple of days, you will have a jam-packed itinerary. So, make sure you plan it so that you’re not zipping back and forth too much.

With most of the main attractions within close distance, it’s possible to make your trip short and sweet! Jamestown NY is a wonderful place to visit for the weekend or a long weekend trip!

best things to do in jamestown ny

Some interesting history about Jamestown NY…

You may have heard Jamestown being referred to as the “The Pearl City” due to its agricultural history.

As settlers began to come to Jamestown, the abundant forests quickly became cash crop territory, with hardwood too heavy to float downstream burned to the ground.

Now, where does the pearl come into this equation? Well, this burned hardwood had its ash leeched to obtain lye and “pearl ash” that was an important component in the manufacturing of glass products.

By the 1820s, Jamestown NY became known as one of the largest centres in North America to produce pearl ash. Cool, right?

Named Jamestown NY after its first settler James Prendergast, Jamestown’s rich history continued to flourish as immigrants from Italian, Irish and English backgrounds began to settle.

Becoming a city in 1886 as its population reached 15,000, it started to flourish into the economically vibrant community that it is today. 

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I hope that this guide to visiting Jamestown, NY has been useful and given you lots of ideas!

Whether you’re a nature fan or a massive Lucille Ball fan, there’s really something for everyone in Jamestown NY.

Make sure that you plan your time wisely, as there is a lot to see here. However, you can do it on a limited-time budget if you’re clever!

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