Best Things to do in Cold Spring NY:
11+ Places you Need to See Now
When you think of Cold Spring NY, what do you think of? River views, cute main street, ice cream? With so many things to do in Cold Spring NY, it will be difficult to look at Cold Spring the same again.
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Where is Cold Spring NY?
Located between the city of Peekskill in Westchester County NY and the city of Beacon in Dutchess County NY, Cold Spring is the epitome of ‘small town’. Just 50 miles north of Manhattan, this historic area of the Hudson Valley is a gem on the river.
What county is Cold Spring NY In?
Nestled on the Hudson River in Putnam County NY, this just adds to the charm of Cold Spring.
Putnam County is a small county, in the lower Hudson Valley region, but it is full of outdoor space, history, small shops, farms and so much more. Putnam County’s population was a little less than 100,000, in the 2010 census, within its area of approximately 246 square miles.
Read all about the places I’ve visited in Putnam County by clicking here
Things to know before visiting Cold Spring NY:
- Cold Spring NY is a small town and Main Street can be explored in an afternoon.
- There is a Metro-North stop at Cold Spring NY, so this makes it a perfect day trip from New York City or anywhere else in the Hudson Valley
- Other things to do in Cold Spring NY may require a car ride or taxi ride.
- Some of these activities are seasonal. As always, confirm all information about your final destination with each individual website.
Characteristics of Cold Spring NY
Cold Spring is a small village in the town of Philipstown NY. Although small (population of a little over 2,000 at the 2010 census) this town is mighty and makes a grand impression for all those who visit.
Directly across the Hudson River and a little further south, you will find West Point NY and the United States Military Academy at West Point and the West Point Museum.
According to Coldspringliving.com:
Cold Spring is a historic area full of and many well-preserved 19th century building which add to its charm. You can download a printable village map and business directory at the Cold Spring Living website.
How Far is Cold Spring NY from NYC?
The distance between Manhattan and Cold Spring NY is between 40 – 55 miles, depending the roads you take to get there.
By Car: The journey from New York City to things to do in Cold Spring NY can take approximately 1 hour to 1 hour 30 minutes.
What is the best way to get to Cold Spring NY without a car?
By Train: The journey by Metro-North’s Hudson Line is a little over 1 hour.
In comparison, the cheapest and fastest way to get from Manhattan to Cold Spring is by car.
How can you get to Cold Spring by train from NYC?
As previously stated, the Metro-North Hudson Line has a riverfront stop right in Cold Spring and conveniently near Main Street. This railroad line begins at Grand Central Terminal and makes several stops in Westchester County before making stops in Putnam County.
Are Things to do in Cold Spring NY safe?
If you’re looking to for ‘small town’ feel, then Cold Spring is your place. It is not only safe but it beautiful. Just like anywhere else in the Hudson Valley or in the world, you should always use your common sense when visiting a new place. Be vigilant and trust your instincts.
What is Cold Spring NY Popular For?
Cold Spring is popular for its river front park and views of the Hudson Highlands. People also visit Cold Spring in order to explore all the shops and restaurants on Main Street. In addition to Main Street, there is also lots to see and do by Route 9 in Cold Spring.
Once an artillery center during the American Civil War, people flock to Cold Spring to explore the local history and enjoy the great outdoors that can only be found in the Hudson Valley. The village of Cold Spring is recognized on the National Register of Historic Places as the Cold Spring Historic District.
Cold Spring also makes this a perfect destination for a Day Trip from New York City, as it’s easily accessible by car and by train.
Hudson Valley Day Trips
Check this article all about the Best Hudson Valley Day Trips to stay up-to-date with all the great things that you can see and do during a short car or train ride from New York City.
What are some things to do in Cold Spring NY today?
Number 1: Have an adventure on the Hudson River
Because of its close proximity to the Hudson River, Hudson River Expeditions is a great company to choose if you’re interested in renting a kayak, canoe and stand-up paddleboard. This is one of the best things to do in Cold Spring NY during warmer months.
Number 2: Listen to live music at Chapel of Our Lady Restoration
Open Seasonally (April – November)
The Chapel Restoration is a beautiful place located on the banks of the Hudson River. Located at 45 Market Street, they offer a seasonal (April – November) concert series that are free to the public. Music performances range from instrumental to choral performances.
Number 3: Visit Stonecrop Gardens
Open Seasonally (April – November)
This traditional Alpine garden is rich in history and initially began as a private garden. Started in 1958 by Garden Conservancy founder Frank Cabot and is wife Anne, the Stonecrop gardens is now open to the public to enjoy during the warmer months of the year.
Due to it’s elevation of 1,100 feet in the Hudson Highlands, this garden enjoys a unique climate. Covering approximately 12 acres, Stonecrop gardens boasts an array of unique features, such as:
- Woodland and water gardens
- Grass garden
- Raised alpine stone beds
- Cliff rock gardens
- An enclosed English-style flower garden
- A Conservatory that houses delicate specimens
- Green houses that showcase an array of plants
Reservations are needed to visit the gardens. This is one of the most relaxing things to do in Cold Spring NY.
Number 4: Discover art at Magazzino Italian Art
Open Year-round: Reservations required
Opened in 2017, Magazzino Italian Art opened its doors and features 20,000 square feet of Italian art focusing on Pot War and Contemporary artists. In addition to the incredible indoor space, Magazzino Italian Art also offers a tranquil outdoor area lined with benches.
This is one the things to do in Cold Spring NY that I often choose when I just need to take a break. And best of all, the indoor and out spaces are free to the public.
Learn more about Magazzino Italian Art Here
Number 5: Take a Guided Canoe Trip to Constitution Marsh
This is one of the lesser-known things to do in Cold Spring NY. Although Constitution Marsh is not easily accessible by car, you can take a guided canoe trip.
These canoe programs focus on the natural history of Constitution Marsh and the surrounding area of the Hudson Highlands. Led by an expert Audubon Naturalist, this guided tour leads you through the channels of the marsh. This is one of the most adventurous things to do in Cold Spring NY.
Reservations are required. The cost of the trip includes: Canoes, Paddles, Life Jackets and safety lesson.
Number 6: Visit the Putnam History Museum
Open Seasonally: Days/times vary according to season
The Putnam History Museum focuses its efforts on collecting and preserving historical material pertaining to the immediate area. Many artifacts from nearby West Point Foundry and its history can be viewed at the museum.
Built in 1830, the building was originally a one-room schoolhouse for children of the employee’s of West Point Foundry. The Putnam History Museum also has a wonderful outdoor exhibitions, open year-round from sunrise to sunset. This is one of the best educational things to do in Cold Spring NY.
- Women of Putnam County
- Hudson Rising
- West Point Foundry: Trailblazer of Industrial America
The Museum is open by appointment.
Number 7: Visit Small Businesses in and around Main Street
Main Street in Cold Spring is always buzzing with activity and its no wonder why. These exceptional small businesses range from clothing stores, antique shops, coffee house, ice cream shops and so much more. Supporting local businesses is one of the best things to do in Cold Spring NY during your visit.
Some great businesses to visit include:
- Vintage Violet – Filled with amazing antiques and vintage items, this is an explorer’s paradise.
- Poor George – This great place is filled with treasures from new items to vintage items.
- Once Upon a Time Antiques – An eclectic assortment of antiques and collectibles. They specialize in china, glass and small items.
- Cold Spring General Store – Focusing on handmade, American goods, this is a general store you will not soon forget.
Number 8: Eat at these Local Favorites
One of the best things to do in Cold Spring NY is to check out the dining scene. This small village offers over 15 restaurants and bars to choose from. This is one of the most delicious things to do in Cold Spring NY.
- Hudson House Inn – located right across the street from the river front park and Gazebo, this restaurant offers breathtaking views of the Hudson River and the Hudson Highlands. This is a local favorite and one of the best things to do in Cold Spring NY.
- Brassiere Le Bouchon – This gem on Main Street offers continental and French cuisine. This French bistro is the perfect location to have delicious food and enjoy the weather on their outdoor patio.
- Cathryn’s Tuscan Grill – with plenty of mouth-watering Italian dished to choose from, ts no wonder this restaurant is a local favorite. During the warmer months, the gardens and outdoor seating with make your evening special.
- Hudson Hil’s Cafe and Market – All-Day Breakfast is just one of the great things about this cafe. The view from their outdoor patio is another great thing. The remainder of their menu is extraordinary and this is why this is a local favorite.
- The Main Course – This take-out location specializes in gourmet food to go. Their menu changes constantly, so make sure to bookmark their website to see what’s in store for that particular day.
- Moo Moo’s Creamery – Open seasonally, this gem serves the most delicious homemade ice cream around. Make sure to bookmark their FB Page because the flavors change often, if not daily.
- Rincon Argentino – A local Argentinian favorite where you can grab a delicious coffee and a specialty sweet treat. This cafe adds to the international vibe in Cold Spring.
Number 9: Ride the Trolley
One of the best things to do in Cold Spring NY, from June through November, the Cold Spring Trolley service provides a great way for visitors to explore the local area. Connecting Cold Spring to Garrison and Beacon NY, for a very small fee, the trolley will take you from one area to another. This is definitely on the list of one of the most fun things to do in Cold Spring NY.
The Trolley stops at nineteen locations along its route and showcases the best this area has to offer. See a full map of the Cold Spring Trolley stops here.
Number 10: Enjoy the Hudson River views at Dockside Park
The centerpiece of Cold Spring NY is Dockside Park. Although it’s not large in size offers gigantic views of the river and the Hudson Highlands State Park. With an amazing views of Mount Taurus, Breakneck Ridge and Storm King Mountain, this is one of the best things to do in Cold Spring NY.
Dockside Park is the ideal spot to take fantastic photos of the surrounding area. Have fun and take lots of great pics. You won’t regret it! This is certainly one of the most Instagram-able locations in the entire Hudson Valley.
Number 11: Explore West Point Foundry Preserve
Open Year-Round: Sunrise to Sunset
During the American Industrial Revolution, the foundry was known for producing steam engines, ships, and artillery. West Point Foundry Preserve is the perfect place to explore and discover so much.
Known as an outdoor museum, the 90-acre preserve houses markers and plaques placed along the hiking trail so you can be familiar with the ruins found and the history of the area. The foundry was also responsible for manufacturing some of the United States’ first locomotives.
Number 12: Take a hike at the Hudson Highlands State Park Preserve
Open Year-Round: Sunrise to Sunset
A mostly undeveloped preserve of over 8,000 acres with over 70 miles of trail, Hudson Highlands State Park Preserve consists of a series of separate parcels of land stretching from Annsville Creek in Peekskill, north to Dennings Point in Beacon. This is one of the best outdoor things to do in Cold Spring NY.
A hikers’ paradise, this popular state park preserve has limited parking at most trailheads. Additional parking for Mount Beacon is available along the surrounding streets in Beacon. Additional parking for the Little Stony Point Area is available at the Cold Spring train station. Cars parked illegally will be ticketed and/or towed. Please be considerate to the residents and park legally.
Tips for A Successful Visit to Cold Spring NY:
- If you plan to walk, hike and visit several attraction, make sure to wear comfortable shoes and clothing.
- Check the weather the day before and right before your outing to make sure any changes in weather don’t ruin your plans.
- Confirm information regarding the place(s) you plan to visit.
- Check the Metro-North schedule if you plan to take the train to Cold Spring
Until the Next Adventure…
Jackie is one of the top bloggers in the Hudson Valley. She has been featured (along with some of her photos) in several local and national publications. Read Jackie’s crazy story, “From a Naive NYC Girl to Popular Hudson Valley Blogger & Author“. Feel free to send Jackie a message here.