17 Reasons to Visit Lake George, NY

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Introduction:

This week we continue with the exploring locally series. The current pandemic is limiting international travel, but more and more people are beginning to explore locally. Throughout this series we will dig into the hidden gems (and some not so hidden) in New York State. Last week we visited nine of New York’s State Parks. This week we will visit Lake George, NY.

Lake George, NY is a small town in the Adirondack Park of New York. Lake George, the town, sits around Lake George, the lake, giving locals and visitors access to a variety of water activities and small town charm. Whether you are looking for some outdoor adventure, indoor family fun, or adults only time, Lake George is the perfect destination. Here are 17 reasons to visit Lake George, NY.

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Outdoor Adventure

Go for a Hike

Lake George, sitting in the heart of the Adirondacks, naturally is surrounded by hiking trails. Around Lake George you can find beginning level hikes such as Shelving Rock Falls and Stewart’s Ledge, moderate level hikes, such as Piolet Knob and the Pinnacle, and difficult hikes, such as Black Mountain and the Tongue Mountain Range. You could spend a half day, whole day, or several days hiking the area.

reasons to visit lake george: hiking
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Go White Water Rafting

If you are looking for an adventure, white water rafting along the Hudson and Sacandaga Rivers will certainly deliver. Adirondack Adventures, located 30 min. outside of Lake George, offers whitewater rafting on the Hudson River, and the Scandaga Outdoor Center offers whitewater rafting along the Hudson and Scandaga Rivers. These companies also offer kayaking, tubing, and canoeing, so if you are looking for a little bit of a calmer experience be sure to check these out.

Adirondack Extreme Adventure Course

The Adirondack Extreme Adventure Course is your source for tree top adventure in Lake George. Perfect for children and adults, there are six adventure courses with some suited for ages 6+ and some suited for ages 9+. Courses include the Leap of Faith, Monkey Bars, Gladiator Nets and The 7 Deadlies Aerial Skateboard, Rock walls, Up-hill zipline, Tarzan Swings, Punching Bags, Rib Cage, Chop Stix, Pogos, and the Long Zipline. You can spend a couple hours or all day here, depending on how many of the adventures you choose to participate in.

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Shepard Park

Shepard Park is located in the center of Lake George and is home to entertainment, a playground, a dock for fishing, and a sandy beach along the shore of Lake George. Shepard Park is located along Lake George’s Canada Street, which features quaint shops, dining options, and family fun attractions. In the winter time you will find the Lake George Winter Carnival taking place on the iced over lake.

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The dock in Shepard Park during the Winter Carnival

Lake George Scenic Cruise

Step aboard a Lake George Steam Boat for a scenic cruise on Lake George. The company offers a variety of different tours on their three large steam boats, including the Minne-Ha-Ha, the Mohican, and the Lac du Saint Sacrement. Cruises range from one hour scenic cruises to dinner cruises. Lake George Shoreline Cruises also offers a variety of cruises, including historical scenic cruises, happy hour cruises, and family fireworks cruises.

Resons to visit Lake George: Scenic boat tour
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Six Flags Great Escape

Get your thrill on at Six Flags Great Escape. Six Flags is a traditional amusement park with thrill rides, family rides, kiddie rides, water rides, live entertainment options, dining, and games. Located in the heart of Lake George, you won’t have to travel far to reach this great attraction.

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Hit the Beach

Lake George is full of great, calm beaches located along the shore that will help you and the family cool off and relax for the afternoon. The Shepard Park beach is conveniently located next to the action of Canada Street, but Lake George boasts many other great beaches. Check out the Million Dollar Beach, Huletts Park Beach, the Dog Beach, Veteran’s Memorial Park Beach, and Roger’s Memorial Park Beach. Hittng the beach is one of the best reasons to visit Lake George.

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Visit the Natural Stone Bridge and Caves

Located about 20 minutes outside of Lake George you can find this natural wonder. A visit to the The Natural Stone Bridge and Caves includes the geological marvel stone bridge and many other notable sites, including the old Sawmill Site Waterfalls, Artists’ Gorge, incredible potholes, and several surface caves. Visitors can take self-guided tours through the sites.

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The Natural Stone Bridge.

Indoor Family Fun

Great Escape Indoor Water Park

The Great Escape Indoor Water Park is an extension of Six Flags Great Escape. It is across the road from the theme park and connected by a pedestrian bridge. The indoor water park features a water house, several water slides, and a surfing station. The indoor water park is also a lodge, so visitors can choose to spend the night or the duration of their stay in Lake George there. The Indoor Water park also features different activities and crafts, occasional characters, and an arcade. The indoor water park is one of the best reasons to visit Lake George.

Reasons to visit Lake George: Indoor water park
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Adventure Family Fun Center

On a rainy day the Adventure Family Fun Center is the perfect place to go. Featuring an indoor go-kart tract, multi-level laser tag, arcade, and bumper cars this center will keep the family busy for hours. There is also a snack bar within the center. For the warmer days you can also find an outdoor go kart tract.

Lake George Lanes and Games

Another great rainy day activity, the Lake George Lanes and Games is a bowling alley and arcade combination. There is also an indoor playground, laser tag, and of course a bar and grill. Whether you choose to spend a day enjoying or choose to end the day with a game of bowling and laser tag, the Lake George Lanes and Games will entertain every member of your family.

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History

Fort William Henry Museum

If you are looking for some educational fun while in Lake George, Fort William Henry is the perfect stop! Fort William Henry is a historic British fort that was built during the French and Indian War. The fort served two main purposes: (1) a staging ground for attacks against French entrenchments and (2) to protect the important inland waterways from New York City to Montreal. Today visitors to the fort can participate in living history exhibits, take a self guided tour of the fort, or take a guided tour. There is also a ghost tour option available for the brave!

For The Adults

Adirondack Pub and Brewery

The Adirondack Pub and Brewery is a great spot for dinner as a family or for the adults for some local Adirondack brew tasting. The menu features a variety of items, including soups, sandwiches, fish, burgers, chicken, beef, and for the vegetarians, a veggie burger. The Pub features an outdoor dining patio as well as indoor dining. For a complete list of the local brews available at the Adirondack Pub and Brewery click here.

Hoppy Trails Brew Bus

The Hoppy Trails Brew Bus is the perfect way to explore some of the distilleries around Lake George and the surrounding areas. The company offers many tour options throughout the Adirondacks. One tour leaves from the Adirondack Pub and Brewery and takes you to two other local breweries for a tour and tasting. This tour is the perfect way to be able to enjoy some of the local brews without the worry of having to drive.

Tiki Tours

Tiki Tours is the perfect way to end a day in Lake George. Hop aboard a Tiki boat and relax on the waters of Lake George. The boat tour does not include food/drinks, but you are welcome to bring your own food/drinks aboard and use the cooler on board the boat. There is a bathroom available on board. Pricing is based off of 3 people, and you can bring up to 12 people with you. Side note: Children are allowed on board. The tiki tours are one of the best reasons to visit Lake George.

Shopping

Factory Outlets of Lake George

The Factory Outlets of Lake George are located just a short drive outside the center of Lake George. Here you will find a 1/2 mile long strip of stores. The outlets are home to over 50 stores, including well known names such as PacSun, Tommy Hilfiger, Adidas, and Old Navy. The Factory Outlets of Lake George is the go to for some fashion shopping, but if you want more personalized, unique items be sure to check out Canada Street.

Canada Street

Canda Street is the go to street in Lake George for shopping, dining, and entertainment. Along Canada Street you will find many quaint souvenir shops featuring unique Lake George items, salt water taffy, and maple syrup. If you are looking for some sweet treats be sure to check out the Lake George Baking Company or the Candy Apple. For clothing check out Adirondack Clothing Company and DILLIGAF. Another pro of Canada Street is you will find Shepard Park and the Shepard Park beach right there, so you don’t have to go far to cool off.

Looking for more great Adirondack towns to visit? Check out Old Forge, New York!

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Lake George is a small town in the Adirondack region of New York State. Lake George has plenty in the way of indoor and outdoor attractions, family fun, and parent escapes. Find out why you should visit Lake George!
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15 Comments

  1. Your posts are certainly make me wish we could travel to NY State. My list is growing longer! I had heard of Lake George. But now I know a bit more. Interesting that you can enjoy both the mountains and a lake steam boat cruise in the same area. The Natural Stone Bridge and Cave sounds like an interesting day trip. Although hubby would vote for a brewery visit. For the “later” list!

    1. There is definitely a great combination of things to do! The Stone Bridge and Caves only takes a couple hours at most, so a trip to the caves followed by the brewery is very doable!

  2. I had no idea that there is so much to see and do in Lake George. My kids had been bugging me for some outdoor fun and I think some white water rafting would be a great experience.

    Thank you for sharing this. This convinced me to definitely visit soon.

  3. That zip line looks like a lot of fun. I’m a little scared of heights, so it’s not the usually activity I’d take part in, but what a great vantage point to see the surrounding area from.

  4. This looks like my kind of place!

    I would definitely put on my boots to go hiking and would be more than happy to sing un por any nature adventures available. Plus, ending the day in a brewery doesn’t sound bad at all.

  5. I have been to NY several times, but so bummed I never went here! Definitely adding it to the list, such an adventure packed trip. I would love to go white water rafting and boy that view post the hike is incredible!! I would skip that roller coaster though haha that looks way too crazy for my taste but my husband would love a re-visit to Six Flags, he is obsessed with that place!

  6. Looks like this place is definitely for me. Hiking, white water rafting and Zip lining are some of the things that I definitely would do at a place. And I am surprised that I had never heard of Lake George till now. I will make sure I add this place to my list so I can visit it the next time I am in NY.

  7. Lake George really looks perfect place to visit as it is having full of nature. I have never done white river rafting before but it really looks good adventure water sports options here. I loved the natural bridges and caves as they really look very photogenic. Good to know here we find many adventure centers for family fun too. I am bookmarking this for my next family weekend out.

  8. Its true that we have to explore and travel more in and around our city after this pandemic. Lake George looks like an amazing place with a lot of scope for adventure for all ages. It looks like a fun place for family. I loved the Natural rock bridge and cave and the Winter Carnival Picture with snow all around is just great. Would love to explore this place sometime whenever we can travel internationally again!

  9. As you said, because of Covid, we have been extensively exploring locally! Are you white water rafting, amusement parks and adventure courses open now for you? It was closed for us, because there is a lot of touch involved in those, but now its opening one by one. Visiting the natural stone bridges and caves is something I wouldn’t want to miss! As always beaches are awesome! Just yesterday, we were at one, closer home.

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