About 5 hours north of busy New York City, Lake Placid is an oasis of outdoor activities and relaxation. If it sounds familiar, perhaps it’s because Lake Placid has twice hosted the Winter Olympics and you can visit the sites those world-class athletes competed on and see how you compare. Nestled in the heart of the Adirondacks, the city provides visitors with the opportunity to reconnect with nature, enjoy amazing food and local beer, and participate in sporting activities year-round. With accommodations ranging from campsites and air b&b’s to luxury lodges and boutique inns, there truly is something for everyone. The next time you’re looking for a relaxing weekend getaway, head to Lake Placid and follow our winter guide to be sure you don’t miss a thing.
Ski Whiteface Mountain
At just under 5,000 feet tall, Whiteface Mountain is the fifth tallest peak in the country and one of the best places to ski on the East Coast. With the largest vertical drop in the East (3,430 feet!) and 87 trails, Whiteface Mountain presents skiers with challenging slopes and long, fun runs.
Ice Skate at the Olympic Oval
When the weather dips low and the ice freezes over on this outdoor rink, it’s the ideal spot for some skating. You’ll be zipping around the same ice as former Olympians speed-skaters from the 1932 and 1980 games.
Dogsled on Mirror Lake
Mirror Lake is a sight to be hold when it freezes over. In the heart of Lake Placid, it’s the focus of a lot of fun winter activities, including dog-sledding. On the super cold days, you’ll see the dogs and their mushers along Main Street. No matter which outfitter you choose, tickets typically run about $10. Enjoy the ride!
Hike at High Falls Gorge
An afternoon hiking at Hill Falls Gorge is an afternoon well spent. Glass bottom bridges showcase nature from a different perspective. There are four waterfalls to be discovered, and groomed hiking trails make for the perfect place to snowshoe. During the winter, be sure to check the calendar for availability and hours.
Hit the Olympic Ski Jump
If you’re afraid of heights, fear not, because you can’t actually use the 1980 Olympic ski jump. However, the ride up may still be a little nerve-wracking. Chair lifts whisk you up above the snow covered slopes to the top. Then, you ride an elevator up even higher to the top of the jump to take in the view from the athletes vantage point. The panorama shot you get of the Adriondacks all around you is pretty unbeatable.
Sip Vino Along the Adirondack Coast Wine Trail
Who says winery tours are just for the warmer months? Hit the Adirondack Coast Wine Trail to tour the vineyards and sample some local flights. A few sips and you’ll be warmed up from the inside out!
Snowshoe or Cross Country Ski
At Cascades Ski Center, you can rent a pair of snowshoes or cross country skis. Once you’re locked in, head out onto their trails to get your cardio in! Another great spot to explore is John Brown Farm, just down the road. A beautiful setting with an open field and log cabins, there are historical markers every few feet to get in a little history lesson during your work out as well.
What can’t you do at the ‘Grand Canyon of the Adirondacks’? Biking, rafting, repelling, tubing, rock climbing – all while enjoying the stunning views around. Keep in mind, activity options vary by the season. In the colder months, a tour includes snowshoes or ice cleats and you’ll see the froze Ausable River, amazing ice and rock formations, and the chasm blanketed in powder.
Liquids & Solids
A cozy, pub atmosphere greets you when you walk in the door at Liquids & Solids. It exudes a laid back, relaxed vibe, but the menu is anything but that. We were expecting burgers, wings and standard comfort fare, but the dishes are incredibly dynamic and eclectic. Plates like braided ox tail stew and house-made kelibasa with fresh spätzle and mushrooms are just of few of the delectable items.
Artisan at Lake Placid Lodge
This upscale restaurant is located at the Lake Placid Lodge and is perfect if you’re looking for a wonderful meal that’s a bit ore on the fancy side. Their wine list is extensive and the menu offers a prix fixe menu or a la carte options. The seasonal tasting menu takes you on a journey from small, chilled bites to a hot, filling entrees – every bit filled with a burst of complimenting flavors.
Lake Placid Pub & Brewery
If you order something besides the local brews on tap, you’ll probably get a funny look or two. Order a pint of a local micro brew and ask for the specials. The beef and beer chili is delish and you can’t go wrong with the tomato soup and grilled cheese. It’s a great spot to sit with friends and debate who skied better that day.
Located inside the Whiteface Lodge, Kanu serves dinner in a grand, cabin-style great room and lunch in a more cozy, relaxed lounge. Fireplaces and the north woods decor create a cozy ambiance, no matter which meal you pop in for. We loved the pizza paired with a local beer for an après-ski lunch.
The cozy, cabin feel of this lodge is exactly what you want to escape to come winter. In the lobby, rich, buttery wood exudes a familiar warmth and the rooms are spacious and inviting. From the grand entrance to the tiny details throughout the property, you’ll feel transported to the ‘north woods’ at every turn. Read more about the Whiteface Lodge.
Mirror Lake Inn
This stately white property sits atop a hill and beckons you to come inside. The moment you enter, all your worries melt away. Even in the summer, something about the lobby smells faintly of a fireplace that was recently lit, a cozy warmth permanently in the air, and freshly baked chocolate chip cookies tempt you at the check-in desk. During the winter months, you’re in a prime location to take a lap around the frozen Mirror Lake or dogsled atop the ice. Read more about the Mirror Lake Inn.
Thank you to Visit Adirondacks for sponsoring this post!
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