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  1. Default NYC to Niagara Falls - the scenic route?

    Hi guys and girls,

    I've never done a roadtrip before, but my cousin and I are planning on doing a three/four day trip from NYC up to Niagara Falls and back, returning via a different route so we get to see a bit of NY state. We going mid-June.

    I'm 3.5 months pregnant, so we would have travelled for longer, but I've got to bear comfort and practicality in mind.

    I'd really like to take a scenic route - going through forests and hills as opposed to motorway all the way!

    Does anyone have any suggestions as to what the best route would be? We can't really camp unless the facilities are pretty good (shower, toilet, shop nearby etc) again because I'm pregnant. Are there any must-see things along the way? Any other handy tips for two females on their first roadtrip would be great!

    Thanks for reading - any advice would be much appreciated!

    Alexandra

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    Tucson, AZ
    Posts
    9,358

    Default My Favorite Word: Loop

    Welcome to the RoadTrip America forums!

    I am a big fan of taking different routes to and from a destination on a RoadTrip. There is usually such a small time/distance 'penalty' to pay for an alternative to the 'best' route that the added benefit of seeing new countryside and different attractions more than makes up for it. In your case, there are two basic alternatives, both have scenic two lane roads as well as parallel Interstates if you do need to bite the bullet and cover some extra distance in minimal time. If you look at a map of New York state, then it should be clear that one route will go around the Finger Lakes to the north and the other will go around them to the south. It's that simple.

    Keep in mind that the most efficient, all freeway route is about 410 miles and consider what you can see for just a few dozen miles more in each direction. On the northern route (described westbound) you could go, for example, up the Hudson River Valley on US-9W to around Albany and then take US-20 west (NY-145 provides a short cut from around Athens to around Cobblekill), and NY-63/NY/77 from Batavia to Niagara Falls provides a bypass of the Buffalo area. Some of the highlights on or near this route are West Point, the Erie Canal, the birthplace of the Women's Suffrage Movement in Seneca Falls, and several wildlife refuges on the northern tips of the Finger Lakes. Total miles: 450

    The southern route (described eastbound), you could again bypass Buffalo on back roads using NY-31/NY-93/NY-77 through Lockport, Akron and Perry with an ultimate goal of Portageville and Letchworth State Park, then head cross country on NY-436/NY-415 to around Savona. From there head up NY-414 to Watkins Glenn State Park, then use NY-224/NY-13 over to Ithaca and take the 1 mile hike in to Taughannock State Park and see a waterfall that's even taller, but admittedly somewhat less spectacular, than Niagara. Next up would be NY-96/NY-17 to Hancock and then follow NY-97 down the Delaware River to Port Jervis and the Delaware Water Gap National Recreation Area before finishing up on US-206/NJ-15 to take you to I-80 for the return to NYC. Total miles: 450

    I think both of those would be doable in a 4 day time frame and still leave about a half day or so to see Niagara Falls. As I say, you could also start out with the intention of staying on the back roads, but whenever time ran short, hop on the freeways (I-87/I-90 for the northern route, I-390/I-86/NY-17 for the southern route) and be where you needed to get to in relatively short order.

    AZBuck

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Location
    Joplin MO
    Posts
    9,270

    Default

    Not trying to quibble, but I-87/90 is the NY State Thruway and it's a toll road.

  4. #4

    Default

    I ran across the Southern Tier for years. SR 17 before it was I 86 was a very scenic route all the way across. There are the hills and woods you talked about. Any of the 2 lane roads that go through the finger lakes. The NYThruway going through Rochester, Syracuse, and Utica to me is a boring drive.

  5. Default Thanks!

    Hey everyone - thanks for all of the suggestions. I did a mapquest route - does this look about right? Sorry, it's a bit long...

    A) Katonah, NY 10536 US
    --------------------------------------------------
    1. Start out going SOUTHEAST on WOODS BRIDGE RD/NY-35 toward ANDERSON RD. Continue to follow NY-35. (go 0.5 miles)
    2. Merge onto I-684 N via the ramp on the LEFT toward BREWSTER. (go 10.5 miles)
    3. Merge onto I-84 W via EXIT 9W toward NEWBURGH. (go 15.6 miles)
    4. Merge onto TACONIC STATE PKWY N via EXIT 16N toward ALBANY. (go 30.8 miles)
    5. Take the RT-199 ramp toward PINE PLAINS/RED HOOK. (go 0.2 miles)
    6. Merge onto NY-199 via the ramp on the LEFT toward RED HOOK/RHINEBECK. (go 3.8 miles)
    7. Stay STRAIGHT to go onto NY-308. (go 4.2 miles)
    8. Merge onto NY-9G via the ramp on the LEFT. (go 3.1 miles)
    9. Turn LEFT onto NY-199 W. (go 4.2 miles)
    10. Merge onto US-9W N toward SAUGERTIES. (go 7.1 miles)
    11. Turn LEFT onto US-9W/NY-32/CHURCH ST. Continue to follow US-9W/NY-32. (go 0.5 miles)
    12. Turn SLIGHT RIGHT onto US-9W/NY-32/S PARTITION ST. (go 0.4 miles)
    13. Turn RIGHT onto MAIN ST/US-9W. Continue to follow US-9W. (go 1.2 miles)
    14. Turn SLIGHT LEFT to stay on US-9W. (go 11.2 miles)
    15. Take the RT-23 W ramp toward CAIRO/NEW YORK THRUWAY. (go 0.3 miles)
    16. Turn RIGHT onto NY-23 W. (go 9.4 miles)
    17. Stay STRAIGHT to go onto NY-145 W. (go 28.9 miles)
    18. Turn RIGHT onto NY-145. (go 7.6 miles)
    19. Turn LEFT onto NY-7/NY-145. (go 3.4 miles)
    20. Turn SLIGHT LEFT onto W MAIN ST/NY-10/NY-7. (go 0.0 miles)
    21. End at Cobleskill, NY
    >> ESTIMATED TIME: 3 hours 2 minutes | DISTANCE: 142.97 miles
    --------------------------------------------------
    B) Cobleskill, NY US
    --------------------------------------------------
    1. Start out going EAST on W MAIN ST/NY-10/NY-7 toward E MAIN ST/NY-145. (go 0.0 miles)
    2. Turn LEFT onto N GRAND ST/NY-10/NY-145. Continue to follow NY-145. (go 2.1 miles)
    3. Turn RIGHT to stay on NY-145. (go 5.0 miles)
    4. NY-145 becomes US-20 W. (go 71.8 miles)
    5. Turn RIGHT onto LINCKLAEN ST. (go 0.0 miles)
    6. End at Cazenovia, NY
    >> ESTIMATED TIME: 1 hour 50 minutes | DISTANCE: 78.96 miles
    --------------------------------------------------
    C) Cazenovia, NY US
    --------------------------------------------------
    1. Start out going SOUTH on LINCKLAEN ST toward ALBANY ST/US-20/NY-13. (go 0.0 miles)
    2. Turn RIGHT onto ALBANY ST/US-20/NY-13. (go 0.3 miles)
    3. Turn LEFT onto FORMAN ST/US-20/NY-13. (go 0.2 miles)
    4. Turn RIGHT onto US-20/LEDYARD AVE. Continue to follow US-20. (go 32.4 miles)
    5. Turn RIGHT onto JORDAN ST/CR-22. (go 0.1 miles)
    6. End at Skaneateles, NY
    >> ESTIMATED TIME: 43 minutes | DISTANCE: 32.97 miles
    --------------------------------------------------
    D) Skaneateles, NY US
    --------------------------------------------------
    1. Start out going NORTH on JORDAN ST/CR-22 toward ACADEMY ST. Continue to follow CR-22. (go 2.5 miles)
    2. Turn SLIGHT LEFT onto SHELDON RD. (go 0.9 miles)
    3. SHELDON RD becomes MILLER RD. (go 3.6 miles)
    4. Turn RIGHT onto GRANT AVE/NY-5. (go 0.6 miles)
    5. Turn LEFT onto WEEDSPORT-SENNETT RD/CR-12C. Continue to follow WEEDSPORT-SENNETT RD. (go 3.7 miles)
    6. WEEDSPORT-SENNETT RD becomes SOUTH ST/CR-12B. (go 0.6 miles)
    7. Turn LEFT onto E BRUTUS ST. (go 0.1 miles)
    8. Turn RIGHT onto NY-34/N SENECA ST. Continue to follow NY-34. (go 8.7 miles)
    9. Turn LEFT onto NY-370/W MAIN ST. Continue to follow NY-370 W. (go 10.4 miles)
    10. Turn SLIGHT LEFT onto RIDGE RD W/CR-163 W. (go 2.2 miles)
    11. Turn LEFT onto NY-104 W. (go 101.4 miles)
    12. Turn LEFT onto LOCKPORT-OLCOTT RD/NY-104/NY-78. (go 0.4 miles)
    13. Turn RIGHT onto RIDGE RD/NY-104. (go 17.9 miles)
    14. Turn LEFT onto CREEK RD EXT. (go 0.1 miles)
    15. Turn RIGHT onto CREEK RD EXT/NY-18 S. (go 1.0 miles)
    16. Turn SLIGHT RIGHT onto NY-104/LEWISTON RD. Continue to follow NY-104. (go 4.8 miles)
    17. Turn RIGHT onto MAIN ST/NY-104. (go 0.6 miles)
    18. Turn RIGHT onto PINE AVE. (go 0.0 miles)
    19. End at Niagara Falls, NY
    >> ESTIMATED TIME: 3 hours 39 minutes | DISTANCE: 159.40 miles
    --------------------------------------------------
    E) Niagara Falls, NY US
    --------------------------------------------------
    1. Start out going EAST on PINE AVE toward MAIN ST/NY-104. (go 0.1 miles)
    2. Turn RIGHT onto 7TH ST. (go 0.4 miles)
    3. Turn LEFT onto NIAGARA ST/NY-384 S. (go 0.1 miles)
    4. Turn RIGHT onto NY-384 S/JOHN B DALY BLVD. Continue to follow JOHN B DALY BLVD. (go 0.4 miles)
    5. Take the ROBERT MOSES PKY ramp. (go 0.0 miles)
    6. Stay STRAIGHT to go onto ROBERT MOSES STATE PKWY S. (go 3.6 miles)
    7. Merge onto LASALLE EXPY E. (go 2.6 miles)
    8. Turn RIGHT onto WILLIAMS RD. (go 0.1 miles)
    9. Turn LEFT onto RIVER RD/NY-265/NY-384. Continue to follow NY-265. (go 5.1 miles)
    10. Turn RIGHT onto NIAGARA ST/NY-266. Continue to follow NY-266. (go 5.5 miles)
    11. Merge onto I-190 S/NEW YORK STATE THRUWAY. (go 5.5 miles)
    12. Take the RT-266/NIAGARA ST exit, EXIT 8. (go 0.6 miles)
    13. Turn RIGHT onto NIAGARA ST. (go 0.5 miles)
    14. Enter next NIAGARA SQ roundabout. (go 0.0 miles)
    15. End at Buffalo, NY
    >> ESTIMATED TIME: 40 minutes | DISTANCE: 24.61 miles
    --------------------------------------------------
    F) Buffalo, NY US
    --------------------------------------------------
    1. Start out going SOUTHEAST on NIAGARA SQ toward DELAWARE AVE/NY-384. (go 0.1 miles)
    2. Turn RIGHT onto DELAWARE AVE/NY-384. (go 0.2 miles)
    3. Turn RIGHT onto CHURCH ST. (go 0.2 miles)
    4. Merge onto I-190 S/NEW YORK STATE THRUWAY via the ramp on the LEFT toward RT-5 WEST/SKYWAY. (go 5.1 miles)
    5. Merge onto I-90 W/NEW YORK STATE THRUWAY W via EXIT 54-61 toward ERIE. (go 1.6 miles)
    6. Take the RT-400 exit, EXIT 54, toward RT-16/WEST SENECA/EAST AURORA. (go 0.5 miles)
    7. Merge onto NY-400 S/AURORA EXPY. (go 12.5 miles)
    8. Take the US-20A/RT-78 ramp toward EAST AURORA. (go 35.5 miles)
    9. Turn SLIGHT LEFT onto LEICESTER RD/US-20A/NY-39. Continue to follow US-20A/NY-39. (go 2.4 miles)
    10. Turn RIGHT onto MT MORRIS RD/NY-36. Continue to follow NY-36. (go 8.5 miles)
    11. Merge onto I-390 S. (go 32.8 miles)
    12. I-390 S becomes NY-17 E (Passing through PENNSYLVANIA, then crossing into NEW YORK). (go 99.8 miles)
    13. Take the US-11/FRONT ST exit, EXIT 72. (go 0.2 miles)
    14. Turn RIGHT onto FRONT ST/UPPER FRONT ST/US-11. (go 1.0 miles)
    15. Turn RIGHT onto MAIN ST/NY-17C. (go 0.0 miles)
    16. End at Binghamton, NY
    >> ESTIMATED TIME: 3 hours 45 minutes | DISTANCE: 200.36 miles
    --------------------------------------------------
    G) Binghamton, NY US
    --------------------------------------------------
    1. Start out going EAST on MAIN ST/NY-17C toward FRONT ST/UPPER FRONT ST. Continue to follow MAIN ST. (go 0.1 miles)
    2. MAIN ST becomes COURT ST/US-11 S. (go 0.9 miles)
    3. Merge onto NY-363 E. (go 0.7 miles)
    4. NY-363 E becomes NY-7 N. (go 0.3 miles)
    5. Merge onto NY-17 E toward SCRANTON/NEW YORK. (go 134.0 miles)
    6. Merge onto US-6 E via EXIT 130A toward BEAR MTN. (go 7.0 miles)
    7. Enter next roundabout and take 3rd exit. (go 0.5 miles)
    8. Stay STRAIGHT to go onto US-6 E/PALISADES INTERSTATE PKWY N. (go 2.5 miles)
    9. Enter next roundabout and take 2nd exit onto US-202 N/US-6 E. (go 0.1 miles)
    10. US-202 N/US-6 E becomes US-6 E/US-202 E (Portions toll). (go 4.1 miles)
    11. Enter next roundabout and take 1st exit onto US-202 E/US-6 E/US-9 S/LOWER SOUTH ST. (go 0.2 miles)
    12. Turn LEFT onto BEAR MOUNTAIN STATE PKWY. (go 3.8 miles)
    13. Turn LEFT onto CROMPOND RD/US-202/NY-35. (go 5.4 miles)
    14. Turn LEFT onto US-202/NY-118/NY-35/SAW MILL RIVER RD. Continue to follow NY-35. (go 6.3 miles)
    15. Turn RIGHT onto WOODS BRIDGE RD/NY-117. Continue to follow NY-117 S. (go 0.5 miles)
    16. Turn RIGHT onto PARKWAY. (go 0.0 miles)
    17. End at Katonah, NY
    >> ESTIMATED TIME: 4 hours 6 minutes | DISTANCE: 166.41 miles
    --------------------------------------------------
    H) Katonah, NY US


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