Pleasant stops on a road trip between Philadelphia and Buffalo?
September 6, 2013 11:55 AM   Subscribe

I'm planning a road trip from Philadelphia to Toronto in October. I'm thinking of breaking up the trip by staying a night somewhere in between. Somewhere with a cute hotel, a nice breakfast and somewhere to wander around before taking off the next day. Just by google mapping it, I'm thinking Ithica, but id be welcome to other suggestions. Secondary question: are there any great hidden food spots to catch on the way? Thanks!
posted by cacofonie to Travel & Transportation around Philadelphia, PA (7 answers total) 3 users marked this as a favorite
Ithaca is Gorges.
posted by bensherman at 12:05 PM on September 6, 2013 [2 favorites]

The Finger Lakes are beautiful. Some suggestions:

- Drive through Hammondsport & up Keuka lake. I think this is the prettiest drive; Hammondsport is small, cute, but touristy. Consider eating at one of the wineries on the west side of the lake. Bully Hill in particular has a beautiful view.

- Drive through Watkins Glen & up Seneca Lake (NY14). The vistas here are more open; Watkins is very touristy in a Niagara Falls - tacky kind of way, but the state park is quite something & is right in town.

- Drive through Ithaca & up Cayuga Lake. Ithaca is bigger & less scenic than the other towns in the area, but has more going on & a nice Old Hippy feel to it. If you have time, stop at Taughannock Falls State Park.

You might want to stay out of town in a B&B or small motel. Glenora Wine Cellars operates a motel on NY14, with spectacular lake views. But October is prime foliage season so you might find accommodations are already sparse.
posted by mr vino at 12:19 PM on September 6, 2013 [2 favorites]

I agree with mr vino. Love Hammondsport. It has some decent restaurants (nothing too fancy) and the wineries along the lake are great. Keuka Springs and Dr. Frank's are my favorite.
posted by mzwz at 12:41 PM on September 6, 2013

Just did that road trip 3 weeks ago and stayed at a best western overnight. Checked out the Buttermilk Falls which was 15 mins away and then walked around cute lil Ithaca. Watson's Glen was also recommended to me. Both (and above suggestion) seems great.
posted by PeaPod at 1:29 PM on September 6, 2013

The Finger Lakes are full of natural beauty.

If you decide to stay in Ithaca, I recommend the William Henry Miller Inn, if it's still in business. It is a bed and breakfast in town. I've stayed there twice and thoroughly enjoyed it both times.

Seconding Taughannock Falls State Park. It was a favorite camping spot of mine when I was in college.

Seconding also the suggestion to check out a winery or three (if you're into that sort of thing) and have the time to spend.

The Cornell Plantations may be worth a visit.

It isn't exactly "hidden," but Moosewood is a very famous vegetarian restaurant (for good reason). I am a raging carnivore and I was very pleasantly surprised.

(Oh, and it's Watkins Glen, not Watson's Glen.)
posted by tckma at 2:33 PM on September 6, 2013

Definitely stop in the Finger Lakes for wine, cheese, and gorgeous scenery. It's a great area to wander.

I like Letchworth State Park outside Rochester, as well. Nice hikes, nice scenery.
posted by easy, lucky, free at 7:18 PM on September 6, 2013

Response by poster: Thanks for the suggestions, folks.

So, first I learned how to spell Ithaca.

Then, during the actual road trip, I stayed at the Hilton Garden Inn in Ithaca, which was overpriced, but quite convenient.

We had plans to hit up the Moosewood for dinner, but got in too late from Philly and ended up having tequila and average mexican food at Viva Tacqueria.

The next day, grabbed a delicious coffee at Gimme Coffee, walked around the lovely Cornell campus and drove up the 89 to Taughannock falls to have a look at the beautiful falls. We then had a lovely drive up back to the 90 along the side of the lake. Didn't have time to check out a winery, unfortunately, but it is a wonderful region and we'll definitely be back.
posted by cacofonie at 7:06 PM on October 16, 2013

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