Ft. Drum, NY
September 11, 2014 12:14 PM   Subscribe

I'm heading to Fort Drum, NY in October visit someone during a weekend (arrive Friday night, leave Sunday afternoon). Where should we fly into: Watertown or Syracuse? Where should we stay?: Near Ft. Drum, in Syracuse, or? There's some time to see things in the area; what should we do and see?

Going with my wife and nine-year old. Cost of things isn't too important.
posted by ShooBoo to Travel & Transportation around Fort Drum, NY (10 answers total)
 
Response by poster: Note about where to fly into: Watertown is a tiny airport nearby Ft. Drum that has two flights a day from Philadelphia. Syracuse has a lot more flights, but is an hour drive.
posted by ShooBoo at 12:17 PM on September 11, 2014


IMO, Syracuse is going to have more to see. There are museums and DestinyUSA (a fancy shopping mall). Not sure what kinds of things you're interested in. The airport is on the north-ish side of the city, so if you're driving to Fort Drum, you'll be driving away from Syr almost immediately.
posted by Wild_Eep at 12:33 PM on September 11, 2014


You'll be pretty close to the Thousand Islands area which is fantastically pretty. I'd recommend a trip up to Alex Bay.
posted by Aizkolari at 12:38 PM on September 11, 2014 [3 favorites]


The drive is a little over an hour and it is not a particularly exciting stretch of road. I wouldn't want to go back & forth too many times but if you can spend a day in Fort Drum then go back to Syracuse, that's what I would do.

Syracuse has:
a zoo - you might be there for the Zoo Boo!
the MOST - hands-on science place
Plenty of places to eat. If you like to drink beer, there's a great bar a block away from the Most - the Blue Tusk. Tons of craft beer on tap and plenty of good food. But that area - Armory Square - has lots of good places to eat.

Were I going to Syracuse in October I would try my best to go to Beak & Skiff for apples, or any of the other billion apple orchards in the area. Beak & Skiff is in the opposite direction of Fort Drumm but there are orchards aplenty.
posted by lyssabee at 12:48 PM on September 11, 2014


If the schedule and cost to Watertown is right for you, I'd say do that. There are plenty of things to do and see in the neighborhood — the Thousand Islands, Boldt Castle, Sackets Harbor — and Syracuse really doesn't have much more to add to the list. There's a friendly little zoo in Thompson Park in Watertown that your 9-year-old might like. I agree with Wild_Eep that if malls are your thing, Destiny USA, the sixth largest mall in the nation, might be of some interest, but the museums in Syracuse are pretty tame. I think you'd be better off having fun in the great outdoors with Watertown as your base.
posted by ubiquity at 12:48 PM on September 11, 2014


October will be prime foliage time, and I'd vote getting an off-season cottage in the Thousand Islands area. It's a good pick if you are interested in wineries and hiking. You could also consider a day trip to Ottawa from either that region or Watertown -- it has lots more to offer than Syracuse.
posted by susanvance at 12:48 PM on September 11, 2014


I probably should say I grew up in Syracuse, still go there several times a year, so that's my comfort zone. Ubiquity is right - there are lots of lovely places in Watertown.

But it gets COLD up there in the fall! Keep that in mind.
posted by lyssabee at 12:49 PM on September 11, 2014


I will refer to my answer in this recent AskMe for restaurants and things to do. Watertown/Ft. Drum isn't especially interesting, but Sackets Harbor and Alexandria Bay are nice. I'd fly into Syracuse because there are more flights. I come to Watertown frequently (I am here right now, actually) and always fly into Syracuse because of the better flight options.

If you do stay in Watertown, there are a bunch of new-ish hotels on Arsenal Street near exit 45 off Route 81.
posted by bedhead at 12:50 PM on September 11, 2014


Syracuse will likely have more flight options and less expensive flights. However, if you don't want to make the drive (it's about two hours) and cost isn't an issue, you should fly into Watertown.
posted by tckma at 1:13 PM on September 11, 2014


Your nine-year-old might not find it too thrilling, but the Everson Museum of Art in Syracuse is housed in an I.M. Pei-designed building, and has a fantastic ceramics collection.
posted by Leatherstocking at 3:08 PM on September 11, 2014


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