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A tray of cider donuts with pumpkins in the background
Credit: @redwhiteandbites on Instagram

Updated 3/26/21

New Yorkers love their iconic New York foods and love to share their opinions. We tell friends where to find the best pizza slice or bagel. We travel across our towns or cities in search of the most perfectly moist half moon cookie. We make pilgrimages to the places where Buffalo wings or the Rochester garbage plate were first served. And we debate the merits of one food versus the other, which brings us to the new I LOVE NY Food Bracket. Voters on the I LOVE NY Instagram, Facebook, or Twitter accounts have now spoken, and NY Pizza is the winner of the 2021 Bracket! Follow I LOVE NY and while voting has ended, please feel free to make passionate comments about why your choice is the best!

Colorful croissants and pastries
Credit: @muyaoeats on Instagram

Whether you have a sweet tooth for New York apple pie or prefer a more savory treat like a bagel with your morning coffee or tea, New York has local bakeries to satisfy everyone for breakfast, dessert, or a snack. Here, you’ll find world-class breads and award-winning pies, treats from around the world, and some of the yummiest-smelling food items you’ll ever experience! Here are 12 of the best bakeries from every region of New York State, so you’ll never have to travel far for a sweet or savory reward prepared by dedicated bakers.

Glamping tents on Governors Island with a view of the Statue of Liberty at sunset
Credit: @pobz_iv on Instagram

Camping is one of the best and most affordable family vacations, immersing you in the peace and tranquility of nature. With warmer weather on the horizon, make reservations at one of New York State’s great campgrounds and plan a stay in the great outdoors. State parks and campgrounds abound, from glittering Lake George to thundering Niagara Falls. New York State also has a variety of privately owned campgrounds perfect for all your needs, from full-service resorts to more rustic family-friendly places. If you aren’t quite into roughing it in the wilderness, try glamping, which elevates sleeping in the great outdoors with creature comforts and modern conveniences. Whether you like to rough it, follow historic pathways, or live luxuriously, New York camps offer something for everyone to love.

Donuts with sugar glaze from the Doughnuttery
Credit: @nyc.snaccos on Instagram

New York is home to some of the world’s best restaurants and is the birthplace of internationally famous foods such as Buffalo wings, the beef on weck sandwich, and of course, the New York (pizza) slice and bagels. Over the past year, the state’s chefs and restaurateurs showcased even more culinary creativity than usual, keeping New Yorkers fed with to-go options that raised the bar for takeout, with prepared dishes and kits that allow you to create a memorable meal at home. Feeling hungry? Drive locally to pick up one of these special food offerings or order online for delivery or shipping (where possible). Bon appetit! 

The front of the Metropolitan Museum of Art
Credit: @dario.nyc on Instagram

Whether you’re looking for a cultural field trip close to home or trying to find interesting diversions online, New York’s museums offer exciting options. In late winter and early spring, many institutions introduce new programming and noteworthy exhibitions, and this year is no exception! Read on for new exhibits at New York State museums, in-person or virtual. There’s something for everyone, from major art retrospectives to new family-friendly exhibits to inspiring historical showcases with a timely twist. 

Buffalo and Erie County Botanical Gardens building lit up at night
Credit: @gerri.gjones on Instagram

Learn a new skill or hone your talents with help from New York State! Online classes and workshops from experts at New York attractions can have you improving your cooking, making colorful flower arrangements, taking acting or improv comedy lessons, getting to the next yoga level, and more. You’ll also find options to expand children’s knowledge of STEM subjects as well as family-friendly educational opportunities for all. Check out these online classes and up your knowledge while supporting favorite New York institutions. 

Frozen waterfall at Five Rivers Environmental Education Center
Credit: @kelvin_krimaging on Instagram

New York State offers endless outdoor adventures, from thrill rides on ziplines and mountain coasters to pulse-pounding mountain hikes. But what if you want a quiet walk in the woods or along the water or even to see a majestic waterfall? Someplace to stretch your legs or get the kids outdoors without too much fuss? Well, New York has you covered there, too, with scenic, easy winter walks and nature trails perfect for a solitary break or a family excursion. Here are 11 easy winter walks in New York State.

The New York State Museum set against a brilliant sunset
Credit: @shuhartphotography on Instagram

A great rainy day or wintertime activity, or the perfect component of a day on the town, a New York museum tour is always a satisfying experience. Many of New York’s museums are open with safety protocols in place, but there is another way to enjoy an exhibit without leaving the comfort and security of home. Virtual museum tours offer an exciting chance to see world-class art and thought-provoking exhibitions, and the technology often makes you feel like you’re walking the galleries in real life. Take an online stroll around these New York State museums with these engaging virtual museum tours.

Pie at Phoenicia Diner
Credit: Kevin Trageser

New York is famed for its world-class restaurants, celebrity chefs, creative food inventions, and diverse agricultural products. Not surprisingly, the state also leads the way with entertaining, informative, and inspiring cookbooks. Here are a selection of 17 books to get you cooking, New York-style, available at your local bookstore, online, and in many cases, as an ebook. Whether you want to make your own Buffalo wings, create a tangy Thousand Island dressing for your salad, or try your hand at a tasty Utica tomato pie, bookmark the pages in New York State cookbooks and have fun in the kitchen!