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Author: Erin Faherty

Erin Faherty is the Digital Editorial Coordinator of I LOVE NEW YORK. She is obsessed with traveling and always up for an adventure.

Snowmobiling at Allegany State Park

While you may be familiar with other regions we’ve written about in this series like the Adirondacks, the Catskills, and the Finger Lakes, there’s a chance you’ll be a pioneer among your friends as you explore the westernmost region of New York. You’re in the right spot, because we are revealing some of the region’s best secrets. In fact, the name Chautauqua is actually a secret itself. It’s said to be from the long-forgotten Erie language of the Erie Iroquoian people, but no one alive today knows what it means—or if they do, they’re better at keeping secrets than we are.

Long Island City

If you visit New York City without visiting at least one outer borough, you’re not really seeing New York City. While Brooklyn gets a lot of attention, we’d like to introduce you to Queens. Queens is the most culturally diverse county in the US so you can bet your taste buds will be pleased. The borough is also home to world-class museums, exciting sports, and excellent views. It’s no wonder that Amazon chose one of Queens’ hippest neighborhoods, Long Island City, as a new corporate headquarters.

View of Brooklyn Bridge over the Hudson River at Brooklyn Bridge Park

Path Through History Weekend is October 6–8 and if you think you're just not that into history, it’s a good time to rethink what you believe history to be. Below, we’ve selected 11 fun events featuring early transportation, stops on the Underground Railroad, stargazing around a bonfire, and petting dalmatians while learning about fire safety. Check out the Path Through History event site for all of the historical and educational sites hosting something special over the weekend!

Miles Wine Cellars
Miles Wine Cellars, Credit: @Amityphotos.com

The Finger Lakes are a treasure trove of secrets and stories. Did you know that at one time, Native Americans told the story that the Finger Lakes themselves were created when a spirit put his hands on the earth, leaving indentations at each of his fingers? Or that there are 11 Finger Lakes and not 10, as one might suspect from their name? Or that the ice cream sundae was invented at an ice cream fountain in Ithaca in 1892? (By the way, we recommend Purity Ice Cream if you’ve got a craving.) The secrets don’t end there. But here are some you can visit today:

Watkins Glen State Park-Photo-Courtesy of Beautiful Destinations

Watkins Glen in the Finger Lakes is a wonderful example of a small town in upstate New York with a big story (other good examples are Seneca Falls and Cooperstown). While there may be fewer than 2,000 year-round residents, Watkins Glen is also home to world-class attractions like gorge-ous Watkins Glen State Park and Watkins Glen International, the only place to watch NASCAR in the state. Don’t worry about the planning, we’ve done it all for you:

Chocolate Workshops at New York Kitchen

You know about the M&Ms store in Times Square, we’ve told you where to get some of the best chocolate-covered donuts in the state, and we’ve even spilled the (chocolate) beans on where to find world-winning chocolate in the Catskills, but there’s even more to New York’s chocolate scene than what we’ve already shared. You can have some pretty unique chocolate adventures in New York State, and we’ve rounded up some of our favorites.

Taste of Buffalo

Whether you’re into pizza, burgers, donuts, or Garbage Plates, it’s safe to say that New York State is a place for foodies. Not only do we have some of the best restaurants in the world, but we also celebrate food all summer long at various festivals and events—many of them including music, entertainment, competitions, and more! We’ve rounded up some of the best food festivals and events going on this summer across the state. Fill up your calendar now so you can fill up your belly later!

Tompkins Falls

While well-known spots are well-known for a reason, sometimes the most fun you'll have on vacation is straying from the beaten path and exploring those locals-only insider secrets. Kicking off a new series on the I LOVE NEW YORK blog, we're diving into the Secrets of the Catskills.