How many main streets in New York have you shopped? With unique architecture, beautiful window displays, and business-lined sidewalks, the state boasts some of the best main streets for shopping. From classic souvenirs and high-end clothes to thoughtful keepsakes and handmade items, there are options for everyone. Take your next shopping trip along a picture-perfect main street in a New York State village, town, or small city with a small-town feel.
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Originally published: 11/21/2019
Ithaca (Finger Lakes)
Home to the Downtown Ithaca Commons and Press Bay Alley, Ithaca offers multiple shopping experiences. The award-winning Ithaca Commons is a four-block pedestrian-only area with a variety of shops, restaurants, and art galleries. Discover handcrafted jewelry at 15 STEPS and delicately crafted vases and sculptures at American Crafts by Robbie Dein. While you’re at the Commons, try incredible vegetarian and vegan dishes at the well-known restaurant Moosewood—popular for its ever-changing menu that utilizes seasonal ingredients, and for its influential cookbooks. If you’re in the mood for a sandwich, Gorgers features tasty subs for all taste buds!
In addition to a stunning natural landscape and rich history in art, the Catskills host some incredible main streets. One of the most vibrant is in Catskill. Running parallel to the Catskill Creek, Catskill’s Main Street offers stores with locally made products, diverse restaurants, and specialty shops. Begin your shopping trip with a specialty coffee at Citiot. As you wander by Victorian buildings along Main Street, find new-to-you secondhand books from Magpie Bookshop and browse delicate handmade gifts at Mahalo, plus products from Saratoga Olive Oil Company. If you’ve worked up an appetite shopping, try the pierogi platter at New York Restaurant or grab a locally sourced snack at the Catskill Mountain Country Store. On your trip to the Catskills, also check out the shopping (and eating!) on Tinker Street, Mill Hill Road, and Rock City Road in Woodstock, Main Street in Tannersville, and Main Street in Delhi.
Clayton (Thousand Islands-Seaway)
Credit: Emma Frisbie
Located along the shores of the St. Lawrence River, Clayton provides a unique shopping experience for those who visit by land year-round and also by water in the summer months. Clayton doesn’t have just one main street to shop—the Village of Clayton, located within the town, has several streets with shops to explore. From souvenirs and jewelry to clothing and locally made food items, you can find a gift for anyone in Clayton! Taste the flavors of the Thousand Islands with “original” Thousand Islands dressing or “River Rat” cheese. Keeping with the nautical theme of the Thousand Islands, Reinman’s Department Store features a wide variety of decorative, boating, and hardware items. Learn about the intricate architecture found in Clayton on a self-guided walking tour—pick up a map from the Chamber of Commerce Monday through Friday 9am to 4pm.
Saranac Lake (Adirondacks)
Nestled in the picturesque Adirondack Mountains, Saranac Lake is a must-see New York State destination. Broadway, the main street through town, and the roads just off Broadway in Saranac Lake’s historic downtown, are filled with Adirondack shops, art galleries, restaurants, and coffee shops. Feel the community-oriented vibe of the village as you walk along the downtown streets, stopping by Goody Goody’s toy store, The Book Nook book shop, and the Adirondack Trading Company gift shop. Shopping for a music lover, or maybe an outdoor adventurer? Ampersound is the place to go for music-related items, and Blue Line Sports has everything from hunting and winter sports gear to camping accessories and team sports equipment.
Northport (Long Island)
Experience the scenic waterfront town of Northport, part of Long Island’s Suffolk County, any time of year. The location along Northport Harbor makes it convenient for shoppers to visit via boat as well. The pedestrian-friendly Main Street, located in the Village of Northport, provides visitors with a local community feel—featuring several boutiques, gift shops, restaurants, and art galleries. LaMantia Gallery and The Firefly Artists are among the many art galleries located along Main Street. After browsing incredible works of art, check out live music and grab a drink at Gunther’s Tap Room—a favorite destination of the late poet and author, Jack Kerouac. Don’t leave the village until you’ve treated yourself to homemade ice cream at Northport Sweet Shop, or a pastry at Copenhagen Bakery. On Saturdays from June to mid-November peruse vendor booths at the Northport Farmers’ Market, held at Cow Harbor Park, at the end of Main Street.
The historic Village of Ellicottville features multiple streets for shopping, not just one “Main Street.” Monroe Street and Washington Street are two of the prominent intersecting streets in downtown Ellicottville that are lined with shops and restaurants. Find colorful socks for every personality type at the Purple Doorknob, and all the ski gear you could ever want at the City Garage and Mud, Sweat n’ Gears ski shops. Take a break from shopping with a seasonal beer at Ellicottville Brewing Company or a glass of wine from the Winery of Ellicottville. Finish your shopping excursion with a decadent treat from Cupcaked Bakery and sponge candy from Watson’s Chocolates. After exploring downtown, head to nearby Holiday Valley Resort—offering skiing, tubing, and snowboarding in the winter and adventure parks, an 18 hole par 70 "Double Black Diamond" golf course, and mountain biking in the summer.
Cooperstown (Central New York)
After just a few steps walking along Main Street, you’ll experience the vibrant, yet historic atmosphere of Cooperstown. As the proud home of the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum, Cooperstown carries the theme throughout the village with shops selling autographed memorabilia, apparel, and baseball hats. In addition to baseball-oriented stores, Main Street is home to gift shops like Riverwood and Tin Bin Alley. While you’re strolling Main Street, stop by Doubleday Café for a juicy burger or Schneider’s Bakery for a homemade doughnut. Just off Main Street, in Pioneer Alley, the Cooperstown Farmers’ Market occurs year-round on Saturdays. Find all kinds of items, such as fresh produce, meats, honey, and jams from vendors within 50 miles of Cooperstown. Rest after a busy day of shopping at the beautiful Inn at Cooperstown or the Otesaga Resort Hotel.
Saratoga Springs (Capital-Saratoga)
Credit: Saratoga County Chamber of Commerce
Known for its exciting summer season at the Saratoga Race Course and energized downtown, Saratoga Springs is a gem, located north of the state’s capital. Lined with unique shops, celebrated restaurants, and delightful coffee spots, Broadway is Saratoga’s “Main Street.” A walkable and dog-friendly street, Broadway is beautifully decorated throughout the year, especially during the holiday season. As a nod to Saratoga’s horse racing history, several shops feature horse-related items, such as stuffed animals, drinking glasses, and shirts. Try it before you buy it with honey samples at Saratoga Tea & Honey Co. and olive oil, as well as balsamic samples at Saratoga Olive Oil Co. For kids and kids at heart, G. Willikers toy store is the place to explore for games and toys. Always looking for a good book? Explore the shelves at Northshire Bookstore, one of the largest independent bookstores in the region.
Cold Spring (Hudson Valley)
Cold Spring, located approximately 50 miles north of New York City and alongside the Hudson River, provides visitors and locals alike with art galleries, antique shops, clothing stores, coffee spots, and eateries—all on the village’s Main Street. Shopping for yourself? Find a new book from Split Rock Books to indulge in a little “me” time. Trying to find a gift for someone that has everything? Head to Cold Spring Apothecary for health and wellness products made with high-quality ingredients. Don’t leave Cold Spring on an empty stomach. From salads and sandwiches made with local ingredients at Hudson Hil’s Cafe, pizza and calzones from Cold Spring Pizza, and homemade ice cream from Moo Moo’s Creamery, there are plenty of options to choose from!
Rhinebeck (Hudson Valley)
Rhinebeck is a quaint village perfect for a Hudson Valley getaway with its picturesque tree-lined streets, unique shops, eclectic restaurants, and beautiful views of the Catskills and Hudson River. Fill your day (and your stomach) wandering along Mill and Market streets, starting with a bagel and coffee at the popular Rhinebeck Bagels. Find your new favorite pair of walking shoes at Pegasus Footwear and discover high quality antiques at Beekman Arms Antique Market, set in a classic two-story barn, with over 30 dealers. Spoil the kids in your life with toys from Land of Oz Toys. Paint the town red (or whatever color you prefer) and explore your artistic side at Rhinebeck Artist’s Shop. A visit to Rhinebeck is not complete without dining at Terrapin Restaurant, a former church turned modern American restaurant serving diverse and delicious dishes. Hope you saved room for dessert because Samuel’s Sweet Shop is a must-try treat. And if you’re in the right place at the right time, you might run into the shop’s celebrity owners: Paul Rudd, Jeffrey Dean Morgan, and Hilarie Burton.
Nestled between the Hudson River and the Catskill Mountains, Saugerties offers small-town charm mixed with a revitalized village center that attracts locals, weekenders, and all walks of life looking for the quintessential main street scene. Fun fact: Saugerties is the hometown of Jimmy Fallon! At the corner of Main Street and Partition street you’ll find Inquiring Mind Bookstore & Cafe, a locally-owned, independent bookstore that offers the perfect setting to dive into your new favorite book with a specialty coffee and baked good from the cafe. Right next door you’ll find Slices, Saugerties’ best pizza, ideal for grab-and-go to continue your adventure. Saugerties is known for its eclectic antique stores, so a visit to Saugerties Antiques Center is a must. Want the inside scoop on one of New York’s best hidden gems? Alleyway Ice Cream (open April-October) is literally in an alleyway so though it may be easy to miss, once you try it you will never forget it. Scooping small-batch, handmade ice cream in unconventional (and classic) flavors, this spot easily earns its stellar reviews and press. Satisfy your sweet tooth even more with a stop at Lucky Chocolates, a small shop serving up big and bold flavors. Just down the road from Main Street is the Saugerties Lighthouse, a picturesque and historic landmark perfect for a light hike, picnic, or even a bed & breakfast overnight stay.
Skaneateles (Finger Lakes)
Known as the “Jewel of the Finger Lakes region,” Skaneateles is a charming village with a vibrant downtown filled with unique shops and restaurants, all along a stunningly crystal-clear lake. Enjoy a breakfast sandwich and coffee at local hot-spot Skaneateles Bakery. Take a jaunt to one-of-a-kind stores including The Local Branch which sells artisan leather goods, find something for everyone at DROOZ and Company, a modern day general store, or find a rare antique at Skaneateles Antique Center. In the mood for good food? The Krebs is a historic restaurant with over 100 years of history as a popular landmark in Skaneateles, having served past presidents, dignitaries, and celebrities. For something more casual, check out Blue Water Grill, a friendly American grill serving up sushi, seafood, burgers, Sunday brunch and more, all with spectacular views on the lakefront deck.
East Aurora (Greater Niagara)
A stroll down East Aurora's exciting Main Street offers a peek into the past with a variety of specialty shops, restaurants, churches, municipal buildings, and carefully preserved homes. Discover where America’s arts and crafts movement began over a century ago and continues to embrace a creative vibe today. Find history, nostalgia, and fun at Vidler's, the largest variety store in the world for over 90 years. Stop into Beulah's General Store, a modern mercantile showcasing gifts, accessories, apparel, housewares, small batch local artisans, and more. Aurora Outfitters is a one-stop-shop for all things outdoors including clothing, footwear, and gear. Grab some grub at Rick’s on Main, known for its delectable entrees, warm atmosphere and friendly, knowledgeable staff. Break bread (literally and figuratively) at Elm Street Bakery, where hand-shaped and baked breads are made fresh daily in a wood-fired brick oven.
Greenport (Long Island)
Located on the North Fork of Long Island, Greenport is an idyllic waterfront village steeped in rich maritime history. Walk along Main and Front streets to enjoy specialty shops like Burton’s Bookstore, and robust restaurants like Lucharitos. Seas the day with nautical themed souvenirs at Revel North Fork. Find a gift for a friend or a furry friend at Tea & Tchotchkes, which sells everything from dog collars to clothing to loose organic teas. For an unbeatable view and dockside dining, look no further than Claudio’s Waterfront. Speakeasy vibes and carefully crafted cocktails are curated at Brix and Rye, which also happens to serve up superb pizzas. Grab a coffee and bakery treat from Aldo’s Coffee Company to fuel your next adventure!