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Planning your trip to Finger Lakes Wine Country

21 Jul 2010  
4.5 of 5 stars based on 1 vote

The Finger Lakes appellation is home to more than 100 wineries. It can be overwhelming figuring out how to plan your trip. This helps you take the first step. Intended for those who are prefer dry wine.

  • Explore locations featured in this Trip List: Rochester, Watkins Glen, Seneca Falls, Penn Yan, Canandaigua
  • Category: Best of
  • Traveler type: Sightseeing, Never been before
  • Appeals to: Couples/romantics, Singles, Large groups, Tourists
  • Seasons: Winter, Spring, Summer, Fall
  • 1. Finger Lakes Wine Region
    Finger Lakes Wine Country, Rochester, Finger Lakes

    There are more than 100 wineries in the Finger Lakes -- most of which are on one of three major wine trails -- each representing a different lake: Seneca Lake Wine Trail, Cayuga Lake Wine Trail, and Keuka Lake Wine Trail. For a weekend trip, I would suggest focusing on one trail.

  • 2. Seneca Lake Wine Trail
    Seneca Lake Wine Trail, Watkins Glen, Finger Lakes

    This wine trail has the most wineries. Seneca Lake is a long lake (nearly 40 miles long) so it is best to focus on an area. You could stay in Geneva (at the north end) or Watkins Glen (at the south end) and do the wineries on the wineries on the east side one day (or two) and on the west side another day. Or you can stay somewhere along the trails on the east or west side and focus on just those wineries. See my Traveler List for Seneca Lake Wine Trail

  • 3. Cayuga Lake Wine Trail
    Cayuga Lake Wine Trail, Seneca Falls, Finger Lakes

    Most of the wineries on Cayuga are on the west side of Cayuga Lake. Cayuga is the longest lake so getting to the other side can be a long trip. You could stay in Seneca Falls (at the north end) or Ithaca (at the south end) and do the wineries on the wineries on the west side of Cayuga one day and go to the wineries on the east side of Seneca another day. Or you can stay somewhere along the trails on the west side and focus on just those wineries. See my Traveler List for Cayuga Lake Wine Trail.

  • 4. Keuka Lake Wine Trail
    Keuka Lake Wine Trail, Penn Yan, Finger Lakes

    Keuka Lake has some of the oldest wineries. The wineries are somewhat spread out but, because it is a smaller lake and because it has fewer wineries than Cayuga or Seneca , you could easily go to all of the ones you wanted to in one or two days (it would make sense to focus on the east side one day; the west side, another). I would suggest staying in Hammondsport - or perhaps at a B&B along the wine trail. See my Traveler List for Keuka Lake Wine Trail.

  • 5. New York Wine & Culinary Center
    New York Wine & Culinary Center, Canandaigua, Finger Lakes

    The New York Wine & Culinary Center in Canandaigua (that's two lakes East of Seneca) is a great place to get an overview of what the Finger Lakes (and the rest of NY State) has to offer. It's about a 20 minute drive from Geneva; 30 minutes or so from Seneca Falls.

  • 6. Other wineries in the Finger Lakes

    There are other wineries in the Finger Lakes. Canandaigua Lake has a few; some of the smaller Finger Lakes also have a few. Even Skaneateles (two lakes east of Cayuga) has at least one. Lastly, the east side of Cayuga Lake has seen an increasing number of wineries open (for example, near Aurora). But this list is meant to focus on the main wine destinations in the Finger Lakes. Hope it's been helpful!