Top 10 things to do in the Finger Lakes this Winter – inside or out!

Winter is a very special time in Cayuga County and the Finger Lakes region if you like the great outdoors or if you just want to stay inside and enjoy a cozy inn or bed & breakfast.   Here’s our Top 10 things to do for outdoor enthusiasts and those of you that just prefer to enjoy a warm fire and sip a glass of fine Finger Lakes Wine.


Snowshoe Hike at the Sterling Nature Center1.  Cross Country Skiing & Snowshoeing Sterling Nature Center in northern Cayuga County has snowshoes that you can use for just a donation.  All of the Center’s trails are open for cross- country skiing and snowshoeing all winter long, sunrise to sunset.

Ice Fishing in Cayuga County - Owasco Lake - Group Ice Fishing2.  Ice Fishing – Ice fishing is available on all of our lakes.  Tip:  Try the north end of Cayuga Lake for northern pike, pickerel and panfish.  If you need any angling gear, make a stop at Bass Pro Shops in the Fingerlakes Mall.

Carpenter Falls in the Winter3.  Take a hike – Cayuga County is home to over 65 miles of multi-use trails great for hiking year round.  From the Owasco Flats Trail in the South to the Cato-Fair Haven Trail in the north, you’ll find hiking opportunities galore.

Birding in the Winter - Cayuga County4.  View Winter Wildlife – Montezuma National Wildlife Refuge is a great place to view native wildlife year round.  Winter is an excellent opportunity to see white-tailed deer, fox, small mammals and resident birds such as woodpeckers and nuthatches.  Pick up the Cayuga County Office of Tourism’s ‘For the Birds’ guide to bird watching in Cayuga County before you go! 

Fair Haven Beach State Park5.  Visit one of Cayuga County’s Three State Parks – Enjoy the pristine quiet of nature at Long Point State Park, Fillmore Glen State Park and Fair Haven Beach State Park.  Hike, cross-country ski, and bird watch.  Be sure to check out each park’s schedule before you go.


Ice Skating at Casey Park6.  Ice Skate at Casey Park in Auburn.  The Casey Park Ice Rink is open to the public throughout the winter on Friday and Saturday evenings.  Bring your own skates or use theirs!  Admission is $5.00 and includes a free skate rental.  Always a family-friendly activity.Aurora Cooks - logo for their new demonstration kitchen7.  Aurora Cooks! The Inns of Aurora’s new demonstration kitchen—is designed to make you feel as though you’re in a chef’s home: intimate yet spacious, refined yet relaxed. Gather around the island and enjoy a glass of wine, a craft beer, or a cup of tea as our expert team shares their kitchen secrets. Perfect for a date night or an outing with friends and family.

MacKenzie-Childs in the Winter8.  Visit MacKenzie-Childs near the historic village of Aurora.  Tour the Victorian farmhouse featuring 15 rooms decorated with MacKenzie-Childs home furnishings, then visit the shop and make your own decorating plans!

The Center for Wellness9.  Relax & Rejuvenate at the The Center, in Auburn is a sanctuary for a lifestyle of well-being. The Center offers everything from acupuncture & herbal medicine to massage & spa treatments to yoga classes.  

Barrel Room Brunch - Sundays 12 - 4PM10.  Enjoy winter with Treleaven Winery! The owners and staff really know how to chase away the winter blues; from comedy night to live music there is ALWAYS something to see and do!  Psst...Simply Cookie will be serving up a delicious brunch all winter long in their cozy Barrel Room every Sunday from 12-4PM! Pair it with a mimosa or pint of beer and enjoy the afternoon with them!