New York Winter Resorts and Vacation Ideas

With so many winter vacation options in New York State, there's no excuse for letting cabin fever get to you during the coldest season. Instead, gather up the family and head to these winter resorts, most of them within a few hours of New York City. Winter resort activities such as skiing, snowshoeing, tubing, and ice skating will warm you up even if temperatures fall. Here are some suggestions for family-friendly winter getaways in the Empire State.

New York is a big state with two upstate mountain ranges—the Adirondacks and the Catskills—that offer large ski resorts and some smaller slopes as well. The Finger Lakes region is quite popular as well.

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    Mohonk Mountain House
    ••• Mohonk Mountain House

    Located in New Paltz, NY, about 90 miles north of New York City, this lakeside Victorian castle on 1,325 acres dates back to the late 1860s. Activities include cross-country skiing on miles of trails, snowshoeing, snow tubing, and ice-skating parties in the Victoria Pavilion. During some weekends, kids can stay and eat free.

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    Rocking Horse Ranch Resort
    ••• Rocking Horse Ranch Resort

    This dude ranch resort in Highland, NY, has 500 acres located two hours north of New York City. If you're on a budget, you'll appreciate the all-inclusive pricing for meals and activities. Winter fun includes skiing, tubing, sleigh rides, and horseback riding.

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    Hull-O Family Farm Vacations
    ••• Hull-O Family Farm Vacations

    Located in Durham, NY, this 1810 farmhouse is about an hour southwest of Albany. Families can participate (if they like) in the daily chores of a working farm: milking cows, collecting eggs, feeding pigs, and more. Visitors stay in private guesthouses, and home-cooked breakfasts and dinners are included.

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    Lake Placid Winter
    ••• Getty Images/Winnie Cabelus/EyeEm

    As the only all-suite resort in the Adirondacks, Whiteface Lodge offers spacious digs with plenty of room to spread out. There's a winning array of family-friendly amenities, from the year-round, heated, indoor-outdoor pool and trio of hot tubs to the games room, bowling alley, movie theater, and an old-fashioned ice cream parlor. In the evenings families are invited to make s'mores around the outdoor fire pit, and grown-ups can indulge at the spectacular spa or visit a cigar-and-cognac outdoor lean-to.

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    This indoor waterpark resort is open year-round, even when the Six Flags theme park across the street is closed. Kids will love the arcade, Kids Klub Clubhouse, and the interactive gaming system. Admission to the water park is included with your stay. 

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    Sagamore Resort
    ••• Sagamore Resort

    For families looking for a low-key getaway that's luxurious yet completely family-friendly, The Sagamore is a wonderful choice on spectacular Lake George in the foothills of New York's Adirondack Mountains. There's a wide array of family-friendly amenities in the winter, from a heated indoor pool to nature trails, and the wonderful Rec—an enormous recreation center with indoor mini golf, basketball, pool, Ping Pong, video games, a loft cinema, and even an indoor wiffleball field. A supervised kids' club for children ages 4-12 runs in the morning on holiday weekends during the school year. In the evening, make s'mores around the outdoor fire pit, or kids can catch a movie in the Rec loft. 

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    Families are welcome at this working farm in Cohocton, in the Finger Lakes, about five hours northwest of New York City. Guests can feed calves and lambs, milk cows, and do other farm chores. Breakfast is served in a large farmhouse with cozy guest rooms and a hayloft room that has toys for kids. A windmill farm and ski area are nearby.