The new year promises an exciting lineup of new attractions, exhibitions, hotels, restaurants, events and more to explore throughout the Empire State. Here is what’s new, what’s happening and what’s coming up in 2024.
WHAT’S NEW AND WHAT’S COMING UP
New multi-use trail launches in the Adirondacks
The Adirondack Rail Trail
, a new multi-use recreation trail at the Adirondack Park, the largest publicly protected area in the ‘Lower 48’ states, launched in late 2023. Starting near Lake Placid, the year-round trail is already attracting cyclists, runners, walkers, and birdwatchers, while in the winter it can be accessed on snowshoes, skis, snowmobiles, and fat-tire bikes. The second phase is currently under construction, due to open in 2024, with the trail expected to be fully completed in 2025.
Niagara Gorge Discovery Center to reopen in 2024 as Great Lakes 360 living museum
The currently vacant Niagara Gorge Discovery Center, close to the Aquarium of Niagara, is undergoing an extensive transformation that will see it reopening as a living museum. Named Great Lakes 360
, it will showcase through 15 new exhibits the wildlife of the Niagara River and the larger Great Lakes ecosystem, featuring animals such as native turtles, amphibians, insects and fish. The project is set to be completed in spring of 2024.
New Billy Joel exhibition premieres in Long Island
The Long Island Music and Entertainment Hall of Fame has unveiled ‘Billy Joel - My Life, A Piano Man’s Journey’
, a celebration of one of Long Island’s greatest musical talents. Visitors can view displays of over five decades of rare memorabilia, donated by the artist himself, including instruments, historic photos and never-before heard or seen audio and video recordings. The exhibition is scheduled to run until summer 2024.
First LGBTQ+ visitor centre within the National Parks System to open in June
Celebrate the legacy of the Stonewall Uprising at the first National Park visitor centre dedicated to LGBTQ+ history
. Opening in June, it will be located at New York City’s West Village, right next to the historic Stonewall Inn, the birthplace of the modern gay rights movement. Visitors can learn about the events that shaped the monumental movement through immersive experiences, including in-person and virtual tours, lectures, exhibitions, and visual art displays.
NASA heading to Niagara Falls for 2024 total solar eclipse
Upstate New York is one of the best places in North America to view the total solar eclipse in April, as it will be the first time in nearly 100 years that the region will be in the path of totality. NASA
will be heading to Niagara Falls for this unique natural phenomenon (there will be a series of special programmes with guest astronauts and scientists from 4 April), while the ‘Come for the Eclipse, Stay for New York’
campaign encourages visitors to stay a few extra days to explore more of the state.
Rock out to live music with a view this summer at Buffalo’s newest amphitheatre
Sitting in front of a spectacular view of Lake Erie, making it a great spot to catch one of the city’s famous sunsets, a new waterfront, open-air music pavilion and events centre is planned to debut in Buffalo in spring 2024. Surrounded by walking and cycling paths, the stunning Outer Harbor Amphitheatre
will cost an estimated $12 million and will have a 6,000-seat capacity for concerts, live cultural events and other activities.
KEY 2024 ANNIVERSARIES
New York’s State Parks and Historic Sites commemorates in 2024 the centennial of its founding. From world-renowned Niagara Falls to the largest collection of Revolutionary War sites, it oversees more than 250 parks, historic sites, recreational trails, campgrounds and more across the state, encompassing 360,000 acres.
Established in 1899, the largest metropolitan zoo in the United States was one of the first zoos in the world that did not have animals in cages. It is the Wildlife Conservation Society’s flagship park, and, over the years, it has played a key role in animal conservation, including helping to save the American bison from extinction.
From Ulysses S. Grant to Bill Clinton and William James to Amelia Earhart, the 750-acre lakeside retreat has served since 1874 as an educational and recreational destination for artists, thinkers, and historically notable figures. The anniversary will be marked with an exciting two-month summer programme.
New York City’s second largest museum will kick off in July 2024 the celebrations for its bicentennial with a series of special exhibits and events. Close to the Brooklyn Botanic Garden, the Brooklyn Museum is known for its extensive and diverse permanent collection, which features approx. 500,000 objects.
Commemorate 400 years of diversity and unity in New York City. Various events will be held all year long and visitors can join in to celebrate the historic metropolis, which was one of the first multinational cities in North America. Then known as New Amsterdam, the first European settlement in America was established on Nutten (now Governors) Island, off the tip of Manhattan.
Modern amenities meet rich history at this new boutique hotel in the historic city of Canandaigua. Promising a luxurious yet cosy stay, its five rooms are named after the lakes found throughout the region. A variety of amenities are available on-site, such as in-room personal chef dining, bartending services, and local wine selections, while the hotel’s central location is perfect for exploring the area’s wine trails, state parks, local shops, and art galleries.
This 2,000-acre former Paleface Ski Mountain lodge near Whiteface has been transformed into the ultimate mountain retreat. A collection of suites can accommodate up to 32 guests in total and each room is complete with Adirondack-style cedar or modern mountain furnishings, stunning wood and vibrant tile work reminiscent of a vintage ski resort. Guests can opt to relax at the wellness centre, explore 35-miles of scenic trails, sip a signature cocktail, or dig into locally sourced food.
The all-suite hotel anchors the new Bellefield at Historic Hyde Park, the first ‘agrihood’ community in the U.S. Northeast
. It features 137 studio, one- and two-bedroom suites, while further amenities include a fitness centre and complimentary grocery delivery service. In addition to the hotel, the development will feature a selection of culinary shops, farm-to-table restaurants, breweries, and distilleries, complementing the area’s world-famous Culinary Institute of America.The Haven Resort & Event Center at
Wild Animal Park’s Haven Resort & Event Center is giving visitors the opportunity to spend the night alongside some of nature’s most extraordinary animals. Launching this spring, the Big Cat Bungalows will offer an indoor fireplace, outdoor patio with a firepit and some feline friends: on one side of your bungalow, you will be able to see lions and on the other tigers. Fifteen treehouses are due to follow later in 2024, which will overlook a field of grazing giraffes.
Upper East Side’s iconic Surrey Hotel was built in 1926 as a residence hotel and over the years it has been home to personalities such as JFK and Bette Davis. The 16-floor property will boast 70 guest rooms, 30 suites and 14 residences, including four Signature suites that will be inspired by the bridges of Central Park. On site guests will also find a jewel-box spa and celebrity favourite and Miami Beach hotspot Casa Tua in what will be its first location on the East Coast.
A new 50-room inn is coming soon to the Vassar Institute of Liberal Arts to accommodate both visitors to the historic college as well as visitors to the area. Filled with inviting, comfortable spaces, the 48, inn will serve as a place where guests from all different backgrounds can come together and will also feature an 86-seat restaurant, The Salt Line, and the Night Owls Bar. The hotel is located within a short distance from the heart of Poughkeepsie, making it easy to explore the city.
NEW PLACES TO…
The West Side Bazaar, a hub for Buffalo’s immigrant community and local business incubator, has now moved to a new home, an expansive space overlooking the Niagara River. Visitors can stop by for a taste of delicious cuisine from around the world, with culinary delights from as far as Myanmar, Sudan, Ethiopia, the Philippines, and Yemen.
The historic North Branch Cider Mill, dating back to the mid-1900s, has reopened after nearly 25 years. In addition to selling cider, it was one of the area’s major tourist attractions, drawing in famous visitors such as former President Jimmy Carter. The renovated mill opened its doors last autumn offering sweet and hard cider from the fully functional press and other tasty bites.
The ultimate Catskill winter retreat awaits in the quaint town of Livingston Manor in the western Catskills, two hours north of New York City. The new Frostfire Lodge is the perfect spot for warming up after a chilly winter day, where you can relax with a warm beverage, watch a movie in front of the big screen or defrost in the Frostfire Sauna.
Offering small-batch American-made clothing, Adirondack Field has a newly opened Lake Placid flagship apparel store. The brand’s name comes from the phrase ‘out in the field’, as Adirondack Field celebrates all those who have contributed to our understanding of the world that surrounds us, from the region’s original inhabitants to today those studying the impact of climate change.
Virgin Hotels New York City has opened its brand new spa in partnership with leading health and wellness brand exhale. It offers a variety of transformative therapies, such as one of the first European Snow Rooms in the U.S. and a Salt Room featuring the brand new Salt Lounge Journey that includes heated zero gravity chairs. Open seven days a week, a ‘Recovery Day Pass’ is also available.
Upstate New York is now home to the only library and learning centre in the U.S. dedicated to the Dalai Lama. It is the only place in the world to contain the teachings of the current Dalai Lama and all former Dalai Lamas, with a digital audio archive of about 40,000 hours of the Dalai Lama’s teachings and 4,000 books of translated ancient texts.
About New York State: New York State is a premier vacation destination with world-class attractions, picturesque natural beauty, locally sourced cuisine and a booming craft beverage scene, an array of accommodations, and iconic, year-round festivals and events. Its 11 diverse vacation regions feature some of the world’s top ranked beaches; two out of America’s top three favourite state parks; breathtaking Niagara Falls; more ski areas than any other state; one of the nation’s longest foliage seasons; multiple Halls of Fame; the largest publicly protected area in the contiguous United States; and the country’s longest multi-use trail. Add in the state’s unique museums, historic landmarks, cultural sites, charming small towns, and urban playgrounds, and it’s no wonder New York has been consistently chosen as a top getaway by travel publications and experts.
Posted by: New York State Tourism
Posted on: 24/01/2024