NYC Fall Art Guide

By: Diana Friedman

When the weather gets ugly and those of us who prefer summer start to complain, we often forget one of the best ways to escape Father Frost is by hiding in one of New York’s fantastic cultural institutions. New York has some of the best museums in the world and I’ve researched them all to give you the ‘can’t-miss’ list of art exhibitions this fall!

MET BRAUER: Ettore Sottsass: Design Radical

Opened: July 21 | Closing: October 8

 Photo via MET Museum
Photo via MET Museum

Even if you don’t work in the architecture and design industry can recognize that the patterns and shapes of the iconic Memphis Group are all the rage right now. They’ve infiltrated every Pinterest board in the best, color-filled way and this is your chance to learn about the founding father of them all. Guaranteed to brighten even the greyest of New York days.

QUEENS MUSEUM: Never Built New York

Opened: September 17 | Closing: February 18

 Photo via Jackson Rollings/AN
Photo via Jackson Rollings/AN

Ever wonder what New York could look like? This new exhibition shows visitors the cool, strange and surreal structures that could have graced our skyline but never did. Filled with models and architectural renderings, this exhibition will show you the endless possibilities that were brainstormed to improve our ever-changing city.

MUSEUM OF MODERN ART: Louise Bourgeois: An Unfolding Portrait

Opened: September 24 | Closing: January 28

 Photo via Mark Rosen of @MarkAtTheMuseum
Photo via Mark Rosen of @MarkAtTheMuseum

Yes, that’s the artist who makes the big spiders. Creepy and kooky just in time for Halloween, this exhibition goes well beyond the big bugs. Peer into the vast and comprehensive collection of the iconic female sculptor’s prints and illustrated books; on view for the first time.

JEWISH MUSEUM: Modigliani Unmasked

Opened: September 15 | Closing: February 4

 Photo via Jewish Museum
Photo via Jewish Museum

Focusing on the Italian’s artists work after his arrival in Paris in 1906, this exhibition at the Jewish Museum focused on the role Amedeo Modigliani’s Jewish heritage played on the development of his artistic style. You’ll recognize him from your Art History 101 courses, but gain a deeper understanding of his incredible life through his exhibition. Stop by the Russ & Daughters restaurant in the museum before the show for a bagel & lox to fuel your art viewing afternoon.


Diana is a lover of architecture, design, puppies and ice cream (not necessarily in that order). See more of her everyday on Instagram: @theartemuse

Six Degrees Society City Guides: Lima, Peru

Also known as the Garden City, Lima represents coastal Peruvian life at its absolute best. We concluded our journey to Peru with a few days in Lima, and thoroughly enjoyed exploring this modern city and having an incredible culinary experience there. Note that the city is expansive and thus not walkable, so choose a neighborhood and explore that area by foot, whether it’s seaside Miraflores, artsy Barranco, or the old, historical city center. Read on for all of the details for what to do, where to sleep, and what to eat in Lima, Peru.

Check out Carolyn Stine’s Instagram hashtag #caro_in_peru for a photo journey of her time in Lima!

Where to Stay:

Miraflores is a central, safe, and bustling neighborhood in Lima, and also happens to be on the coastline and the home to many of the city’s best restaurants. We stayed at the Hilton Miraflores, which had a beautiful rooftop infinity pool overlooking the city that we happily soaked in every evening during sunset. The concierge team was also incredibly helpful with scoping out last-minute reservations, especially on New Year’s Day when much of the city was sleeping.

Where to Eat:

La Mar Cebicheria – This little ceviche spot on the northern edge of Miraflores has people queuing up well before lunchtime, so stake out a spot at the bar for the most instant gratification. I opted for the catch of the day ceviche here, which came with steamed sweet potato and sweet corn and was a meal in itself. Grab a pisco cocktail and a scoop of fresa gelato for dessert and you can’t go wrong here for lunch.

 Photo Courtesy of Carolyn Stine 
Photo Courtesy of Carolyn Stine 

El Pan de la Chola – My absolute favorite breakfast in Peru, hands down. This little bakery and breakfast spot boats freshly baked bread and croissants, wonderful coffee and fresh juices, and drool-worthy avo toast. Skip the hotel breakfast and head here, you’ll want to come back every day.

 Photo Courtesy of Carolyn Stine
Photo Courtesy of Carolyn Stine

Huaca Pucllana – In the ruins of an old ceremonial pyramid that rises above Lima, this dinner spot was a home run both in ambiance and food. We had a lighter meal here and went with a few salads (featuring the regional speciality, quinoa) and also a beautiful beef carpaccio. 

 Photo Courtesy of Carolyn Stine
Photo Courtesy of Carolyn Stine

 

Canta Rana – Small and decidedly unfussy, this lunch spot in Barranco was a little local haven . Grab an icy cold Cusquena and order the pulpo imperial – it’s a mix of grilled octopus and octopus ceviche and was fresh and delicious.

 Photo Courtesy of Carolyn Stine
Photo Courtesy of Carolyn Stine

Central Restaurante – I have already written about my incredible experience at Central, the #1 restaurant in Latin America, but I am happy to sing its praises again and again. It’s on the adventurous side, so I wouldn’t recommend it to picky eaters or vegetarians, but was a once in a lifetime experience that I will not soon forget.

 Photo Courtesy of Carolyn Stine
Photo Courtesy of Carolyn Stine
 Photo Courtesy of Carolyn Stine
Photo Courtesy of Carolyn Stine

What to Do

Barranco – This artsy, up-and-coming neighborhood south of Miraflores might have been my favorite neighborhood in Lima. Have lunch at Canta Rana, and spend an afternoon meandering through the colorful, graffiti-splashed streets. Don’t miss Tostaduria Busseti for coffee (sit in the back courtyard), Dedalo Art Gallery, PPPP, and the area around the pedestrian bridge for mid-day strolling.

 Photo Courtesy of Carolyn Stine
Photo Courtesy of Carolyn Stine
 Photo Courtesy of Carolyn Stine
Photo Courtesy of Carolyn Stine

Larco Museum – I would head back to the Larco Museum for the exterior by itself. This absolutely stunning, sun-drenched building is whitewashed and covered with every variety of bougainvillea, and is a feast for the eyes. The museum itself tells the story of Peru’s history, and the Inca civilization.

 Photo Courtesy of Carolyn Stine
Photo Courtesy of Carolyn Stine

El Malecon – After grabbing breakfast at El Pan de la Chola, spend a morning meandering through the seaside park, El Malecon, which goes for miles along the coast. The park is filled with gorgeous views of the ocean, eye-catching art installations, and if you’re feeling adventurous, you can go parasailing off of the Lima cliffs here as well.

Historic Center of Lima – Get to know the beating heart of this historic city by exploring the old historic city center. Start at Plaza Mayor, and don’t forget to explore the old cathedral and surrounding area.

Originally seen in Caros City: Written By Carolyn Stine: Carolyn is author of the food and travel blog Caro’s City that details her travel diaries, culinary pursuits, NYC adventures, and all of the unexpected moments that happen in between. Despite working on the digital side of the fashion industry by day, you can most frequently find her in search of the best new restaurant, knee-deep in planning a trip to a far-reaching locale, or at her local branch of the New York Public Library. Follow Carolyn’s adventures on Instagram at @Carobaker1 and on her blog at https://caroscity.wordpress.com/ .

Six Degrees Society City Guides: Palm Springs, California

Like an oasis in the middle of the California desert, Palm Springs is a refuge for all arbiters of style. One could make a long weekend just out of exploring the hotels in the area, which showcase an incredible fusion of kitsch, high design, and everything in between. Take a road trip out from LA (In-N-Out rest stop optional) and park yourself in this design mecca for a long desert weekend.

Check out Carolyn’s Instagram hashtag #caro_in_palmsprings for a photo diary of her trip!

Where To Stay:

Your best bet for a relaxing weekend away is booking an Air BnB not far out of town. The homes here are big on style, and you’ll want to make sure that you have a pool at your digs because Palm Springs gets HOT. Use your quiet Air BnB as a launching pad for exploring the area. 

 Photo Courtesy Of Carolyn Stine 
Photo Courtesy Of Carolyn Stine 

What To Do:

The Parker Hotel – An absolute feast for the senses, The Parker is a design mecca no matter what your style may be. Even if you go for just an hour, spend some time walking around the grounds, and don’t forget to visit the croquet court and the lemonade stand for a sweet treat.

The Saguaro Hotel – Neon color is the name of the game at this funky hotel, which also has a huge pool and a killer Mexican restaurant inside. Swing by the outdoor tiki bar for a cocktail and some people watching poolside.

 Photo Courtesy of Carolyn Stine 
Photo Courtesy of Carolyn Stine 

 

Ace Hotel – If Stumptown coffee, Monday night bingo, and pool parties are your thing, check out the Ace Hotel. Stopping by for breakfast and an excellent coffee are musts so you can check out the scene.

Explore the Town – Grab brunch and wander! There are so many great little interior, design, and clothing/accessory shops and the main area of town is an easy stroll after a leisurely daytime meal.

Where To Eat:

Birba – Book a table at Birba for dinner and sit out on the patio for a lovely Italian feast. Classics such as the bruschetta and meatballs are excellent, and the pizzas and pastas are perfect for sharing with a group.

 Photo Courtesy Of Carolyn Stine 
Photo Courtesy Of Carolyn Stine 

Workshop Kitchen + Bar – Whether you hit up Workshop for brunch or dinner, the stunning modern space and reinvented classics make this spot a can’t-miss. I loved the avocado side baked with goat cheese and drizzled with honey and toasted almonds. Great bloody maries here as well

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Lappert’s Ice Cream – Make a pit stop at Lappert’s while exploring town, and grab a “Dole Whips” pineapple soft serve to keep cool in the desert heat.

 Photo Courtesy of Carolyn Stine 
Photo Courtesy of Carolyn Stine 

Cheeky’s – Another excellent brunch spot, steal a seat on the patio at Cheeky’s and indulge in updated brunch hits such as huevos rancheros and eggs benedict.

Formally seen in Caros City: Written By Carolyn Stine: Carolyn is author of the food and travel blog Caro’s City that details her travel diaries, culinary pursuits, NYC adventures, and all of the unexpected moments that happen in between. Despite working on the digital side of the fashion industry by day, you can most frequently find her in search of the best new restaurant, knee-deep in planning a trip to a far-reaching locale, or at her local branch of the New York Public Library. Follow Carolyn’s adventures on Instagram at @Carobaker1 and on her blog at https://caroscity.wordpress.com/ .

Six Degrees Society City Guides: Austin

I had the pleasure of visiting Austin in mid-October for good friend’s wedding and instead of getting in and out for the wedding. My friend Carolyn Stine and I turned it into an exploration trip where we ate, walked and waited (Franklin BBQ) our way through Austin! I was really taken by the city and the people and loved the southern hospitality feel but also felt like a manageable “big city”. 

In addition to our trip suggestions below (planned by Carolyn Stine of Caro’s City) you can follow her Instagram photo journey through Austin via her hashtag #caro_in_austin, as well as her Instagram takeover of the @zipkick feed with all of her Austin recommendations!

Below you’ll find all of her recommendations! 

Where to Stay: 

I’m lucky enough to have journeyed to this fair city more than once, and have stayed both in the heart of downtown Austin at the W (note: rooftop pool) and at a friend’s residence in Allendale. I would recommend that first-timers stay in North or South Austin not too far from the river, as this is the easiest area for venturing out to explore from. Also note that Uber/Lyft/Via do not operate in Austin, so plan to do some combination of walking and cabbing via my preferred car service app in the area, GetMe.

 

Where to Eat:

Barley Swine – For a Texan twist on farm to table, I could not recommend the Barley Swine dining experience more highly. We loved the shiitake pasta dish so much that we ordered it twice, and they have an inventive cocktail menu as well. Don’t miss this spot for a creative and delicious dinner on the town.

 Barley Swine: Photo Credit Carolyn Stine 
Barley Swine: Photo Credit Carolyn Stine 

Jo’s Coffee – This tiny South Austin coffee shop is perfect for grabbing a cold brew while exploring the area’s plentiful shops and street art. Bonus: there is a well-know mural on the side of their building that is very social media friendly.

 Jo's Coffee: Photo Credit Carolyn Stine 
Jo’s Coffee: Photo Credit Carolyn Stine 

Amy’s Ice Cream – The quintessential Austin ice cream experience. Best known for their Mexican Vanilla, I also recommend ordering the salted caramel biscoff cookie flavor and having them fold in additional biscoff cookies.

 Amy's Ice Cream: Photo Credit Carolyn Stine 
Amy’s Ice Cream: Photo Credit Carolyn Stine 

Elizabeth Street Cafe – When Vietnamese cuisine meets classic brunch items, you know that you have a home run. Sit outside on the charming patio and order the breakfast pho, beignets with housemade jam, and an egg-tastic bahn mi for a morning well spent.

 Elizabeth Street Cafe: Photo Credit Carolyn Stine 
Elizabeth Street Cafe: Photo Credit Carolyn Stine 

Torchy’s Tacos – Torchy’s may look like a fast-food joint from the outside, but take one bite of their tacos and you will see that the exterior is incredibly deceptive. Ask for the secret menu, and I recommend springing for the green chili pork missionary style and the trailer park hillbilly style. And don’t forget queso and a cerveza on the side.

 Torchy's Tacos: Photo Credit Carolyn Stine
Torchy’s Tacos: Photo Credit Carolyn Stine

Gordough’s – Like no doughnuts I’ve ever had before, but worth every bite. Served out of a tiny trailer in South Austin, this doughnut spot serves them warm and topped to order. I chose fresh strawberries and dark chocolate on mine, but there are some pretty inventive combos at the decadent spot.

 Gourdough's Donuts: Photo Credit Carolyn Stine 
Gourdough’s Donuts: Photo Credit Carolyn Stine 

Franklin BBQ – Last (but by no means least), Franklin is the mecca for smoked meats in this country and more than lives up to its overwhelming reputation. Be prepared to make a day of this experience – we went on a Sunday at 9am, and waited until 1pm to be served. Bring folding chairs, entertainment, and an appetite. And don’t make dinner reservations that evening. Double up on the brisket and ribs, but also get a bit of the pulled pork, sausage, and smoked turkey so you can taste it all. Sides and pies were not superstars in my book. Focus on the MEAT.

 Franklin BBQ: Photo Credit Emily Merrell 
Franklin BBQ: Photo Credit Emily Merrell 

What to Do:

Explore South Austin – Vaguely reminiscent of East Nashville, this character-filled neighborhood south of the river has it all. Start with brunch at Elizabeth Street Cafe or Gordough’s, and swing over to South Congress to hit up some of my favorite shops in the city. Don’t miss Stag Provisions, Nannie Inez, JM Dry Goods, and Uncommon Objects, and be sure to swing by Jo’s for a caffeine kick mid-day.

Zilker Park – I am always on the lookout for spots of greenery in the midst of an urban jungle, and Zilker Park provides the perfect escape from the city. I loved wandering through the Botanical Gardens there, but also don’t miss the Barton Springs Pool and the Lady Bird Lake Trail.

Explore Downtown Austin – One of my favorite main drags in the heart of Austin is North Lamar Boulevard. My recommendation for a lovely afternoon adventure is to start at the top at Kettle and Brine, my ultimate home store, and make your way south, stopping at Kick Pleat, Hope Outdoor Gallery (it’s an insane graffiti park), Amy’s Ice Cream, and ending at the original Whole Foods (it’s like the Disneyland of grocery stores).

 Hope Outdoor Gallery. Photo Credit Emily Merrell
Hope Outdoor Gallery. Photo Credit Emily Merrell

Lake Travis – No trip to Austin is complete without a boat day on Lake Travis. We packed up a picnic to bring aboard and spent the day cruising the lake, getting some color, and meeting fellow lake-goers.


By Carolyn Stine: Carolyn is the Commerce Experience Manager at Club Monaco, but her heart (and stomach) lies firmly in the food and travel universe. Despite working on the digital side of the fashion industry by day, you can most frequently find her in search of the best new restaurant, knee-deep in planning a trip to a far-reaching locale, or at her local branch of the New York Public Library. Follow Carolyn’s adventures on Instagram at @Carobaker1 and on her blog at www.caroscity.wordpress.com

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Six Degrees Society City Guides: Portland, Oregon

Every year I take a trip with my girlfriends to some place we’ve never been before in the USA. This fall we traveled to the Pacific Northwest to Portland, Oregon to explore the quirky city the and the famous wine country.  

When we travel Ms. Carolyn Stine is our official tour guide planning a creative and detailed itinerary. Check it out below and for more inspiration on travel, dining and cooking check out her new blog at  CarosCity and book your next trip to Portland stat! 

 The girls on our trip to Portland 
The girls on our trip to Portland 

Where To Stay: 

Mark Spencer– In the heart of the Pearl District, this downtown Portland spot has been recently renovated and is the perfect home base for exploring on both sides of the river.

Where To Eat:

Blue Star Donuts – In a town known for epic donuts, Blue Star wins my vote for “best of the best.” This spot is miles better than Voodoo, which is instagram-worthy but not nearly as tasty.

 Vodoo Donuts Portland (Photo credit Carolyn Stine)
Vodoo Donuts Portland (Photo credit Carolyn Stine)
 Blue Star Donuts (photo Credit Carolyn Stine)
Blue Star Donuts (photo Credit Carolyn Stine)

Ned Ludd – The idea of the hearth is central at Ned Ludd, a tiny little dinner spot filled with twinkle lights, dark wood, and charm. We loved the sweet corn gnocchi and seared albacore tuna, and don’t miss the warm salted chocolate chip skillet cookie with milk for dessert.

 Gnocchi at Ned Ludd (photo credit Carolyn Stine) 
Gnocchi at Ned Ludd (photo credit Carolyn Stine) 
 Chocolate Chip Cookie in a skillet for dessert at Ned Ludd (Photo credit Carolyn Stine)
Chocolate Chip Cookie in a skillet for dessert at Ned Ludd (Photo credit Carolyn Stine)

Olympia Provisions – Cheese plates, charcuterie boards, and bloody marys. Oh, and a wicked ham and apple and blue cheese sandwich. Come for brunch and linger over drinks at this homey spot that feels like classic Portland.

 Olympia Provisions Bloody Mary (Photo Credit Carolyn Stine)
Olympia Provisions Bloody Mary (Photo Credit Carolyn Stine)
 Olympia Provision Bloody Mary (Photo Credit Carolyn Stine) 
Olympia Provision Bloody Mary (Photo Credit Carolyn Stine) 

Le Pigeon – A culinary adventure that absolutely cannot be missed. This James Beard-award winning chef and institution boasts incredible meat dishes and each were more delicious, innovative, and beautifully plated than the next. Note that the menu is primarily meat and I do not recommend it for vegetarian diners.

 Le Pigeon (Photo Credit Carolyn Stine) 
Le Pigeon (Photo Credit Carolyn Stine) 
 Nachos at Le Pigeon (Photo Credit Carolyn Stine)
Nachos at Le Pigeon (Photo Credit Carolyn Stine)

Ex Novo Brewing Co – The Portland microbrew scene is absolutely exploding, and Ex Novo is the perfect spot for enjoying a flight and trying some of the best. Snag a picnic table outside, order some flights, and don’t forget a side of extra crispy bacon and pickled watermelon rinds.

 Ex Novo Portland (Photo Credit Carolyn Stine) 
Ex Novo Portland (Photo Credit Carolyn Stine) 

Ava Gene’s – This Portland institution lives up to all expectations and more. Having officially sampled the majority of this Italian-locavore menu, I can say with confidence that you cannot go wrong with any dish. But I’m seriously not kidding when I say that we ordered upwards of a dozen dishes (and 4 bottles of wine – but who’s counting?!)

 Ava Gene's Portland (Photo Credit Carolyn Stine) 
Ava Gene’s Portland (Photo Credit Carolyn Stine) 

Tasty N Alder – This walk-in-only brunch spot in the heart of downtown has a warm and cozy vibe and a menu item for all palettes. Do not on any account miss out on the malted chocolate milkshake and french fry app (they are meant to be dipped), and my favorite entree, the korean fried chicken and kimchi bowl.

 Tasty N Alder Bloody Mary (Photo Credit Carolyn Stine)
Tasty N Alder Bloody Mary (Photo Credit Carolyn Stine)
 Tasty N Alder (Photo Credit Carolyn Stine) 
Tasty N Alder (Photo Credit Carolyn Stine) 

Stella Taco – In the enchanting yet lowkey Alberta Arts district, this casual taco spot is not short on flavor. Grab a michelada, double up on guac and queso, and don’t forget the fried avocado tacos for a stellar lunch while shopping the area.

 Stella Taco Portland (Photo Credit Carolyn Stine)
Stella Taco Portland (Photo Credit Carolyn Stine)

What To Do: 

Explore the Pearl District – Right in the beating heart of downtown Portland, the Pearl District boasts Portland mainstays such as Powell’s Books (it’s an emporium), the Union Way arcade, and ALL of the donuts (I recommend doing a Voodoo vs. Blue Star tasting one morning before you walk around).

Explore the Alberta Arts District – All the way up in northeast Portland, this was one of my favorite areas in the entire city. This district feels like a little town unto itself, with a quirky main drag featuring everything from galleries (check out Guardino and Ampersand), little shops (loved Screaming Sky, Amelia, and Tumbleweed), and tons of food trucks and restaurants (Case Study Coffee Shop and the aforementioned Stella Austin are big wins). Spend a few hours around lunch time walking around and popping into all of these little gems.

Burnside Bridge – There are a few bridges over the Willamette River that slices between east and west Portland, but the Burnside Bridge features the iconic White Stag Sign and thus is my top pick. Take an amble over the river with a coffee in hand, and don’t forget to take a #selfie in front of the Portland stag.

Washington Park – For an already nature-conscious city, Washington Park provides even more opportunity to feel one with the local environment. Walk around the immerse yourself in the stunning rose garden and the Shakespeare Garden, but do not under any circumstances miss getting tickets to the Japanese Garden. It is the epitome of zen and makes you feel miles away from the big city.

 Japanese Garden  Portland (Photo Credit Carolyn Stine) 
Japanese Garden  Portland (Photo Credit Carolyn Stine) 
 Washington Park Portland (Photo Credit Carolyn Stine) 
Washington Park Portland (Photo Credit Carolyn Stine) 

Side Trip – Wine Country

If pinot noir is the name of your game, do not miss an amble into Oregon wine country while visiting Portland. Choose McMinnville as your home base (we stayed in the lovely and spacious La Rambla Lofts on the main street there), and spend your days meandering between wineries and trying the best that the region has to offer. I loved Winter’s Hill, Sokol Blosser, Domaine Drouhin, Red Ridge, and Coeur de Terre, but my list could go on. Don’t miss Hotel Oregon for rooftop drinks and Community Plate for an incredible breakfast (plus epic sandwiches to-go for a picnic at the vineyards).

 Cheese Platter (Photo Credit Carolyn Stine)
Cheese Platter (Photo Credit Carolyn Stine)
 Sokol Blosser Winery (Photo Credit Carolyn Stine) 
Sokol Blosser Winery (Photo Credit Carolyn Stine) 


By Carolyn Stine: Carolyn is the Commerce Experience Manager at Club Monaco, but her heart (and stomach) lies firmly in the food and travel universe. Despite working on the digital side of the fashion industry by day, you can most frequently find her in search of the best new restaurant, knee-deep in planning a trip to a far-reaching locale, or at her local branch of the New York Public Library. Follow Carolyn’s adventures on Instagram at @Carobaker1 and on her blog at www.caroscity.wordpress.com

 

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Six Degrees Society City Guides: Hudson Valley, NY

Living in NYC can be daunting, stifling and at times frustrating. Some people find solace in weekends in the Hamptons, others travel further to Nantucket or Cape Cod. However, only a few hours north of the city are some charming places you can escape to for a little R & R and taste of fresh air.  Whether you’re looking for a foodie’s paradise, a challenging hike or a leisure canoe trip the Hudson Valley has a little bit for everyone. I’ve consulted Carolyn Stine for her take on the best things to see, experience and eat in the Hudson Valley. Want more of her pics? Check out her instagram at @Carobaker1

Hudson Valley Long Weekend

Culture: 

DIA: Beacon – Housed in a former Nabisco factory, this industrial space along the Hudson serves as the perfect blank canvas to showcase DIA’s collection of 21st century art and sculpture. Check the website in advance for information on the rotating exhibits, and spend an afternoon exploring this avant-garde space.

 Photo Cred Carolyn Stine 
Photo Cred Carolyn Stine 

Storm King Art Center – Coming upon a larger-than-life modern sculpture in the midst of the rolling landscape is a true feast for the eyes, and Storm King’s incredible collection serves as the perfect contrast to the natural space it resides in. Don’t miss this place.

 Photo Cred Carolyn Stine 
Photo Cred Carolyn Stine 

Opus 40 – This lesser known sculpture park in Saugerties is set in an abandoned quarry, which the artist fashioned into an elaborate stone earth work. You only need about an hour to hike around the premises and get lost in the small trails between the stonework.

 Photo Cred Carolyn Stine
Photo Cred Carolyn Stine

Karma Triyana Dharmachakra – For those of us looking to have a zen moment away from city life, look no further than this Buddhist monastery, which is tucked away within the Woodstock Hills. We explored the premises and sat for a meditation class here after a hike, and left feeling balanced and rejuvenated.

 Photo Cred Carolyn Stine 
Photo Cred Carolyn Stine 

Food: 

Tito Santana – This casual taqueria in Beacon is the perfect lunchtime pit stop en route to a more northern destination. Grab as assortment of tacos and a side of guac before you hit the road.

 Photo Cred Carolyn Stine
Photo Cred Carolyn Stine

Zora Dora Paleteria – Homemade popsicles with bright flavors in the heart of Beacon’s downtown. I tried an avocado popsicle and it was absolute heaven on a stick.

 Photo Cred Carolyn Stine 
Photo Cred Carolyn Stine 

Cucina – For a low-key Italian meets farm to table experience, look no further than Cucina in Woodstock. This was one of my favorite dinners in the area, and is the perfect spot for sharing a few fresh salads and pastas with a group (note: don’t skip dessert here).

 Photo Cred Carolyn Stine
Photo Cred Carolyn Stine

Oriole 9 – For a sit-down brunch, do not miss this little spot in the heart of Woodstock’s main drag. I ordered truffled scrambled eggs, which were served in a steamed artichoke.

 Photo Cred Carolyn Stine
Photo Cred Carolyn Stine

Jane’s Homemade Ice Cream – So quintessentially classic and so good. Stop here after dinner in Woodstock for a sweet treat.

 Photo Cred Carolyn Stine 
Photo Cred Carolyn Stine 

Phoenicia Diner – This old school diner along the highway in Phoenicia is a bit off the beaten path, but is worth it for a hearty breakfast experience. Try the huevos rancheros, and don’t forget to grab a face-sized cookie to go.

Holy Cow – The go-to spot for classic soft serve, this Rhinebeck roadside shop also serves up their signature “udders,” which are cupcake liners with frozen soft serve in them, topped with decadent treats such as sprinkles and crushed oreos.

 Photo Cred Carolyn Stine 
Photo Cred Carolyn Stine 

Sunfrost Farms – I could go to this little farm cafe every day for breakfast if I had the chance. Both a full service farm, small market, and indoor/outdoor cafe, Sunfrost Farms has something for everyone. We stopped here for breakfast (I had fresh berries and homemade granola), and ordered sandwiches to-go for our hike that afternoon.

 Photo Cred Carolyn Stine 
Photo Cred Carolyn Stine 

Shindig – Burgers and beers, baby. This Woodstock haunt is the perfect place to post up at the counter, order an epic burger (I chose lamb) and beer, and have a chill evening. Don’t miss the side of waffle fries and mac n’ cheese.

 Photo cred Carolyn Stine 
Photo cred Carolyn Stine 

Bread Alone – I’ve swung by this Hudson Valley bakery in both Woodstock and Rhinebeck, and it is equally lovely in both locations. This is a perfect place to stop by for an iced coffee and baked good in the AM.

 Photo Cred Carolyn Stine 
Photo Cred Carolyn Stine 

Drinks:

Commune Saloon – After a long day of hiking, there is nothing better than grabbing a beer and sitting outside by the open fire pit at this local hang-out in Woodstock.

 Photo Cred Carolyn Stine 
Photo Cred Carolyn Stine 

The Beekman – One of the oldest hotels in the area, this Rhinebeck institution is absolutely stunning, and has a small front patio that’s perfect for a pre-dinner drink al fresco.

The Liberty – Right on the main drag in Rhinebeck, this casual spot is perfect for an afternoon cocktail (and don’t forget to get an order of fried pickles for the table).

Nature:

Overlook Mountain – This stunning hike in Woodstock is not beginner level, but the views at the top make every moment worth it. En route to the apex, you’ll stumble across an old abandoned hotel and climb-able water tower (not for the faint of heart).

 Photo Cred Carolyn Stine 
Photo Cred Carolyn Stine 

Walkway Over the Hudson – The longest pedestrian walkway in world, this Poughkeepsie landmark is a great place to get out of the car and stretch your legs while taking in gorgeous views of the Hudson River Valley.

Burger Hill – Swing by this beautiful Rhinebeck park with a bottle of rose and watch the sunset.

Home Base:

While I’ve stayed at friends’ homes in the area and it has been positively lovely, my favorite hotel home base is Hotel Dylan. It is right in Woodstock and is the perfect launching pad for all of the adventures that the area has to offer. It has an outdoor fire pit and hammocks for early morning and evening lounging, and also offers coffee and a la carte breakfast from Bread Alone every morning.


By Carolyn Stine: Carolyn is the Commerce Experience Manager at Club Monaco, but her heart (and stomach) lies firmly in the food and travel universe. Despite working on the digital side of the fashion industry by day, you can most frequently find her in search of the best new restaurant, knee-deep in planning a trip to a far-reaching locale, or at her local branch of the New York Public Library. Follow Carolyn’s adventures on Instagram at @Carobaker1 and on her blog at www.caroscity.wordpress.com

 

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