Overlooking the pristine Lake Champlain, the historic town of Essex, New York attracts a number of visitors each year. While the beauty of the surrounding Adirondacks attracts outdoor enthusiasts, other visitors delight in the art and culture of this nationally recognized historic site.
Settled in 1765, the city of Essex boasts a multitude of historic buildings that architecture buffs will delight in visiting. During the summer months, a stroll through town will reveal a city filled with well-preserved churches and homes representative of 19th-century architecture. Several museums dedicated to the historic and cultural heritage of the area can also be found within town, including the Adirondack History Center Museum. Outside the city around Lake Champlain, history buffs can admire Fort Ticonderoga, an important historic site during the Revolutionary War, which is open to the public and offers tours and numerous activities year round.
With its perfect location surrounded by lakes and mountains, Essex is an outdoor-lover's dream. Boating is a popular sport during the summer, and visitors can rent a boat from one of several local marinas or take a tour out on the lake. Westport Marina offers a large variety of rentals including pedal boats, kayaks and motor boats. The beauty of the Adirondacks offers a perfect backdrop for a day of waterskiing or fishing. Other outdoor activities include golf, horseback riding and hiking one of the many trails in the surrounding mountains. The Ausable Chasm is a unique natural attraction within the Adirondacks forming waterfalls and natural bridges through which guests can hike, boat or even raft. Camping is also a popular option in the area; during the day, campers can visit several prominent sites including Hyde's Cave and Rainbow Falls.
Summer isn't the only time when Essex is abuzz with outdoor activity. An abundance of snow makes this area as beautiful in winter as it is in summer, with plenty for outdoor lovers to experience. Ice fishing on Lake Champlain is a popular activity as is ice skating. The surrounding Adirondacks also offer plenty of opportunity for skiing, snowboarding and even snowshoeing!
The charming atmosphere of Essex is complimented by its warm and welcoming character. Visitors will find a number of beautiful bed and breakfasts available for romantic getaways. Many of the cottages and lodges in the area also offer special packages for summer and winter getaways. There are a number of dining options ranging from home-cooked meals to fine dining, so each visitor will find just the right option to suit his or her taste. Some of the best restaurants feature local and organic foods harvested from the sprawling farmlands surrounding the area along with locally raised meats. The town also boasts a vibrant shopping scene filled with many locally owned businesses. The Essex Farmer's Market is a great place to try some of the locally grown foods and visit local crafters and other vendors. The Adirondack Art Association Gallery is the perfect place to browse through fine art before meandering through the many boutiques and antique stores dotted throughout town.
Essex, New York offers visitors the charm and history of an early American settlement with all the outdoor adventure that can be expected from the Adirondacks. With so many activities to choose from, all types of visitors will find just what they're looking for in Essex.