Peekskill, NY is a small and charming city on in the Hudson River Valley, just 50 miles north of NYC. Over the past couple years, more and more daytrippers are making the short trek to Peekskill, thanks to its beautiful waterfront, easy access to trails, and cute, walkable town.

To get here, take the short ride on the MetroNorth Hudson Line to Peekskill, which drops visitors about a 15 minute walk into town (alternately, it’s not a long wait for an Uber.)

Keep reading for our recommendations of what to do, where to eat and drink, and how to make the best of your time in this sweet little Hudson Valley town!

What to Do in Peekskill, NY: Explore Town, Take a Scenic Sightseeing Cruise, or Hike Blue Mountain

Hardcore hikers often head to Cold Spring for their dayhikes, but Peekskill has several easy-to-access trails at its Blue Mountain Reservation. Take a leisurely nature walk in Depew Park, or challenge yourself to a bit of a climb along the Ned’s Left Lung mountain bike trail. (A word of caution: rumor has it the trail markers here sometimes suck. Be aware of that as you’re going in, and you’ll either do fine… or earn yourself a drink at the end of the day.) Check this map to see thet rails.

If you’re looking to enjoy some gorgeous river views, New York Boat Co. has sightseeing, sunset, and brunch cruises along the Hudson aboard The Evening Star. Shore-side, Peekskill’s Riverfront Green Park has a two-mile trail that starts at the train station and heads south along the river to Fleischmann’s Pier Park. Grab a coffee from the upcoming The Central (located inside the train station) and enjoy the easy walk, which has awesome views and eye-catching sculptural artwork.

Speaking of art, art lovers should check out the impressive collection at the Hudson Valley Museum of Contemporary Art, as well as the gallery and arts center Kinosaito in Verplank, which showcases the works of abstract artist Kikuo Saito (and also has incredible coffee at its cafe, Banana Dang). Add them to your contemporary art tour of the Hudson Valley, along with nearby Storm King Art Center and Dia: Beacon.

South Division Street seems to be the shopping hub in town. Grab a coffee at Peekskill Coffee House and head to Bucko!, which has cozy upstate sweaters, thoughtful accessories, cute baby items, and well-chosen home goods. The artist studios at the Flatiron building are certainly worth a peek, and the building’s gallery occasionally has sales. Stark Vintage and 222muchswag are two cool new vintage stores that specialize in 80s and 90s streetwear. We also love the longstanding Bruised Apple, an indie book and record shop with cozy reading nooks, little antechambers, and eccentric decor.

There’s a weekly outdoor farmers market every Saturday 8am-2pm in the Spring/Summer/Fall on Bank Street (between Main St. and Park St.). In the winter the farmers market is indoors at 925 South St.

Despite all this nature, and things to do — many day trippers to Peekskill never make it past the waterfront–partially because it’s really close to the MetroNorth, but also because it’s hard to make it past the Peekskill Brewery. There’s no doubt that sipping craft brews in this beautiful, sunlit space is an awesome way to spend an afternoon in the Hudson Valley. A continuously rotating beer lineup features both Peekskill Brewery’s own craft beers—with some staples, and some seasonal specialties—but also guest brewers as well. And with a full menu of lunch and dinner offerings, it’s easy to get sucked in here. (We won’t judge you if you don’t make it into town, but make sure to catch the sunset from the park across the brewery!)

Where to Eat and Drink in Peekskill: Restaurants Overlooking the River, a Restored 1940’s Tavern, or a Craft Brewery

New to Peekskill is the Factoria complex, which has some of the best river views in Peekskill. Aside from its arcade and event space, it houses two restaurants/bars: the Fin & Brew, which serves fresh seafood and craft beer, and the pub-style River Outpost Brewing Co. On Main Street is Birdsall House, a farm-to-table gastropub housed in a beautifully restored 1940’s tavern. They have a great beer list and host fun events like movie nights. It’s the same owners as Gleason’s, which serves flatbread pizza in a similar atmosphere. For ramen that truly warms the soul (plus sushi), check out RameNesque for lunch or dinner. For more upscale dining, visit Apropos, the delicious farm-to-table American restaurant at the four-star Abbey Inn and Spa.

There are two fun dive bars in town for those craving some nightlife: Oley and Chuck’s Rainbow Grill and The Redline Roadhouse in Cortlandt, which also has a solid burger, dinner specials, and incredible live music.

Before you leave town, don’t miss Hudson Creamery, just steps from the train station. Based in Kingston, NY, it’s a great local ice cream shop with a retro vibe serving up 30 flavors of Janes Ice Cream (Kingston, NY) and killer sundaes.

Escape Brooklyn would like to thank Fred Camino of Peekskill ExUrbanist for helping us create this travel guide. Check them out to find out what’s happening in Peekskill!