Northeast Weekend Getaways: Top 23 Charming Spots | Stanton House Inn

Weekend getaways in Rhode Island

The Northeast of the USA hosts an abundance of picturesque destinations for weekend getaways. From a busy city to tranquil shores, there’s plenty of experiences to enjoy. Venture into coastal small towns for a dose of history and maritime charm. Explore stunning beaches and towering mountain ranges during the summer in the Northeast. New England especially boasts picturesque countryside, cliff-lined coasts, and countless small towns. They’re some of the best spots for a Northeast summer vacation. Coastal escapes, mountain retreats, vibrant cities, and charming small towns – the Northeast has them all.

 

Ready to explore the best Northeast weekend getaways? Let’s get into it:

 

Quick hits

  • Explore the Northeast for a weekend getaway, from coastal escapes to mountain retreats and urban adventures.
  • Discover unique destinations all along the East Coast

 

Enchanting Coastal Escapes

Sandy beach of a quaint New England town, perfect for northeast weekend getaways on summer vacation

Get ready for sandy beaches, quaint towns, and fresh seafood along the picturesque coastlines of the Northeast. Picture yourself strolling along the shore with the Atlantic Ocean lapping at your feet. Imagine exploring charming shops and savoring the delightful flavors of New England. These enchanting coastal escapes will rejuvenate and inspire you.

 

Each destination is rich in maritime history and promises an unforgettable experience. These elements will make your weekend getaway, including romantic getaways, truly memorable.

 

Bar Harbor, Maine

Acadia National Park, a major East Coast destination

On the edge of Acadia National Park, Bar Harbor offers a perfect balance between small-town charm and natural beauty. With miles of hiking trails, breathtaking ocean views, and a charming downtown, Bar Harbor is a nature lover’s paradise. Start your day with a visit to the park, where you can:

 

  • Hike along the rugged shoreline
  • Kayak in Frenchman Bay
  • Simply enjoy the fresh air

 

When hunger strikes, satisfy your cravings with a delicious lobster roll from one of the many seafood restaurants that dot the town.

 

Bar Harbor is not only a hub for natural wonders, but it also boasts a vibrant arts scene and charming local shops. Take a stroll through the town center where you’ll find the Abbe Museum. This museum dedicates itself to showcasing the history and culture of Maine’s native Wabanaki people. Don’t miss out on visiting St. Saviour’s Episcopal Church, an architectural marvel in Gothic Revival style. And for a comfortable night’s stay, the romantic Bayview Hotel is a great choice. It offers waterfront views, serves made-to-order breakfast, and even provides complimentary cookies.

 

Newport, Rhode Island

Interior of the Breakers at Newport, Rhode Island, a historic town

Newport is a destination where opulence meets history for a unique experience. The town is famous for its hillside mansions, picturesque shores, and distinctive shops. It’s the perfect backdrop for a luxurious weekend getaway.

 

Here are some highlights of what you can do in Newport:

 

  • Take a journey back in time as you explore the Cliff Walk. This 3.5-mile coastal path offers breathtaking ocean views. It also provides glimpses into the lavish lifestyles of the Gilded Age.
  • Visit The Breakers, the summer “cottage” of the Vanderbilts.
  • Explore Rosecliff, a mansion modeled after the Grand Trianon of Versailles.

 

After immersing yourself in Newport’s rich history, take time to explore its arts scene and indulge in the town’s culinary delights. Visit Third Beach for a day of sun and sand, or enjoy breakfast at Belle’s Cafe with a view of Newport Harbor. Be sure to grab drinks on the lawn at Castle Hill and watch the sun set over the Atlantic Ocean.

 

Kennebunkport, Maine

Kennebunkport harbor

Kennebunkport, Maine, is a charming coastal town that encapsulates the charm of coastal New England. The town boasts beautiful sandy beaches and historic architecture. Unique boat tours are a major attraction here. That said, you could spend your days just wandering the quaint streets. The local shops offer a variety of goods for browsing. And of course, don’t forget to sample the tasty local delicacies, such as lobster rolls and blueberry pies.

 

Some of the highlights of a visit to Kennebunkport include the opportunity to:

 

  • Take a boat tour around the Bush family compound, offering a glimpse into the summer home of a presidential family.

 

For a memorable stay, consider:

 

 

Cape Cod

friends enjoying the beach in Cape Cod

This spot has long been a favorite getaway in the Northeast. It oozes maritime charm, boasts world-class restaurants, and features unique shops. The Cape Cod Canal sets its miles of stunning coastline apart from the mainland.

 

The main draw is the Cape Cod National Seashore with its picturesque beaches. If you’re a theater or movie buff, check out the Wellfleet Drive-In or the Cape Playhouse, the oldest professional summer theater.

 

Provincetown is a gem of a Cape Cod town. It’s eccentric, with shopping, beaches, art galleries, and a unique main street. The fresh seafood is a highlight and a major reason to visit.

 

Although Cape Cod is less than a two-hour drive from Boston, summer traffic can be heavy. Arriving early is a good idea, or via the ferry. For accommodations, try out:

 

 

Block Island

Mohegan Bluffs on Block Island

Block Island is a Northeast gem, known for its scenic beauty and historic landmarks. It’s a popular spot for a summer vacation. Visitors can enjoy a bike ride around the island or tour the Southeast Lighthouse. If relaxation is on the agenda, Mansion Beach is the ideal spot.

 

For the nature enthusiasts, the Mohegan Bluffs and Clay Head Trail offer opportunities for hiking, birdwatching, and wildlife viewing. They also provide stunning views of the coastline.

 

Visit the Southeast Lighthouse and the Block Island Historical Society Museum. Both showcase the island’s rich past, if you’re a history buff.

 

As for accommodations, the Spring House Hotel is a family-friendly option. It offers spacious rooms, a seasonal outdoor pool, and a farm-to-table restaurant. The 1661 Inn is a more romantic choice. Located in Block Island’s historic district, it provides elegant rooms with water views, a gourmet restaurant, and a garden.

 

Nantucket, Massachusetts

Brant Point Lighthouse in Nantucket, MA

Nantucket is another quaint town, known for its beautiful beaches and historical architecture. It’s a perfect summer destination. Visitors can explore the island’s historic homes or visit the Whaling Museum. For a little seaside relaxation, Madaket Beach is the place to go.

 

The island is also a haven for outdoor enthusiasts. It boasts miles of scenic bike paths and hiking trails. Some of the most popular ones include the Polpis Harbor Trail, Squam Swamp Trail, and Sconset Bluff Walk. Boat tours are available for exploring the coastline and learning about its history and ecology. If you visit in summer, you may even get a chance to see whales.

 

For accommodations, check out the Nantucket Hotel & Resort. This family-friendly property offers amenities like a heated outdoor pool, children’s program, and a beach shuttle. If you’re looking for a more romantic getaway, The White Elephant is a great option. This luxurious hotel is in Nantucket’s historic district. It offers elegant rooms, a spa, and a waterfront location. It also houses a restaurant for your dining pleasure.

 

Martha’s Vineyard

Victorian style houses on Martha's Vineyard.

Martha’s Vineyard is a sought-after and exclusive weekend getaway in the Northeast. The island is famous for attracting celebrities and the upper echelons of society.

 

The laid-back New England island vibe is complemented by charming inns and farm-to-table eateries. A local transit bus can transport you to popular spots such as the Gay Head Lighthouse, Aquinnah Cliffs, Edgartown shops, and Oak Bluffs cottages.

 

When it comes to accommodation, the Winnetu Oceanside Resort on the South Beach in Edgartown is a luxurious option. It’s ranked among the top 25 New England Resorts. Meanwhile, the Mansion House in Vineyard Haven offers elegant seaside charm. It’s a delightful choice for both couples and families.

 

Captivating Mountain Retreats

Breathtaking mountain view, ideal for captivating mountain retreats in the Northeast

If tranquility is what you’re seeking, the Northeast’s mountain retreats are just the ticket. These serene escapes offer stunning mountain vistas, exhilarating outdoor adventures, and cozy accommodations. They’re the perfect setting for rejuvenating weekend getaways.

 

Each spot offers its own unique blend of breathtaking views, outdoor activities, and charming accommodations.

 

Stowe, Vermont

Stowe, VT

In the heart of the Green Mountains, Stowe is a picturesque small town. It boasts a city center that could be straight from a postcard. And outdoor recreation opportunities abound. The town center, with its whitewashed church spire and charming boutiques, is just perfect. Here, you can soak in the quintessential New England ambiance.

 

Stowe offers a range of outdoor activities, including:

 

  • World-class skiing at Stowe Mountain Resort
  • Hiking the scenic trails of Mount Mansfield, Vermont’s highest peak
  • Enjoying a leisurely hike along the Stowe Recreation Path
  • Taking a scenic drive up the Auto Toll Road for stunning views of the surrounding mountains

 

Have you heard of the Trapp Family Lodge? The family who inspired The Sound of Music once called it home. Now, it’s a splendid inn with its own farm and outdoor center. And don’t forget about the cross-country ski trails – they’re truly exceptional. This place is worth making one of the best road trips from NYC.

 

White Mountains, New Hampshire

Fog drifting over Lincoln, NH

The White Mountains are an awe-inspiring sight. They’re popular among both nature lovers and adventure seekers. Towering peaks, lush forests, and numerous hiking trails make this place a haven for outdoor exploration.

 

Scenic hikes like the Quechee Gorge Trail and Mount Tom Trail are available for all levels of outdoor enthusiasts. Activities such as zip-lining and rafting are available to thrill-seekers.

 

Lake Placid, New York

Lake Placid of rich Olympic history is a paradise for winter sports enthusiasts. This charming town in the Adirondack Mountains boasts world-class ski slopes, ice-skating rinks, and bobsled experiences. It also offers unique activities like cross-country skiing.

 

Beyond its outdoor adventures, Lake Placid has a lively local scene. Explore the town’s local shops, galleries, and eateries. It’s what makes this town a great pick for an Adirondack Mountains vacation. For a cozy night’s rest, choose from charming, rustic accommodations. Options range from the historic Lake Placid Lodge to the luxurious Whiteface Lodge.

 

Urban Adventures

Reading Terminal Market

You cannot post a guide to weekend getaways in the Northeast without mentioning its cities. From the iconic metropolises of New York City and Boston to the historic charm of Philadelphia, they’re all unique. Each city offers a unique blend of culture, history, art, shopping, and dining.

 

New York City, New York

Times Square in Manhattan

Experience the ultimate urban adventure in New York City, the city that never sleeps. This bustling metropolis is home to world-class attractions and renowned museums. It also boasts a shopping and dining scene that is second to none. Witness iconic landmarks like the Statue of Liberty and Times Square. Immerse yourself in the cultural institutions like the Metropolitan Museum of Art and the American Museum of Natural History. The shopping districts are seemingly endless. From upscale Fifth Avenue to the trendy boutiques of Soho, you’re sure to find the perfect souvenir or fashionable find.

 

Boston, Massachusetts

Boston harbor

Boston offers a blend of old-world allure and contemporary excitement. As you navigate through the city, you have your pick of activities:

 

  • Walk along the Freedom Trail and be transported back in time
  • Visit iconic landmarks like the Old North Church and Paul Revere’s House
  • Immerse yourself in the city’s rich colonial past

 

But Boston isn’t just about history – it’s also a vibrant city with a thriving arts scene, trendy shopping districts, and a passionate sports culture. Here are some some top things to do in Boston, MA:

 

  • Catch a game at Fenway Park
  • Explore the galleries and boutiques of Newbury Street
  • Indulge in some of the city’s best seafood at one of its many acclaimed restaurants

 

Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

Cities like Philadelphia make for some of the best weekend getaways

The City of Brotherly Love boasts a great arts scene, eclectic shops, and vivacious sports fans. A visit to Independence Hall, where the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution were signed, is a must. And the iconic Liberty Bell is another marvel to behold.

 

The city is not just about history, though. Its underground culture and thriving arts community make it an exciting destination for those seeking new and different experiences. The Reading Terminal Market is a must-visit, as are the many galleries and theaters.

 

Charming Small Town Getaways

Charming small town with historic architecture, perfect for relaxing getaways

Small towns in the Northeast provide charming getaways in and of themselves. These picturesque destinations give a unique blend of history, culture, and natural beauty.

 

Mystic, Connecticut

Mystic River

Mystic, Connecticut, is a historic seaport town. Its rich maritime history makes it a perfect destination for history buffs and nautical enthusiasts. The most famous of the many things to do in Mystic, CT, is the Mystic Seaport Museum. This living history museum showcases an authentic 19th-century shipping village and ship.

Mystic also boasts charming shops and a renowned aquarium. Whether you’re on a walking tour along the picturesque waterfront or enjoying a seafood meal, Mystic will leave a lasting impression.

 

Woodstock, Vermont

Woodstock, Vermont, is a charming village in the Green Mountains. Its allure lies in its quintessential New England charm. Visitors can enjoy scenic hikes, bustling farmers markets, and the comforts of cozy accommodations.

 

During your stay:

  • Explore the town’s picturesque streets
  • Browse local shops at the Church Street Marketplace
  • And savor the farm-to-table cuisine at one of Woodstock’s many restaurants

 

And don’t miss out on a unique experience at the nearby Billings Farm and Museum. This working dairy farm gives you a glimpse into 19th-century rural life.

 

North Conway, New Hampshire

Mount Washington Cog Railway over a road near North Conway, New Hampshire

The White Mountains are home to North Conway, New Hampshire. This popular ski town offers a unique blend of activities beyond the obvious skiing. In winter, you can hit the slopes at the nearby Cranmore Mountain Resort. You can also try snowmobiling or experience the thrill of dog sledding. For a classic winter wonderland experience, try the world-class ice skating. And after a day of outdoor adventure, you can warm up by the fire with a hearty meal.

 

The Most Unique Getaway Spots

Hidden gem with unique experiences, ideal for unforgettable Northeast getaways

Sure, everyone knows about New York City and the like. But the Northeast is also home to several hidden gems. Of the many to choose from, here are three of the most unique getaway spots in the Northeast.

 

Greenwich, Connecticut

Greenwich, Connecticut is a tony coastal town along the Long Island Sound. On the long list of the best things to do in Greenwich, CT, you’ll find options like:

 

 

Explore the town’s lovely parks and beaches, or enjoy a round of golf at one of Greenwich’s many picturesque public courses.

 

Conveniently located a short drive from New York City, Greenwich is a unique blend of Manhattan cosmopolitanism and New England charm.

 

New Hope, Pennsylvania

New Hope, PA

New Hope, Pennsylvania, is a anothing charming town of eclectic shops, art galleries, and theater scene. It’s an ideal destination for art lovers and culture enthusiasts.

 

You can spend your day exploring the numerous galleries featuring local artists’ work. Catch a performance at the Bucks County Playhouse, a popular theater near New Hope. After a day of cultural immersion, relax with a meal at one of the town’s fantastic eateries. To end your day, take a leisurely stroll along the Delaware Canal Trail.

 

The Berkshires, Massachusetts

The best description this writer has ever heard of the Berkshires is that they’re like Vermont, without being too Vermont. This region in Western Massachusetts is packed with charming towns and art galleries. It also hosts famous venues like Tanglewood and the Massachusetts Museum of Contemporary Art. The Berkshires, with their rolling mountains, cultural heritage, and historical significance, create an ideal backdrop for a memorable weekend getaway.

 

Spend your days exploring the streets of:

  • Great Barrington
  • North Adams
  • Lenox
  • Lee, MA
  • Pittsfield

 

Browse local boutique shops and art galleries. And take in the natural beauty of the surrounding landscape on the hiking trails, or go mountain biking. And when the sun sets, catch a performance at one of the many world-class venues that call the Berkshires home.

 

Tl;dr

The Northeast is a trove of diverse and unique weekend getaways. Here, you can find everything from enchanting coastal escapes and captivating mountain retreats to bustling urban adventures and charming small towns. If relaxation is your goal, there’s a place for you. If you’re into outdoor fun or cultural immersion, you won’t be disappointed. So what are you waiting for? Get out there and do some exploring!

 

Frequently Asked Questions

 

Where should I spend Labor Day weekend?

For a memorable Labor Day weekend, consider New England. The region is known for its stunning coastline, charming towns, and historical sites. It’s also a hub for various outdoor activities. It’s the perfect place to unwind and explore!

 

Where do people from New York go in summer?

Summer months open up a world of possibilities for New Yorkers. They can head to the beaches in the Hamptons or Jersey Shore. Alternatively, they can explore the mountains and islands of the Adirondacks and Bermuda. All of these perfect getaways are just a short trip away.

 

What is the best time of year to visit the Northeast?

The best time to visit the Northeast is in autumn, thanks to the beautiful fall foliage. However, summer and early autumn also offer great opportunities to explore the region.

 

What outdoor activities can be enjoyed in the Northeast?

In the Northeast, there’s a wide array of outdoor activities to enjoy. These include hiking, skiing, and snowboarding. Additionally, you can embark on a kayaking adventure or go whale-watching. The region is also home to scenic trails in both mountainous and coastal areas.

 

Are there any unique getaway spots in the Northeast?

Indeed, the Northeast boasts several unique getaway spots. These include Greenwich in Connecticut, New Hope in Pennsylvania, and the Berkshires in Massachusetts. Each of these locations is uniquely charming and offers its own set of attractions.

 

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