When I came across a Conde Naste Traveler article calling Hudson, NY their "new favorite weekend getaway" I was instantly curious and admittedly, a little skeptical. I knew the surrounding region was beautiful, and I knew the town's reputation as an antiques haven and burgeoning food scene was indisputable, yet I still had a vision of Hudson being just another quaint upstate New York village.
I visited today and I'm hestitant to gush too much and sound like that dorky neophyte to the Hudson River Valley, but I still have to say it...Hudson, New York is my new favorite weekend getaway!
I think the reason I was so smitten with Hudson is that the first word that comes to mind when strolling through the sizeable downtown isn't quaint...it's liveable. Polished, hip, classic and a touch bohemian are other attributes that come to mind. I walked nearly a mile and saw only a quarter of the galleries, bakeries, restaurants, food trucks and antique stores...probably less. Yet everything was so accessible. I found myself strolling at a pace that I would in any mid-size city and envisioning myself doing it on a regular basis. Yet I had space to breathe. Much like my historic neighborhood in Raleigh, NC, renovations were happening everywhere. The familiar sounds of belt saws and hammers were a bit like music to my ears.
It was 91 degrees and I was wearing skinny jeans, yet I didn't even mind. There was a nice breeze blowing off the river. I stopped at a cafe to grab an iced coffee and two colorful macarons. I sat on the stoop of a presently vacant storefront and enjoyed the feel of the cool granite on my legs. I people watched. I lost track of time for the first time in forever.
So...yes, I will obviously be back to Hudson one weekend, and next time I hope to stay awhile.
1. Walking is a great way to get a feel for downtown Hudson. A simple drive won't cut it because you will miss the detail of each carefully curated storefront, plaques describing the period and style of homes (Federal, Greek Revival, Victorian), hidden gardens and cafes, not to mention the chance to snag some really amazing antiques. Wear comfortable shoes and on a hot day, plan ahead and bring water.
2. Park on either end of Warren Street, but not in the middle. Walk the whole length. Trust me, there are too many gems you'll miss otherwise.
3. If you are staying overnight or for a full day, I also recommend taking a scenic drive in the country. There are some great spots close by for swimming and hiking to round out your visit. There are also plenty of farms and vineyards.
2 Note Botanic Perfumery for hand crafted botanical perfumes and natural products in pretty packaging
Moto for coffee and waffles
Cafe La Perche for bistro fare
Flowerkraut for flowers, botanical paper and yes, kraut!
White Rice for vibrant textiles and colorful clothing
Patisserie Lenox for french macarons in a variety of flavors (apricot and sour cherry anyone?)
*These were my favorite spots on my short day trip. I plan to add many more over time.