By Ilona Kauremszky

Q: We’re planning a drive to New York City and on the way back we want to spend a few days checking out one of the parks. Are there any stops worth taking?

A: Two beautiful parks worth exploring include Letchworth State Park and Chimney Bluffs State Park. Both are unique and possess dramatically different topography. Letchworth has a canyon slicing through it while Chimney Bluffs contains some of the best-preserved bluffs that resemble a Mars-like feel with its pointed peaks. Fifty-six kilometres south of Rochester along the Genesee River, three waterfalls create a dramatic backdrop to the lush outdoor scenery surrounding Letchworth State Park.

Rich in history, this nature retreat is where you can learn about the Seneca Indians exploring the interior of a Seneca Council House and drop by the gravesite of Mary Jemison whose own epic life living among the Seneca fueled many books.

The park is equipped with camping, cabins and has ample hiking trails, a swimming pool, fishing, horseback riding and hot-air ballooning.

Over in Huron, NY, overlooking Lake Ontario massive earthen spires jet out at Chimney Bluffs State Park. Enjoy fishing, hiking, picnics and awesome scenic views.

When it comes to choosing a park in New York State, the pickings are big. There are over 225 properties across the state. Approximately 90% of them remain natural. For cabin and camping reservations call the NYS Cabin/Camping Reservation System at toll-free 1-800-456-2267 or for more details on any of the above parks or other parks visit


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