Albany doesn't have a ton of hustle and bustle but there are are several parks and trails a short distance from the City. Half Day: - Thatcher Park for the beautiful Indian Ladder Trail with lookouts from the Helderberg Escarpment: http://nysparks.com/parks/128/details.aspx- Saratoga National Historical Park for history and walking trails...more
We were surprised an impressed with all that we saw in the New York State Museum. We enjoyed the birds, animals, minerals, plants & the people upstate. Rooms were filled with NYC memorabilia from the South Street Seaport, Black Harlem, subway cars, Ellis Island and recent ground zero. Photographs and memorabilia were well displayed; a lot being...more
Every Thursday evening at 5pm during the summer (June-August), make your way downtown to the Albany Riverfront Park for a lovely outdoor free concert right on along the river!This night has become HUGELY popular in recent years, and the place gets PACKED, so arrive as close to 5pm as you possibly can. Vendors sell all the good treats of summer: ice...more
You simply can't miss one of the most beautiful and simply fun festivals in the whole state!Albany celebrates its Dutch Heritage with the Tulip Fest in May, a three day event. The beauty of thousands of brightly colored tulips (my favorite flower) thickly covering Washington Park is enough of a draw for me, but there are plenty of events at this...more
Governor Nelson A. Rockefeller Empire State Plaza commissioned his friend Wallace K. Harrison (see Rockefeller Center) to be principal architect of the Plaza. The Empire State Plaze is one of the most fantastic capital centers in the country. The Plaza encompasses 98 acres of land, and provides jobs to 11,000 people in 10 buildings. Construction of...more
Resembling a church, Albany's City Hall is one of city's oldest buildings. It was constructed from 1881 to 1883 by architect Henry Hobson Richardson, one of the architects who created the state capitol building. The building is made of Rhode Island granite and features a 200-foot bell tower. In front of City Hall is the statue of General Philip...more
The Schuyler Mansion is one of the homes built by Revolutionary War general Phillip Schuyler. Right now, the staff is finishing up a large restoration project, and most of the interior of the Mansion has been restored to it's original Georgian decor. It is open for public group tours in the summer, and gives group tours by appointment from November...more
We passed through security and took an elevator to the Corning Tower Observation Deck located on the 42nd floor; the tallest building in New York State outside of New York City. The building dominates the Albany skyline with its glass, marble and angular forms. We had good views of Albany, the Plaza, and surrounding areas. Also visible are the...more
The NYS Capital looked quite majestic & has served as the seat of government since the 1880s. The building is a marvel of late 19th century architectural grandeur. Under the direction of five architects, the Capitol was built by hand of solid masonry over a period of 25 years. When Governor Theodore Roosevelt declared the Capital completed. Its is...more
I really enjoyed the clean and new looks, especially its surrounding grounds, of this common hotel...more
I have stayed at this Hampton Inn a few occassions, most recently in July of 2006. This was the last...more
It was an OK hotel - the rooms were nice and the bed was very comfortable. There is an indoor...more
It looks like a Dinner/Sport-bar/Country Style Restaurant. Very busy but the place is big enough. Has a ¨takeout¨ sections if you decide to call ahead and pick up your food. If you are in the mood for BBQ, ribs, pulled pork, mac and cheese, and beers, this is it. They have more things in their menu, but these are definitively very good.more
BF and I went to Van's while visiting the Capital District from GA for a graduation. I wanted something different and miss the food from NY (it's just better, sorry my southern friends!) and the reviews convinced me it was somewhere I wanted to try. I was not disappointed. There was one very harried server working on a slow Sunday but we were in no...more
After checking out the 3 I Dines restaurants that were supposed to be open but weren't, SES and I decided to make a quick stop at Jillian's to grab a quick drink and a snack. Jillians is a chain restaurant/bar/pool hall that really doesn't offer much out of the ordinary. We had the boneless buffalo wings which were about average. I had my usual...more
Pinto and Hobbbs has moved around the corner to Washington Avenue across from the Albany Institiute of History and Art and with the new intimate space comes a new fresh food menu featuring some very tasty items. They roast thier own turkey which makes for great open face hot turkey sandwiches. They have burgers, rubens, salads and home made soups...more
The Daily Grind is a tiny, below-street level cafe located on Albany's famed Lark Street, and it serves up a wide menu of delicious coffee concoctions, as well as desserts and cafe food. Everybody I know loves this place. The size and service are intimate and perfect for a date. You sit at a little table and a waitress comes just to take your...more
Open until 3pm (like most downtown Albany eateries), Maurice's is famed for its fresh (sliced in front of you) hot roast beef sandwiches. They offer a wide variety of typical deli lunches, but every sandwich is big, fresh and delicious. When I worked downtown, I ate at Maurice's as often as I could. I can't tell you how good my memories are of this...more
Formerly a White Tower restaurant, then the iconic Albany club the QE2, this building has recently been reborn as the Fuze Box Lounge. It's a great place for drinks and dancing, and there's frequently live music. Also, they do theme nights every week. Mondays are Indie Rock, there's karaoke on Tuesdays, Wednesday is "Happy Hour Night." Swing Night...more
We used to walk here, mostly, because it was closest place to go. Pitchers of Bass for under $10 and baseball on the tv made it a great place to go hang.It was here that I witnessed the return of the King to the Yanks. Too many college wannabe crowd so dress anyway you want. You might just stand out. And that has never been a bad thing.more
Albany, much like Boston, is one of those cities that is best enjoyed by walking it. Albany is loaded with historic, beautiful churches that you would otherwise miss during a drive. Albany also has some of the best architecture in the US and also the most diverse. Here you will see just about every style of building there is to see. Another great...more
You're best bet to traveling in the area is to have car access. If you do, nothing is beyond your reach.That's why if you're visiting from overseas, connect with someone in the area who can drive you to the best places and drop you off if need be.City Buses are do-able and affordable - I used to take them to work all the time - but you're really...more
One of the many ways to get to Albany for NYC is to take the train. Amtrak provides daily service to Albany several times a day. There are two stations serving the Albany area, one located at 555 East Street in Rensselaer and the other located at 332 Erie Blvd. in Schenectady. You'll have to take a bus or a cab to get to Albany from either of these...more
This is a fairly large plaza with an extensive list of stores.The directory includes:Christmas Tree, Foot Locker, Gap, Hallmark, Kay Jewelers, KB Toys, Lane Bryant, Lerners, Macys, Payless, Radio Shack, Sears, Victoria SecretThere are several eateries with wares for your consumption. (Friendly's, Taco Bell)They have a bank and post office for your...more
Stuyvesant Plaza is an open-air shopping plaza on the outskirts of Albany. I've worked in various stores here on and off since high school, and the whole plaza is just great. There's a wide range of stores, and most of them are fairly upscale. Highlights include Book House (and Little Book House), a locally owned book store, Different Drummer's...more
Not a specific shop, but Lark Street and the surrounding side streets is one of the best places to shop in Albany. There are gobs of fascinating little gift stores and book shops. Some highlights include Romeo's Gifts (on the corner of Lark and Madison), The Daily Grind (204 Lark), the famous Lark Street Tattoo (274 Lark). Check out their website...more
The Tulip Festival is one of the larger ones held in the eastern United States. It is also the longest operating festival in Albany (about 60 years, 2007).The second weekend of May is the time; Washington Park is the place; thousands of people make a huge crowd and parking problem.There is a tulip parade, the selection of a tulip queen, the tours...more
Here are a few of the neighborhoods within metropolitan Albany.Capital HillRuns north-south from Washington Avenue to Madison Avenue and east-west from Eagle Street to Lincoln Park. This area is where all the impressive public buildings are.Center SquareRuns north-south from Holland Avenue to I-87 and east-west from Oneida Terrace to Hackett Blvd....more
After my early morning flight to Montreal, followed by the 3.5 hour drive to Albany, it was lunch time when I drove into the centre of the city for a look around before checking into my hotel. The delicious smells coming from this busy line of mobile vendors caught my attention as I was walking by the State Education building! They sell everything...more
The crime report for Albany, in general, is mostly bad. Overall the crime statistics put the city in the "high risk" category. But, Albany has many zipcoded areas and much of the data for many of those areas indicated high probability of crime while a very few areas were in the low risk level. Zipcode area 12211 was one of the best areas and area 12204 was not too bad either.
These two areas are bounded by Loudon Road, I-787 and route 378.
Also there are ninety-eight sex offenders registered in the area (see website below).
Caution should generally be used by tourists in the area especially when they stray away from the high profile tourist areas in the city. Roaming around Albany late at night is not recommended.
Keep car doors locked to prevent car theft. Keep valuables locked away and out of sight.
Keep a good eye on the kids. Be careful, Be smart, Be safe.
Want a little piece of Albany history - go to the Visitors Center for maps and tour info. If old houses are your thing - Albany hosts 2 mansions - Ten Broek and Schyuler Mansions. Both are easy to locate, inexpensive to visit, quick to peruse and nicely maintained.
Albany, just like every city has it's fair share of street vendors. The vendors here only come out during lunch hours and they line the street next to the SUNY campus and The Empire Plaza. What I thought was neat about these vendors is that each stand is dedicated to a different style of food, there was Chinese, Indian, Italian, Sushi, etc. I...more
If you are in the vicinity of Albany and need a driving break you might stop in at Albany and take a look at " Empire State Plaza" .On a saturady or sunday the plaza is completely deserted and the state capital buildings are quite imposing .Time Needed : 1/2 hourmore