Auriesville Things to Do
Traveling along the Mohawk River valley on route 5S and just east of Auriesville, NY you look up into the hills and see a shining pavillion and marble statues. Drive up Noeltner Road and arrive at the Shrine for North American Martyrs. The shrine is dedicated to the only canonized american martyrs: St. Rene Goupil (1642), St. Isaac Jogues (1646), and St. John Lalande (1646). There is also a dedication site for Kateri Tekawitha, Lily of the Mohawks.
The main reception is utilitarian, sort of a large gym building with stained glass and native american decorations. Inside this building is the meeting hall, the gift shop, a small cafetria and a bay window with a great view across the Mohawk Valley.
Across the road from the reception building are the outdoor shrines. There is a paved walkway winding among the trees, with statuary and monuments along the way. There is an outdoor church where masses for special intentions are said on scheduled days. The whole ambience is quiet and serene (you feel like you should talk in a whisper).
The main shrine building is at the end of the walkway. It is an octagon/circular shaped building. Here you find the main altar for regular mass services. Next to the main shrine building is another gift shop with special emphasis on Kateri Tekawitha.
We went in 2005, in the 120th year of the shrines foundation. It was a fairly warm day down in the valley but a bit chilly (jacket weather) up on the hill, in among the trees. I imagine there could be a swarm of insects in the wooded areas on hot, humid days.
We spent over an hour walking and admiring the statues and scenery. Cost is free (conscience donation).Related to:
- Budget Travel
- Road Trip
- Religious Travel
If you do not have a private car, then getting to and around Auriesville is going to be somewhat of a problem.
Amtrax has a station in Amsterdam (Station AMS), about 10 miles away, with limited service (stops twice daily).
Schenectady County Airport (518-399-0111) is quite a ways away (35 miles from Auriesville) and is the closest commercial airfield to Auriesville.
The closest public bus service is Greyhound and they have stations in Amsterdam and Gloversville (1-800-858-8555).
Brown Coach (1-800-424-4700) also has dial-a-bus service for $15 per ride in Fulton County that covers the Gloversville, Fulton, Amsterdam route (which includes Auriesville).
Yellow Cab (518-842-3000) and Community Cab (518-842-4788) from Amsterdam will service the Auriesville area but rides start at $25 per call.
The only limo service for this area is from Johnstown (about 10 miles northwest)... Regal Ride, (518-762-5065).
You might find it more convenient and cheaper to rent a car for your visit, from Enterprise in Amsterdam (518-843-8535) if you come to the area by bus or train; or Enterprise in Schenectady (518-374-7890) if you come by plane. The roads around the area are easy to follow. Basically it is routes 5 and 5S and the NYS Thruway (I-90) for east-west travel and routes 30, 30A and 67 for north-south travel. Those routes will get you to most tourist sites in the area.Related to:
- Road Trip