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“Breathtaking & Gorgeous!” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Watkins Glen State Park

Watkins Glen State Park
Watkins Glen, NY
607-535-4511
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Ranked #2 of 19 Attractions in Watkins Glen
Type: State Parks, Outdoors
Activities: Hiking, Walking
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Attraction details
Owner description: The cascades of 18 waterfalls are the calling card of this state park.
Jersey City, New Jersey, USA
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
“Breathtaking & Gorgeous!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 21, 2010

This was the highlight of our trip! It was so beautiful. One stunning waterfall after the next. And great exercise! Stick to the stairs, the trails off the side were not as pretty. Wear old shoes because it can get muddy! Not to miss! Don't forget your camera!

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Philadelphia
Senior Contributor
33 reviews 33 reviews
Reviews in 14 cities Reviews in 14 cities
31 helpful votes 31 helpful votes
“Gorge Trail - Beautiful”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 1, 2010

We really enjoyed the Gorge Trail at the State Park. If you can walk there from your hotel, do so because there is a parking fee. Otherwise, pack some water and a camera. The trail takes you up many steps (800 in total) and by many gorgeous waterfalls. We took the Gorge Trail from the main entrance to the Upper Entrance and then took the Indian Trail back, which was step-free and less populated.

Recommendations: go early to avoid crowds, wear sneakers, prepare to be splashed slightly, prepare to climb steps (not all at once - it's not overwhelming). We are fast walkers and were able to do the Gorge Trail one way and the Indian Trail back to the main entrance in under 2 hours.

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Scarsdale, New York
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
“Refreshing and gorgeous hike”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed May 27, 2010

A few of my friends decided to go on a hike; we had already been to the hikes around Ithaca a couple times, so we decided to check out this lesser-known park. Although Watkin's Glen was nowhere near as expansive as the parks near Ithaca, its twists and views are enjoyable.

We arrived at the east entrance. There are a few trails you can take - we chose to save the Gorge trail for last since it runs by the Glen Creek. We first trekked along on the South Rim trail and crossed over to the Indian trail at the Mile Point bridge. There was not much to see at the west end of park, besides a small playground and rest areas. From there, we descended the steps to explore the Gorge trail.

The South Rim and Indian trails were nothing special; however, the Gorge was spectacular. We were glad that it was saved for last. It takes you into the cascade-filled gorge. At some points, we were even showering in the mist behind waterfalls. The trail is pretty curvy, so coming around bends revealed pleasant surprises.

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New York
Contributor
16 reviews 16 reviews
Reviews in 13 cities Reviews in 13 cities
11 helpful votes 11 helpful votes
“Worth the hike”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 22, 2010

We read about the waterfalls and the gorge trails in a travel book while on our vacation in the Finger Lakes region so we checked it out. Well worth our time and the pictures don't do the beauty justice...the hike itself isn't bad at all, and many people did the round trip. You will walk behind two waterfalls on the Gorge Trail. What wasn't clear to us until we already paid our money is this--you can either park at the main entrance (in town) for now $8 or park for free at the top entrance. We parked at the main entrance and waited 30 minutes to take the shuttle bus to the top entrance. We were trying to figure out why we just paid $6 for a trip we could have made for free in our car. However, as we found out, we didn't have to make a round trip. We hiked down (1.5 miles) and went to the car. We took our 1 year old in his stroller--it wasn't a problem for us as whenever we approached the stairs, we carried him in the stroller (starting from the top and working down had its benefits--we didn't have to make any climbs up stairs, just down them). I would not recommend this trip for anyone who has problems walking--once you start you are committed to the trail start and finish points, althought there are plenty of places to stop, take amazing pictures and rest (this may not be the case on other trails, but was for us on the Gorge Trail). As many people already mentioned, there are a lot of stairs and the paths are not always smooth (it is a gorge, after all). I definitely recommend doing this on a day with good weather and to take some water. Despite our small confusion at the beginning with the parking and shuttle, our hike was well worth it and worked out in the end to be a great way to see the natural beauties. Also, as you exit right from the park there is an ice cream shop (right next to BK) that is worth your time for a refreshing treat after the hike.

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Pinconning, Michigan
Top Contributor
279 reviews 279 reviews
71 attraction reviews
Reviews in 184 cities Reviews in 184 cities
158 helpful votes 158 helpful votes
“Beautiful gorge with many waterfalls”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed March 9, 2010

First off, Watkins Glen is beautiful. There are numerous waterfalls throughout the gorge, and you get to walk under a few of them. My only advice is to show up at the right time of the year. We visited in early May, when the snow had gone and the temperatures were higher, but only the first 1/3 of the gorge trail (the best of the trails) was open. That means there are multiple waterfalls that we did not see, including the much better view of Rainbow Falls. I understand they needed to make repairs, but it was disappointing to not be able to see the rest of this beautiful state park.

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