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“A meaningful tour”
Review of Val-Kill Cottage

Val-Kill Cottage
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Hudson Valley New York Great Estates Pass
Ranked #3 of 21 things to do in Hyde Park
Certificate of Excellence
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Attraction details
Owner description: The home of Eleanor Roosevelt that is located on the Roosevelt estate and is open to the public.
Level 6 Contributor
106 reviews
37 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 77 helpful votes
“A meaningful tour”
Reviewed August 23, 2013 via mobile

We took the guided tour of Eleanor Roosevelt's Val Kill cottage, and it was highly worthwhile. Our guide had known Eleanor personally and had been a guest there during the former first lady's lifetime. She let us see all of the house, as well as the original stone cottage. It was all recreated very faithfully, and the atmosphere was cozy and warm as it must have been back then.

Our tour guide shared a lot of information, and I almost felt like we had stepped back in time as we went through Eleanor's beloved home and memories. This tour was a wonderful example of the meaningful experiences that can be found in a beautiful historic place. I think our specific guide made the difference.

Visited August 2013
2 Thank explorergurl
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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409 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Philadelphia area
Level 6 Contributor
437 reviews
125 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 186 helpful votes
“great stop! excellent film and ranger tour!”
Reviewed August 23, 2013

The film alone is worth a stop. Our ranger, Victor, did a fine and personable tour--with special attention to children as well as to adult history buffs.

Visited August 2013
Thank NorthArrow
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
New York City, New York
Level 4 Contributor
40 reviews
15 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 23 helpful votes
“Friendly staff”
Reviewed August 23, 2013

The staff at the home was friendly but honestly didn't seem as well informed about her subject as the other tour guides we encountered throughout HydePark.

Visited August 2013
Thank Bfranz
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
New York, NY
Level 3 Contributor
22 reviews
18 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
“Small but interesting”
Reviewed August 14, 2013

My family of 6 adults, a 9mo old, and a 22mo old decided to walk the 2 miles from FDR's home to Val Kill, expecting an easy walk. It took 50 minutes, and we weren't walking slow. It was a nice walk, but I recommend leaving plenty of time to get to Val Kill so you can take your time.

The only tour left was the 4pm by the time we go there. The tour was supposed to be 45 minutes long, but the last bus back to FDR's was leaving at 450pm, so we had to leave the tour in the middle of it to avoide another 50 min trek back. Our fault for crunching the time, but it was silly that the last bus leaves before the park even closes.

You start by watching a short video on Eleanor, then move on to her cottage with a tour guide. He was informative but talked slow and took a long time getting to the point. It was cool to see how she lived after her husband died and hear the stories about her that I'd never heard before. We didn't get to tour the grounds with the guide since we had to leave, but we walked around a bit beforehand while waiting for our tour to start. It's rustic and not that well kept - I'm guessing it looked much better when she was taking care of it.

I wouldn't make a special trip to see this, but if you're visiting FDR's, it's worth the stop. The tour is about an hour altogether, plus any time you spend exploring on your own, which probably wouldn't be too much.

My 9month old was fine being held through the tour, but my 22mo old nephew wasn't happy and created a ruckus, so my brother and sister in law missed most of the tour unfortunately. I wouldn't bring young kids unless you know they can behave or you end up getting nasty looks from the mostly older visitors.

Visited August 2013
Thank rugrl18
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Arlington, Massachusetts
Level 4 Contributor
43 reviews
22 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 25 helpful votes
“Eleanor Roosevelt was an amazing woman!”
Reviewed July 28, 2013

I initially wasn't that interested in going on this tour, but it was part of the combination ticket that I purchased. Upon finishing the tour and watching the film, I was amazed at how much we owe to this amazing woman and humanitarian! She was truly ahead of her time and a champion for women, workers, the poor, world peace, and the civil rights movement. Please don't an opportunity to learn about such an important figure in history.

Visited July 2013
1 Thank tm77rr
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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