My Favorite Local Places to Visit on Long Island · New York
When it comes to traveling I believe national jaunts are just as important as international take-offs. I love traveling overseas but I’ve also made it a big point to explore my very own beautiful country, America.
Now that I’ve been living in New York since 2010 I can say I’m a New Yorker — but what many don’t realize is how big New York really is! I’m talking beyond the 5 boroughs of Manhattan, Brooklyn, Queens, Bronx, and Staten Island. I’m talking upstate and out east…
So far today I've met many sharks — including one that's over 20 feet long, scary I know — I've made friends with penguins, sea otters, and walked through a room full of butterflies flying around me…. yes this is the dream job I've worked hard to obtain. Thank you @iloveny @discoverlongisland for the experience –photo with @nasaview ♡ #travelblogger
I recently worked with the lovely folks at the tourism board of I ♥ NY and Discover Long Island — you guessed it, we took a trip to LI where history, aviation, animals, farmed foods, and wine tasting awaited me. Coffee too ツ because the addiction is real.
How to get there:
Transportation → trust the route of Long Island Railroad! I took the train from Penn Station and what I love about public transportation like this — is that it’s on time, hands-free, and reliable.
Where to Stay:
I stayed at the Hyatt Place and it was one of my favorite Hyatt locations. The staff provides everything — and I mean everything! From toiletries forgotten to getting my coffee fix with their Starbucks store inside. Their complimentary breakfast had a lot of delicious variety and the beds were extremely comfortable. Also, loved their strong WiFi connection. The location is also wonderful with a lake across and the Atlantis Aquarium next door.
Where to Eat:
My recommendations are as follows:
For the best seafood → Buoy One
It’s both a fish market and a café.
For the best Italian → Lombardi’s Love Lane Market
So fresh!! And the variety is extensive. Lombardi’s was one of my favorite highlights from the trip. The gourmet market has been serving Mamma Lombardi’s homemade recipes for 40 years and is now open in the heart of the North Fork. Keeping with the North Fork tradition, Love Lane Market uses top quality seasonal ingredients from local purveyors and offers market menus, shopping, catering and more!
For the best winery → Castello Di Borghese
This is the very first vineyard in Long Island which opened in 1973. You can dine here too! They partner with local restaurants and bring you quite a unique experience. I highly recommend getting the historical run down from one of its owners, and their Pinot Noir is seriously legendary!
For the best chocolate and sweets → Sweet Indulgence
I brought home a slice of rocky road fudge for my boo and you wouldn’t believe how delicious it was. He is a big rocky road fan and it really impressed him! Next time we’re out there he wants to stock up, lol.
For the best coffee & hot chocolate → Aldo’s
We got very lucky with our timing and were able to meet the legendary Aldo himself as well as get the star treatment from him. Great guy, great coffee.
For the best soups → Sweet Tomato’s
A classic town favorite with healthy delicious food and about 12 soups made a day! It’s located right next to a lovely shop and Billy Joel’s motorcycle collection — yeah you should check that out too if you’re into choppers.
What to do:
→ Long Island Aquarium and Exhibition Center
With a theme based on the Lost City of Atlantis, Long Island Aquarium blends science and nature with the ancient myth to create an informative and entertaining environment for visitors of all ages. Offering a rich variety of experiences, the Long Island Aquarium had been named a Top 10 Aquarium for Children by Parents Magazine. Fascinating marine life exhibits, Aquatic Adventures, Shark Dive, Butterflies and Birds, Atlantis Explorer Tour Boat, Penguin Encounters, educational programs and more.
NEXT UP → Sagamore Hill National Historic Site (Teddy Roosevelt’s Estate)
Sagamore Hill was the home of Theodore Roosevelt, the 26th President of the United States, from 1885 until his death in 1919. Teddy took his last breaths here too. During Roosevelt’s time in office, his “Summer White House” was the focus of international attention. Peace treaties and extraordinary world meetings took place here.
Standing in the spot former president Theodore Roosevelt built in his home to address America 🇺🇸 he gave some of his greatest speeches here — ones we quote from still today.
OFF TO → Vanderbilt Museum and Planetarium
This place is amazing and so photo worthy. The story goes that William Vanderbilt wanted to mark the world in his own unique way — in line with all the great things his family has contributed. So he set out to build a museum! They have an Egyptian mummy, the largest preserved whale shark I’ve ever seen, and even human skulls. The place is filled with many marine extraordinaries too!
ON TO → Wickham’s Farm
Take a tour of this gem! Wickham’s Farm is one of the largest farms on the North Fork of Long Island. It’s historic, bicentennial farm, beautiful to behold against the sparkling waters of Peconic Bay. Wickham’s fruit is grown on some of the oldest continually cultivated land in the country, much of the farm dating from 1661.
THEN → Cradle of Aviation
The Aviation museum is truly a unique place with both history, future, and a lot of first. As it was an army base to begin with — the evolution of flight took place here. I didn’t know that Long Island had the first ever ballon flight in 1873 in America. This is the place daredevils came to do what they do best and dare the laws of gravitation — or at least test their boundaries.
If you have some extra time or if you’re traveling with kids? I recommend…
FINALLY → Long Island Children’s Museum
What I learned at the Children’s Museum is to never stop playing! At LICM — the staff is dedicated to having fun and through that educational miracles happen. Through exhibit exploration and participation they cover math, science, english, and engineer. No lie — I might have had a bit too much fun!
If you’re a New Yorker like me, live in New England, or anywhere around the world, you’ll love spending the weekend exploring all the experiences Long Island has to offer.
…btw I was impressed with their Wifi game — everyplace had and happily offered it.