25 Best Things to Do in Old Forge, NY

Old Forge, NY
Mahmoud Suhail / shutterstock.com

Old Forge, New York, was originally a forge that was considered unsuitable for farming.

As a result, an iron mine was opened in the year 1811.

Before 1933, this community remained a village for 30 years, but it was eventually dissolved due to higher management costs.

However, despite all these bumps, the hamlet of Old Forge remains to be a principal business district and tourist attraction.

Famous as  "Adirondack Base Camp," Old Forge is quite renowned as a summer vacation destination and has innumerable places to attract visitors and keep them entertained.

Its location in the mountainous region makes this place naturally abundant regardless of the season during which you are visiting.

With perfect accommodations and affordable service providers, the hamlet has plenty of options to choose from.

Old Forge has a charm of its own and will not disappoint you, whether you're a first-time visitor or a returning tourist.

These are the best things to do in Old Forge, New York:

Go Skiing Down McCauley Mountain

Snow covered McCauley Mountain
B137, CC0, via Wikimedia Commons

McCauley Mountain is a famous mountain that is just outside Old Forge.

This mountain has a 633-foot vertical drop, paddle lift, double chairlift, rope tows, T bars, and multiple trails for skiing.

It is home to 21 ski trails, which are 3,000 to 5,000 feet in height,

The place is perfect for enjoying skiing.

People of all experience levels, from beginners to experts, can enjoy this place at very affordable rates.

A very beautiful and refreshing place,  McCauley Mountain is definitely a place worth visiting.

Take Your Kids to Enchanted Forest Water Safari

Entrance of Enchanted Forest Water Safari on a foggy day
Arsenalforthewin, CC BY-SA 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons

Enchanted Forest Water Safari is the attraction that makes Old Forge the best summer vacation destination.

It is the largest water park in the entire state of New York.

The water park has more than 50 rides and attractions, which include more than 30 water rides.

Enchanted Forest Water Safari is designed in such a manner that it focuses entirely on making the experience enjoyable for all guests.

In addition to the water park, the place comprises an amusement park, a barnyard, a circus, gaming arcades, shops, amusement rides, kiddie rides, go-carts, zip line, miniature golf, bumper boats, and more.

This place is a themed paradise that everyone should definitely visit once.

Immerse Yourself in Old Forge's Art and Culture at View Arts Center

This beautiful art center is one of the most famous tourist attractions and the heart of Old Forge.

View Arts Center is a multi-dimensional facility that offers insights into the hamlet's art and culture.

It hosts a variety of national art exhibitions and live performances.

The center hosts some of the most notable art shows in the entire area that recognize artists from all over the world.

As beautiful as this place is, it definitely deserves a lot more admiration and attention from visitors.

Meet the Llamas at Moose River Farm

Moose River Farm is one of the best recreational areas in Old Forge.

This farm provides visitors with an opportunity to have a unique experience by taking various tours and llama excursions.

You can also enjoy tracking, playing with llamas, and petting the birds, all while admiring gorgeous views of the Adirondack Mountains.

Go Back in Time at the Goodsell Museum

Exterior of Goodsell Museum
FollowerOfHank, CC BY-SA 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons

The Town of Webb Historical Association is responsible for operating the Goodsell Museum.

This place exhibits a number of historical exhibitions, most of which are local.

The exhibitions are spread over six rooms with an additional research library that boasts a unique collection of photographs, postcards, maps, books, and business and historical genealogy records.

This place is quite historic.

In addition to the museum, it also has a special ice house and a beautiful barn.

It is a perfect place for people looking for historical classics.

As is pretty much understandable from its name, Kurt Gardner Photography Gallery is a gallery that exhibits the work of local photographer Kurt Gardner.

Most of the pictures are of the captivating beauty of natural mountains and high peaks in the Old Forge area.

This gallery is located on the main street and allows visitors to browse through the collection of photographs on display.

You can also purchase the pictures that you like.

This gallery is quite famous as a beautiful picture spot during holidays, as it is heavily decorated.

Kick Back and Enjoy Locally Crafted Beer at Fulton Chain Craft Brewery

Fulton Chain Craft Brewery is one of the most famous and dedicated breweries in the hamlet of Old Forge.

This local brewery will definitely give you the best time with its cold-crafted brews.

Fulton Chain Craft Brewery is also a great place to visit if you are looking forward to tasting drinks made with local ingredients.

This brewery has more than 10 beers on the menu, which are delicious and worth trying.

It is the most chilled-out brewery in Old Forge.

Enjoy a Day of Family Fun at Calypso's Cove

Calypso's Cove is another great place to check out if you are traveling with family or a group.

This place is quiet, thrilling, and adventurous.

Calypso's Cove offers various adventurous activities like rock climbing, zip-lining, racing, gaming, and more to visitors.

This amusement center also allows you to participate in various gaming challenges, which are the best way to engage in some physical activities on vacation.

With so many facilities available at affordable prices, Calypso's Cove is definitely worth checking out.

Hike to the Top of Bald Mountain

Beautiful view of the Bald Mountain during autumn
Wildnerdpix / Shutterstock.com

If you are looking for some naturally beautiful spots in Old Forge, Bald Mountain surely won't disappoint you.

This beautiful mountain is perfect for people who are seeking some challenging and adventurous activities.

Breathtaking view of the sunrise from Bald Mountain
PureADK / Shutterstock.com

You can track up to the peak of the mountain, which is almost 2,350 feet above the ground.

At the summit, all your hard work will pay off, and you will be blessed with breathtaking views of the Fulton Chain of Lakes.

Scenic view from the Bald Mountain
James Aloysius Mahan V / Shutterstock.com

The trails are steep in some places, so make sure that you pack a good pair of shoes if you are planning to hike this area.

You can also take guided hiking tours to ensure your safety if you are not a professional.

Catch a Show at the Strand Theatre

Collection of film equipments in Strand theatre
North woodsman / Shutterstock.com

For all art lovers, the Strand Theatre is the perfect place to visit.

This property comprises four theaters that are always lively, with different artistic performances from varying genres.

Camera collection at Strand Theatre
North woodsman / Shutterstock.com

From fancy to classical performances, the Strand Theatre has it all.

The place has on-site snacks as well, which makes the experience of enjoying art performances very comfortable and pleasant.

Displays at Strand Theatre
North woodsman / Shutterstock.com

It also boasts modern amenities that make it perfect for enjoying present-day cinema in addition to art performances.

This theater is the perfect place to go with your family during your downtime, as it will easily lift your spirits.

Play a Round of Mini-Golf at Nutty Putty

Nutty Putty is an ideal place to spend some quality time with friends and family in Old Forge.

This mini-golf course is an attractive location due to its natural scenery and colorful outdoors.

It is surrounded by beautiful flowers, which makes it different from the usual ones.

The surrounding pine trees provide shade for players and keep them cool even in hot weather.

The golf course is tricky, and the holes are uniquely designed.

Some of the holes have moving features, which make the game much more challenging and exciting at the same time.

Treat Yourself to Freshly Baked Pizza at the Sky Bar at Tony Harpers

Also known as Tony Harper's Pizza and Clam Shack, this restaurant serves the best pizza in Old Forge.

The pizzas are not only delicious but also freshly prepared with their signature servings.

In addition to the pizzas, the restaurant is also famous for its collection of drinks, which include premium quality cocktails and beers.

The place is equipped with HD televisions and well-maintained furniture.

In addition to the food, the place also has fantastic live music arrangements that are mostly performances by local bands or individual artists.

Go Camping at Old Forge Camping Resort

Old Forge is one of the most famous places in New York when it comes to camping.

The hamlet is home to beautiful scenery, lush green vegetation, and well-maintained campsites.

Apart from the campsites, Old Forge also has big open grounds that allow visitors to bring their own camping gear and enjoy.

A property called Old Forge Camping Resort is dedicated entirely to camping.

This place is extremely popular among folks as it is known for its well-equipped campgrounds and multiple bear sightings.

You can also enjoy activities like fishing, cycling, swimming, ball games, and trekking at this resort.

Shop for Essentials and Souvenirs at the Old Forge Hardware

The Old Forge Hardware is the perfect store for shopping in the town.

This hardware store will fulfill all your requirements.

From rental equipment to gifting options, the store has it all.

The prices are reasonable, and the staff is very friendly.

A hidden gem in the hamlet, the Old Forge Hardware store is a must-visit place.

Go on an Excursion along the Adirondack Scenic Railroad

Adirondack Scenic Railroad
valiant.skies / Shutterstock.com

The Adirondack Scenic Railroad is the getaway ticket for all those who are looking forward to getting lost in the beautiful woodlands.

With the objective of preserving Old Forge's rail history of the town, this attraction offers a unique way of experiencing the beautiful gifts of nature.

This place in Old Forge attracts a large number of visitors, as it is unbelievably beautiful and photogenic.

A ride along this railroad is an experience that will transform your hours into a lifetime of memories.

The train allows you to board the bogies for the best views of the forests.

In addition to the breathtaking scenery, the rail tours allow visitors to participate in entertaining activities like recreating train robberies, murders, and other mysteries.

The trains also offer special eco-tours.

Visiting the Adirondack Scenic Railroad is a perfect way to spend time in a tranquil and peaceful environment.

Enjoy Your Choice of Outdoor Activities at Rivett's Marine

Rivett's Marine is a fully operational marine that will meet all your requirements.

The company has the best quality boating gear to ensure that customers have the best boating experience.

In addition to boating gear, the company also offers equipment for hiking, kayaking, skiing, and other adventure activities at affordable prices.

Situated on one of the Fulton Chain of Lakes, this beautiful place won't fail to cater to all your needs at one stop.

Spend the Day at Old Forge Public Beach

Old Forge Public Beach on a cloudy day
Guitarbogus, CC BY-SA 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons

Visiting Old Forge Public Beach is a great way to spend an outdoor summer day.

This beach is open year-round and welcomes visitors from 9 am to 6 pm.

It has plenty of parking, a beach entrance, and an adjoining playground complete with a pirate ship.

There's an entrance right next to the public tennis courts near Lakeview Avenue and Lakefront Park.

It comes complete with changing facility as well as secure fencing, ensuring the sandy area around remains free of the general traffic.

Kids can explore safely on the playground swings and wading pools in addition to other fun activities all while admiring the magnificent surrounding scenery.

There are rafts and diving boards available here as well.

No admission fee at Old Forge Public Beach means everyone (including you) can enjoy a beautiful day in paradise for less.

Go Whitewater Rafting with Adirondack River Outfitters

Adirondack River Outfitters (ARO) offers a wide range of rafting trips that offer all types of adventurers some of the best thrills in New York.

Led by an amazing team of local rafting experts with an impressive understanding of the Hudson River Gorge and the Adirondacks, ARO strives to provide our customers with only top-rated fun thrills.

ARO has been offering world-class experiences and professional whitewater paddling instruction since 1980.

The Hudson River offers rafting enthusiasts 15 miles of thrills.

Hiring a guide with Adirondack River Outfitters will leave you assured of skill, safety, and even some delicious food on your trip.

Pedal Your Way through Spectacular Views of the Adirondack Mountains

Gorgeous view of a road in Adirondack Mountains
Jim Schwabel / Shutterstock.com

Pedal your way through a breathtaking rail cycle path with Adirondack Rail Bike Adventures' Timber Ridge adventure.

The 7-mile round trip takes you through the natural beauty and spectacular views of the Adirondack Mountains.

You and three more people will pedal along with a set of rails north of Thendara Station under the forest canopy on your way to Carter Station for another fantastic journey through the mountains.

With little chance of running into traffic, your only company will be deer, birds, squirrels, and other wild animals.

Timber Ridge lets you enjoy a 1½-hour excursion on the scenic route.

There are four seats on each bike, so tickets can be shared.

If an individual would like to take the trip alone, then they can pay for a private tour.

Camp at Nicks Lake Campground

Located smack amidst the Black River Wild Forest, Nicks Lake Campground is a lovely location for camping.

This campground features 112 campsites, a vast lake for fishing and canoeing, and a picnic area.

Lifeguards are also on staff if you wish to swim in this pristine lake.

There are over 5 miles of hiking in scenic terrain for those who love great weather or stellar sunrises, or sunsets.

When the lights come on bright in the evening, you can choose to frolic around lakes looking for lunker bass and brown trout.

Or you can also spend time at an ADA playground, basketball court, horseshoes, volleyball game, and over 3 miles of paved biking and jogging paths.

Whitetail deer are everywhere here in spring and summer.

Enjoy Wine Tasting at Montezuma Winery - Old Forge

Raise a glass of wine at Montezuma Winery - Old Forge, where you can go wine tasting at its charming tasting room.

The winery offers award-winning specially crafted wines, which are labeled with the artworks of  Sandra Hildreth of Saranac Lake.

These artworks titled the Moose River Series showcase the mesmerizing beauty of the Old Forge location and the gorgeous Adirondacks.

You can enjoy its best wines; from dry to sweet, including Blueberry, Rhubarb, Riesling, and its most popular flavor, Cranberry Bog.

Montezuma Winery - Old Forge was established by George and Virginia Martin in 2001.

You can find it off Highway 28.

Grab a Hearty Meal at Walt’s Diner

Your trip to Old Forge may not be complete without having comfort food from Walt's Diner, which has been an Adirondack tradition for decades.

It's popular for serving homemade omelets, pancakes, sandwiches, soups, chilis, fish fries, and desserts for breakfast and lunch, as well as for dinner on Friday nights.

The award-winning diner is like your home away from home for its comfort food that would remind you of your gram of her homecooked meals.

It features an open-air kitchen, which lets customers see how their food is prepared.

Walt’s Diner also offers catering for large group parties.

Hang Out at The Back Door Bar

After a long day, it's nice to grab some ice-cold beers or some delicious cocktails with your friends and family at The Back Door Bar on Highway 28.

It's a popular spot for those who want to relax with great company and delicious drinks with upstate flavors to enjoy.

The bar also has TV screens showing your favorite sports as you enjoy its warm and friendly atmosphere while having a beer or a tasty cocktail.

There's also a diner, which offers American comfort food, including its mouthwatering wings that you can try with your drinks!

The Back Door Bar also hosts live music on weekends.

Read a Book at the Old Forge Library

Relax in the comfortable reading nooks and enjoy a great read at the Old Forge Library on Crosby Boulevard.

Founded in 1977, the library is nestled in a historic mansion, which keeps a great selection of books, audiobooks, movies, music, e-books, TV shows, comics, and many more.

These are available in different genres with specifics for kids, teens, and adults.

The library also hosts many programs and events for the community, including art exhibits, reading clubs, and Author's Day, among others.

Drop by the Old Forge Library and choose a new book to read!

Get Your Coffee Fix at Ozzie’s Coffee Bar

At the start of your day in Old Forge, have a cup of your favorite coffee at Ozzie's Coffee Bar.

Here, you can have the best coffee and espresso in town paired with its delicious breakfast sandwiches, cupcakes, scones, cookies, croissants, bagels, and many more.

And of course, there are not complete without a warm atmosphere and smiles that you'll get as soon as you step in!

Enjoy a latte, mocha, or any cup you like the most, and savor the moment!

Ozzie's Coffee Bar is located off Highway 28.

Final Thoughts

Adventure is worth its weight in gold, and there's no better place to meet it than in the Adirondack Mountains.

Old Forge offers many attractions for visitors who wish to explore the region.

On your next visit to Old Forge, consider these top things to do as you make the most of your time while also planning more time to explore and leisurely enjoy every fun activity that this town has to offer!

Spotted a mistake, have some feedback, or just want to chat with our editorial team? Click here to get in touch.
Find out more about Travel Lens and read our editorial guidelines here.