16 Best Things to Do in Rhinebeck, NY

Rhinebeck, NY
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The historic village of Rhinebeck has roots dating back to the 17th century when Europeans first settled in the area.

Through the centuries, it has seen the region and the country change and evolves to what it is today.

As such, the community aims to preserve its significant part in history while also taking care of its natural gifts.

It’s the perfect place for a quaint holiday.

Here are some of the best things to do in Rhinebeck, NY:

Watch an Airshow at the Old Rhinebeck Aerodrome

View of Old Rhinebeck Aerodrome
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An interesting place you can check out in town is the Old Rhinebeck Aerodrome.

This living museum is dedicated to sharing the wonders and history of amazing aircraft and preserving them.

It features a collection of great aircraft, including 79 vintage ones that you can see at this attraction.

View of Old Rhinebeck Aerodrome
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Apart from those, it also displays 33 automobiles that you can learn more about in the museum.

The Aerodome also conducts airshows that you and your companions can watch in awe.

Head over to the old Rhinebeck Aerodrome for a wonderful time with your buddies.

View of Old Rhinebeck Aerodrome
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Munch on Delicious Dishes at Samuel’s Sweet Shop

One of the most recognized food places in this part of the Hudson Valley is Samuel’s.

This establishment has called Rhinebeck its home since 1994.

It has since become a town staple.

When you check this place out, make sure to try some of their delicious coffee drinks and tasty treats.

Apart from the delicious dishes, you can also check out some of the events this establishments host.

They even hold food contests that have been featured on TV.

If you’re looking for a Rhinebeck restaurant to dine in, head over to Samuel’s.

If you’re itching to discover amazing works of art, then head over to the Gallery at Rhinebeck.

This place holds a collection made up of works created in a myriad of art styles.

The gallery aims to become an art destination many would visit in the Hudson Valley Area, and it’s on its way to doing just that.

With 65 featured artists displaying their work at The Gallery, you can find here an assortment of gorgeous art styles filled with unique and individual beauty.

Get to know many local artists by browsing the amazing art collection at The Gallery at Rhinebeck.

Explore the Wilderstein Historic Site

Outside View of Wilderstein Historic Site
Rolf Müller (User:Rolfmueller), CC BY-SA 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons

As you explore the beautiful Rhinebeck area, don’t forget to visit the Wilderstein Historic Site.

Today, this structure stands as a house museum.

However, back in the day, it served as the home of Margaret Suckley, the cousin and confidante of former U.S. President Franklin D. Roosevelt.

Apart from this significant historical fact, many also consider it as one of the most stunning and vital examples of Victorian architectural design in the Hudson Valley.

If you want to witness its beauty and learn about its past, then make sure to take part in a guided tour of this fantastic house museum.

It’s one of the best historical places to visit in this region.

Learn How to Make Clay Art at the Hudson Valley Pottery

Located at the heart of historic Rhinebeck, you will find Hudson Valley Pottery.

This community art studio is a place where you can have the means to create stunning pottery art while you’re in town.

The studio comes fully equipped with all the tools and materials that you may need to create your masterpiece.

Apart from providing you with the means to turn clay into art, this place also conducts several classes and workshops that people of all pottery skill levels can learn from and enjoy.

If you’re looking for something unique to do in Rhinebeck, try making your own clay masterpiece at Hudson Valley Pottery.

Relax and Learn at Northern Dutchess Botanical Gardens

While vacations are usually filled with thrill and excitement, don’t forget to find some time to relax.

Relaxation doesn’t mean you have to go somewhere dull.

An excellent place where you can find some peace while being interesting at the same time is the Northern Dutchess Botanical Gardens.

This terrific place in Rhinebeck serves as a working greenhouse.

It offers its visitors a wide selection of plants for purchase, all grown in this garden.

Additionally, it features a wide assortment of plant species, all displayed in alphabetical order.

They even have short descriptions, so you can learn more about them as you browse and stroll through this garden.

Relax, learn, and have an amazing time at this botanical garden.

Learn About Personal Growth at Omega Institute

Omega Book Store at Omega Institute
Ken Wieland from Philadelphia, USA, CC BY-SA 2.0, via Wikimedia Commons

A popular place many visitors of Rhinebeck visit is the Omega Institute.

Created back in 1977, this place works to promote and provide the public with wellness education, health, and personal growth.

View of Omega Institute
Ken Wieland from Philadelphia, USA, CC BY-SA 2.0, via Wikimedia Commons

Here, you can take part in the institute’s many educational experiences, which are meant to inspire people in their personal development.

Other than that, however, this place features excellent recreational amenities that guests can use.

It has a garden you can stroll through and the Long Pond, where you can partake in many water-based outdoor activities.

View of Omega Institute  Rhinebeck
Ken Wieland from Philadelphia, USA, CC BY-SA 2.0, via Wikimedia Commons

Additionally, there are numerous trails nearby that you can check.

It also has several sports amenities for you to use.

Don’t hesitate to check this place out when you’re in town.

Dinning Hall at Omega Institute
Ken Wieland from Philadelphia, USA, CC BY-SA 2.0, via Wikimedia Commons

Immerse Yourself in Nature at Ferncliff Forest Preserve

For lovers of nature, you can head over to the Ferncliff Forest Preserve.

This nature preserve serves as the home to stunning flora and fauna that you can discover during your visit.

It also features a gorgeous pond surrounded by multiple nature trails that span more than a dozen miles.

The preserve itself is over 200 acres big, so you have a lot of room to explore and many things to discover when you visit this place.

Interestingly, years ago, this nature preserve also had multiple observation towers, each having a different purpose.

Now, only one of those towers remains, and it has been preserved to represent its legacy so that future visitors and generations can appreciate it.

The Ferncliff Forest Preserve is one of the most magical sites in Rhinebeck, so make sure to add this to your holiday itinerary.

Catch Classic and Foreign Language Movies at Upstate Films

Sometimes, a movie night is needed, even while on holiday.

When you visit Rhinebeck, do check out and support the local Upstate Films.

This movie theater screens a wide range of films, and anyone can find something they can enjoy from the ones they show.

For a fun time, you and your companions can watch the latest Hollywood Blockbusters at this cinema.

However, if you’re in the mood for something unique, check their schedule out.

This place often screens incredible foreign films and several classic movies.

For a fun movie night with your traveling companions, check out Upstate Films.

Participate in Events at the Dutchess County Fairgrounds

View of Dutchess County Fairgrounds
Anthony22 at English Wikipedia, CC BY-SA 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons

When coming to Rhinebeck, a must-do by every tourist is to check out the events happening at the Dutchess County Fairgrounds.

This venue has been welcoming people from all walks of life for around 160 years.

However, it has maintained its exhibiting and lively atmosphere until today.

The fairgrounds serve as the venue for a wide variety of fairs and events all year-round.

View of Dutchess County Fairgrounds
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The most popular of which is the Dutchess County Fair.

Other than this, the place has many concession stands and food stalls that you can buy fair food from.

The bustle of this place never dies down, and as visitors, it’s a must to check out.

Stroll Through Market St. and Montgomery St.

Nothing beats getting to know a place you visit other than by exploring the place itself.

When you come to Rhinebeck, make sure to walk around the gorgeous downtown area.

More specifically, you should consider checking out the sights, sounds, and shopping opportunities at Market St. and Montgomery St.

Here, you can find a lot of different establishments, ranging from quirky shops to amazing cafes.

Find a souvenir to remember your trip by or try out the amazing dishes at one of the establishments located at the heart of Rhinebeck.

Coming here is a great way to familiarize yourself with this beautiful historic New York town.

Visit the Museum of Rhinebeck History

There is more to Rhinebeck than just being a charming small village.

With Europeans settling in the area since way back in the 17th century, this town has had a long history.

To get to know more about its background, check out the Museum of Rhinebeck History.

You can find this fantastic museum at a site called the Quitman House.

The museum features many artifacts, memorabilia, and collectibles that are significant to the historic community of this village.

Apart from that, you can also find documents, articles, and photographs as part of its collection.

Learn more about how people lived in Rhinebeck throughout the centuries by visiting this fantastic museum.

Other Things to Do Nearby

Stop by the Vanderbilt Mansion

View of Vanderbilt Mansion
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You can find the oldest Hudson River estates just 15 minutes away from Rhinebeck village.

Vanderbilt Mansion is located in Hyde Park, New York, and it was built between the years 1896 to 1899.

This attraction used to serve as the residence of the Vanderbilt family, one of the wealthiest and most prominent families around.

View of Vanderbilt Mansion
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Today, this estate houses a museum featuring artifacts, items, and memorabilia connected to the house and the Vanderbilt family.

History buffs can also check out the incredible archive housed in this estate.

Additionally, you can also find a planetarium and light show here, which everyone will enjoy.

Step back in time, and get a glimpse of how the rich and powerful lived at the turn of the century by visiting this site.

View of Vanderbilt Mansion
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Check Out the Staatsburgh State Historic Site

View of Staatsburgh State Historic Site
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Another historical estate that you can visit near Rhinebeck village is the Staatsburgh State Historic Site.

This place features a Beaux-Arts mansion that used to serve as the summer residence of Odgen Mills, a former U.S. Secretary of Treasury, and his family.

Today, this elegant and stunning home has been restored to how it appeared during the turn of the century.

Inside Staatsburgh State Historic Site
Rolf Müller (User:Rolfmueller), CC BY-SA 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons

It still features the furniture and house items used by the family at the time.

To learn more about this place, you can tour the mansion and learn more about the place’s past.

Apart from its historical significance, this palace also serves as the venue for special events throughout the year.

If you want to visit, know that this site is only 12 minutes to the south of Rhinebeck.

Inside Staatsburgh State Historic Site
Rolf Müller (User:Rolfmueller), CC BY-SA 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons

Learn About a Former U.S. President at Home of Franklin D. Roosevelt National Historic Site

Outside View of Franklin D. Roosevelt National Historic Site
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The Hudson River Area is undoubtedly a historical region that played a huge role in U.S. history.

As such, it is home to many historical places, and one of them is the former residence of Franklin D. Roosevelt.

Given that it used to be the home of the country’s former commander-in-chief coming here is worth all the time and effort.

Outside View of Franklin D. Roosevelt National Historic Site
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Here, you can find artifacts and memorabilia related to the life of the former president.

It also houses his impressive library containing an extensive collection of books and documents.

Apart from home, the estate also has a pleasant garden that you can explore.

If you want to learn more about FDR’s life, go on a guided tour of his former home along the Hudson.

What’s more, is that the place is just 16 minutes away from Rhinebeck.

Go Camping at Mills Norrie State Park

View of Mills Norrie State Park
Juliancolton, CC BY-SA 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons

If you travel around 12 minutes south of Rhinebeck, you can reach the Mills Norrie State Park.

It’s a place that you’ll love if you like being surrounded by the beauty of nature.

At this state park, you have access to many outdoor amenities that you can use to have a fun and exciting time with your companions.

Here, you will find several walking trails that will let you appreciate the scenery in this part of New York.

You can also find many opportunities for outdoor recreational activities here.

It’s also the perfect place to go camping while staying near the Hudson River.

Don’t hesitate to check this place out while visiting the region.

Final Thoughts

Rhinebeck is a village with a charm that matches its long history.

Surrounded by incredible nature and exciting background, you can experience the small-town wonders this place offers by making it your next holiday destination.