Maybe you’re a local looking for something new to do in the area, maybe you’re planning a visit for the first time to New York, but Auburn most definitely is a place you need to consider. Steeped in history, Auburn has been home to figures such as Harriet Tubman and William Henry Seward and has preserved their respective homes for a glimpse into the past. Plus, located right in the Finger Lakes, there are countless things to do outside not to mention so many nearby accommodations to stay in during your adventures including Airbnb vacation rentals and even cabins with hot tubs! Walk the nature trails, spend time at Owasco Lake on the beach or in the water, or visit the vineyards and strawberry fields! With so much to choose from, you’ll hardly run out of things to do in Auburn, New York!
1. Pay respects to Harriet Tubman at Fort Hill Cemetery
Harriet Tubman, as many would already probably know, was an African-American abolitionist and a political activist who was enslaved, escaped, and then helped others gain their freedom via the Underground Railroad or the secret routes that help enslaved African-Americans in the south escape to the free states and Canada. Harriet also played a huge role during the Civil War and the Movement for Women’s Suffrage.
After a life-long fight for social justice, Harriet Tubman succumbed to pneumonia on March 10, 1913, at 93 years of age, and was finally laid to rest here at Fort Hill Cemetery. Today, lots of people visit the gravesite to pay their respects and commemorate her life and work.
Harriet Tubman Grave at Fort Hill Cemetery
Address: 19 Fort St, Auburn, NY 13021, United States
Opening hours: 9am - 1pm (daily)
2. Taste local wine at CJS Vineyards & Aurelius Winery
Harvest is complete in the Fosterville Vineyard. Still have Cabernet Franc hanging in the Lake Vineyard. We should finish harvest in about a week, weather is still great!Posted by CJS Vineyards on Thursday, 19 October 2017
Stop by this family-owned winery for authentically homemade wine from the on-site vineyards. CJS specializes in grapes which create the perfect blends for Riesling, Pinot Noir, and Cabernet Blanc, which you can sample in their elegant wine tasting room. Or, schedule a tour on their website for the full wine-making experience and learn about wine from some of the winemakers themselves!
CJS Vineyards & Aurelius Winery
Address: 6900 Fosterville Road, Auburn, NY 13021-8564
Website: CJS Vineyards & Aurelius Winery
Opening hours: Sat - Sun: 12pm - 5pm (closed from Mon - Fri)
3. Explore the historic home of William Henry Seward
Join us for our last First Friday of 2018! We will be open from 5 pm to 8 pm.Posted by Seward House Museum on Friday, 2 November 2018
The Seward House Museum is a must-visit for anyone into history, particularly the history during the Civil War era. A pre-booked tour is the only way to see the museum, so make sure you book online before you go! When you arrive, you will be shown around the house, viewing seven rooms which accurately depict Victorian-era living habits. Upon completion of the tour, you’ll be given access to explore without your guide the 1816 kitchen and space they utilized in the Underground Railroad!
Seward House Museum
Address: 33 South St. Auburn, NY 13021
Website: Seward House Museum
Opening hours: Tue - Sat: 10am - 5pm; Sun (June - August): 1pm - 5pm (closed on Mon)
Price: 12 USD
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4. Admire art exhibits at Schweinfurth Art Center
Spend an afternoon marveling at the multiple exhibits on display at the Schweinfurth Art Center. From local to national to international, the museum highlights all kinds of beautiful works of art in all forms of mediums for you to wander through and interpret. And if you’re looking for something more hands-on, the art center is always providing classes on poetry, music, and even dance for you to tap into your inner Picasso!
Schweinfurth Art Center
Address: 3304, 205 Genesee St, Auburn, NY 13021
Website: Schweinfurth Art Center
Opening hours: Sun: 1pm - 5pm; Tue - Sat: 10am - 5pm (closed on Mon)
Price: 10 USD onwards
5. Go fishing with Markin' Fish Charter
Fishing charters on Skaneateles and Owasco Lakes! Book your charter today! www.markinfishcharter.comPosted by Markin' Fish Charter on Monday, 15 April 2019
If you’re thinking about what to do in Auburn, NY, here’s one that yu and your family can enjoy. Spend a day on one of their large fishing boats, waiting for the fish to bite while catching up on your favorite book! Markin’ Fish Charter takes off from two different docks, so you have the choice of fishing on Owasco Lake or Skaneateles Lake. Pick either the morning or the afternoon for your charter, and bring your camera, for the views over the shimmering water are stunning, especially during the sunrises!
Markin' Fish Charter
Address: 8 Richardson Ave, Auburn, NY 13021
Website: Markin' Fish Charter
Price: 250 USD onwards
6. Buy interesting items at Winton Antiques
If you plan a day of shopping, be sure to include Winton Antiques on your itinerary of places to stop. Browse the shelves for retro looking mugs, or pick through the tray of vintage rings for a flair completely unique. Whether you are an avid antique collector or are just browsing for something different for the kitchen, Winton is sure to delight you!
Address: 217 Grant Avenue B8, Auburn, NY 13021
Website: Winton Antiques
Opening hours: Tue - Sat: 10am - 4pm (closed on Sun & Mon)
7. Pick strawberries at Strawberry Fields Hydroponic Farm
Nothing says “fresh” quite like a strawberry just picked off the vine. Strawberry Fields Hydroponic Farm gives you the opportunity to pick your own berries to take home to bake, jam, and preserve, as well as the peaceful experience of wandering their fields. Take a deep breath as the sweet aromas wash over you! And don’t forget to stop by their gift store to stock up on all things strawberry! Check their calendar before you go to make sure the strawberries are ripe for the picking when you arrive!
Strawberry Fields Hydroponic Farm
Address: 4240 E Genesee St, Auburn, NY 13021
Website: Strawberry Fields Hydroponic Farm
Opening hours: Sat - Sun: 10am - 4pm; Mon - Fri: 10am - 5pm
8. Relax and enjoy a film at the Auburn Movieplex 10
With their newly renovated theatre and cozy reclining chairs, Auburn Movieplex is perfect for any event, from date night to escaping the summer heat! Get your large buttered popcorn and immerse yourself in the entertainment of their large screens, letting the surround sound carry you into a totally different universe! With their convenient 24-hour movie hotline, it’s easy to check their showtimes at any time so you’ll never miss your movie!
Auburn Movieplex 10
Address: 360 Grant Avenue Rd, Auburn, NY 13021
Website: Auburn Movieplex 10
Opening hours: 12:30am - 10pm (daily)
Price: 6.75 - 8.75 USD
9. Entertain the kids outside at Casey Park
As one of the top Auburn, NY, attractions, Casey Park provides the perfect place to take the kids for a day outdoors! Take the baby for a soothing walk in the stroller through one of the nature paths. Let the kids run around the playground, avoiding the hot lava beneath them! Pack the skateboards to test your tricks at the skate park.
And in the summer, bring your swimsuits to splash around in the pool, or, in the winter, your ice skates to glide across the rink. No matter what the season, Casey Park is constantly there for your entertainment!
Address: 150 N Division St, Auburn, NY 13021
Website: Casey Park
Opening hours: Mon - Fri: 7am - 3:30pm (closed on Sat & Sun)
10. Get lost in the woods at the Charlie Major Nature Trail
This trail follows the track of an old railroad which once serviced many of the mills along the Skaneateles Creek. The trail runs from Mill Road, just north of Old Seneca Turnpike, for 1.2 miles (1.9 km) to Crow Hill Road in Mottville. At various points, the trail crosses the creek via wooden bridges, plus you will encounter the remains of many old mill buildings, railroads, and dams. Be sure to pack a lunch, for there is a beautiful picnic spot where you can rest before finishing your trek!
Charlie Major Nature Trail
Address: Charlie Major Nature Trail, Skaneateles, NY 13152
Website: Charlie Major Nature Trail
Opening hours: 7am - 7pm (daily)
11. Step back in time at the Harriet Tubman Home
The Harriet Tubman Home allows its guests to wander the halls of her home and learn about her and her values. This homestead offers guests the opportunity to explore the four buildings on the 26 acres (10.5 hectares) of land, two of the buildings having been used by Tubman herself. Learn about her mission work and the people she cared for in this home, as well as the impact her life had on the city of Auburn. This truly is a must-see for anyone seeking a deeper understanding of the history and culture of Auburn!
Harriet Tubman Home
Address: 180 South St, Auburn, NY 13021
Website: Harriet Tubman Home
Opening hours: Tue - Sat: 10am - 3pm (closed on Sun & Mon)
Price: 5 USD
12. Take a stroll in the historic town center
Downtown Auburn, with the enchanting Lake Owasco running right through its center, is a great pick for a peaceful evening out on the town. Check out one of their many craft breweries for dinner; browse through the retail and boutique shops for some local art and souvenirs; walk the streets and snap photos of the historic landmarks scattered about. Plus, with its bustling art district, there is always a festival involving music, art, or performances of some kind going on! So if you’re curious as to why Auburn has been titled one of the best small cities in the U.S., stroll downtown to find out!
Historic Town Center
Address: 25 South Street, Auburn, NY 13021
Website: Historic Town Center
13. Play golf at Highland Park Golf Club
Collect your golf clubs and get ready to stay out all day, for the beauty of Highland Park Golf Club won’t make you want to go home anytime soon! Spend your morning carting around the green, enjoying the sunshine and the company of good friends while you golf one of New York’s more challenging courses. Then, come back to the club and enjoy a luxurious meal at the 19th Hole Restaurant to wrap up the picture-perfect day!
Highland Park Golf Club
Address: 3068 Franklin Street Rd, Auburn, NY 13021
Website: Highland Park Golf Club
Opening hours: 7am - 5pm (daily)
Price: 34 - 44 USD
14. Get a carnival experience at Playland Amusements
This carnival definitely provides a bit of old-time feel with its games and glittering rides! Playland prides itself on keeping their grounds clean and well-maintained, providing a fun-filled experience for each of their guests. The rides run on a ticket price, so purchase your tickets at the door and spend the evening running around the park, going from ride to ride! Be sure to check the website for nights with live performances, as well as their highly-anticipated Halloween nights in October!
Address: 138 Garrow Street Ext, Auburn, NY 13021
Website: Playland Amusements
15. Dine in casual comfort at Sunset Restaurant
This family-owned restaurant prides itself on providing their guests with “fine dining, in a casual relaxed atmosphere.” They offer tasty, American-style dishes for lunch and dinner, as well as your classic New York Strip Streak (19.50 USD) which is a must when visiting NY! If you’re stopping in for just a light snack and a drink, check out their tavern menu which provides simple dishes at low prices. The Sunset never fails to please their guests with their home-cooked meals, so there’s no wrong choice off this menu!
Address: 93 N Division St, Auburn, NY 13021
Website: Sunset Restaurant
Opening hours: Tue - Thu: 11:30am - 2pm, 5pm - 9pm; Fri: 11:30am - 2pm, 4:30pm - 10pm; Sat: 11:30am - 2pm, 5pm - 10pm; Sun: 1pm - 8pm (closed on Mon)
16. Shop at Fingerlakes Mall
Rainy day outside and need to get out of the house for a little while? Fingerlakes Mall is just what you’re looking for! With little local boutiques, plus some bigger name brands, you’re sure to find it easy to spend a few hours browsing the shelves for a little gift to treat yourself! Also in the mall is a movie theater, so when you’ve finished shopping, you can relax and enjoy a film.
Address: 1579 Clark Street Rd, Auburn, NY 13022
Website: Fingerlakes Mall
Opening hours: Mon - Sat: 10am - 9pm; Sun: 10am - 6pm
17. Prepare for a picnic at the Emerson Park
Located on the north shore of Owasco Lake, the lush Emerson Park provides all the entertainment necessary for a day outdoors. Its sprawling green lawns offer countless patches for picnics, fields for disc golf and frisbee, swimming and tanning areas on the beach, plus kayak, canoe, and paddle boat rentals for exploring the lake! So whether you’re hoping to relax or adventure, Emerson has possibilities for all!
Address: 6877 E Lake Rd, Auburn, NY 13021
Website: Emerson Park
Opening hours: 11am - 7pm (daily)
18. Get a little scientific at the Ward O'Hara Agricultural/Country Living Museum
Named in honor of author and avid farm equipment collector Ward W. O'Hara, the Country Museum first began when Ward and his wife had no where to house all the farming equipment they had in their possession. Today the museum is a treasure house of what life on a farm was like in the mid-1900s. From hand tools, to hay harvesting machines, to blacksmith works, and even common child’s toys, this fascinating display of antiques is the perfect way to brush up on your agricultural history!
Ward O'Hara Agricultural
Address: 6880 NY-38A, Auburn, NY 13021
Website: Ward O'Hara Agricultural
Opening hours: 10am - 4pm (daily)
19. Gain some local knowledge at Cayuga Museum
Cayuga Museum is a history museum on the local Auburn area which makes it an interesting stop for both locals and visitors! It is separated into three buildings – the mansion that belonged to the Case family, the Case Research Laboratory, and the Carriage House Theater. Each building has sections devoted to storytelling and history, including the permanent exhibit in the Theater where you can learn all about the creation of talking movies! Guests have encouraged others that this part, in particular, is a must if your itinerary includes the Cayuga Museum!
Address: 203 Genesee St, Auburn, NY 13021
Website: Cayuga Museum
Opening hours: Tue - Sun: 12pm - 5pm (closed on Mon)
Price: 6 USD
20. Admire the Romanesque architecture of Willard Memorial Chapel
Built in 1892 - 1894, this chapel was built for the students of the Auburn Theological Seminary which taught and trained pastors and missionaries. Now, although no longer used for these purposes, the chapel still resides on the old campus and is the only building in the world to have its glasswork and interior design completed by Louis C. Tiffany and Tiffany Glass and Decoration Co. This reason alone makes it well worth a visit because of the piece of art the building is in and of itself. With its nine Mooresque-style chandeliers, mosaic flooring, and fourteen stained glass windows, to name a few of the features, you’ll want to spend hours just taking in its beauty.
Willard Memorial Chapel
Address: 17 Nelson St, Auburn, NY 13021
Website: Willard Memorial Chapel
Opening hours: Tue - Fri: 10am - 5pm (closed on Sat - Mon)
21. Spend an elegant evening at the Auburn Public Theater
Auburn Public Theater is constantly thrilling their guests with musicals, plays, comedians, and music performances from local to international artists to share the enchanting world of the arts with everyone. Located in the heart of Downtown Auburn, this large theater is centrally located to more than 10 different restaurants so you can make a whole evening out of it with dinner and a top-quality performance! The theater even provides its guests with their own bar onsite, open most performance nights, so you can sip a cocktail before the show or during intermission!
Auburn Public Theater
Address: 8 Exchange St, Auburn, NY 13021
Website: Auburn Public Theater
22. Take a sunny afternoon dip in the Owasco Lake
Owasco Lake is the 6th largest of the Finger Lakes and is located only 2.5 miles (4 km) south of Auburn. Due to the shallow waters, this lake retains a warm, relaxing temperature throughout the summer, making it perfect for wading and swimming. There are three beaches with public access: Emerson Park, Owasco Lake Inlet, and the boat launch at Owasco Flats, so you can choose your beach based on the surrounding area if you plan to make a day out of seeing this part of Auburn!
Address: Cayuga County, New York, United States
Website: Owasco Lake
23. Enjoy live music at Moondog's Lounge
Moondog is putting out some serious moods with its intimate stage area, complete with fireplace and fully stocked bar. Sit back and listen to the music from band performances to open mic night covers. And enjoy happy hour every day from 5pm - 7pm, when you can order cocktails for 5 USD and beer for 3 USD. Plus, with its large selection of fine New York wines, there are countless options for everyone!
Address: 24 State St, Auburn, NY 13021
Website: Moondog's Lounge
Opening hours: Wed - Sat: 5pm - 12pm (closed on Sun - Tue)
24. Feel the beats at the Falcon Lanes Tidal Wave Bar
30 min and counting til the best show around!!!!!!! STR8ON!!!!!Posted by Falcon Lanes Tidal Wave Bar on Saturday, 23 December 2017
A bit of an adult playground, Falcon Lanes Tidal Wave Bar offers 16 lanes for bowling, a fully stocked bar with 50 different liquors, and a sprawling dance floor. Test out your bowling skills, and then head over to the bar for a little cocktail refresher! With a party going on almost every weekend, Falcon won’t disappoint with its trendy vibes!
Address: 75 Pulaski St, Auburn, NY 13021
Website: Falcons Lanes
Opening hours: Thu: 6pm - 12am; Fri: 5pm - 12am; Sat: 5pm - 9:30pm, 10pm - 12am (closed from Sun - Wed)
25. Drift into peace at Hoopes Park
Hoopes Park has become a popular destination in Auburn for its natural beauty and the recent completion of a project to replant the flowerbeds, enhancing its charm and turning it completely picturesque. The park is regularly used for antique and art shows, as well as concerts, so you might stumble across an unexpected party! However, even when it’s quiet, it is the most relaxing place to hang up your hammock, open your book, and listen to the water fountain trickle away on the pond.
Address: 100 S Herman Ave, Auburn, NY 13021
Website: Hoopes Park
Opening hours: 7am - 9pm (daily)
Small city with big adventures
Auburn may be classified as a small city, but that in no way means that there’s a shortage of things to do! Whether you are into history and agriculture, sports and outdoors, or entertainment and shopping, Auburn always has something going on which will keep you amused no matter what time, day, or season it is!
Frequently asked questions the top things to do in Auburn, New York
1. What are the best attractions to visit in Auburn?
When it comes to tourist attractions, Auburn, NY, certainly has lots of it including the Harriet Tubman Grave at Fort Hill Cemetery, Playland Amusements, Owasco Lake, and a whole lot more.
2. What are the best activities in Auburn?
Auburn, NY is a city that is at the northern end of Owasco Lake, which is one of the famed Finger Lakes in New York State. This pretty much means that you’ll have plenty of outdoor activities to enjoy here including swimming at Owasco Lake, fishing with Markin’ Fish Charter, and picking strawberries at Strawberry Fields Hydroponic Farm.
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