The Saratoga Traveler: Day Trips, Weekend Getaways & Hidden Gems

December 2011 Archives

December is a big month in and around Saratoga.  Lots of great family oriented activities close to home.  In the next couple weeks I'll be highlighting some of those activities not just here in Saratoga Springs but also in nearby towns along with day trips in the Northeast.


If you're like me you spend the cold, snowy days of winter planning your Spring vacations and looking forward to camping season.  During the month of December I'll highlight some of the smaller towns and villages that are within a days drive of Saratoga. Places that will make awesome spots for Spring vacations.   I'll post about special events happening, great deals and things not to be missed.

So let's get started.....


1.  This week is restaurant week in Saratoga.  For those of you not familiar with Restaurant Week it's the week to try some of Saratoga's best restaurants at a set price with a set menu.  Lunch is a 2 course menu (for $9.09) and dinner is a 3 course menu (for $18.19) at these prices it's an unbeatable deal.  For  the complete list of restaurants that are participating check out  Be sure to jot down the phone number of the restaurant you're interested in and give them a call to see if reservations are required.  Restaurant week starts on December 2nd and runs until December 8th.


2.  Need some holiday decorating inspiration?  The Saratoga Festival of Trees is at the City Center now until December 4th.  Saturday is Family Day with breakfast with Santa at 8:00, 9:30 and 11:00 (reservations required) and at 12:30 your child can have a sundae with Santa (reservations required) and at 8:00 am - 2:00 pm there will be Santa's work shop where kids can participate in crafts for an additional $1 fee.

There is an admission fee of $8 for adults, $5 for seniors and $3 for children over 10.  Children 10 and under will be free.

Come and get inspired or purchase your wreath, tree  or centerpiece.


3.  You missed the Victorian Streetwalk in Saratoga?  Don't fret just hop in the car and take a trip to Sharon Springs for their Victorian Christmas on December 3rd.  So many fun activities including a Victorian themed Farmer's Market, Scavenger Hunt, Christmas Karaoke and free crafting where you can learn to make Victorian style greeting card and ornaments.  There will even be a Victorian Costume Parade and Contest. Don't have a costume?  Come to the Farmer's Market and for $10 you can get a Victorian hat (man's or woman's) to put you in the spirit.  The $10 will then be donated to benefit victims of Hurricane Irene.  The Schoharie Valley was hard hit by the hurricane.

Sharon Springs in the Schoharie Valley and is an easy drive from Saratoga Springs.  By following Rte 29 through Galway and Broadalbin and then following Rte 30 through Johnstown then take Rte 5W and then turn onto Rte 10S.  Complete directions can be found on google maps or mapquest.  Sharon Springs is about an hour and 15 minutes.  It's a beautiful drive any time of year and the Schoharie Valley is just breathtaking.


4.  If you'd like to take a car ride but would like to stay a little closer to home then why not try the Christmas in the Country tour?  It's the 21st annual Christmas in the Country tour where you can visit artists' open houses and studios, purchase handmade items, home baked goods and find unique gifts.  The tour features shops and artisans in Washington and Warren Counties including Fort Ann, Hudson Falls and Kingsbury.  There will be 13 stops along the tour, which is much like the cheese tour I took in September.  Maps are available at each location.  There will also be door prizes and refreshments available too.  The tour starts Friday December 2nd from 10 am - 5 pm and Saturday December 3rd,   Sunday December 4th from 10 am - 5 pm.

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Kim Bernard

Moved to Saratoga from St Louis MO (home of The Gateway Arch, Baseball Cardinals and of course Anheuser-Busch) with my family for my husband's job. In the last 2 1/2 years we've had the opportunity to explore and discover day trips, hidden gems, along with some of the most beautiful, historic, interesting and curious places in New England. So come with me and look through a Midwesterner's eyes at Saratoga and beyond. I hope you enjoy your adventures and feel free to share yours and together we can feed our travel bug!