Water: Lower Falls Rochester

30 Day Trips within 30 Minutes of Rochester

Sometimes you just need a spontaneous adventure or quick getaway to refresh your day. Try one of these day trips within 30 minutes of Rochester next time someone says, “I’m bored!” This is part 1 in our 30-Minute Day Trips series.

30 Day Trips within 30 Minutes of Rochester: Channing H Philbrick Park PKA Linear Park
Channing H Philbrick Park in Penfield

1. Channing H Philbrick Park (Linear Park)

As Irondequoit Creek passes through Channing H Philbrick Park in Penfield, it drops 90 feet over one mile giving us the cascades that make this park so special.

30 Day Trips within 30 Minutes of Rochester: ARTISANworks retro room
ARTISANworks in Rochester

2. ARTISANworks

I’ve heard ARTISANworks described as a walk-through kaleidoscope, a bombardment on the senses, a 360° canvas, a space that defies all boundaries, a place that can’t be described but must be seen, surprising, inspiring, and in some instances shocking.

30 Day Trips within 30 Minutes of Rochester: Sam Patch
Sam Patch at Schoen Place in Pittsford

3. Sam Patch Erie Canal Tours

Sam Patch Erie Canal Tours are a great way to experience the canal, the locks, & learn about its history along your narrated cruise. Seasonal.

30 Day Trips within 30 Minutes of Rochester: Erie Canal Fairport Thomas Creek Boardwalk
Thomas Creek Wetlands Walk in Fairport

4. Thomas Creek Wetlands Walk

Most folks when visiting Fairport walk along the canal path not knowing that the Thomas Creek Wetlands Walk is running parallel to them. There is also a viewing platform where you can relax and take in the sights and sounds.

30 Day Trips within 30 Minutes of Rochester: Durand Eastman Park
Durand Eastman Park in Irondequoit/Rochester

5. Durand Eastman Park

Durand Eastman Park’s landscape design was inspired by the work that Olmsted had done 20 years earlier in Highland, Seneca, and Genesee Valley Parks.

Public Gardens Around Rochester: Webster Arboretum
Webster Arboretum at Kent Park

6. Webster Arboretum at Kent Park

Follow the pathways that meander around Webster Arboretum’s 40 acres of open spaces, flower & herb gardens, water elements, and a wide variety of trees.

Erie Canal Greece Canal Park
Greece Canal Park

7. Greece Canal Park

Greece Canal Park encompasses 577 acres, with 4 easy walking trails varying in length under 1.5 miles over level or gently rolling terrain.

30 Day Trips within 30 Minutes of Rochester: Old Canal Lock 62
Old Canal Lock 62 behind Pittsford Plaza

8. Erie Canal Lock 62

Old Erie Canal Lock 62 is tucked just far enough off the beaten path that many do not realize it’s there, just over the hill behind Pittsford Plaza.

30 Day Trips within 30 Minutes of Rochester: Cobbs Hill Park
Cobbs Hill Park in Rochester

9. Cobbs Hill

The view from Cobbs Hill, the quiet, the breeze, the friendly nature of people walking and taking it all in—there’s nothing quite like it in Rochester.

30 Day Trips within 30 Minutes of Rochester: MacKay Wildlife Preserve
MacKay Wildlife Preserve in Caledonia

10. MacKay Wildlife Preserve

There are interesting man-made and geologic wonders to discover at MacKay Wildlife Preserve in Caledonia, including a sea of round, moss-covered boulders.

READ PART 2
30 More Day Trips within
30 Minutes of Rochester

Charlotte-Genesee Lighthouse
Charlotte-Genesee Lighthouse in Rochester

11. Charlotte-Genesee Lighthouse

You can climb the Charlotte-Genesee Lighthouse’s 40 foot high tower and enjoy the view of Lake Ontario, the Genesee River, and Ontario Beach Park. Seasonal.

Vitale Park on Conesus Lake
Vitale Park on Conesus Lake

12. Conesus Lake

Conesus Lake is the westernmost Finger Lake and the closest to Rochester. You can drive around the entire lake in 30 minutes.

Martin Luther King Jr Memorial Park at Manhattan Square
Martin Luther King Jr Memorial Park at Manhattan Square

13. Martin Luther King Jr Memorial Park at Manhattan Square

Concerts, events, and festivals at Martin Luther King Jr Memorial Park at Manhattan Square are organized more frequently now, and the cascades behind the stage will make for a beautiful backdrop.

Oatka Creek Park Scottsville NY
Oatka Creek Park in Scottsville

14. Oatka Creek Park

Oatka Creek Park in Wheatland is one of the more strollable in the Monroe County Park system, with little change in elevation along the 3.3 mile loop trail.

30 day trips within 30 minutes of Rochester: Tinker Nature Park Fairy Trail in Henrietta
Tinker Nature Park Fairy Trail in Henrietta

15. Tinker Nature Park

At Tinker Nature Park you can look for Tinker Bell in one of the 20+ miniature homes along the Fairy Trail, or take a meditation walk in the labyrinth.

30 day trips within 30 minutes of Rochester: Rochester Hidden Sidewalk
The Hidden Sidewalk in Charlotte

16. Rochester’s Hidden Sidewalk

To find Rochester’s hidden sidewalk, start at Ontario Beach Park & head west on Beach Ave. Across from Clematis St. & Cloverdale St. are the two main entrances.

Erie Canal: Meridian Center Park
Meridian Center Park in Brighton

17. Meridian Centre Park

Meridian Centre Park is located off Winton Road. There are several points of access from the large parking area to the Erie Canal path.

30 day trips within 30 minutes of Rochester: Braddock Bay Fish and Wildlife Management Area at Marina
Braddock Bay Fish and Wildlife Management Area Marina Trail

18. Braddock Bay Fish and Wildlife Management Area

The Braddock Bay complex includes the bay and the surrounding wetlands. We break it down so you can start exploring!

30 day trips within 30 minutes of Rochester: Lower Falls in Maplewood Park
Lower Falls in Maplewood Park

19. Maplewood Park

Maplewood Park is a linear park that follows the river from Driving Park and the Lower Falls to just north of Route 104, ending at the pedestrian bridge over the Genesee.

30 day trips within 30 minutes of Rochester: Turning Point Park Rochester NY
Turning Point Park on the Genesee Riverway Trail

20. Turning Point Park

Turning Point Park’s most striking feature is a 3,572 ft-long bridge over the Genesee River Turning Basin, part of the greater Genesee Riverway Trail.

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Planning Your
Rochester Day Trip

30 day trips within 30 minutes of Rochester: Rochester Public Market
City of Rochester Public Market

21. Rochester Public Market

The Rochester Public Market is the place to grab the freshest local and wholesale fruit, veggies, seafood, beef, cheese, bread, flowers and spices. The market is surrounded by excellent restaurants, cafes, a donuts shop, and a distillery.

30 day trips within 30 minutes of Rochester: High Falls Genesee River Rochester NY
High Falls view from the Genesee Brew House.

22. High Falls

High Falls is both the name of the waterfall and the district in the city where it can be found. There’s plenty of parking and food options on both sides of the river.

30 day trips within 30 minutes of Rochester: Sunken Garden at Warner Castle Rochester NY
Sunken Garden behind Warner Castle in Highland Park

23. Warner Castle Sunken Garden

When you stroll around the back of Warner Castle and down the lawn, you’ll discover the Sunken Garden. It’s a peaceful retreat, and beautiful anytime of the year. Continue walking behind the garden and you’ll find yourself at Highland Bowl.

30 day trips within 30 minutes of Rochester: Lamberton Conservatory at Highland Park in Rochester NY
Lamberton Conservatory at Highland Park in Rochester NY

24. Lamberton Conservatory

Tropical plants need tropical temperatures, so visiting Lamberton Conservatory in winter is a welcome escape from the cold! Don’t miss the Spring Show that runs late-March through May and the Holiday Show in December.

30 day trips within 30 minutes of Rochester: Mount Hope Cemetery Rochester NY
Mount Hope Cemetery in Rochester, NY

25. Mount Hope Cemetery

Mount Hope Cemetery is a special place all year-round, but there’s something about Autumn that turns it into a virtual painting.

30 day trips within 30 minutes of Rochester: Highland Park Rochester
Highland Park in Rochester, NY

26. Highland Park

Highland Park was designed to be enjoyed year-round. Every pathway, every tree, every vista & every relationship between the land & water is intentional.

30 day trips within 30 minutes of Rochester: Mendon Ponds Park
Looking down at the Devils Bathtub in Mendon Ponds Park

27. Mendon Ponds Park

Mendon Ponds Park is the largest Monroe County Park with 2,500 acres of woodlands, ponds, wetlands and glacially created landforms.

30 day trips within 30 minutes of Rochester: Seneca Park Rochester NY
Seneca Park in Rochester, NY

28. Seneca Park

The Seneca Park Zoo is a but a small part of the greater 297-acre Seneca Park, designed by Frederick Law Olmsted in 1893.

30 day trips within 30 minutes of Rochester: Corbetts Glen Nature Park
Corbetts Glen Nature Park in Brighton

29. Corbetts Glen Nature Park

Corbetts Glen Nature Park is a hidden green space in a suburban jungle, nestled in between an express way and 2 highly trafficked roads near the Penfield/Brighton Town border.

30 day trips within 30 minutes of Rochester: Genesee Valley Park Rochester
Genesee Valley Park in Rochester, NY

30. Genesee Valley Park

Genesee Valley Park is a Frederick Law Olmsted-designed park located at the intersection of the Erie Canal, Red Creek, and Genesee River.

Looking for more day trips within 30 minutes?

Check out Part 2 in our 30-Minute Day Trips series next!

Debi Bower

Born, raised and living life as a digital designer in Rochester, NY! I am also a day-tripper, writer & photographer, exploring the nooks and crannies that make our part of New York State so special.

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