Cayuga Lake State Park beach cover

Cayuga Lake: One of New York’s 11 Finger Lakes

Cayuga Lake is the longest of the Finger Lakes at 38.1 miles. There are 140 streams that flow into Cayuga. Water that comes into the lake takes 10 years to cycle through toward Lake Ontario.

You can drive around the entire lake in 120 minutes. But plan some stops along the way for a full, rewarding day trip around Cayuga Lake!

Seneca Falls visitor center cover
Seneca Falls visitor center
Seneca Falls sign
Gould Hotel
Seneca Falls canal lock 2
Lock 2
Seneca Falls Anthony Stanton Bloomer
Anthony, Stanton, Bloomer
First Convention for Womens Rights in Seneca Falls NY
First Convention for Women’s Rights Held in Seneca Falls, NY 1848

Seneca Falls (north end)

Step back in history at the Women’s Rights National Historical Park in Seneca Falls. Check out the famous “It’s a Wonderful Life” bridge and museum.

Montezuma National Wildlife Refuge on Cayuga Lake
Montezuma National Wildlife Refuge
Montezuma National Wildlife Refuge eagle statue near thruway
Montezuma National Wildlife Refuge view inside

Take a slow drive through Montezuma National Wildlife Refuge and look for migratory waterfowl and nesting eagles.

Paleontological Research Institution and its Museum of the Earth in Ithaca NY
Museum of the Earth
Public Gardens Around Rochester: Cornell Botanic Gardens
Cornell Botanic Gardens
Sagan Planet Walk
Sagan Planet Walk

Ithaca (south end)

Enjoy a day filled with science at the Museum of the Earth, the Sciencecenter and the Sagan Planet Walk. Eat and shop around Ithaca Commons. Explore the gardens at Cornell Plantations and the Ithaca Children’s Garden.

Groge Trails Cascadilla Creek Ithaca
Cascadilla Gorge
Ithaca Falls
Ithaca Falls
Robert H Treman State Park
Robert H Treman
Taughannock Falls State Park
Taughannock Falls State Park

Ithaca is Gorges!

Pick a waterfall, any waterfall! They are all spectacular.

Taughannock Falls State Park

Buttermilk Falls State Park

Cascadilla Gorge

Robert H. Treman State Park

Ithaca Falls on Fall Creek

Find more waterfalls around Ithaca

Things to do around Rochester NY: MacKenzie-Childs
MacKenzie-Childs

Other points of interest

Stop at MacKenzie-Childs on the east shore in Aurora, if not for the shopping then definitely for the landscape!

Follow the Cayuga Wine Trail, Sweet Treat Trail or Cheese Trail!

Eat at MoosewoodParker’s Grille & Tap HouseDeerhead Lakeside Restaurant & Bar, Fargo Bar & Grill, Cayuga Lake Creamery, Hazelnut Kitchen, Connie’s Diner, The Heights, Sumo, Ciao, Ithaca Ale House, Just a Taste, Carriage House Cafe, Istanbul Turkish Kitchen, Agave, and many more!

Cayuga Lake State Park Swing
Cayuga Lake State Park

Swim at Cayuga Lake State Park, Taughannock Falls State Park, Long Point State Park, and Myers Park ($5 gate fee for non-residents of Lansing)

Cayuga Lake Taughannock Falls State Park
Cayuga Lake, Taughannock Falls State Park

More about Cayuga Lake

60 minutes from Rochester – MAP

Spend a Day in the Finger Lakes Region

The Finger Lakes Region is one of the most beautiful places on earth, and right in our backyard! It is easy to get out there and explore.

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32 Roadside Waterfalls Near Rochester

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39 Natural Swimming Holes

On a hot day, you can sit under a waterfall, swim in a lake, or jump in a creek at one of these refreshing natural swimming areas.

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3-Day Getaway Along Routes 5 and 20

Routes 5 and 20 is a beautiful 67-mile stretch of highway where NY-5 and US-20 converge, following an ancient foot trail of New York’s first people.

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Where is your favorite spot along Cayuga Lake?

Share your thoughts with us in the comments. Your insight and experience is invaluable!

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COVID-19 NOTE: Some of the information you find in our articles may currently be inaccurate due to closures and cancellations.

Please follow the most current recommendations from the CDC and New York State for spending time away from your home. The great outdoors can provide a well needed respite & escape during stressful times. Please move quickly through parking lots, trail heads, and scenic areas. If crowded, choose a different park, trail, or time to visit. Please day trip responsibly.