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Maplewood Park

30 Day Trips within 30 Minutes of Rochester

Sometimes you just need a fun, 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!”

Braddock Bay Marina Trail
Braddock Bay Marina Trail

1. 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!

Water Trails: Conesus Lake
Conesus Lake

2. Conesus Lake

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

Oatka Creek Park birch trail
Oatka Creek Park

3. 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: Rochester Hidden Sidewalk
The Hidden Sidewalk in Charlotte

4. 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.

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

5. 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.

Helmer Nature Center bridge
Helmer Nature Center

6. Helmer Nature Center

The paths at Helmer Nature Center in Irondequoit, made primarily of wood chip, boardwalk, and hard-pack gravel, are easy to navigate and clearly marked. There are sloped portions that take you down to the valley floor where the terrain around you is hilly and tree covered making it peacefully quiet.

Webster Arboretum
Webster Arboretum

7. Webster Arboretum

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.

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.

Make sure you wander back through Washington Grove!

MacKay Wildlife Preserve
MacKay Wildlife Preserve

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.

Channing H Philbrick Park
Channing H Philbrick Park

11. Channing H Philbrick 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.

Turning Point Park walking winter

12. 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.

Highland Park
Highland Park

13. 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.

Durand Eastman spring
Durand Eastman in May

14. 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.

High Falls Rochester NY Genesee River falling for you
High Falls

15. 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.

Breese Park Henrietta
Breese Park

16. Breese Park

Breese Park is located along the Genesee River in the small community of Riverton on the far west side of Henrietta.

Set your sights on late-April to early-May to see the native bluebelles, trilliums, and ferns in their full spring glory!

Corbetts Glen tunnel entrance

17. Corbetts Glen

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.

Tinker Nature Park

18. Tinker Nature Park

Tinker Nature Park comprises 68-acres in Henrietta with a 1.2 mile flat perimeter trail for jogging, biking, skiing, snowshoeing or walking.

Warner Castle Sunken Garden from above
Warner Castle Sunken Garden

19. 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.

Mendon Ponds Fairy Trail red door
Fairy Trail at Mendon Ponds Park

20. Mendon Ponds Park

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

Brickyard Trail
Brickyard Trail

21. Frankel Nature Park

Sandra L. Frankel Nature Park is a 72-acre linear park connecting the Brighton Town Hall and Library on Elmwood Ave with Buckland Park on Westfall Road. The 0.8-mile Brickyard Trail runs the length of the park.

Thomas Creek wetlands
Thomas Creek wetlands walk

22. 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.

Maplewood Rose Garden orange
Maplewood Rose Garden in June

23. 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.

Hamlin Beach State Park sunset
Hamlin Beach State Park

24. Hamlin Beach State Park

Hamlin Beach State Park has 7 miles of beautiful biking and walking trails, including a mile-long self-guided tour of a CCC/POW camp.

Ellison Park

25. Ellison Park

Irondequoit Creek meanders through Ellison Park on its way to Irondequoit Bay and Lake Ontario, offering visitors year-round fishing and non-motorized boating opportunities.

Brighton Town Park summer bench
Brighton Town Park

26. Brighton Town Park

Brighton Town Park is surprisingly serene, despite it being bordered on one side by office buildings and across the pond by a major express way.

Ontario Beach Park Jetty at the Port
Port of Rochester

27. Ontario Beach Park

Lake Ontario Beach Park is located at the northernmost tip of the city of Rochester, and is bordered on the East by the mouth of the Genesee River.

Erie Canal: Meridian Center Park
Meridian Center Park in Brighton

28. 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.

Powder Mills Park Daffodil Meadow Trail
Powder Mills Park Daffodil Meadow Trail May 1

29. Powder Mills Park

Powder Mills Park favorites include the fish hatchery, and Daffodil Trail, and the Mushroom House, which is technically private property but still draws a crowd!

Seneca Park north trail

30. 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 More Day Trips within 30 Minutes of Rochester

Looking for things to do around Rochester that are close to home? Guests visiting from out-of-town? Here are 30 more day trips within 30 minutes.

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Where are your favorite day trips within 30 minutes of Rochester?

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


2 thoughts on “30 Day Trips within 30 Minutes of Rochester”

  1. paul j jankowiak

    1. Clover street canal locks.
    2. Seneca Park Zoo
    3. Letchworth State Park (eagles)
    4. The public beach at Charlotte
    5. The views at Irondequoit Bay (jetties)
    6. Webster Park Picnics
    7. Farmington (Finger Lakes) horse racing
    8. Strolling along Park Ave.
    9. Cornhill festival

    1. That’s a great set list! Irondequoit Bay is fascinating between the cliffs and history of the area. I am unfamiliar with the jetties. I’ll have to explore further! Thank you for the recommendations, Paul!

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COVID-19 NOTE: 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 and locally—seek solitude!