Day Trips Around Rochester NY

Explore Monroe County

Monroe County is the heart of the Greater Rochester Nine County Region. It is also considered among the 14 counties in the Finger Lakes Region.

The county includes the City of Rochester and its 19 surrounding towns and villages.

The Erie Canal crosses paths with the Genesee as the river courses north through the City of Rochester on its way toward the county’s northern border at Lake Ontario. Both Monroe County and Livingston County are protected from river flooding by the mighty Mount Morris Dam.

Here are a few ideas for exploring Monroe County

19 Monroe County Towns and Villages

Each Monroe County town & village has something unique to offer. Here is just a taste of what makes each one special.

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22 Monroe County Parks

Monroe County parks are free, so take advantage of 12,000 acres of natural, zoological, historical, and geological experiences.

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31 Monroe County Libraries

A free library card allows you to access 31 Monroe County libraries, including Central Library and Libby, the digital library.

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Exploring The Genesee River

At Genesee Valley Park, the river merges with the Erie Canal and continues north through Rochester before reaching Lake Ontario.

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Rochester Public Market

The Rochester Public Market is the best place to find the freshest locally grown produce, seafood, beef, cheese, bread, and beverages.

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30 Craft Breweries in Rochester and Monroe County

It can be overwhelming to consider all the breweries that call the Greater Rochester area home. Let’s focus on the ones here in Monroe County.

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60 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.

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Explore the Erie Canalway National Heritage Corridor

Nearly 80% of the upstate population lives within 25 miles of the Erie Canal. Explore the 115-mile stretch between the Cayuga-Seneca Canal and Niagara River.

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City of Rochester Parks

Many of our City of Rochester parks have beginnings embedded in Rochester’s youth. Some were even designed by notable landscape architects.

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Rochester: The Image City

Rochester evolved from the Flower City to the Image City when Eastman invented a way for the masses to capture everyday moments on film.

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The Flower City: Exploring Rochester’s Extraordinary Flowers and Trees

Rochester became a global center for flower and tree nurseries in the mid-1800s, fostering our identity as The Flower City.

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Street Art: Exploring Rochester’s Murals & Graffiti

Rochester has a vibrant street art culture, with dozens of murals, graffiti, and other forms of public art on display throughout the region.

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Our Favorite 5 Town Parks to Explore

These town parks have a unique offering of woods, wildlife, and water features to explore walking paths ranging from pavement to boardwalk.

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23 Hidden Places Around Rochester

From secret gardens to enchanting waterfalls, exploring hidden places around the Rochester area is the ultimate way to add some spice to your travel experiences.

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Rochester’s Olmsted-Designed Parks

Rochester is fortunate to be one of a handful of American cities with a park system comprised of Frederick Law Olmsted-designed parks.

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The Greater Rochester Nine-County Area

The Greater Rochester Area is made up of nine counties that fall under the Greater Rochester Chamber of Commerce.

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Explore the Finger Lakes Region

The Finger Lakes region includes cities, villages, farmland, and 11 lakes that collectively create one of the most popular tourist destinations.

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Monroe County - Free Rochester Day Trip Ideas: Rochester International Jazz Festival
Rochester International Jazz Festival

Major Festivals, Concerts and Events

2023 Rochester Festivals – Six in the City

“Festival season” in Rochester runs from May to September. Let’s focus on the six most popular summertime City of Rochester festivals!

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Lilac Festival

Rochester International Jazz Festival

High Falls Film Festival

Corn Hill Arts Festival

Rochester Fringe Festival

Hilton Apple Festival

Spencerport Canal Days

ROC the Riverway

Rochester Pride Festival

Fairport Canal Days

Clothesline Art Festival

Park Ave Summer Festival

Monroe County Fair

Monroe County -  University of Rochester

Monroe County is home to ten colleges and universities

Bryant & Stratton College in Greece and Henrietta

Colgate Rochester Crozer Divinity School in the city

Monroe Community College in Brighton, with a campus in the city

Nazareth College in Pittsford

Roberts Wesleyan College in Chili

Rochester Institute of Technology in Henrietta

St. Bernard’s School of Theology and Ministry in Pittsford

St. John Fisher College in Pittsford

State University of New York at Brockport in Brockport, with a campus in the city

University of Rochester in the city

rochester skate park
Rochester Skate Park

Monroe County Facts

The county runs along Lake Ontario’s southern shore and is named after James Monroe, the fifth President of the United States.

The Monroe County seat is the City of Rochester. As of 2020, Monroe County’s population was 759,443.

According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the county’s total area is 1,367 square miles, of which 657 square miles is land and 710 square miles (52%) is water. [source] That high percentage is mainly due to having a county line that extends into Lake Ontario, in addition to Irondequoit and Braddock Bay, the Erie Canal, Genesee River, and other large tributaries.

Rochester’s Fun Facts: Oldest, Original, Only, & More!

Rochester’s fun facts will inspire you to explore more. And these are just some of the historical tidbits that make Rochester special.

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Where are your favorite places to visit around Rochester and Monroe County?

Your insights and experiences are valuable. Please share them in the comments.

Debi Bower, Day Trips Around Rochester NY

Debi Bower is the founder and creative director of and author of the book Day Trips Around Rochester, New York.


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