Womens Rights National Historical Park cover

Explore Seneca Falls

Seneca Falls, on historic Route 5 and 20, is known for two defining moments in its history. The first is its role as the birthplace of the Women’s Rights movement in 1848. The second is its inspiration for the fictional town of Bedford Falls in the classic film It’s a Wonderful Life. These moments continue to draw people to Seneca Falls for gatherings, rallies, and celebrations.

Best of Rochester - Day Trips Around Rochester book

Day Trips Around Rochester, New York

Best of Rochester Award-Winning Book for Best Published Literary Work of 2023.

Plan Your Day Trip to Seneca Falls

Connies Diner
Connie’s Diner

Breakfast

Enjoy a tasty meal at Connie’s Diner in Waterloo on your way into town.

Declaration of Sentiments Womens Rights National Historical Park
Declaration of Sentiments
First Convention for Womens Rights in Seneca Falls NY
Woman’s March
Womens Rights National Historical Park lifesized statues
Women’s Rights NHP
Wesleyan Chapel Womens Rights National Historical Park cover
Wesleyan Chapel

Morning

Stop into Sauders Store, a Mennonite family-owned grocery market. While essentially a grocery store, it’s filled with unique regional and homemade goods that are a browser’s delight.

Next, head into the village and park on Fall Street or in the lot behind Women’s Rights National Historical Park. The park includes the Visitor Center, Declaration Park, and Wesleyan Chapel. The Visitor Center has two floors of exhibits for you to explore. In Declaration Park, you’ll find a waterwall inscribed with the Declaration of Sentiments, which states that “all men and women are created equal.” Tour Wesleyan Chapel, where the first Women’s Rights Convention was held. It is widely recognized as the start of the women’s rights movement.

El Bajio Mexican Grill and Bar Seneca Falls
El Bajio

Lunch

Stroll down Falls Street to find excellent options, like El Bajio Mexican Restaurant, Little Italy, and Downtown Deli.

National Womens Hall of Fame
National Women’s Hall of Fame

Afternoon

You can either walk or drive to the National Women’s Hall of Fame in the 1844 Seneca Knitting Mill on the south side of the Cayuga Seneca Canal. Locally, the Bridge Street bridge is known as George Bailey’s Bridge, a reference to the village of Seneca Falls being the inspiration for Bedford Falls in the movie It’s a Wonderful Life. Inside the recently renovated 1844 mill, explore independently or take a guided tour to hear the stories of over three hundred American women who have made significant contributions to their fields. Enjoy a late-afternoon stroll through Seneca Falls Harbor, heading east to the Ovid Street bridge for a breathtaking view of Trinity Episcopal Church, with Van Cleef Lake and canal locks 2 and 3 as the backdrop. Alternatively, for a longer walk, head west along the canal from the Hall of Fame to explore the Ludovico Sculpture Trail.

Seneca Falls visitor center cover
Seneca Falls visitor center

Head back across the canal to Fall Street and check out the Seneca Falls Heritage and Tourism Center. This three-story center offers a wealth of information about the history of Seneca Falls and the surrounding area.

Gould Hotel
Gould Hotel

Dinner

Enjoy a meal at the Gould Hotel, Parker’s Grille and Tap House, 84 Fall, or Red Brick Pub Kitchen and Cocktails. Or keep it casual by stopping in Waterloo at the seasonal Mac’s Drive-In on the way home.

Signature Events

Route 90 Garage Sale traffic cover
Route 90 Garage Sale traffic

50-mile Route 90 Garage Sale

July

Extend your day with a fifteen-mile drive along County Route 90—one of New York State’s scenic byways—between Seneca Falls and Aurora or drive the entire route to Homer. Every year offers new things to see, with different homeowners taking part and various villages and clubs providing food and fun along the way.

Bedford Falls Blvd Seneca Falls
Seneca/Bedford Falls

It’s a Wonderful Life Festival

early December

Sponsored by It’s a Wonderful Life Museum, the three-day festival celebrates Seneca Falls’ bond with Bedford Falls. Members of the original cast, their descendants, and the public gather to enjoy film screenings, themed dinners, and cast signings.

Google Map of Locations

view map separately here

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Where are your favorite places to visit in Seneca Falls?

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 daytrippingroc.com and author of the award-winning book Day Trips Around Rochester, New York.

People often ask me if I get free access to places while exploring. The answer is no unless I’m invited to previews or granted behind-the-scenes access as part of my media role. Generally, I don’t mention my project, Day Trips Around Rochester, NY, because I want the same experience you would have. I create and share content simply because it brings me joy. I would appreciate your support—a cup of coffee or two to help fuel future field trips—if you have found valuable information here that has helped you explore the Rochester area.

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