The Great Rochester Area is made up of nine counties that fall under the Greater Rochester Chamber of Commerce.
Some counties are also part of the 5-county Rochester Metropolitan Area, 7-county Genesee Valley Region, the 14-County Finger Lakes Region, and the 17-county Western New York region.
We are all part of Upstate New York.
But no matter how we group ourselves, each county has something very special to offer! This is only a highlight of each county to inspire you to explore the greater Rochester area. Visit each county’s tourism website to find more detailed information and to download their official guides.
& The City of Rochester
County Seat: City of Rochester
Major Municipalities: Greece, Irondequoit, Henrietta, Brighton, and Penfield are among the largest of the 19 towns and villages
Major bodies of water: Lake Ontario, Genesee River, Erie Canal
Sights & Attractions: Because we live in Monroe County, we’ve dedicated an entire page to it! Some places and events that draw crowds from across the country are the Strong Museum, International Jazz Festival, Eastman Museum, Eastman Theatre, and Rochester Museum & Science Center + Strasenburgh Planetarium
Scenic Drives: Lake Ontario Seaway Trail; NY-251 through Wheatland, Rush, & Mendon; NY-65 south to the Sunflower Field, Mendon Ponds Park, and Honeoye Falls; NY-31 and roads that hug the canal, like E. Canal Rd in Brockport, Canal Road through Adam’s Basin, and Schoen Place in Pittsford; Fishers Rd-Park Rd-Railroad Mills Road loop around Powder Mills Park; or any of the historic neighborhoods in the City
County Seat: City of Batavia
Major Municipalities : LeRoy, Bergen, East Bethany, Darien Center
Scenic Drives: Take NY-33 into Batavia, and NY-77 north through Iroquois National Wildlife Refuge, or take NY-98 south to US-20. and loop home on NY-19
County Seat: Village of Geneseo
Major Municipalities: Caledonia, Avon, Geneseo, Dansville
Sights & attractions: Vintage Drive-In, National Warplane Museum, Wadsworth Homestead, Abbey of the Genesee, New Deal Gallery, Mount Morris Dam, Hemlock “Little World’s” Fair, Genesee Valley Hunt, Five Arch Bridge, Caledonia Fish Hatchery, Big Springs Museum
Scenic drives: Nations Rd, CR-408 south to Nunda, CR-15 south to Springwater, NY-20A between Geneseo and Lakeville
County Seat: City of Canandaigua
Major Municipalities: City of Geneva, Victor, Naples, Bristol, Phelps, Clifton Springs, Honeoye, Farmington
Sights and Attractions: Sonnenberg Gardens, Ganondagan State Historic Site, Bristol Mountain, Antique Wireless Museum, Canandaigua City Pier boat houses, New York Kitchen, CMAC, 1816 Farmington Quaker Meetinghouse Museum, Smith Opera House
Scenic Drives: Any combination of roads between Canandaigua and Naples: NY-21, NY-64, CR-16, CR-64, CR-33, CR-34, CR-36; NY-15A + US-20A; NY-444 + CR-41
County Seat: Village of Albion
Major Municipalities: Holley, Medina, Ridgeway, Shelby
Major bodies of water: Erie Canal, Lake Ontario, Oak Orchard Creek/River
Sights & attractions: NY-104 Cobblestones, Medina Historic District, Lyndonville Shoe Trees, Medina Sandstone Hall of Fame, Holley Depot Museum and Historic Society, Medina Railroad, Albion Courthouse Square District, Pullman Universalist Church, Oak Orchard Lighthouse
Scenic Drives: NY-63 through Iroquois National Wildlife Refuge, Medina, and Lyndonvile; CR-98 from Albion to Oak Orchard Lighthouse
County Seats: Village of Waterloo and Village of Ovid (It became a two-shire county in 1822.)
Major Municipalities: Seneca Falls, Lodi, Interlaken
Scenic Drives: Skip the thruway and make a slow-road loop of NY-96 and US-20
County Seat: Hamlet of Lyons
Majoy Municipalities: Wolcott, Sodus, Pultneyville, Newark, Palmyra, Macedon, Walworth, Ontario
Major bodies of water: Erie Canal, Lake Ontario
Sights & attractions: Brantling, Huckelberry Swamp, G & S Orchards, Alling Coverlet Museum, Hoffman Clock Museum, Hotchkiss Peppermint Museum, William Phelps General Store, Sodus Bay Lighthouse Museum, Ohmann Theater, Museum of Wayne County History, Fox Sisters Property
Scenic Drives: Make a loop combining NY-104 and NY-31 through all of the canal towns, and, depending how far east you head, take NY-89 between Wolcott and Savannah, NY-414 between N. Rose and Clyde, NY-14 between Sodus Point and Lyons, or NY-88 between Sodus and Newark
County Seat: Village of Warsaw
Major Municipalities: Wyoming, Perry, Castile Java, Silver Springs, Silver Lake, Varysburg, Arcade, Attica
Sights & attractions: Arcade & Attica Railroad, Hidden Valley Animal Adventure, Spotlight Theater, Charcoal Corral and Silver Lake Twin Drive-In, Wyoming County Historical Museum, Wyoming “Gaslight Village”
Scenic Drives: Make a loop of NY-19 and 19A; follow the wind turbines from US-20A and loop NY-78 or NY-39 and NY-77
County Seat: Village of Penn Yan
Major Municipalities: Dresden, Italy, Milo, Dundee
Scenic Drives: Loop NY-14 and 14A with NY-54, CR-1, CR-44 connecting Penn Yan, Dresden, Dundee, and Milo
There are so many interesting roadside attractions near Rochester. As you’re driving around the area, you should at least see these five!
Rochester railfans are incredibly lucky that passionate preservationists before us saw the value in retaining structures we can still appreciate today.
Water trails are either formally marked routes along a navigable waterway, or simply any waterway suitable for kayaks and small motorized watercraft.
Where are your favorite places to explore around the Greater Rochester region?
Share with us in the comments. Your insight and experience is invaluable!