It’s true. Upstate New York is home to America’s First Wine Trail. Not just the state, but the whole country! In 1983, five wineries banded together to establish the Cayuga Lake Wine Trail and produced the first-ever
brochure. This first brochure was audacious — quote: “The Cayuga Lake Wine Trail offers a variety that is unmatched in wine touring and tasting. Nowhere else will travelers experience such a multitude of premium wines, attractions, comfortable lodging, fine restaurants, friendly people, and splendid scenery.”

In its 35 years in existence, it’s lived up to that quote and then some! With 14 member wineries, over 75 local businesses, a handful of state parks — 1 including the tallest waterfall this side of the Rocky Mountains — and hundreds of acres of vineyards, the Cayuga Lake Wine Trail is a destination not to be looked over.

At the south end of the lake is Ithaca, home to Cornell University and Ithaca College. It’s a unique town with affordable gift shops, over 100 waterfalls, and more restaurants per capita than New York City! The birthplace of Women’s Rights is located at the north end of the Lake in the town of Seneca Falls. It is also believed that A Wonderful Life was based on Seneca Falls and some of the residents within it.

Although each winery is unique and different than the next, they each have one thing in common: they’re all pet friendly. That’s right; you’re more than welcome to bring your furry friend with you while you travel the trail. There are also many local lodging options that are pet friendly to complete your fur baby’s visit.

What each winery does offer: exceptional service, an unforgettable time, wines you’ll want more of, and a bargain you’ll want to tell your friends about. The tasting fees at each winery vary, but range from $3 to $5, which provides you with 4 to 6 different samples. Bottle prices also vary, but average from $12 to $20 dollars, with, of course, some being less or more. Most wineries also offer an incentive; the more you buy the bigger discount you’ll get! It’s the best way to stock your wine fridge for your next get together.

Amongst all the wineries, close to 7,000 medals have been won for individ- ual wines and numerous Governors Cups have been awarded which, if you haven’t heard of them, are the Oscars of the wine industry. The 2017 winner is from Cayuga Lake, and they won for their Riesling, which is the variety that the Finger Lakes are known for producing best.

Between the breathtaking views, delicious wines, and exceptional hospital- ity, the Cayuga Lake Wine Trail is a destination you mustn’t miss!