Escape The City With a Trip to Rhinebeck

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Flu season is about to hit the city. Your stress level is skyrocketing as you imagine the whole family cooped up in the apartment and your holiday to-do list mounting. Take a deep breath, and start planning a family day trip to Rhinebeck this winter. It will give you the breath of fresh (cold!) air you need and you’ll be dazzled by Rhinebeck’s delicious dining scene that is kid-friendly, too.

Take a Poet’s Walk
First stop is Poet’s Walk, for hiking, snowshoeing or cross-country skiing with the family (and the dog on leash!) at this gorgeous park overlooking the Hudson River. Designed by Romantic landscape architect Hans Jacob Ehlers in 1849, you’ll find bridges, pavilions, cottages and wandering paths here to inspire and explore. Great on a sunny or snowy day and don’t forget to bring the camera for some beautiful family photos and capturing scenic views.
Poet’s Walk
River Road (Take 199 West to County Road 103/River Road)
Red Hook, Ny
Open daily Nov 1 – Mar 13, 2012, 9:00 am – 6:00 pm (check site for other season’s hours)

Admire Flowers in Full Bloom
Visit the world’s largest grower of anemones at Battenfeld Anemone Farm, a hundred-year old family farm right in the heart of the Hudson River Valley. This farm is more serious than Martha Stewart about anemones. They track the origin of their crop back to the de Caen variety found on the Normandy coast of France.

Peruse the 1.5-acre greenhouse where the flowers are carefully cultivated and watch a winter garden grow. After a gander at the gorgeous buds, hit the farm’s retail shop in the morning before the locals swipe all the handpicked anemones for sale that day.

Battenfeld Anemone Farm
856 Route 199
Red Hook, Ny
Open daily Sept – May 7:00 am –7:00 pm

Cut Down A HolidayTree
Right next door to the anemone farm is Battenfeld’s Christmas Tree Farm. Battenfeld is right off Route 199, the main thoroughfare to and from the Taconic Parkway to downtown Rhinebeck, so it’s convenient to pick up a tree and tie it to the top of your car on your way back to the city.

If you’re a Christmas tree enthusiast who has heated arguments about whether a blue spruce is better than a douglas fir, you’ll be in heaven here as you can also check out Saltsman Christmas Tree Farm and Wonderland Farm to find the perfect tree that strikes your fancy. If taking home a tree sounds like too much work, just enjoy the views, hot cider and potential for fun holiday photos!

Battenfeld Christmas Tree Farm
856 Route 199
Red Hook, Ny
Open daily 8:00 am – 4:00 pm beginning Nov 23 – Dec 18, 2012.
(Call ahead or check web site for closures and harvest limits)

Eat Like a Local
Hit downtown Rhinebeck for a plethora of dining options around the intersection of Market Street and Montgomery Street (Route 9). No matter what time of day you visit, we’ve got the right picks.

Breakfast should be done at Bread Alone, where you can sit and have fresh eggs from Feather Ridge Farm or multigrain oatmeal with Spruceton Valley maple syrup. Or grab your cup of joe and pastries to go while you stroller down the strip.
If you have epicurean children on your hands, take them to a lunch at Gigi Trattoria. This chic Italian spot serves up skizzas, their specialty flatbread pizza amongst a whole menu of panini, pasta, and secondi. You can please everyone at the table with the go-to Margherita skizza, but if you’re a gourmand bunch you might wanna try the Bianca topped with Coach Farm goat cheese, fig jam, pear, arugula and truffle oil. There are plenty of vegetarian options here and even a gluten-free skizza crust, so dietary issues are accommodated without hesitation.

There’s something cozy about Aroi, a converted colonial house turned delectable Thai restaurant. Like most Asian restaurants, sharing plates family style is the way to go. We recommend the pad see ew and massaman curry, full of flavor but not too spicy. It’s a local favorite for something different.

Bread Alone
45 E. Market Street
Rhinebeck, Ny
Counter: Open daily 7:00 am – 6:00 pm
Dining Room: Open Mon – Fri 8:00 am – 3:00 pm, Sat – Sun 8:00 am – 4:00 pm

Gigi Trattoria
6422 Montgomery St
Rhinebeck, Ny 12572
Open Sun – Thurs, 11:30 am – 9:00 pm
Open Fri – Sat, 11:30 am – 10:00 pm
Sun Brunch begins 10:00 am

55 East Market Street
Rhinebeck, Ny
Lunch: Open daily 11:30am – 3:00 pm (closed Tues and Wed)
Dinner: Open daily 5:00 pm–9:00 pm

How to Get There
The best way for exploring the area and our favorite picks is with a car. It’s an easy 2-hour drive up from the city and there’s no need for a full weekend if you can’t fit one in. If you just want to wander downtown Rhinebeck, you can take Amtrak from Penn Station to Rhinecliff and call a taxi to haul you a few miles into town.

Has your family checked out all the happenings in Rhinebeck? Got any other must-do activities for families?

— Sarah Choi