Is it typical for a young child to exclaim “hooray!” when you tell them you’re visiting a winery? That’s the response I nearly always receive from mine. It might be challenging to pique children’s interest in visiting locations that are genuinely intended for adults. Who among the parents’ wishes to visit the playground, an amusement park, or a kid’s museum one more time? (Even if we all go there, it doesn’t mean we always want to.)
Perhaps it’s because we visit them so often. Perhaps it’s because I’m adept at locating family-friendly locations. Or maybe it’s simply that vineyards are the ideal destination for family outings. Whatever the reason, my 3-year-old enjoys spending a couple of hours at the vineyard while I sip a drink and visit with my husband and our friends.
We just went back to one of our favorite locations, the Finger Lakes in New York. It’s really lovely, enjoyable, and tranquil there. We visited many vineyards in addition to spending time at the lake, grilling on the terrace, and dining at waterfront eateries.
I’ll now include some of our favorite wineries in the Finger Lakes, particularly those that welcome children. Of course, the Finger Lakes are home to many great vineyards. The wineries below are certain to be kid-friendly since I’ve been to them all and they all boast breathtaking vistas and outstanding wine choices. Anyone who is on the lookout for best kid friendly wineries Finger Lakes may take a look at this list and proceed.
1. Enid Lake
The Seneca Lake Wine Trail, the biggest of the Finger Lakes, has 27 wineries on it, although there are several more that are not included. Around the lake, there are also entertaining breweries, distilleries, and restaurants.
2. Estates and Wineries of Three Brothers
Three Brothers is second on the list. This is one that we have visited several times since it is a genuine favorite. Looking for a special sampling opportunity? On the same property, there are three vineyards, a microbrewery, and a café. Seneca Lake may be seen from one lovely tasting room. Another is quite unique and enjoyable, with a bayou motif.
Everyone in your group can find something to appreciate from the wine, beer, craft drink, and food options. After that, everyone may relax together on the covered terrace, among the vines, or in some plush Adirondack chairs.
3. Vinyards at Ventosa
This vineyard has a Tuscan villa-like appearance, yet it is completely family-friendly. Nobody objected when I conducted a tasting while carrying a baby. Both the lovely patio and the vineyard provide a view of the lake. On Wednesdays, live music is performed in the restaurant as you enjoy a delicious meal and a glass of wine.
There are picnic tables on the lawn where the kids may play if you’re concerned that they’ll disrupt other customers on the patio. To experience Italian wine country without the stuffiness, go to Ventosa Vineyards.
4. Grist Iron Brewing Company
Okay, I admit it—I cheated a little. This one is a brewery, not a vineyard. However, Grist Iron is so ideal for families that I just had to include it. This location deserves better than delicious. The ideal spot to stop for lunch is a pub-style cafe serving Bavarian pretzels, pizzas, and sandwiches. You may try some of their on-site brewed craft beer while you’re there.
To keep the kids (and you) occupied, they provide both indoor and outdoor seats, as well as yard activities.
5. Keuka Lake
Keuka Lake has less wineries, breweries, and distilleries than you could ever visit, while being smaller and less hectic than Seneca. Visit a few of Keuka Lake’s top wineries.
6. Bully Hill
Bully Hill is a full-service resort with one of the most breathtaking vistas in the Finger Lakes. It offers tastings at several sites, a gift store, and a delectable restaurant with breathtaking views.
If you’re overwhelmed by the selection, you may create your own tasting for $2 each pour or simply let them make the decision for you. We did both, and each was excellent. While we tasted, our kids enjoyed playing on the terrace that was completely enclosed. This is an excellent place for lunch as well, if you need a break from drinking wine.
7. Weis Wineries
We enjoyed the wine, and our kids enjoyed the patio made of crushed stone and the picnic tables. We loved the stunning lake view from Weis Vineyards while sipping wine slowly and watching the youngsters shovel rocks into their dump trucks.
This vineyard offers samples of its German-style wines in its brand-new tasting room and ancient barn, which both have a contemporary and rustic atmosphere. Although they don’t have a restaurant with full-service, they do offer food to pair with your wine.
8. Domaine LeSeurre
Domaine LeSeurre is directly next door to Weis, so you can go from Germany to France in a matter of minutes. Given that the proprietors are from Champagne, France, you can be sure that the wine will be of the highest quality.
This vineyard is ideal for families because of the big grassy area next to the stone terrace. Their welcoming staff may bring a bottle to your outside table as you relax and watch your children play. They won’t be bothering anybody, so you may unwind without worrying.
Other things to do when you visit Finger Lakes with kids
You’ve never heard of the Finger Lakes, what? That’s OK, since before we left on a family vacation in central New York and returned gushing about it, few of my friends had experienced it.
The eleven slender lakes that make up the Finger Lakes area are encircled by vineyards. But what makes the place really unique are the deep gorges that give rise to waterfall after magnificent cascade. Simply said, there isn’t a memory card large enough to save all the breathtaking views.
Families seeking a short getaway can consider a vacation to the Finger Lakes area, where there are several excellent hikes, quirky tiny museums, and hands-on activities.
- Waterfalls Walk
It’s often difficult to realize a location is empty since it’s so amazing. I feel that same about the four state parks in the Finger Lakes. Rivers flow across the whole region, transforming into waterfalls as they plunge down rocky gorges. You may take drizzly walks next to waterfalls and through moss-covered forests, then cool down by swimming in natural pools. It resembles a prehistoric Garden of Eden.
In the Finger Lakes area, we climbed to a number of breathtaking waterfalls, where my daughter Sophia is seated close to one of them.
- Trail at Watkins Glen State Park
The Main Canyon Trail at Watkins Glen State Park, the most visited park, contains 19 waterfalls within two miles that were all produced by a gorge that suddenly descended 400 feet. Typically, from May and October, depending on the weather and path conditions, it is accessible to hikers. Unfortunately, a recent downpour had left just a tiny portion of the route available when we visited. Nevertheless, we were able to wander behind a thundering waterfall.
- West Virginia Outdoor Resorts
The large swimming hole made by water pouring down the most breathtaking waterfalls you’ve ever seen was what we appreciated the most about the Robert H. Treman State Park. Since they are so flawless, they seem to be artificial.
The natural pool is just a short distance from the parking lot despite the fact that the park contains five hiking routes. You may at least put your toes in the cool water here and take in the scenery even if you aren’t ready for another climb. A lifeguard, restrooms where you can change into your swimwear, and a grassy area where you can lay out a blanket and spend the day are all available.
- Buttermilk Falls State Park
Our favorite place to visit was Buttermilk Falls State Park. We visited in the summer, yet at times it seemed like we were the only ones in the park. You would be really missing out if you visited the Finger Lakes region without hiking this park’s Gorge Trail.
There are a gazillion calf-burning stairs and less than a mile of distance to go, but the prize is a magnificent double cascade. Near the parking lot, it also boasts a little natural pool and lengthy, stunning falls.
- Take a lake sailing trip
It’s difficult to resist setting sail on Seneca Lake when the sky is clear, and the sun is making the water shine. Simply accept it. Your family will be well taken care of throughout the two-hour trip around the biggest and deepest of the Finger Lakes by the team of True Love Schooner Excursions.
While you relax, have a local hard cider, learn about the region’s history, or even take a nap on the padded benches while the wind and sun sweep you, older kids could even get to help lift the sails.
There are more than 100 wineries, breweries, and distilleries in the Finger Lakes area of New York. After checking out the aforementioned suggestions, keep exploring! Spend some relaxation by the lake, go hiking in Watkins Glen, check out a variety of parks and waterfalls, or go shopping in one of the many adorable downtowns to balance out your stay.