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Top 10 Distinctly Dutchess Destinations

We often use the hashtag #DistinctlyDutchess to identify what sets us apart, what’s unexpected, and what is truly unique to Dutchess County. Sometimes it’s hard to choose just a few, as there are just so many wonderful experiences to be had here, but we decided to help you narrow it down. Check out these ten Distinctly Dutchess Destinations!  

1. Home of Franklin D. Roosevelt National Historic Site and FDR Presidential Library and Museum

Did you know that FDR is the only US president to be elected to four terms? Visitors can tour FDR’s childhood home and where he hosted Winston Churchill, Queen Elizabeth and King George VI prior to WWI. His presidential library and museum is America’s first and the only one to be used by a sitting president. The museum’s interactive and immersive exhibits cover every aspect of the FDR administration, the Roosevelts’ personal history and his struggle with polio.

2. Walkway Over the Hudson 
At 1.28 miles across, and 212 feet high, the Walkway Over the Hudson the longest elevated pedestrian bridge in the world. With access from either side of the river, this New York State Historic Park gives visitors a birds’ eye views of the Hudson River and nearby mountains.

3. Eleanor Roosevelt National Historic Site

Eleanor Roosevelt, was known as the ‘First Lady of the World’. Not only did she served as First Lady, she advocated for women’s rights, civil rights, and was one of the authors of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights adopted by the United Nations. Tour her own personal oasis at the Val-Kill Cottage just up the road from the FDR sites.  

4. Old Rhinebeck Aerodrome
There’s no better way to see the Hudson Valley than taking to the skies in an open air bi-plane ride. Weekend visitors can enjoy air shows featuring the oldest flying plane in America, the 1909 Bleriot. The living history museum also gives visitors the chance to get up close and personal with vintage aeroplanes from the Pioneer, Golden Age and WWI eras of aviation.

5. Trevor Zoo at Millbrook School

A truly unique spot is Trevor Zoo. It is is America’s only AZA accredited zoo located at and ran by a high school. Students from Millbrook School care for more than 180 exotic and indigenous animals including eight endangered species. Meeting the students and animals in this intimate zoo setting is a memorable experience for anyone who visits.

6. Dia:Beacon

Dia Art Foundation's collection is housed in a naturally lit, 300,000 square-foot facility, including art from the 1960s to the present. It is one of the largest exhibition spaces in the country for modern and contemporary art. Enjoy large scale installations from renowned artists such as Richard Serra, Dan Flavin and Agnes Martin.

7. The Culinary Institute of America

The Culinary Institute of America is an institution made up of five campuses, with Hyde Park being the largest and primary of the group. It is the only located on the east coast and welcomes visitors to enjoy student-led tours as well as dining in one of their amazing restaurants open to the public. 

8. Orvis Sandanona

Sure, there are plenty of shooting grounds around the US, but did you know that Orvis Sandanona in Millbrook is the oldest permitted shotgun club in the country? The pristine grounds and fully-catered lodge offer a top-notch location for corporate outings, an individual sporting experience, private instruction or even a bachelor or bachelorette party!

9. The Fisher Center for Performing Arts at Bard College

This eye-catching structure sits upon the gorgeous campus at Bard College and home of their performing arts program. Designed by architect Frank Gehry, the 110,000 square-foot center contains two theaters, four rehearsal studios for dance, theater and music, and professional support facilities. The Fisher center offers a number of different performances open to the public year-round and has been called the ‘best small concert hall in the United States by The New Yorker.

10. Appalachian Trail 

Although it may just be a small section, we are proud to be a county where people can experience a slice of the Appalachian Trail. In fact, 30 miles of the trail pass through southeastern Dutchess, including 4,000 acres of protected parkland. Visitors can come enjoy outdoor recreation including hiking, biking, snow shoeing and cross-country skiing. 

  

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