Family-friendly autumn activities in Lake Placid, NY

Swimming in Lake Placid

Lake Placid, NY is a skiing mecca in winter and a lakeside paradise in summer, but there’s plenty for families to do in the off-season, too.  Families wanting a quiet, beautiful retreat filled with foliage, wildlife, and outdoor adventure can turn Lake Placid in to an autumn playground. Three top picks (plus where to stay!):

  1. Kayak on the lake: Kayaking and canoeing are on offer directly from Lake Placid resorts, or independently, through several area outfitters. Group tours are on tap, but families can just as easily navigate the peaceful lake on their own. Look for wildlife, including many species of birds. Let the kids row while you relax!
  2. Rock climb with Eastern Mountain Sports: That’s right: Lake Placid offers one of New England’s EMS schools,  where families can learn a new outdoor skill together. Rock climbing is one of the most popular picks, with kids as young as four learning the ropes (pun intended!). Instruction is friendly with children, but still professional; kids come away with honest-to-goodness skills. All equipment is included, and the class includes a field trip to climb at a local site.
  3. Learn about Olympic history: Pick up an Olympic Sites Passport and check out the Olympic facilities at Lake Placid. At the Whiteface ski resort, ride the gondola to the top for a view of the region, then tour the Olympic Jumping Complex. There’s even a pool where visitor’s can watch Olympic hopefuls flip and twist into while they train for their sport. Check out the sliding courses next—bobsled competitions were held here—then head to the Olympic museum and ice skating rink to see where Miracle on Ice occurred in the 1980 Olympics.

Stay at beautiful Golden Arrow Lakeside Resort. As the name implies, this hotel is located right on the shore, offers a great swimming beach while the weather cooperates, and family-friendly dining. Golden Arrow stands out in the region for its environmentally-friendly features, including its crushed limestone beach that off-sets the impact of acid rain in the Adirondacks. From this beach, families have full use of kayaks and canoes, and the hotel is a short walk from Lake Placid shopping and dining.