New York

Binghamton’s Best

Elevate yourself with a hot air balloon rideThe bowl shaped valley of Binghamton, New York is located near the Pennsylvania border.  Its main claim to fame is being the birthplace of IBM, but there is so much more to this popular city.  With over 9000 acres of state forest land, and a focus on science and education, this is a great place to explore the great outdoors. Couple that with its historic charm, and Binghamton is quickly emerging as a great place to visit.  Set at the meeting point of the Susquehanna and Chenango Rivers, there is plenty of natural beauty here, inspiring visitors who are drawn to its banks from all over the world.

And, since accommodations are affordable too, what’s not to like?  Check out the best things to do while you’re here:

• No doubt, the biggest draw here is the outdoor lifestyle, so it comes as no surprise that Confluence Park is a great way to spend the day. Hike, bike or walk on the Riverwalk trail as you wind through the beautiful scenery of the woods and the riverbanks. In fact, there are many parks around town, which offer a variety of cool activities for families.

• With huge open spaces, Binghamton is the perfect spot to take to the skies.  Elevate yourself with a hot air balloon ride. You will never forget the stunning sights of the rolling hills from above.  Check out Southern Tier Balloon Tours, their twice daily experience is top notch and will treat you to exquisite views and service.

• Some consider Binghamton to be the carousel capital of the world.  With that in mind there is a fantastic collection of antique wooden merry go rounds throughout the city.  Children and parents alike will surely feel some sense of nostalgia at these hand crafted wooden works of art.

• Check out Ross Park and the nations 5th oldest zoo.  There are a variety of exotic animals at this Binghamton staple, in business since 1875.

• Stare at the stars at the Kopernik Observatory and Science Center. This nationally renowned research center has three professional telescopes and is open every Friday night to the public. There are several unique programs and classes offered throughout the year, so check their calendar for your specific dates.

• If you prefer the planetarium, the only one in the region is located right in the middle of the city.  The Roberson Museum and Science center will tickle your scientific curiosities with their interactive art and science exhibits.

• Satisfy your culinary senses with a speidie.  If you have never heard of this Greater Binghamton specialty, you are not alone.  This delicious delicacy actually originated in Italy.  You won’t be disappointed with this yummy, marinated, meaty treat.

• Binghamton is making a name for itself in the competitive craft brew industry.  There are several new handcrafted breweries popping up around town, many of which have built their reputations on their unique somewhat bizarre (but delicious) creations.  Check out Walter Street Brewing Company for some of the best tasting beer in town.  The rival North Brewery continues to push the envelopes of tradition by experimenting with some rare (to the brew industry) ingredients such as rhubarb and lavender. Finally, for a unique vibe, visit Binghamton Brewing Company which has taken up residence in a fully restored former firehouse. This relatively new niche is a great way to interact with the friendly and welcoming locals.

• If you would rather savor a glass of wine than a pint of beer, Binghamton has that too.  Year round wine tastings showcase the flavors of the region at the Black Bear Winery. This lovely location is a great way to slow the pace and enjoy the afternoon.

There is always something new and exciting to explore in Binghamton. This affordable up and coming hot spot is experiencing a boost thanks to its focus on the outdoor lifestyle and emerging craft brew scene.  A new crop of visitors is eager to explore what was once the best-kept secret in New York.