Explore Essex

An Enchanting Escape

Rated one of the most charming towns in the Northeast, Essex is the ideal destination, teeming with historic allure and outdoorsy adventures perfect for year round visits. There’s so much to see around our hotel near Lake Champlain, making it a centrally located home base for exploring the region. Now, discover why so many travelers have discovered Essex for their relaxing getaway.


Outdoor Recreation

HIKING: Champlain Area Trails (CATS) offers trails for hiking, skiing, snowshoeing, birding, and picnicking in the Champlain Valley of New York State’s Adirondack Park. For a full map of the trails, click here.

ADIRONDACK HIGH PEAKS: For more strenuous terrain, hike the 46 Adirondack High Peaks, with elevation ranging from 3,820 to 5,344 ft. All but four of the 46 peaks are right here in Essex County, many within 40 minutes of the Inn. Each offers a unique trekking experience. It’s even possible to hike two or three peaks during a single day.

BIKING: Bicyclists consider the Lake Champlain Bikeways some of the finest cycling in North America.

FISHING: Lake Champlain—with its abundance of trout, salmon, walleye, smelt, and bass—is the four-season home to some of the best fresh-water fishing in the country.

CROSS COUNTRY SKIING: Within minutes of the Inn, dozens of pristine trails ramble through the hills, woods and pastures, skirting frozen lakes and rivers. While the quarry trail is a five-minute walk from the Inn, both the Mt. Van Hoevenberg Cross Country Ski Center and the Cascade Cross Country Ski Center offer groomed trails in nearby Lake Placid.

DOWNHILL SKIING: Whiteface Mountain, known as the Olympic Mountain, is 40 minutes from the Inn.

YOGA: Yoga classes are held regularly on property and private sessions can be scheduled.

PICKLEBALL: Five outdoor pickleball courts are within a five-minute drive of the Inn, as is a year-round indoor court that can be booked for you by the Inn team.


Day Trips

VERMONT: Just one block  east of the Inn and a ferry ride across Champlain Lake, guests can easily visit several towns in Vermont for the day. The ferry to Charlotte leaves Essex regularly. From there, Middlebury, Burlington, and Shelburne are easy to access with their museums, restaurants, and more.

AUSABLE CHASM: Established in 1870, the Chasm is one of the oldest attractions in the U.S., offering something for everyone to enjoy. Explore up to five miles of scenic walking/hiking trails, hop on a raft for a float tour, go tubing or rappelling, or try a lantern tour. The adventure park also features an 18-hole disc golf course, mountain bike rentals, and more. 

LAKE PLACID: Home to the Winter Olympics in 1932 and 1980, Lake Placid is only 45 minutes away. Window shop on the town’s quaint Main Street and stop for lunch at one of the more than 30 restaurants. Lake Placid offers venues for competitions and recreation year-round, including the Olympic Center, Olympic Jumping Complex, Bobsled Experience, Biking Center, and Whiteface Mountain.

SHELBURNE VINEYARD: Just seven miles north of the Charlotte ferry dock, Shelburne Vineyard produces some of the finest cold hardy wines in the region. Stroll the vineyards, take a picnic, and enjoy a wine tasting.


Local Cultural Activities

ADIRONDACK ART ASSOCIATION: Located across the street from the Inn, this art association features work from local artists and craftsmen and is open to the public for viewing and shopping.


DEPOT THEATER: Offering professional summer theater in Westport, the Depot Theater is only 12 miles south of the Inn. Committed to promoting and providing exposure to the performing arts in the Adirondacks, the theater invites all to “take a journey without leaving the station.” 


ESSEX THEATER: Located in the Masonic Lodge, on the Inn-side of the ferry dock, the Essex Theater also offers several productions every summer.


THE GRANGE HALL IN WALLONBURG: Through a partnership with the Champlain Valley Film Society, the Grange Hall offers current and classic movie showings year round. Located a five-minute drive from the Inn, The Grange also brings in speakers, musicians and offers other community events open to the public.


MEADOWMOUNT SCHOOL OF MUSIC: This summer school for young musicians is located in Westport and holds concerts throughout the summer. 



FORT TICONDEROGA: Experience an action packed day with weapon demos, museum exhibits, living history, family programs and more. Explore 2,000 acres of the Fort’s stunning Adirondack landscape with garden tours, hiking trails and canoe rentals. Open May through October. 




In Essex

The hamlet of Essex, a national historic district, is known for its natural beauty, tranquility and architectural treasures. Shops and eateries are open throughout the year, with an expanded offerings in the warmer months.

For updates on what’s happening in Essex, check out the town of Essex Website, here.

BEGGS POINT:  Just one block east of the Inn, Beggs Point is a town park with a playground, beach and dock.

ESSEX FARM: The town of Essex is a hub for the burgeoning Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) movement. Located one mile from the Inn, Essex Farm is owned by Mark and Kristin Kimball and features a full diet organic farm, all powered by draft horses. They offer a farm stand and farm tours. Kristin’s bestselling book, The Dirty Life, can be found in our library for you to read. Several former Essex Farm hands have started their own CSA’s in our community, including Full and By Farm and Reber Rock Farm.



GOLF: There are two nearby public golf courses:

Westport Country Club, 18 holes, 7000 yds, in Westport 

Willsboro Country Club, 9 holes, 2579 yds, public, in Willsboro 

BOWLING: The Willsborough Bowling Center is five miles north of the Inn.

TENNIS and PICKLEBALL:  There are two tennis courts and five pickleball courts available for public use, both three miles north of the Inn.



THE INN’S TAVERN is, of course, recognized widely as one of the best restaurants in the North Country. Serving dinner all year round, on Friday – Sunday with a seasonal menu that changes weekly, we recommend making a reservation to dine at the Tavern. For an intimate dinner experience with friends and family, book our private room known as The Stables.


PINK PIGJust south of the ferry dock, this eatery is an informal year-round gathering spot for locals and visitors alike. Open for breakfast and lunch, the Pink Pig also sells antiques, cottage furniture, farmhouse décor and gifts.


THE OLD DOCK: Local cuisine meets casual lakeside dining at this restaurant by the ferry dock. The Old Dock is open seasonally for lunch and dinner.


ESSEX ICE CREAM SHOP: Cool off on a hot summer day with ice cream. Located just north of the Inn.

DOGWOOD BREAD COMPANY: Located in Wadhams on the Boquet River, find breads and pizza, homemade soups and sandwiches.


TURTLE ISLAND CAFE: Offers year round dining in Willsboro.


OLD ORCHARD PLACE: Located in Willsboro, here you can enjoy lunch or dinner with handcrafted pizza specialties and a wide variety of other delicious food and drink.


INDIAN BAY MARINA: Located on Willsboro Point, just 15 minutes from the Inn. Seasonal dining, serving lunch and dinner. Open 7 days a week.


THE BARN DOOR TAVERN: A stone’s throw north of the Inn, this is where locals and out-of-towners are warmly greeted over a glass of beer or wine while listening to talented musicians and/or playing pool, scrabble or darts.