As you travel north on I-87, pulling away from the whirlwind that is New York City, you can feel the pressure leaving your body as the Catskill Mountains come into view to the west. Within two hours of the city lies a secret many urbanites have visited but most try hard to keep to themselves. The Village of Andes, NY.
Listed among the New York Times ‘Great Escapes’
Andes is small in terms of year-round residents, but large on what makes it most precious: peace. Far enough away from crowds but close enough to be an easy drive, Andes offers visitors a chance to explore a huge variety of experiences. Being nestled in the Catskills, there are some you would expect like hiking, biking, fishing, hunting, skiing and other outdoor pursuits … or just sitting on a rocking-chair porch and doing nothing. But more than just a great place to take in nature, Andes is at the center of a world of cultural experience many who simply drive through never see. In fact, the village has been listed among the New York Times Great Escapes.
With many from NYC calling Andes home, both part-time and full-time, there is another connection between Andes and the city. One of the four primary reservoirs that supply New York with its world-famous water is situated within the town’s limits. The Pepacton Reservoir, covering 7,000 acres, offers visitors amazing outdoor experiences like fishing, canoeing and kayaking. Because the water is part of the city drinking supply, motorized access on the water is limited, making this a very quiet, peaceful water-sport spot! There are several well-maintained trails around the water, and up the mountain back towards town.
At the center of town along Main street, you will find The Andes Hotel offering visitors delicious meals, comfortable rooms and grand porch from which to watch the comings and goings of a small village. But more than just a great place to dine and stay, the hotel is a hub of year-round activity with music, dancing, and special events. You may even see neighbor Kelsey Grammer, who has a near-by 1900s farm house.
Across the street, is the Andes General Store, where you can have an exceptional breakfast of Argyle Farms steak and eggs, stock up on deli sandwiches for your mountain hike, or just grab a mug of locally roasted Fosterbuilt coffee.
And if you’re in the mood for a bit more, wander to the alley behind the hotel to find a grand jewel by the name of Two Old Tarts. Do not miss the Smoked BBQ Beef Brisket. WOW! Many have found the peace and quiet of Andes to be the perfect antidote to urban life. This is not a recent development. Artists of many stripes have found Andes to be a haven. Main street has small shops, galleries and a wonderful museum housed in one of the area’s most architecturally significant buildings, the Hunting Tavern. A museum unlike most you’ve experienced, the Hunting Tavern traces stories of masquerading Indians, and feudal serfdom. Known as the center of the Anti-Rent Rebellion, in the 1840s Andes was the site of a violent campaign in which Catskill farmers successfully overcame a feudal land system of absentee ownership surviving from the days of Dutch settlement. It was a pivotal incident in New York State history, leading to a constitutional convention and legal changes, and people in Andes still speak of it with pride.
There is much to do among the hills, valleys and alleys of Andes, NY. Spring, summer, winter or fall, this secret along State Route 28 is one you may soon be calling home, second home!