With its quaint lakefront downtown, nearby Whiteface Mountain, and nostalgic Olympic venues, Lake Placid, New York, offers the perfect combination of tourism energy and small-town atmosphere. The mountain lake town features year-round activities, festivities, and adventures. This photo itinerary will help you plan your visit.
Buy the Olympic Sites Passport for access to the Olympic Sports Complex, Olympic Jumping Complex, Olympic Center, and certain activities at Whiteface Mountain. It also provides discounts on exciting entertainment like Extreme Tubing and Yoga on the Mountain.
Day One: Olympic Venue Tour
Start your day with a visit to the Olympic Ski Jumping Complex.
Take a short chairlift ride up the mountain, then an elevator to the top of the ski jump for a panoramic view of the Adirondack High Peaks. If you’re lucky, you’ll catch some training exercises or competitions and get to see athletes ski off the practice jump into the pool. In the winter, they offer tubing – but don’t worry, you don’t tube down the ski jump.
Next, head to the Olympic Center where you can tour the Lake Placid Olympic Museum, skate on the Olympic Speed Skating Oval (winter only) and see the rink where the 1980 US Olympic Hockey Team won the gold medal in the tournament that came to be known as the “Miracle on Ice.” We got some coffee on our way through town, then sat and enjoyed watching an intense local high school hockey practice.
From the Olympic Center you can walk along Mirror Lake in downtown Lake Placid enjoying unique shops like Just Bead It – where you can make your own bracelet or necklace or simply shop for craft supplies – and eateries like Smoke Signals – where you can savor melt-in-your-mouth brisket or pulled pork tacos!
Day Two: Mountain Adventure Tour
Visit Whiteface Mountain for adventures ranging from a relaxing gondola ride with incredible views to a thrilling bobsled experience that will rattle your brain! Whiteface offers tons of activities year-round such as skiing, tubing, skating, gondola rides, bobsled and luge rides, zamboni rides, mountain biking, horseback riding, air bag jumping, and more!
Day Three: Serenity Hiking Tour
Hike at High Falls Gorge and enjoy four beautiful waterfalls and quiet forest trails. Safe access is available in all seasons and snowshoe rentals are offered in the winter. A half-mile round-trip hike provides waterfall views and even a glass-floor walkway that suspends you over the rushing waters of the Ausable River. The one-mile, wooded nature trail is simply stunning in the fall foliage and exhilarating in snowshoes!
After your outdoor adventure, enjoy lunch at their unexpectedly cozy River View Cafe. Tucked in the back of the visitors center/gift shop, this little cafe offers excellent soups, sandwiches, baked goods, coffees, and a beer and wine bar to help you refuel after your hike. There’s an outdoor picnic area during the warmer months, but we loved relaxing by the fireplace in their rustic, authentic, Adirondack décor.
Whether you’re seeking relaxation or thrills (or a little of both!), Lake Placid has what you’re looking for.