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Between swimming holes in summer and ski slopes in winter, the Catskill Mountains in southeastern New York hold plenty of year-round appeal. But if you ask us, the area reaches its true potential in fall, when the landscape explodes in color. Now’s the perfect time to make the roughly two-hour journey for a weekend filled with mountain hikes, apple picking or just planting yourself in front of a fireplace with a hot beverage. So pack up your plaid and literally head for the hills to do everything or absolutely nothing at these cozy upstate retreats. 

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Scribner s catskill lodge
Douglas Lyle Thompson

Scribner's Catskill Lodge (HUNTER, NY)

Located in the heart of the Catskills, this 1960s building two hours north of the city was recently updated by the Brooklyn-based creative team Studio Tack to give it a contemporary aesthetic that’s like catnip for hipster city kids. The more than 20-acre hilltop property is basically a one-stop shop for an autumnal weekend, with its communal fire pit, an on-site restaurant that boasts 270-degree views of the landscape and a locally sourced menu, and seasonal activities including fly-fishing and guided mountain hikes. 

13 Scribner Hollow Rd., Hunter;

north branch inn catskills
Courtesy of North Branch Inn

North Branch Inn (NORTH BRANCH, NY)

Newly restored, this historic 14-room guesthouse in the tiny village of North Branch (blink and you’ll miss it) sits on seven acres of fields with rustic gardens and sunken pools. After exploring the region’s famed orchards, curl up in the library with a book, enjoy a few frames at the inn’s original early-20th-century bowling alley or take in a movie at the inn’s small theater outfitted with repurposed seats from Radio City Music Hall.  

869 N. Branch Rd.; North Branch;

sprucetown catskills
Courtesy of Spruceton Inn

Spruceton Inn (WEST KILL, NY)

Billing itself as “a Catskills bed and bar,” this nine-room retreat will wet your whistle upon arrival: The knotty-pine front desk also doubles as a bar serving beer, wine, cider, whiskey and simple cocktails. One hard cider too many at check-in? Take a load off in a hammock near one of the property’s five fire pits, watch the sunset and settle in for s’mores under the stars. 

2080 Spruceton Rd., West Kill;

roxbury catskills
Courtesy of The Roxbury

The Roxbury (ROXBURY, NY)

Feeling nostalgic? Each guest room at the Roxbury is decorated in a Technicolor theme inspired by a famous TV show, film or cartoon of the ’60s and ’70s: “The Mod Pod,” “Golightly a Go-Go” and “Samantha’s Cloud,” to name a few. The property boasts two spas, which offer a hot tub, a dry sauna and a steam room made of 100 percent recycled green car windshield glass. Groovy, baby. 

2258 County Hwy. 41, Roxbury;

nine river road catskills
Courtesy of Nine River Road


Originally built in 1884, this former furniture store is now an intimate eight-room inn within walking distance of downtown Callicoon’s art galleries, bars, restaurants, artisanal cheese shop and Sunday farmers’ market. Grab a complimentary bike to explore town, mingle with other guests on the property’s screened-in porch or warm your bones by the potbelly stove. 

9 River Rd., Callicoon; 

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