Insider’s Guide to the 1000 Islands

With so much to explore in the 1000 Islands, it’s hard to know where to begin! As you plan your summer vacation to the region, consider these five insider tips on where to go and what to do. From experiences like mid-week camping trips, to hitting local farmer’s markets, this is your guide to the perfect 1000 Islands fun.

Catch a Movie Under the Stars

After a long day of exploring the region, nothing beats sitting back and catching a movie at one of the area’s drive-in theatres. Head over to the Black River Drive-in for a quick flick, and don’t forget to enter in the pizza drawing during intermission! If you are feeling a more 50’s vibe, hop in your car and cruise over to the Bay Drive-in  in Alexandria Bay, which is complete with a throwback 50’s style café and indoor viewing area.

Listen to the Music on the Water 

Waterfront concerts are plentiful along the water and there’s no coverage charge.  From jazz to brass ensembles, country and contemporary, listen to music, watch the sunsets and the boats cruise by on Sundays on the Village Green in  Cape Vincent  or in Sackets Harbor on the Battlefield, Wednesdays in Alexandria Bay or check out Frink Park in Clayton on Thursdays!

Stop in at a Local Farmers’ Market

If you’re feeling hungry or just looking for something local to take home, stop in to one of our local farmers markets, meet the farmers who grow the produce and pick up some fresh goods.  Located in Alex Bay, Cape VincentClayton, and Watertown, our farmers’ markets offer a variety of local produce, baked goods, meats and cheeses!

Play at a State Park

Experience the 1000 Islands in its purest form at a regional State Park. More than 15 New York State Parks dot Lake Ontario, the St. Lawrence River, and several boat-access only islands.  Preservation is the main focus of most of these pristine natural wilderness areas, but they are also open to many outdoor recreation activities! Pitch a tent for a simple mid-week stay at a campsite on Wellesley Island or at Cedar Point. Spend the day on the beach, hike trails, or let the kids burn off some energy at the playground.

Taste Local Craft Creations

The 1000 Islands region is home to a wide variety of wineries, craft breweries, and small-batch distilleries. Many use locally-sourced ingredients to create their tasty brews. Visit these craft beverage creators to sample wine made with sweet cold-weather grapes, beers brewed with  hops grown right in New York State, and spirits distilled from the finest grains.  Check event calendars to coordinate your stay with a special craft beverage event, like Grape Blossom Festival  at Thousand Islands Winery.  The winery’s first on-site festival of the summer season welcomes local artisan and craft vendors to the grounds, so you can sip and shop!

Whether you’re a first-time visitor or a returning fan of the 1000 Islands, use this guide for an unforgettable season of adventure. Fit in more fun by staying in our unique local lodging. With 1000 islands, and even more possibilities, you won’t find another place quite like it!