A visit to the village of Sleepy Hollow takes you directly to the area made famous by author Washington Irving. It is here you'll find the Old Dutch Church, the Sleepy Hollow Cemetery and nearby Pocantico River, brought to life in literature by Ichabod Crane's legendary encounter with the Headless Horseman.
Experience the beauty of the Hudson River with a stroll through Kingsland Point Park, where visitors can also see the historic 1883 Lighthouse at Sleepy Hollow and the Tappan Zee Bridge. A walk on the Croton Aqueduct Trailway will take hikers right past the Old Dutch Church and cemetery, where gravestones date back to the 1600s and carry the names of some of the area's earliest Dutch settlers.
Visit the Union Church of Pocantico Hills and take in the beauty of the stained glass by artists Marc Chagall and Henri Matisse. Tour Philipsburg Manor with its working grist mill, farm and manor house for a glimpse into Colonial life. Here you can board a shuttle bus to visit Kykuit, the Rockefeller family estate. Historic attractions, beautiful river views and picturesque tree-lined streets boasting beautiful homes make Sleepy Hollow a must-see stop on a tour of the Historic Hudson River Towns. For more information, see www.sleepyhollowny.gov, orwww.sleepyhollowtarrytownchamber.com
The 1883 Lighthouse at Sleepy Hollow: A trip to this historic lighthouse begins at Kingsland Point Park. Listed on the National Register of Historic Places, the lighthouse offers nature and historic heritage programs on a monthly basis and features exhibits of logbooks and chronicles, photographs and furnishings that illustrate what life was like in a lighthouse more than 100 years ago. Guided tours for groups are available by reservation only. Admission to the lighthouse is $5 ($4 for seniors and children). Call for tour information. Palmer Avenue off Route 9. (914) 631-1440.
Kykuit: This magnificent house and gardens was the home to four generations of the Rockefeller family. Tours include the house, gardens and coach barn. Advance reservations are not required. Kykuit is open from April to November. Admission. (914) 631-9491. www.hudsonvalley.org
Union Church of Pocantico Hills: Works of Marc Chagall and Henri Matisse, two modern-day masters, are featured in the spectacular stained glass windows at this beautiful church, built by the Rockefeller family in the early 20th century. The building boasts the only cycle of church windows created by Chagall in the United States. Open 1-4 p.m. Wednesday through Friday and Sunday from 2-5 p.m., April through December. Groups may schedule special appointments for tours. Donation. Route 448 (Bedford Road) off Route 9. (914) 631-8200.www.hudsonvalley.org
Philipsburg Manor, Upper Mills: This early 17th century farm was owned by the Philipse family and includes a fully furnished Dutch-style manor house, barn and a restored gristmill, gardens, reception center, orientation film and giftshop. Special events are scheduled throughout the year. Open 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily April through December; 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturdays and Sundays, January through March; Closed Thanksgiving, Christmas Day and New Year's Day. Route 9. Admission. (914) 631-3992.www.hudsonvalley.org
Old Croton Aqueduct Trailway. The trailway runs through Headless Horseman country, otherwise known as Sleepy Hollow. Here the trail passes behind the Old Dutch Church cemetery made famous in Washington Irving's stories and crosses the Pocantico River near the spot where the Headless Horseman scared Ichabod Crane. Owned and managed by the New York State Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation, the trailway offers a scenic walk from northern Westchester County into New York City, or vice versa, following the path of the aqueduct that was once used to bring fresh water from the Croton Reservoir to New York City. The trail traverses most of the river towns and while mostly a walking path, it does have some sections suitable for horseback riding. No motorized vehicles are permitted anywhere along the trailway. Many points of access make it easy to walk sections of the trail. Train stations and bus stops are within walking distance, or a quick taxi ride, from almost any place along the path. The trail begins on the south side of the Croton Dam, farthest away from the spillway. Along the way walkers will see old ventilator shafts as well as a weir chamber, used to spill off waste water during floods. Various parts of the trail offer spectacular Hudson River views. The Friends of the Old Croton Aqueduct have published an award-winning map detailing the route of the trail and attractions along the way available, for $5.75 by calling 914-693-4117. For general trailway information, call 914-693-0529, www.aqueduct.org Kingsland Point Park, Palmer Avenue off Route 9 in Sleepy Hollow. A scenic recreation area right on the Hudson River. Take a walk along the river and enjoy a picnic. (914) 366-5109. Guided kayak tours also are offered through Hudson River Recreation, 1-888-321-HUDSON.
Rockefeller State Preserve: Route 117 East. Woodlands, meadows, wetlands and a 24-acre lake offer a wonderful retreat from the city. Come to jog, cross-country ski or study nature. Fishing licenses are required and horseback riding is allowed with a permit. Kykuit, former home of the Rockefellers and one of the valley's most popular attractions, is located adjacent to the preserve. The preserve is open daily. Parking fee. (914) 631-1470.