9 Favorite Finger Lakes History Stops

During your stay near the Finger Lakes near Rochester New York, there are a variety of fun history stops to make your trip fun and memorable. We’ve put together a list of the Finger Lakes 9 favorite history stops to learn more about the story of the area.


Granger Homestead & Carriage Museum

[Photo credit: Finger Lakes Visitors Connection]



#1- Granger Homestead & Carriage Museum, Canandaigua

At the Granger Homestead & Carriage Museum you can take a tour of the large collection of carriages from the early 19th century. This is a mansion built for the Postmaster General for two U.S. Presidents, Madison and Jefferson, Gideon Granger in 1816. This mansion is filled with historic carriages where you can take tours anytime throughout the year.


#2 Bristol Valley Theater, Naples

The Bristol Valley Theater has been producing live theater to audiences for over 50 years. Professional performers from all over the country come to perform musicals, plays, concerts, and family events for visitors and locals alike. Go to a show to enjoy the entertaining and dramatic side of the Finger Lakes.


#3- Bloomfield Antique Country Mile, Bloomfield

The Bloomfield Antique Country Mile features numerous antique shops that hold countless valuables and treasures from the past. Take a stroll into these many authentic antique stores to find old furniture, ornaments, housewares, and a variety of other trinkets that represent the wonders of the past.


Canandaigua Lady

[Photo credit: Finger Lakes Visitors Connection]



#4- Canandaigua Lady, Canandaigua

If you enjoy 19th century history, you might enjoy taking a boat ride tour of the Canandaigua Lake on an authentic replica of a double-decked paddlewheel boat similar to the steamboats that were used between 1820-1930. You can opt for a simple boat ride tour of the lake, or step it up a notch with a full cruise that includes a narrated history, lunch, dinner, or another unique themed event.


#5- Downtown Clifton Springs, Clifton Springs

If you are a Victorian-era enthusiast, taking a stroll through downtown Clifton Springs will give you a wonderful tour of the beautiful Victorian architecture that is present throughout the town. Here you can even take a glimpse at houses listed on the National Register of Historic Places while walking down East Main Street. In addition to historic homes, there are a wide variety of restaurants, parks, shops, and gardens to tour as well. The Foster Cottage Museum is also located here and offers free admission during the summers for you to learn about the history of the area.


#6- Cobblestone Houses

Around the Finger Lakes you can find a large assortment of beautifully built historic cobblestone buildings. These houses were built out of rocks found on the shores of nearby Lake Ontario and originate before the Civil War. You can find these buildings throughout the many towns of the Finger Lakes and admire their beauty and architecture. A few of the most historic cobblestone buildings in this area are the Geneva Cobblestone Restaurant and the 1837 Cobblestone Cottage Bed and Breakfast in Geneva. Take a tour of these beautiful buildings to learn about the history of this architecture.


Smith Opera House

[Photo credit: Finger Lakes Visitors Connection]


#7 Smith Opera House, Geneva

While visiting the Finger Lakes, be sure to stop by the Smith Opera House to add some century old culture and art into your lives. This theater has been around for over a century and has been home to a large variety of performing arts, concerts, dance, and orchestras. In addition to these musical performances, there are also theatrical performances of comedy, community theatre, documentaries, and house films. Take a trip to the Smith Opera House for some entertainment you will never forget.


#8 The Holloway House, Bloomfield

The Holloway House is a historic restaurant that originated as an early 1800s stagecoach tavern. You can still visit this restaurant to enjoy a bite to eat and have a taste of the historic recipes made by Sally Lunn. Feast on fresh Sally Lunn bread, roasted turkey, crab cakes and even green Killarney Kress salad while enjoying the company of family or friends. Learn about the history behind this antique restaurant while also enjoying a delicious meal.


#9- Naples Hotel Ghost Hunt, Napels

If you are into the thrills of ghost hunts, the Napels Hotel can be a great place for you to visit while up in the Finger Lakes. Since 1895, this hotel has accommodated numerous travelers who have come and gone. However, there are a few that never left and remain on the premises visiting with new guests. You can enjoy a dinner and ghost tour at this hotel and meet some of the spirits that have stayed and haunted the building.