Welcome To

Columbia County

Rolling scenery and quaint country towns in Upstate New York.

 

Welcome to Columbia County

Columbia County is an area with quaint country towns, villages, and hamlets located to the south of Albany in Upstate New York. The county stretches from the Hudson River in the west to New York State’s border with Massachusetts in the east. Columbia County has a landscape of gently rolling hills with views of the Catskill Mountains to the west and the Berkshires to the east. The county’s fertile agricultural land features farms, orchards, and vineyards. Columbia County also offers numerous historic sites, state parks, and lakes. Columbia County is around a two-hour drive from New York City and just 30 minutes from the Capital District.

What to Love

  • Quaint country towns and villages
  • Rolling hills and agricultural land
  • Historic sites and homes
  • State parks and lakes

Columbia County Communities

Columbia County is comprised of one city, 18 towns, and numerous villages, hamlets, and census-designated places. Hudson is the county seat and a thriving hub of art and independent businesses. Though Hudson is the only Columbia County community officially recognized as a city, its population of around 6,000 is smaller than the nearby village of Kinderhook. Real estate in this historic village includes beautiful large homes dating as far back as the 18th century. At the intersection of State Routes 22 and 23, Hillsdale is a charming community close to the Massachusetts state line with a historic town center featuring great local businesses. This small farming town of 2,000 residents has colorful Victorian homes. South of Hillsdale on Route 22, Copake is named for its proximity to Copake Lake. This small town of around 3,600 people features large and attractive single-family homes in a range of styles. The town of Ghent consists of several hamlets surrounded by rolling agricultural land. Other popular destinations in Columbia County include the idyllic small towns of Chatham and Austerlitz.

Dining, Entertainment & Shopping

Conde Nast Traveler describes Hudson as the trendiest town in New York State. Red Dot opened in 1999 as an early trailblazer of Hudson’s now booming dining scene. Red Dot’s delightful coastal menu includes seafood risotto, mussels mariniere, fish and chips, and delicious Belgian frites. Pan-Latin eatery Lil’ Deb’s Oasis pairs flavorful cuisine with craft beer in a colorful funky space. Hudson also offers grass-fed burgers at the retro Grazin’ Diner, rotisserie chicken at Kitty’s Market, and contemporary comfort cuisine served with local beers at Wunderbar Bistro

Samascott Orchards
in Kinderhook has a farmers’ market, bakery, and ice cream shop. Visitors can also pick their own fresh fruit to take home. Kinderhook’s dining options include hearty German cuisine at The Flammerie, cheese boards and beer at Saisonnier, and elevated pub grub paired with an extensive beer and wine selection at Dyad Wine Bar. 


Overlooking Copake Lake and the golf course at Copake Country Club, The Greens is a fine choice for sophisticated farm-to-fork fare. The Clock Tower Pub & Grill in Copake’s village center serves delicious steaks and diverse daily specials.

Things to Do

The Martin Van Buren National Historic Site in Kinderhook preserves the Lindenwald mansion and estate of the United States’ eighth president. Guided tours are available of Lindenwald’s 36 rooms, which retain their original furnishings and décor from the mid-1800s. 

Columbia County features many outdoor recreation areas and scenic spots. Copake Lake is a picturesque destination for fishing, boating, and jet skiing with two marinas. The adjacent Copake Country Club has a public golf course designed by Devereux Emmet with enchanting views of the lake. The 1,569-acre Lake Taghkanic State Park features lush forests surrounding a lake with boat launches and a swimming beach. Just across the state line in Massachusetts, hiking trails ascend to gorgeous Bash Bish Falls in the Taconic Mountains. The popular skiing destination of Catamount Mountain Resort straddles the state boundary close to Hillsdale. 

Copake Auction House
is the county’s longest-running auction house with a special focus on bicycles. Every Saturday between May and October, Copake Hillsdale Farmers Market is full of vendors offering bountiful produce from local farms. Around 15,000 attendees descend on Hillsdale’s Dodds Farm each August for the Falcon Ridge Folk Festival.

Schools

Columbia County is served by numerous school districts. Highlights include:

  • Chatham High School, Public, 9-12
  • Germantown Junior-Senior High School, Public, 7-12
  • Ichabod Crane Senior High School, Public, 9-12



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