Two counties equals twice the fun

Winter in Upstate New York is enjoyed with equal parts breathtaking beauty, cozy culinary experiences and wintry outdoor activities. In particular, Cortland County and Oswego County present the best elements of the snowy season.

Depending upon which county you choose to visit first, these fun-filled destinations are just 3 hours from Ottawa, give or take.

Whether you’re considering a family vacation or a friend’s weekend away, these two counties offer twice the fun for everyone.

Cortland County 

Hampton Inn

Conveniently located just off the I-81, the Hampton Inn promises a comfortable stay for those seeking to explore Cortland County. With free Wi-Fi, private ensuites, a heated indoor pool and complimentary breakfast, you will feel right at home in one of 68 cozy rooms.

Brix Pubaria

Brix Pubaria is a casual eatery located in the heart of Cortland on Main Street. Boasting an industrial atmosphere with exposed brick walls and hardwood floors, Brix Pubaria serves some of the best brick-oven pizza in the county.

Bru 64 and Rex's Pasta in Cortland County, New York.

Bru 64

Just a few doors down from the pub, you will find local hotspot Bru 64. Coffee shop by day, live entertainment venue by night. Owners Judd and Kelly are as passionate about craft coffee, beer and wine as they are about the town they live in.

Grab a cold one and catch a performance by some outstanding musicians when you stop by Bru 64.

Lime Hollow Nature Centre

Lime Hollow’s Executive Director, Glenn Reisweber’s (a.k.a. “Fun Glenn”) passion and appreciation for the great outdoors is contagious. Since 1993, this exceptionally well-maintained nature centre offers locals and tourists alike an opportunity to connect physically, emotionally and spiritually with over 447 acres of pure outdoor bliss.

With 12 miles of entrance-fee free trails, dense forest, plenty of ponds and more, a visit to Lime Hollow is a chance to get lost in the wonder of nature.

Rex’s Pasta

Featuring homemade, authentic Italian cuisine like Mama’s Spag and Balls and Aunt Josie’s Special cavatelli, the only thing larger than the portion sizes at Rex’s Pasta are the staff’s hearts.

This family-owned restaurant is run by sisters Haley and Heather, who named the establishment after their father, Rex.

Après-ski on the deck at Greek Peak Mountain Resort.

Greek Peak Mountain Resort

Greek Peak Mountain Resort is Central New York’s largest ski resort and home to 55 trails and an average of 122 inches of snowfall each year. Whether you enjoy skiing, snowboarding, cross-country skiing or snowshoeing, this is one Cortland County experience you don’t want to miss out on. Is it your first time hitting the slopes or looking to brush up on your skills? Greek Peak’s friendly staff provide lessons in a comfortable learning environment.

If skiing and snowboarding isn't for you, get your adrenaline pumping at the Greek Peak’s 18-lane Winter Tubing Centre or experience pure excitement on the Nor’easter Mountain Coaster that takes you through every peak, turn and dip of the mountain.

At the base of the mountain, a two-tier heated outdoor deck awaits, making for the perfect place to enjoy your après-ski after a long day on the hill. Dine mountain side at Trax Pub & Grill where you’ll find over 20 different beers on tap.

The atrium of Hope Lake Lodge in Cortland Country, New York.

Hope Lake Lodge

In close proximity to the hill, Greek Peak’s Hope Lake Lodge exceeds expectations with sweeping panoramic views, wooden accents, and grandiose main entrance. Each luxury-condominium style suite features a fully-equipped kitchen, large living space, fireplace and flat screen TV.

The lodge’s rustic charm carries throughout the entire hotel and into Acorn Grill, a casual dining area with a large selection of traditional American fare.

Oswego County 

People from all over the world come to cast a line in the Douglaston Salmon Run (DSR), a two-and-a-half mile stretch at the lower end of the Salmon River. Over the years, the Douglaston Salmon Run has evolved into a fishing experience for every type of angler, even newcomers seeking a personalized approach to learning the art of fly fishing.

Fly fishing with Douglaston Salmon Run in Oswego County, New York.

Specializing in fly fishing catch-and-release, Jay Peck is one of many DSR guides. With over 20-years of experience fishing and guiding on the DSR, Jay will teach you as much about the history of the Run as he will about the sport.

A little preparation goes a long way for this outdoor sport. Be sure to wear layers of warm clothing and bring extra socks and gloves in case yours get wet.

Millhouse Market

Serving breakfast, lunch and dinner, Millhouse Market is a quaint deli specializing in over 30 different mouth-watering sandwiches on a selection of freshly baked bread. Fun fact: each sandwich is named after historical persons in the surrounding area.

Accompanying the eatery is a gift shop featuring local, one-of-a-kind products that would make for great souvenirs of your time in Oswego County.

Tailwater Lodge & Tailwater Restaurant

No Upstate experience is complete without an overnight stay at Tailwater Lodge. From luxurious bedding to spa-like baths, rooms at the lodge are designed with comfort in mind. Take advantage of the lodge’s close proximity to hundreds of trails waiting to be explored by foot, ski or snowshoe.

Enjoy fine dining at Tailwater Bar + Restaurant, where nautical flavours and metropolitan flair unite to form a menu of thoughtfully prepared dishes. Round out your stay with a visit to the tap room, a soak in the outdoor hot tub or a friendly round of foosball in the game room.

Want to learn more about these two counties? Visit and to plan your vacation.