Beyond scenic parks and preserves, Albany County boasts several unexpected places that are perfect for a picturesque stroll. From historic landscapes to sprawling attractions, switch up your go-to spots for a walk with some of the places featured below!
Nestled in Menands, Albany Rural Cemetery is the epitome of the rural (or garden) cemetery movement. With meandering roads, enchanting wooded hills and exquisite burial monuments, it's a picturesque spot for a stroll during all four seasons. Take advantage of the winding paths throughout the 467 acres for a walk or run. Walkers will be in good company with one president (Chester A. Arthur), 34 members of Congress; 8 presidential Cabinet members; 5 New York State governors; and 55 mayors of the City of Albany all buried in the cemetery.
The Empire State Plaza is a unique urban setting for a walk with options to stroll inside and outside! Occupying 98 acres of land, the Empire State Plaza features over a dozen memorials, ninety-two works of Abstract Expressionist art and a myriad of buildings. Go for a walk around the three large reflecting pools, accented by fountains in the summer, to soak up the magnificent architecture of the NYS Capitol Building. Explore the Plaza Art Collection, a treasure trove of modern art, scattered throughout the Empire State Plaza in the concourse, in office buildings and throughout the outdoor spaces. Journey below into the concourse for a quarter-mile stretch of casual dining and shops that connect the the Capitol Building, the Egg Performing Arts Center, the Corning Tower and the New York State Museum underground.
Head to the scenic grounds of Shaker Heritage Society, the site of American's first Shaker settlement, for a unique backdrop for a stroll. From friendly cows, to a rustic barn built in 1915, it is a peaceful escape in Colonie. While going for a walk on the grounds, check out the interpretive signs to learn more information and interesting facts about the Shakers. Footsteps away from the historic Shaker buildings is the 180-acre Ann Lee Pond Nature Preserve. Embark on a tranquil walk along the trails for bold displays of foliage amid the wetlands, forest and meadows.
Even if you are not a student, escape the hustle and bustle with a walk around Indian Pond. Located in the southeast corner of the UAlbany Uptown Campus, this tranquil spot is open for the general public. Explore the walking trails and venture across the bridge at this hidden gem.
Located on the edge of the city of Albany, Capital Hills Golf Course features extensive grounds with rolling hills and a trail. While the golf course is in season, early bird walkers and runners are welcome to visit before the course opens for the day. Once the golf course closes for the season in late autumn, the grounds are open from dawn to dusk as a dog park for walkers and runners. Explore the sprawling landscape on a walk or stroll!