20 Most Popular Destinations in Northeast US 2019

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GetawayMavens.com, bringing you the best weekend getaways in the Northeast, is 6 ½ years old, and with over 500 destinations from Virginia to Maine and beyond, it has garnered plenty of worldwide attention. This year, we compiled the “20 Most Popular Destinations in the Northeast US 2019” to reflect the last year’s statistics.

One thing is for sure. Getaway Mavens readers are a romantic bunch.

Whether seeking seaside towns, sandy beaches, historic sites, National Historical Parks, and road trips in the Eastern United States, the most searched and read post by far is “Most Romantic Destinations in the Northeast USA.”

But what were those destinations exactly?

How the Getaway Mavens Ranked Most Popular Destinations in the Northeast US 2019

The following most popular destinations in the northeast us, according to number of page views as reported on Google Analytics, indicate either enormous pride or outsized interest or both.

In 2019, for the second year in a row, the State of NY came out on top with 8 towns and parts of NYC in the Top 20. That’s a whopping 40%.

Is your town or city on the list? How do you get there? Granted, it’s part luck, but you can help that along by sharing widely and often on social media.

We compile the Top 20 each year, so stay tuned. The following 20 destinations garnered the most page views on Getaway Mavens from January 1 2019 through December 31, 2019

Top 20 Most Popular Destinations in the Northeast US 2019

Exterior, Roundhouse at Beacon Falls NY

Beacon NY

The steady-Eddie Beacon retains the top spot as the #1 Getaway Mavens most popular destination in the Northeast US for 2019. Hundreds of thousands are curious about this former mill town on the Hudson, a trendy home to DIA:Beacon, plenty of great restaurants, and one stunning boutique hotel.

Back yard, The Canteen, Provincetown MA
Back yard, The Canteen, Provincetown MA

Provincetown MA

Though one of the Getaway Maven’s first posts in 2013, there apparently was a resurgence of interest in this “edge of the world” town in 2018, as it moved from 10th place to 3rd. This year – Provincetown landed the #2 spot in numbers of page views. On the tip of Cape Cod, Provincetown is high energy and gay in all definitions of that word. It’s beautiful, fun and free-spirited and perfect for like-minded souls.

Visitors snap a selfie in front of Cold Spring General Store in Cold Spring NY.

Cold Spring NY

Published in 2018, nostalgia seems to be driving interest in this Hudson Valley village, all the way to the third spot. Main Street Cold Spring looks like a perfectly preserved time capsule wrenched from 19th Century America. The entire center of the village was placed on the National Register of Historic Places due to its more than 200 well-preserved structures.

Bilger's Rocks Grampian PA
Roof of Bilger’s Rocks Grampian PA

Clearfield County PA

What the?? New to the list this year, and all the way to #4 – the appeal of this remote and rustic region of western PA was quite the surprise. But with 102 miles of the Susquehanna River, thick, verdant forests, unique rock formations, and a quirky entrepreneur bringing “Roadside Attractions” back, Clearfield County makes for a great overnight stop on I-80 between NY or DC and Chicago.

Touch Tanks with Sea Rays Norwalk Maritime Center CT

Norwalk CT

Though it moved from second place to fifth, there’s still quite a bit of curiosity about Norwalk CT. Home to two family favorite attractions – the Norwalk Maritime Aquarium and the much lauded Stepping Stones Children’s Museum, an increasing number of excellent restaurants and a couple of boutique hotels, not to mention a brand new luxury mall, interest in this Southern CT town has been on the upswing.

Perfect Blend Yarn and Tea Shop Saugerties NY
Mary Ebel Perfect Blend Yarn and Tea Shop Saugerties NY

Saugerties NY

Saugerties NY, another apparently hot Hudson River Valley mill town (see Beacon, above) hit the #6 spot out of nowhere. But it’s well deserved. Budget Travel Magazine once deemed Saugerties NY one of the Ten Coolest Towns in America, but I’ll also add that it’s one of the most down-to-earth, friendly and community minded, with not just one, but two independent bookstores, as well as an indie movie theater, a wonderfully inviting yarn and tea shop, emerging artist galleries, and the “crafting kitchen” and spa for one of NYC’s most well known organic and holistic skincare lines.

Fred Rogers Exhibit at St. Vincent College Latrobe PA
Fred Rogers Center Saint Vincent College Latrobe PA

Laurel Highlands PA

There’s plenty of renewed interest in The Laurel Highlands region of Western PA, about an hour southeast of Pittsburgh, first published several years ago, and updated in 2018, with the addition of Mr. Roger’s hometown of Latrobe. In 7th place this year, there is obvious interest in Fred Rogers, with the release of major motion picture starring Tom Hanks (who came here often to research). The area is so spectacular, it proved the ideal setting for several Frank Lloyd Wright masterpieces and it’s where you’ll find a Truman-Show-esque small town, fantastic whitewater rafting, and one of the most unusual and luxurious resorts.

Absinthe Experience Mt. Defiance Distillery Middleburg VA
Absinthe Experience Mt. Defiance Distillery Middleburg VA

Middleburg VA

Another tiny, little known burg made it to the 8th spot of the search list this year for the first time. Fox Hunting and Wine rule the day in Middleburg VA, a small well-to-do hamlet in Loudoun County outside Washington DC: so much so that you can stay in a 250+ year old Inn called the Red Fox, or in a new posh country estate centered on equestrian activities, and visit a distillery that makes its own absinthe from scratch.

Setting up a shot at Ithaca Falls NY
Ithaca Falls Setting up Shot

Ithaca NY

New to the list this year, in #9 place, Ithaca NY, boasts over 100 waterfalls within ten square miles. Most cascade through fractures in the earth: a landscape that endows the town with the perfect tagline, “Ithaca is Gorges.” Outside of the CG movie, Avatar, you’ll hardly see a locale quite like this.

Headless Horseman Bridge Sleepy Hollow NY

Sleepy Hollow NY

Home to Washington Irving – author of The Legend of Sleepy Hollow, you’ll find plenty of opportunities to connect with the Headless Horseman in this Hudson River NY town, especially around Halloween. A perennial favorite at #10, there’s still lots of curiosity about Rip Van Winkle’s hometown.

DUMBO Reflector Sign - DUMBO, Brooklyn, NY

DUMBO/Brooklyn

For the second year in a row, coming in at #11, the section of Brooklyn “Down Under the Manhattan Bridge Overpass” has been garnering followers with fantastic photos and a 24-hour itinerary that covers lots of ground.

Carroll Creek Park in bloom, Frederick MD

Frederick MD 

On this list several years running, Maryland’s second largest town is still a contender at #12. With a stunning downtown canal-walk that swarms with locals on balmy days and nights, brick row homes, adorable boutiques, and growing culinary scene, Frederick feels like a mini-Philly but has a charm all its own.

Weird and wacky, Pine Bush NY is not only the UFO Capital of the East Coast, it's also home to legendary Angry Orchard Cidery, among other vineyards and breweries. Coincidence? You decide.

Pine Bush NY

There must be quite a bit of fascination with UFO’s, as minuscule Pine Bush NY came out of nowhere to #13th place. From 1981 to 1987 there were over 25,000 reports of a boomerang-shaped unidentified flying object in and near Pine Bush NY. There were so many reported sightings that the quiet hamlet became known as the UFO Capital of the East Coast. This title well befits its location betwixt Catskill Mountains and Hudson Valley–a land with a long history of myths, myths, legends, and reputed paranormal activity.

Decades Restaurant Bowling Arcade Lancaster PA
Decades Lancaster PA

Lancaster PA

With its increasingly trend-forward arts, entertainment, and restaurant scene, the City of Lancaster PA is also growing in interest at #14. Some people might be looking for the Amish experience, but many more are discovering how a down-at-heels town can be successfully revitalized.

New Bedford MA docks at sunset
Merrills sunset view New Bedford MA

New Bedford MA

On this list long ago, New Bedford MA had fallen off until this year, when it came in at #15. With upgraded infrastructure, a second boutique hotel, trendy wine and beer bars, and picture-perfect cobblestone streets; history buffs, Melville fans, and art aficionados seem to be driving eyeballs to this updated post.

Patio and Clayton River Walk from 1000 Islands Harbor Hotel NY
Patio and Clayton River Walk from 1000 Islands Harbor Hotel NY

1,000 Islands NY

Published just this year, this post about spending 48 hours in the 1,000 Islands region of New York was an instant hit, making the list at #16. There’s a reason that millionaires during the Gilded Age built castles and hid out on the 1,800 large and small islands that dot the St. Lawrence River. in the Thousand Islands NY. It is exquisite here – and closer than you might think. You can drive to Clayton NY, one of the larger waterfront towns, in just over five hours from New York City.

Riverfront walkway Portstmouth NH

Portsmouth NH

Another oldie but goodie back on the list (#17), Portsmouth NH has something for everyone. History, maritime excursions, bike and brewery tours, a Naval Base – this coastal New Hampshire city shines.

Old Montgomery Ward Building, Putnam CT

NE CT Quiet Corner CT

In the # 18 spot, this little known section of Connecticut apparently has many fans – or at least curious researchers. Connecticut’s Northeastern-most section, bordering Rhode Island and Massachusetts – has been dubbed the “Quiet Corner.” But there’s an energy here that’s driving positive changes, mostly of the artistic and culinary sort, in the small towns of Putnam, Pomfret, Woodstock, Brooklyn, and Killingly/Danielson.

Thimble Islands photo

Thimble Islands

Just off the mid-Coast of Connecticut in Stony Creek (an area of Branford CT), the bubble-gum hued Thimble Islands draw coach bus tours, and apparently Google searches galore – as this post comes in at #19. You might also learn about the “Stony Creek Pink Granite,” quarried here, used to build a lot of New York City’s iconic structures.

Lobster Trap Buoys on land Stonington CT Most Popular Destinations in Northeast US 2019

Stonington CT

For the second year, the Long Island Sound set Stonington CT, home to Connecticut’s last commercial fishing fleet, squeaked in at #20. Stonington’s downtown – known as “The Borough” – is so adorable, it stood in as a Maine waterfront town in the Meryl Streep/Tommy Lee Jones movie, Hope Springs. Wedged between the more commercialized Mystic and the Rhode Island State line, Stonington has got authentic New England cred without the crowds.

All Time Most Popular Getaway Mavens Destinations Since 2013

Shark Girl at Canal Side Buffalo NY

Although they may not have shown up on the 20 Most Popular Destinations in the Northeast US 2019 Most Searched List, the following towns and cities have had the highest number of searches from Getaway Maven’s inception (June 2013) to date:

  1. Beacon NY
  2. Buffalo NY
  3. Provincetown MA
  4. Martha’s Vineyard MA
  5. Frederick MD
  6. Seneca Lake NY
  7. Boyertown PA
  8. Northeast Corner CT
  9. Hershey PA
  10. Onancock to Cape Charles VAPopular Destinations in Northeast US 2019 Pin
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