Now that summer is coming (that's what some nice days are telling me, anyway), I'm looking for some fun, interesting retreats nearby to NYC in the state. Ideally I could rent a car and drive, or take public transportation. Something that's offbeat, something that I can't get in the city itself... Suggestions?

Paige, Upper West Side

Making nearby trips can minimize hassle associated with airlines and is also quite economical! First, determine what sort of fun you're looking for. Does sleeping in a tent in the
wilderness
excite you, or are you more a sunning-by-the-pool-of-a-5-star-hotel-person? Do you like amusement parks, or is a quiet day in the porch swing of a log cabin more your thing? Do you have a passion for slot machines, or is being by the water much more appealing? Once you've honed that, then you can start sleecting from many options. Also, think about whether you have family or in nearby cities/towns...often they can provide you with accomodation while you explore some new terrain, and it's a great time to catch up! If you're going to go away for 4th of July weekend, we recommend making travel plans sooner than later, because hotels book rapidly and traffic can be a nightmare. Enjoy!