Old Forge, Adirondacks

 If you close your eyes and think of an outdoors vacation, the town of Old Forge in the Adirondacks would appear in many a mind.  For the Gunn clan, the trek to Old Forge each July is a rite of passage.  We fell in love with Old Forge several years back and that affection grows with each visit.  This town (and all of the Adirondacks really) has a zen quality about it that exudes calm and tranquility.  The Main Street is welcoming, the residents are friendly and the temperatures are cool.  The entire town has a hip, rustic and non-commercial vibe.  Unlike some places that try to manufacture that image, what you see is what you get with Old Forge.  It is what it projects.  It is committed to outdoor beauty, locally owned businesses and family.


There are so many things that we love about Old Forge and the Adirondacks, here are some of our favorites:

  • Old Forge Hardware store – This place is right out of a Norman Rockwell painting.  It feels like you have traveled back in time to the 1950s while you wander around this gigantic store that seems to sell everything. 
  • Swimming in the channel – there is a dock and swimming area within steps of our cabin.  The kids love swimming there and it’s easy for us to keep an eye on them from the yard or deck

  • Enchanted Forest Water Safari  – this amusement park is a unique blend of fairy tale stories, rides, petting zoo, circus and water park.  The kids love it all!

  • Old Forge pondThe town’s public beach starts the Fulton Chain of lakes.  In addition to the beach, there is a platform with a diving board in the deeper water, a wooden ship / playground and one absolutely amazing view!     

  • Pied Piper – The only thing better than the ice cream is the view of Old Forge pond

  • Inlet – Small town north of Old Forge that has an old school playground including a "merry go round"(remember those?) and other play areas that you have disappeared from most parks because of liability concerns!

  • Bald Mountain – Hiking to the ranger's tower on Bald Mountain is a must.  The hike is challenging but not too challenging to do with children.  The views along the way of the Fulton Chain Lakes are breathtaking...

  • Bear watching – It’s not uncommon to stumble upon a black bear.  We’ve seen them in trees, in town, on the road.  One year, one even broke into our car to eat some candy that we had mistakenly left!

  • Slickers – This local restaurant has hands down the best French Dip sandwich you’ll ever taste, in our opinion.  We love going on Friday nights to listen to some live music, have a French Dip and share a pitcher of beer.
  • The Strand – Part movie theatre, part museum.  This theatre is so vintage you feel a little hipper just being there.  They are are now digital so if you would like to make a donation, please visit their link!

  • Adirondack Pizza and Arcade – The games are old and the prizes aren’t anything to write home about but this arcade has a vintage feel as well.  We get the family special of pizza and wings and then let the kids play games for as long as $5 will take them.

We love Old Forge and the Adirondacks so much.

It’s a tradition passed down to our family, from Margie's family, and will remain a part of our family for years to come.

We are a family focused on experience which often times means finding new places to create new experiences.  For us, Old Forge is so special that it deserves a repeat visit every Summer because each visit blends a combination of new experiences with the comfort of familiar memories. 

Old Forge is what other outdoor vacation towns try to be.

Here are a few more photos to share our "ADK vacation" with you...

View from our table looking out at 4th Lake at Northwoods Inn 
(great breakfast, lunch, and dinner)

Grab this paper as soon as you arrive to town...
We have found this to be the best way get all the info. on what is going on in the area.

Ask a local how to find this spring water spot...fill your own bottles off the side of road 
(just down from Bald Mt. parking lot).  How cool!?

Ever seen "bear proof" trash cans?

To read even more about Old Forge, we have made a blog with some more details here:

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