We left Lancaster and drove to Bear Mountain in New York state beneath a blanket of rain and cloud. It was such a shame because some of the scenery was stunning, but we couldn’t stop for photos or we would have been soaked to the skin.
I adored Bear Mountain from the second we arrived, although the check in process was a little odd. We had reservations for 2-nights at the Overlook Lodge, which was actually located down the road from Bear Mountain Inn, where you had to check in. It was a really beautiful lodge and I only wish the weather had been better for us. I was so looking forward to exploring the park, walking alongside the lake and taking a few photographs of the carousel, but to do all of that would have involved a soaking to the bone, so unfortunately we missed out.
As it was such a long drive to Bear Mountain from Pennsylvania, we made reservations at the onsite Restaurant 1915 before we left for the trip – looking back at how bad the weather was, that had been a very wise move indeed – this way we knew that once we arrived, we had a good place to unwind and eat. The food was very good, there was a standard menu and a tapas menu, we opted for the tapas and the portion sizes were huge, far bigger than typical Spanish Tapas, but we certainly weren’t complaining. I also had a bowl of the corn chowder from the standard menu, which was very tasty. The restaurant has a large interior space but it also has a nice outside area with covering. We decided to dine outside, beneath the warm night air and sound of the rain. Sometimes it’s the little things in life that really are the best.
After dinner, we drove back down to the lodge and enjoyed a few drinks in the common area. The lodge and stone cottages are on the same winding road, but the lodge certainly has the best spot and the views from the outdoor patio and our room were wonderful. I even loved the sounds of the grasshoppers that filled the night air. I would absolutely stay here again, and in a way, I feel like I must go back at some point because I didn’t really get to experience everything that this wonderful area has to offer. Maybe next time I’ll take a heavy rain coat and some wellington boots, then I am fully prepared regardless of the weather.
A shopping day at Woodbury Common was next on the agenda and we actually enjoyed it so much that we went back the following morning for a few hours before driving to Lexington in Massachusetts. Woodbury Common is the biggest shopping outlet in the world and you definitely need at least 7 hours to get around all of the outlets. It’s about an hour or so from New York City (although just a few minutes from Bear Mountain) and several companies offer day trips there from the city for as little as $40 per person. Something for you to think about if you want to grab some good bargains and get out of the city for a while.
The plan for our final evening had been to just relax and order pizza, but as it was still raining heavily outside, nowhere at all was prepared to deliver. We eventually bit the bullet and ordered a “Sexy Pie” for collection from The Historic Old Oak Inn. It may have been a nightmare to get there and TravelShopGirl got absolutely soaked in the process, but it was REALLY good pizza! If you stay in the area, you must try it! They will usually deliver to the lodge and inn, we were just unlucky that night.
The next morning we left Bear Mountain, had a few hours at Woodbury Common and then hit the road again, this time for our journey to Lexington in Massachusetts.
Before we arrived in Lexington, we made a stop at Diner I84 for some food. We were both quite hungry and ordered some mozzarella dippers to share and then a grilled sandwich each – possibly the biggest grilled chicken sandwich I have ever seen in my entire life. It was good, but I couldn’t eat it all.
The Inn at Hastings Park was where we would spend the night and what an absolutely stunning property it was. I can’t say enough good things about this place and I only wish we’d had 2 nights there instead of just 1.
The Inn is just 15-miles from Boston, ideal for those living in the city that want to get away for a weekend, and is made up of 3 buildings. The Main House was built in 1881 and was home to a descendant of one of Lexington’s first families. The second building is the Isaac Mulliken House, named in honour of the spirited politician who lived there in the mid-nineteenth century. And the third building is the Barn, which served as Mulliken’s original carpentry shop. TravelShopGirl and I found ourselves in a Junior Suite located in the Barn and it was gorgeous. We were on the second floor (there were only 2 suites in the barn, so it was nice and quiet, too) and you could smell the freshness as soon as you walked through the door. The suite itself was decorated beautifully, I absolutely loved the American flag on the wall and the light that sat atop the table in front of it. The bathroom was HUGE and offered a wonderful, deep bathtub, walk-in power, massaging, does just about everything but make dinner shower and a large vanity area. The moment I set eyes on the tub, I had visions of the wooden shutters on the windows being slightly open while I soaked in the warmth of the water and watched the snow fall outside – then I remembered it was summer and my vision was shattered!
The main building looked impressive from the outside and that followed through to the inside. There was also a lovely porch area at the front of the building, so you could sit outside and watch the world go by. There was one gentleman who liked to sit there and play his guitar, which added an even cooler vibe to our experience. I would highly, HIGHLY recommend the Inn at Hastings Park. I promise that you will not be disappointed. Breakfast at Artistry on the Green (an award-winning restaurant located at the Inn) was included in our stay and that was very good, too. I ordered eggs and hash browns with toast, and although simple, it was perfectly done.
We didn’t get to do much in Lexington, the bad weather really slowed us down during the drive, so we spent the evening at Waxy O’Connor’s Irish Bar – we even managed to take part (kind of) in the weekly quiz with the locals. It was fun and a nice way to wind down and relax after such a long journey in awful weather.
We didn’t have a long journey at all from Lexington – we were going to Salem, which is about 30 minutes away…