There are so many tiny towns south of Buffalo and throughout the Southern Tier that you may have never heard of or visited, depending on your proximity to them. And many are full of unexpected, fun, and exciting activities to explore.
From nature excursions to foodie finds, venturing to these lesser-known spots isn’t a bad way to spend the day. Plus, you can always combine a visit to these towns to make a weekend getaway out of it! The best part? The furthest town on this list is only about an hour from Buffalo, making this “trip” highly adaptable and easily family friendly.
Here are 3 towns south of Buffalo and what to visit while you’re there:
Stop 1: Springville, NY
35 minutes from Downtown Buffalo
Must Visit Attraction: The Sleeping Lady
344 West Main Street Springville, NY 14141 / FACEBOOK
As you begin your road trip through the Southern half of Western New York, stopping for coffee is a must and we’ve got the perfect place. Similar to a coffee shop, The Sleeping Lady is a drive thru service that features espresso beverages and treats. Not only do they sell coffee, but they also sell lattes, smoothies, mochas, and frappes. It’s a locally owned family business that offers dozens of different flavors for their beverages. Some of these flavors include grape, pomegranate, and blueberry. They also sell treats like muffins and donuts.
Must Visit Attraction: Scoby Dam Park
11020-11024 Scoby Hill Rd, Springville, NY 14141
Scoby Dam Park is a great place for a hike, picnic, or fishing. It offers a hiking trail along Cattaraugus Creek and is known for its great fishing spots. During your hike, you’ll see scenic views of the creek and the dam. Scoby Dam is listed on the National Register of Historic Places and it is definitely a sight to be seen.
Stop 2: Arcade, NY
50 minutes from Downtown Buffalo
Must Visit Attraction: Arcade and Attica Railroad
278 Main Street, Arcade, NY 14009 / WEBSITE
Take a step back in time as the Arcade and Attica Railroad offers the very last operating steam train excursion in New York. This adventure starts when you enter the historic station where you will be surrounded by the history of railroading in America. After boarding the train, you will embark on a journey through the countryside. The train makes a stop at Curriers depot where you are able to depart from the train and explore, take pictures, and talk to the crew!
The Arcade and Attica Railroad also offers featured train rides like The Great Train Robbery Train Ride, Murder Mystery Diner Train Ride, Wine on the Rails Train Ride, and many more. So, be sure to check out their website to see the full list of train rides that they offer.
Must Visit Attraction: Savage Winery
11300 Savage Rd, Chaffee, NY 14030 / WEBSITE
The best road trips are always accompanied by wine and this spot is the perfect place for an afternoon or nighttime wine tasting. Savage Winery is a small farm winery that specializes in sweet wines. They also offer a variety of beers, ciders, and slushees. The winery is located on a working alpaca farm and there are also some sheep and miniature goats on the farm.
Stop 3: Rushford, NY
1 hour from Downtown Buffalo
Must Visit Attraction: Rushford Lake and the Rushford Lake Food Truck (The Eatery)
Route 243 Rushford, NY 14777 / FACEBOOK
Rushford Lake was formed by a dam on Caneadea Creek in 1927. This ultimately led to the loss of the communities of East Rushford and Kellogville by flooding. Today, Rushford Lake is open to the public for boating, fishing, and kayaking. There is also a small beach area located on the Northern area of the lake.
The lake features a small food truck called The Eatery. The Eatery is located on County Road 49 and offers a variety of delicious food and snacks like fried bologna, poutine, buffalo chicken wraps, and hamburgers. This food truck is only open in the summertime so be sure to take that into consideration!
Must Visit Attraction: Moss Lake Bog
9149 Sand Hill Rd, Houghton, NY 14744 / Website
Moss Lake is one of Western New York’s hidden gems, tucked away on a small dirt road about 5 minutes from Rushford Lake. The Moss Lake Preserve is managed by The Nature Conservancy and was declared a National Natural Landmark in 1973.
There is a trail that circles the lake and a floating bog boardwalk that allows you to walk out onto the bog. (Please note the boardwalk is closed until further notice, while the trails and picnic area remain open.) There are hundreds of catfish and a few turtles have also been spotted in the water. Also, expect to see a variety of different birds on your trip to this 15-acre bog lake! Download a trail map here.
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