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Saranac Lake picture in Adirondacks
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  • 2 hours to Half Day Time to Spend
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Located just 9 miles northwest of the bustling tourist town of Lake Placid, Saranac Lake is the perfect escape from the high prices that accompany Lake Placid's Olympics attractions. Filled with shops, hotels and local diners, Saranac Lake is considered one of the most idyllic villages in upstate New York.

Recent travelers characterized the area as a lesser-known gem of the Adirondacks. Whether you visit when the leaves are changing, in February for winter carnival or once the snow has melted, Saranac Lake offers plenty of stunning scenery without hoards of tourists. Canoeing, hiking and kayaking are especially popular here.

Saranac Lake is free to visit. Keep in mind, though, that some activities, such as boating and biking, will cost extra if equipment needs to be rented. To get to Saranac Lake, travelers can fly into Adirondack Regional Airport, which sits about 7 miles northwest of town and offers direct flights to and from Boston's Logan International Airport. Additionally, the Trailways of New York provide rail service to the region from various parts of the state.

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#1 Saranac Lake Located just 9 miles northwest of the bustling tourist town of Lake Placid, Saranac Lake is the perfect escape from the high prices that accompany Lake Placid's Olympics attractions ... Read more » Posnov / Getty Images

#2 Whiteface Mountain (Lake Placid) With the largest vertical drop on the eastern seaboard (measuring 3,430 feet), 87 trails and 11 ski lifts, Whiteface Mountain is a skier's paradise. But should you decide ... Read more » Allen McGregor / Flickr

#3 Fort Ticonderoga Nicknamed the "Key to the Continent" in the 18th century, Fort Ticonderoga sits on Lake Champlain and once served as a strategic focal point during the Revolutionary War and the ... Read more » pmstephens / Getty Images

#4 The Wild Center (Tupper Lake) Nestled within the Adirondacks about 21 miles southwest of Saranac Lake, The Wild Center features 81 acres of forest and plenty of wildlife. In fact, all of the site's ... Read more » Wild Center / Flickr

#5 John Brown Farm State Historic Site (Lake Placid) For those who are interested in history but don't want to drive too far to find it, John Brown Farm State Historic Site is worth a visit. Located less ... Read more » capecodphoto / Getty Images

#6 Lake Placid Olympic Sports Complex Situated on Mount Van Hoevenberg about 7 miles southeast of Lake Placid, the Olympic Sports Complex is an ideal attraction for those interested in the Olympics and winter sports. The ... Read more » Matthew Stockman/Staff / Getty Images

#7 Lake Placid Olympic Jumping Complex Less than 2 miles southeast of downtown Lake Placid, the Olympic Jumping Complex is another popular (and convenient) outing for winter sports enthusiasts. Once used as an event site during ... Read more » Bruce Bennett/Staff / Getty Images

#8 Lake Placid Olympic Museum For a glimpse into the 1932 and 1980 Winter Olympic Games, make a stop at the Lake Placid Olympic Museum. Although some past travelers found the property to be a ... Read more » MDV / Flickr

Saranac Lake picture in Adirondacks
Whiteface Mountain picture in Adirondacks
Fort Ticonderoga picture in Adirondacks
The Wild Center (Tupper Lake) picture in Adirondacks
John Brown Farm State Historic Site (Lake Placid) picture in Adirondacks
Lake Placid Olympic Sports Complex picture in Adirondacks
Lake Placid Olympic Jumping Complex picture in Adirondacks
Lake Placid Olympic Museum picture in Adirondacks
Saranac Lake picture in Adirondacks
Whiteface Mountain picture in Adirondacks
Fort Ticonderoga picture in Adirondacks
The Wild Center (Tupper Lake) picture in Adirondacks
John Brown Farm State Historic Site (Lake Placid) picture in Adirondacks
Lake Placid Olympic Sports Complex picture in Adirondacks
Lake Placid Olympic Jumping Complex picture in Adirondacks
Lake Placid Olympic Museum picture in Adirondacks

Boasting more than 100 scenic lakes and the Mount Pisgah ski area, Saranac Lake is one of the Adirondacks' most popular regions for skiing and water activities. Posnov / Getty Images

While many come to Whiteface Mountain during the colder months to experience some of the region's best winter activities, come summertime, Whiteface offers visitors superb hiking, mountain biking and 4x4 excursions. Allen McGregor / Flickr

Near the Vermont border in the eastern part of the Adirondacks region, Fort Ticonderoga showcases an array of military artifacts within a fully restored former French fort. pmstephens / Getty Images

For an up-close look at some of the area's wildlife, a visit to the Wild Center is a must. This family-friendly attraction offers interactive experiences like a treetop-level walk, animal encounters and the Naturalist's Cabinet room. Wild Center / Flickr

Once the home of former abolitionist John Brown, the John Brown Farm State Historic Site now acts as the final resting place of the iconic leader, as well as a museum and protected state park. capecodphoto / Getty Images

A visit to the Olympic Sports Complex is a must for thrill-seekers and Olympics enthusiasts. One of the many activities offered is the attraction's bobsled experience, which invites visitors to ride down the complex's bobsled track with a professional. Matthew Stockman/Staff / Getty Images

At the Lake Placid Olympic Jumping Complex, visitors can get up close to several towering ski jumps once used during the 1980 Olympic Winter Games. Our tip: Visit during an event day so you can see the jumps in action. Bruce Bennett/Staff / Getty Images

With features like a curling practice area, Miracle on Ice memorabilia and a display of Olympic and parade uniforms, odds are history buffs and sports enthusiasts will find plenty to enjoy while perusing the Lake Placid Olympic Museum. MDV / Flickr

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