Ithaca is GORGES is more than a slogan for the county-seat of Tompkins County, New York … it is a Finger Lakes way of life. With more than 150 gorges and waterfalls in the region, hiking and outdoor activities are the rigueur du jour. Taughannock Falls, located in the hamlet of Trumansburg, is 215 feet high with a vertical drop greater than Niagara Falls. Stunning in all seasons, the Finger Lakes is a great place to live, work, and play. Ithaca and Tompkins County boasts three New York State Parks and one marine state park and offers access to 28,000 acres of public forest for hiking, mountain biking, and outdoor recreation.
Boating & sailing enthusiasts can enjoy Cayuga Lake, the longest of the 11 Finger Lakes, which connects to the New York State Erie Canal system and the Atlantic Ocean! Cayuga Lake was selected one of the top 10 bass-fishing lakes by Sports Afield Magazine. Nearby lakes are Canandaigua, Conesus, Owasco, Otisco, Honeoye, Keuka, Seneca, and Skaneateles.
Education is the key industry in Tompkins County with Cornell University & Ithaca College, (Note: Michael Eisner, head of Disney Corporation is an IC grad.) and Tompkins Cortland Community College, employing more than 14,000 people and educating thousands of students annually. Sport fans can enjoy nationally-ranked Cornell hockey and Ithaca College Bombers football, or just a quick hour’s drive to Syracuse, New York to catch Division I men’s basketball team, the Syracuse University Orangemen.
After higher education, tourism is the second largest industry in the County. Ithaca offers more restaurants per capita than New York City. The Finger Lakes region draws upon a large tourism radius to include all of New York State, Pennsylvania, Canada, and beyond. Museums and shopping are abundant as are quaint bed & breakfasts and more than 100 wineries in the region. The area also has award-winning regional year-round theatre.
Other area attractions include Watkins Glen International Speedway, Corning Museum of Glass, the Sciencenter, the Carl Sagan Planet Walk, the Rockwell Museum of Western Art and Cornell University’s Johnson Museum. Finger Lakes Gaming & Racetrack and Tioga Downs, within an hour’s drive, features horse racing and casino action all year long. The area also boasts several golf courses, lake cruises, fine and casual dining, shopping, and historical sites, including the National Women’s Hall of Fame and the Harriet Tubman Home.
Ithaca is four hours from New York City, less than an hour from Syracuse, two hours from Rochester, and only 4-1/2 hours from Philadelphia, PA.