New York City is that shiny object that keeps you so distracted you forget there’s a world beyond it. Do you have to spend hours and hours to get there? You could if you have that kind of time. There’s so much natural beauty in upstate areas like Ithaca, Binghamton, and Buffalo, and all offer great hiking, too. But none of those are a hop, skip, and a jump from Manhattan.

The benefits of hiking, or just going for a walk in nature, are endless. Your endurance improves, you’ll burn tons of calories and you can fend off hypertension, diabetes, and some cancers.

As far as self-care goes, hiking is ideal. You can do it alone or use it as an opportunity to catch up with a few friends. If your partner likes to be out and about, hiking is a great way to fortify your bond.

Plan a hiking adventure to these sites close to New York City.

Cold Spring

This cute town in the Hudson Valley is a hot spot for experienced and novice hikers of all ages. It’s just about an hour on Metro North from Grand Central. You could drive, but mass transit is more efficient.

There are several hiking trails in and near this area including Breakneck Ridge Trail, known for its rock scrambles. This hike might be best for those with endurance.

There’s also Anthony’s Nose, and both are part of Hudson Highlands State Park.

Malouf’s Mountain Campground

In about 80 minutes on Metro North, you’ll arrive in Beacon, where this campground is located. You won’t need to pack a whole lot of gear to enjoy the grounds. You don’t even need a car. This campground takes pride in being accessible to all, and it has a hike-in, hike-out setup.

Even if you have no intention of camping, you can enjoy the trailheads. There’s also fishing, boating, and opportunities to swim.

The campground offers meals, snacks, and drinks for purchase but it’s a good idea to bring your own refreshments.

Storm King Mountain

If you drive in from midtown Manhattan, you’ll be looking at a 75-minute journey, depending on traffic. At the top of Storm King Mountain, you can enjoy fantastic views of the Hudson Valley and the Catskills.

According to Trip Tins, “When searching for the parking lot, type in ‘Storm King State Park parking lot – RTE 9W North, Cornwall-On-Hudson, NY 12520.'”

Alternatively, you can put the coordinates in your GPS, which are: “41°25’22.8″N 74°00’02.9″W.”

Don’t have a car? No problem. Take Metro North to Cold Spring station on the Hudson Line. From there, you can grab a taxi to the trailhead.

Gertrude’s Nose

Gertrude’s Noise is both dramatic and popular, and it’s part of Minnewaska State Park in Kerhonkson. If you aren’t afraid of heights and rock scrambles, this one is for you.

You can drive there in about an hour and 30 minutes, depending on your starting point in Manhattan. After purchasing your pass for Minnewaska State Park, prepare yourself for a full day of activity.

According to New York State, “The park features numerous waterfalls, three crystalline sky lakes, dense hardwood forests,” and so much more.

Bear Mountain

According to Historic Hudson River Towns, “Bear Mountain was so-named because the profile of the mountain resembles a bear lying down.”

This special State Park offers much more than just hiking trails. Other attractions include a pool, museums, a zoo, and in the winter months, an outdoor ice skating rink. Please note that these incur additional costs.

To get there, a car is your best bet since it’s approximately 50 miles north of New York City. If that isn’t possible, hop on Metro North to the Peekskill station, where you can get a taxi to the park.