A Traveler’s Guide to Hiking in Buffalo, NY

Buffalo New York

Some people know Buffalo as the home of spicy chicken wings, glass-fronted skyscrapers, and Art Deco buildings. Others know it as the gateway to Niagara Falls and a ton of other outdoor attractions. If your idea of fun involves a pair of hiking boots, a backpack, and a liter bottle of water, Buffalo has a lot in store for you. From the gentle beauty of Letchworth State Park to the drama of Niagara Gorge, the hiking opportunities are endless. Whether you’re a long-term resident or a first-time visitor, don’t even think of hitting the trails until you’ve checked out our traveler’s guide to hiking in Buffalo, NY.

When to Go

There’s no bad time to visit Buffalo, but just how much enjoyment you’ll get from hiking during your visit will depend on whether you’re braced for the weather or not. As travellerspoint.com notes, Buffalo is known for its distinct seasons, enjoying hot, sunny summers with temperatures ranging from 20 °C to 35 °C and cold, snowy winters. The peak season is from June through August. If you want to skip the crowds but still have the weather on your side, spring and fall both make great options, with average temperatures ranging between 5 and 15 °C.

Where to Go

The area surrounding Buffalo is ripe with opportunities for hiking. Depending on just how long you’ll be staying in the area, try to pack in as many of the following awesome opportunities as possible.

Knox Farm State Park

If a hike through 600 acres of rolling, wildflower-dotted meadows and shaded forests floats your boat, don’t miss a visit to Knox Farm State Park. It may not have the most dramatic hiking trails in Buffalo, but it definitely has some of the most bucolic.

Letchworth State Park

Known as the Grand Canyon of the East, Letchworth State Park is a destination no hiker worth their boots should miss. It may be an hour’s drive from the city, but its dramatic scenery and camera-worthy landmarks make it worth the trip. Although it’s studded with more trails than you can count, the one you really won’t want to miss is the 7 mile Gorge Trail, a stunning hike that takes you through meadows, falls, the park’s famous railroad bridge, and Inspiration Point, an incredible vantage point that offers breathtaking panoramas over the surrounding landscape. If history’s your thing, be sure to add the short but rewarding Mary Jemison Trail to your itinerary.

Chestnut Ridge County Park

Chestnut Ridge County Park has some great trails but the real reason to visit is the Eternal Flame, a natural gas leak nestled in a trickling waterfall that needs to be seen to be believed. The trek up the gorge may be challenging, but you won’t regret the effort.

Amherst State Park

Covering over 77 acres of land, Amherst State Park is a vast area of meadows, forests, creaks, ancient orchards, and gorgeously landscaped grounds. No matter your age, your fitness level, or your time allowance, there’s a trail to suit. Along the way, you’ll find plenty of opportunities for bird watching, fishing, and picking. Dogs are permitted and there are even a few large fields for them to romp around in unleashed.

Akron Falls County Park

Described by visitbuffaloniagara.com as one of the best hikes around Buffalo, Akron Falls County Park offers a moderately challenging hike that takes you from the drama of Murder Creek to the gentle cascades of the lower falls viewing area. Along the way, you’ll find plenty of great picking spots to stop and enjoy some al fresco dining in the sunshine.

Zoar Valley

Named by Only in Your State as one of the best hiking spots in Buffalo, Zoar Valley is an unmissable destination for anyone who likes getting down and dirty in nature. The valley offers three equally worthwhile trails to explore year-round, along with one that’s open from June to August only. If you want an easy hike with gorgeous woodland views, Holcomb Pond Trail comes highly recommended. If your legs are up for a workout, Valentine Flats and Point Peter Trail both offer plenty of challenge and an equal amount of reward. if you’re after some great shots to post on Instagram, the stunning half-mile Forty Road with its dramatic vistas and old-growth forests shouldn’t be missed.

Tifft Nature Preserve

If you like to combine a little birdwatching with your hikes, be sure to include Tifft Nature Preserve in your itinerary. Comprised of 264 acres of wetlands and forest, the preserve offers numerous opportunities for hiking, picnicking, and wildlife spotting. In even better news, it’s located just a few minutes from downtown Buffalo, meaning you won’t have far to travel to get your nature fix.

Niagara Gorge

If there’s one place no nature lover can miss during their time in Buffalo, it’s Niagara Gorge. Regardless of your skill and fitness level, you’ll have no trouble finding a trail that suits. If you’re looking for a short but fun trail, the 2.5 round trip Devil’s Hole Trail is a guaranteed crowd-pleaser – just be sure to wear good hiking boots as the stairs can get slippery at times. If you’re up for a bigger challenge, the Whirlpool Rapids Trail is ideal. No matter which trail you choose, you’ll be blessed with endless opportunities to enjoy the many species of plants and wildlife that inhabit the area.

Reinstein Woods Nature Preserve

Located just 12 miles from downtown Buffalo, Reinstein Woods Nature Preserve is a conservationist’s dream. In addition to providing various opportunities for families and individuals to enjoy the preserve’s natural surroundings, it also funds initiatives for both underprivileged kids and the wider community. Even leaving aside its worthy credentials, it’s a great place to visit, with well-maintained, accessible trails that are as equally suited to kids as to adults. Dotted along the way, you’d find peaceful ponds scattered with magenta lilies, a nature play area, an environmental education center, and the biggest American beech tree in the state. If you’re looking for a place that all the family can enjoy, this is it.

Moss Lake

It may be a slight trek from downtown Buffalo, but Moss Lake is worth the effort. Serene, blessed with gorgeous panoramas, and home to a giant lake with ducks, herons, turtles, and catfish, it’s a great place to enjoy a peaceful stroll in nature.

Add Comment

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Joseph Tsai
10 Things You Didn’t Know about Joseph Tsai
20 Things You Didn’t Know About Ethos
Avneesh Agawral
10 Things You Didn’t Know About Avneesh Agrawal
20 Things You Didn’t Know about Flipkart
Credit Card
10 Reasons We Like The Divvy Business Credit Card
Tesla
The Top Five Stock Picks Targeted at Climate Change
Credit Card
The 20 Best Travel Credit Cards of 2021
Wine
20 Things You Didn’t Know About Vinovest
Bullet Train
China’s 373 MPH Bullet Train is World’s Fastest Land Vehicle
Flea market
10 Reasons to Visit the Kane County Flea Market
Los Angeles
The 20 Best Day Trips from Las Vegas
Indiana
The 10 Best State Parks in Indiana
Aston Martin Cygnet
The History and Evolution of the Aston Martin Cygnet
What is an Interference Engine and What is it Used For?
Volkswagen Passat…Chattanooga, Tennessee
Why Volkswagen Stopped Producing the Passat in the U.S
A Closer Look at Aston Martin’s Valhalla Supercar
A Closer Look at the Creux Automatiq Ghost V3 Mono
Seven Fridays
A Closer Look at the SevenFriday’s P1C/04 Caipi Watch
Doxa Sub 200 Whitepearl
A Closer Look at the The Doxa Sub 200 Whitepearl
Montblanc Summit
A Closer Look at the Montblanc Summit Lite Smrt
How Cote De Pablo Achieved a Net Worth of $6 Million
How Upchurch Achieved a Net Worth of $4 Million
Charlene de Carvalho-Heineken
The 10 Richest People in The Netherlands
How Kelly Osbourne Achieved a Net Worth of $20 Million