European settlers arrived in Watkins Glen around 1800. It was incorporated in 1842 as Salubria. The village was later rechristened Jefferson before locals selected the name Watkins, after the village's founder Dr. Samuel Watkins. It got its current name, Watkins Glen, in 1926.
Watkins Glen is a tiny village of around 2,000 residents. Its small-town charm and natural beauty appeal to travelers from around New York state and beyond.
When is the best time to visit Watkins Glen, NY?
You'll love Watkins Glen from May to September, when the shining sun creates the perfect conditions for outdoor adventures. Expect to pay more for a summer getaway, though. Accommodation providers throughout the Finger Lakes region tend to increase their rates due to high demand in June, July, and August.
Expect highs in the mid-70s to lower 80s during the day. Early mornings and evenings can be cool, though, so don't leave your light sweaters and long-sleeved shirts behind. Those heavier clothes will also come in handy if you travel on either end of the peak season. Expect daytime highs in the high 60s during May and in the low 70s in September.
Winters in Watkins Glen are quite cold, with average daily temperatures in the low to mid-30s. You can find bargain rates during the season, especially after the festive period, but it's likely to be too cold to really enjoy all Watkins Glen offers.
Below is a chart of the current pricing seasonality of hotels and motels in Watkins Glen, NY:
Watkins Glen by Star Rating
Below we've posted 3 graphs demonstrating mean price patterns by star rating class in Watkins Glen, NY. You can use these charts to determine the best dates to book in Watkins Glen for any future trips.
What luxury hotels are near Watkins Glen, NY?
4 Star Average Prices: $175.26
Enjoy high-end rooms with excellent views at upscale hotels around Watkins Glen. You'll always feel pampered at the following local hotels.
Geneva on the Lake is a casual resort that opened its doors in 1981. Its founder Norbert H. Schnickel Jr. liked to call it “an oasis, a little island of beauty, peace, and friendliness in a busy world.” Today, his son William continues the family tradition. The resort's suites and studios are opulently appointed with European-inspired décor. See the concierge to book a deep-tissue or Swedish massage in the privacy of your room. Lancellotti's Dining Room & Parlor Bar is the perfect place to unwind after a busy day of sightseeing.
Hilton Garden Inn Elmira/Corning offers the excellence you'd expect from a Hilton property. The standard rooms are lovely, but for real luxury, book a suite. Each one has separate sleeping and living rooms and a whirlpool tub. There's also a hot tub downstairs, along with an indoor pool, fitness room, and 24-hour business center. More than 2,340 square feet of function space and a dedicated events team can take care of your next business function or celebration. There are several restaurants close by, but it's nice to know the Garden Grille is always there when you don't feel like venturing out.
What affordable hotel options can you find in Watkins Glen, New York?
3 Star Average Prices: $149.83
The Watkins Glen area specializes in mid-priced to luxury accommodation. However, there are a few hotels that regularly offer low rates. You'll need to book them early because the limited budget-friendly offerings in the area tend to fill fast.
Knights Inn Horseheads suits travelers who want a clean, comfortable room and little else. It doesn't have pools or on-site restaurants, although there is a serviceable business center, and a dining room serves free continental breakfast each morning. The rooms aren't flashy, but they are functional, with microwave ovens, mini-fridges, flat-screen TVs, and plenty of space for spreading out. High-speed Wi-Fi is free throughout the property, along with parking for small and large vehicles.
Econo Lodge Elmira-Corning offers a unique traveling experience that makes you feel like a valued guest: freshly popped popcorn and homemade cookies served every afternoon. It's a personal touch that makes all the difference. The Econo Lodge also treats you to a free piping-hot breakfast each morning and complimentary high-speed Wi-Fi during your stay. Its rooms are charming, with fridges, microwave ovens, coffeemakers, and power outlets near every nightstand for charging your mobile devices while you sleep.
2 Star Average Prices: $104.96
Where are the best discounts in Watkins Glen, New York?
Selected travelers can save money at local hotels from well-known accommodation providers. Make sure you bring appropriate documentation to the check-in counter to lock in your preferential rate.
Hampton Inn Elmira Horseheads slashes its regular room rate for AAA auto club members, AARP and CARP members, travel agents, military and government employees, and large traveling groups. The hotel has well-appointed guestrooms and suites, including some with whirlpools, fridges, microwaves, and sofa beds. Wi-Fi is free, and so is breakfast each morning. Take your time enjoying the buffet or grab an On the Run breakfast bag, available weekdays, if you've got an early start. Business travel is made easy with a business center that never closes. Once your paperwork is done, hit the heated pool or the fitness center.
Candlewood Suites Elmira Horseheads discounts accommodation for AAA and CAA auto club members, Entertainment Card holders, U.S. and Canadian government employees, and large traveling groups. It's an all-suite hotel, so you enjoy your own full kitchen, work desk, and a flat-screen TV with premium cable channels and a DVD player. Bring your own movies or borrow some from reception. You can also borrow items from the Lending Locker, including board games and kitchen appliances. An on-site gym, outdoor gazebo grill, and the Candlewood Cupboard for snacks and easy meals will all help you feel at home.
What Watkins Glen hotels offer the best value to travelers?
Your dollar will go further at the following Watkins Glen hotels. Look forward to great facilities and service when you stay with these accommodation providers.
Arms at the Glen is a charming 1900s property lovingly restored in 2012. The work has spruced up the hotel without sacrificing its historic appeal. All rooms are individually decorated with vintage-inspired furniture and modern appliances. Stroll around the gardens and relax in the common areas. Arms at the Glen is a hotel like few others you'll find. The unique experience it provides will help make your stay in Watkins Glen special.
Country Inn & Suites by Radisson Big Flats (Elmira) is a more traditional kind of hotel. Here, it's the little things that matter, like the complimentary cookies and coffee in the lobby and the delicious free breakfast buffet with buttered waffles and toasted bagels, prepared fresh each morning. There are a variety of room options, including accessible rooms and suites, each with cable TV, coffee-making facilities, and fridges for storing bottles from the nearby vineyards. Wi-Fi is free, and there's a 24-hour business center if you need computer access. The heated indoor pool ensures it's always the right season for swimming.
Why should you try exploring Watkins Glen, NY?
Watkins Glen is made for outdoor adventurers. These are just some of the fun outdoor experiences waiting for you in this New York community.
Watkins Glen State Park is an outdoor oasis in the heart of downtown. Its Gorge Trail, winding over and around the park's 19 waterfalls, only opens from mid-May to the end of October. However, you can admire views over the gorge on the Rim Trail all year round. Start your hike at the main entrance, then catch the shuttle from the upper entrance back downtown.
Clute Park is great fun for families. This 35-acre lakefront park has outstanding recreation facilities, including a playground, picnic tables, tennis courts, a boat launch, and its own skate park. You can grill in the park, or you can visit Texas Hots if you'd prefer someone else does the cooking. Great Escape also serves ice creams to the young and young-at-heart. During July and August, Clute Park hosts Movies on the Lake every Wednesday.
LaFayette Park doesn't have as many features, but its playground and picnic tables are always popular. Big crowds usually come out for the live music scheduled every Tuesday in July and August and the farmers' market every Friday from May to October.
Practice your putting at Watkins Glen Golf Course, a public nine-hole course that's a mile from the village center. Open April through October, the course offers challenging play in a relaxed environment with world-class Seneca Lake views. A glass of local Finger Lakes wine is the perfect reward for a game well played, whether you win or lose!
When you're staying in the Finger Lakes district, you need to get on the water at least once. Seneca Lake Kayak and Winery Tours and Summit to Stream Adventures can make it happen. Both groups offer kayak tours of the pristine local waters. Summit to Stream Adventures also organizes fishing excursions. Try your hand at fly fishing or take a boat out on a charter tour. The local waters are home to lake trout, salmon, bass, rainbow trout, and several other delicious fish species. Seneca Lake Kayak and Winery Tours also has paddleboards for hire.
Watkins Glen is a charming village that provides a welcome escape from the fast pace of modern life. Given its size, accommodation options are limited. Book your room early for the best selection and price.
FAQs about hotels in Watkins Glen
How much does a cheap hotel in Watkins Glen cost per night?
In the last year, a 2 star hotel in Watkins Glen can be as cheap as $104.96 per night. (based on HotelPlanner prices)
How much does a 3 star hotel in Watkins Glen cost per night?
In the last year, the average 3 star hotel in Watkins Glen has been $149.83 per night. (based on HotelPlanner prices)
How much does a 4-5 star hotel in Watkins Glen cost?
In the last year, the average 4 star hotel in Watkins Glen has been $175.26 per night. (based on HotelPlanner prices)