Connect With Nature in Carmel, NY

February 16th, 2023 by

When your busy schedule has you too occupied, life can be stressful and repetitive, and you may crave a break from your routine. Whether you go on a relaxing picnic or a rigorous hike, nature provides the perfect solution to a hectic lifestyle. The scenic hamlet of Carmel has beautiful destinations where you can surround yourself with nature to find clarity and peace. Meadowland GMC is here to help you take that mental break you need. We’ve done the work for you and put together a list of some of the best places in Carmel to connect with nature.

Fahnestock State Park Nature in Carmel, NY

Outdoor enthusiasts will love the recreation opportunities offered by Fahnestock State Park. This 14,086-acre facility features picnic areas, hiking trails, campgrounds, and fishing, hunting, and birding opportunities. The facility is also home to various activities, such as the Taconic Outdoor Education Center, which provides Fahnestock Winter Park. The winter park features over 20 kilometers of groomed cross-country skiing and snowshoeing trails.

Fishing aficionados will enjoy the park’s multiple water features. There are four ponds and two lakes with a variety of fish, including bass, pickerel, and rainbow trout. Please note that you must have a permit from the Department of Environmental Conservation to fish in the freshwater area. The campground, situated along the park’s rock ridges, provides a tranquil setting for campers. No matter how you find your peace, Fahnestock National Park covers you with loads of engaging (or disengaging) activities.

  • Location: 1498 Route 301, Carmel.
  • Hours: 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. daily.

Fred Dill Wildlife Sanctuary

Fred Dill Wildlife Sanctuary is the perfect location for a leisurely walk or a grueling hike, whichever you prefer. The former site of the Putnam County Racetrack and fairgrounds is now a nature preserve that features picnic areas, educational information, and trails. Although it may feel like you’re miles away from civilization, you’ll find the sanctuary conveniently between the Putnam Plaza and downtown.

The Fred Dill Wildlife Sanctuary has well-marked trails, with round signs for the Duck Trail, the Leaf Trail, and the Turtle trail, each with its respective animal. Although they have good footing, the trails are relatively steep and have a couple of steady inclines. This is a good choice if you plan to take your hike to the next level and run the trail.

Before exploring the sanctuary, check out the educational tour guide and map. The sanctuary features 12 stations that have unique features. The interpretive guide is informative and entertaining, with well-marked areas. A pond and a pavilion with picnic tables at the far end of the sanctuary are the perfect places to eat lunch after a good hike. Next time you’re looking for a fun and educational hike, stop by Fred Dill Wildlife Sanctuary.

  • Location: 62 Fair St., Carmel.
  • Hours: Always open.

Sycamore Park

Sycamore Park is jam-packed with fun outdoor activities and perfect for spending the whole day outside the house. The park is located between Long Pond Road and Long Pond in Mahopac and features 32 acres of land and water, with 18 acres dedicated to water and land activities. It boasts picnic and playground areas, a spacious beach, four tennis courts, a baseball/football field, paddle ball courts, and a concession stand. The picnic area features grills and tables under a pavilion — ideal for large gatherings.

The real highlight of Sycamore Park is Dog Park, a beloved dog playground. Bring your furry friend along for all kinds of fun. This facility includes two fenced-off runs designed to allow dogs to run off-leash and a designated play area for small and senior dogs. The park is a members-only facility, costing $25 per year for residents and $75 per year for non-residents. What better way to spend time in nature than with your faithful pooch?

  • Location: 790 Long Pond Rd., Mahopac.
  • Hours: Always open.

Centennial Golf Club

A golf course can serve as an example of how the natural environment can coexist with recreational activities, providing the perfect environment to relax and enjoy nature. If you’re looking for a new place to play golf, then the Centennial Golf Club is a great choice.

The course provides spectacular views of the surrounding countryside. There is also a short game area to improve your skills or have fun. In addition, Dave Pelz’s golf schools are open to the public from May to September.

If the average 18- or 9-hole course needs to be more challenging, try out the club’s championship course, which features a 27-hole layout designed by World Golf Hall of Fame member Larry Nelson. The landscape of the facility will impress even the most experienced players.

  • Location: 185 John Simpson Rd., Carmel.
  • Hours: 7 a.m. to 8 p.m. daily.

Ninham Mountain Multiple Use Area

If you’re looking for a new hiking area or coming from a big city and want to experience the best views of nature, then The Nimham Mountain Multiple-Use Area must be visited. This forest features numerous hiking trails and a fire tower with amazing views.

The Nimham Mountain Multiple-Use Area, which spans 1,054 acres, is named after Daniel Nimham, the Wappingers tribe’s chief. It’s popular with hikers, horseback riders, and bikers because of its many trails and old roads.

The forest is mainly composed of mixed hardwoods and conifer plantations, presenting a beautiful backdrop for your hike or campsite. Other activities available include paddling, fishing, hunting, and trapping. The Nimham Mountain Multiple-Use Area is the ultimate destination for your next nature expedition.

  • Location: Gipsy Trail Rd., Carmel.
  • Hours: Always open.

If you’re planning on taking a break from the daily grind and reconnecting with nature, we suggest exploring the various parks and sanctuaries in the town of Carmel. Do you know of any scenic sites that we missed? Contact our team at Meadowland GMC in Carmel, New York so that we can add it to our list. If you are looking for peace of mind out on the road, stop by today to get your car serviced or talk to one of our helpful sales associates about test-driving a brand-new vehicle.

Photo Credit: Image by Aaron Burden is licensed with Unsplash License