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An Affordable (and Eco-Friendly) Weekend in Woodstock, NY

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My mission was simple: for my husband and me to get some desperately needed time out of New York City among trees, fresh air and wildlife, and open space for our active toddler boy to run, climb and explore. Also important: finding a reasonably priced place to stay for the weekend near Woodstock, NY, where our friends were getting married. 

After much research into different inns and B&Bs (many of which do not allow children), we decided to stay at The Retreat at TreeGap, an eco- and family-friendly B&B about a mile outside town with a focus on organic food (and big breakfasts!) and sustainable living.

We arrived in early afternoon and were greeted by fresh, fragrant air, innkeeper Megan Reynolds, and her dog Bess. Megan showed us around the main house and adjacent carriage house set on 16 acres of lush woodland with hiking trails. Especially impressive was the array of large solar panels—which generates 85 percent of the electricity needed to run the place.

Our room was in the carriage house—a large, recently renovated one-room wood cabin with mid-century modern décor with large windows and skylights that’s ideal for couples or small families who are looking for quiet, private accommodations without worrying about disturbing anyone else who may be staying at the inn. Furnished with a king-size bed, a foldout futon/couch, private bathroom with shower, flat-screen TV, small dining table with chairs, a variety of books, and maps of hiking trails nearby, the cabin also included three different kinds of wastebaskets: trash, recycling, and compost. A mini-fridge came stocked with organic milk and butter, fruit preserves, granola, peanut butter, coffee, agave syrup, and oat milk.

On our first evening in Woodstock, we had a fantastic, relaxed dinner at Joshua’s Café on Tinker Street, followed by a visit to Taco Juan’s for ice cream. Back at our cabin that night we happily rediscovered this formula: a very comfortable bed + sounds of crickets in the trees just outside our window + complete lack of city noise = a good night’s sleep.

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In the morning, I opened our door to find a large breakfast tray waiting for us with: hard-boiled eggs, Megan's freshly baked sourdough bread, biscotti and cinnamon rolls, fresh buttermilk, homemade yogurt, apple cider, and two bowls of oatmeal with raisins. It looked so beautifully put together I almost didn’t want to touch it. But being in the country makes us extra hungry, so we dove right into one of the most satisfying, delicious meals we’ve had in a long time. Even our two-year old picky eater was happy with the offerings. Mission accomplished.


Maria Stegner is a designer at Travel + Leisure.

Photos courtesy of Maria Stegner

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