Although trains travel to the region (Amtrak to New York, then Metro North to Peekskill), the best way to see the expansive Hudson Valley region is via car. From Baltimore, West Point is about 270 miles. The five-hour drive up Interstate 95, then the New Jersey Turnpike to the Garden State Parkway North finally becomes picturesque once you enter the Palisades Parkway, eventually landing you in the Hudson Valley, where you'll follow a series of smallish roads overlooking the Hudson River to the Academy.
The Thayer Hotel at West Point, 674 Thayer Road, West Point, 845-446-4731; thethayerhotel.com. The Thayer, on West Point property, is an ornamental, majestic hotel. In the marble and leaded glass-adorned lobby are displays of international flags and portraits of celebrated military leaders. Room rates start around $219.
Castle on the Hudson, Benedict Avenue, Tarrytown, 800-616-4487; castleonthehudson.com. This hotel is a 100-year-old castle built by the son of a Civil War general. Its posh guest rooms with luxurious amenities begin at $295.
Equus, 914-631-3646, castleonthehudson.com/language/en-US/Dining.aspx. The regal Oak Room at the five-star, Zagat-rated restaurant in the Castle on the Hudson was once owned by Louis XIV. Try the arctic char with pine nuts. Entrees from $28.
Harvest on Hudson, 1 River St., Hastings, 914-478-2800, harvest2000.com/hoh. Modern Mediterranean cuisine with views of the Hudson and Palisades. Entrees from $24.
United States Military Academy at West Point. Along with its impressive sites, watching an Army football game at Michie Stadium has been described as one of the greatest experiences in sports. Tickets start at around $79. Go to goarmysports.com or call 877-849-2769. Tours of West Point are offered daily, 9 a.m.-4:45 p.m. Tickets begin at $12. Go to westpointtours.com
Storm King Art Center, Old Pleasant Hill Road, Mountainville, N.Y., 845-534-3115; stormking.org. This 500-acre landscape of fields, hills, and woodlands showcases more than 100 sculptures by prominent artists.
Kykuit, 381 N. Broadway, Sleepy Hollow, 914-631-8200. The Rockefeller estate includes extraordinary gardens, architecture, artwork and history. There are five tour options, with tickets ranging from $23-$35.
Pride of the Hudson Boat Tours, Torches Landing, Newburgh, N.Y., 800-979-3370; prideofthehudson.com. Two-hour sightseeing cruises.
To plan a trip to Hudson River Valley, go to travelhudsonvalley.org or call 800-232-4782.Copyright © 2015, The Baltimore Sun