The 4-Hour Rule: Labor Day Edition

Three getaways for takin' it easy this three-day weekend

By Shari Gab

Labor Day Vacay Shouldn’t Have to Be So Much Work
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22 August 2016

Long weekends have a way of sneaking up.

All too often accompanied by the words, “We were gonna go out of town, but ...

Bummer. But not this time.

We’ve got three destinations just close enough to not be a shlep yet just far enough to help you forget you’re a city mouse, if only for a few blissful days.

Where To Go: Essex, Connecticut
Two hours by car
There’s not a ton to do in lovely little Essex. It’s great. A trip back in time to the simple life, the to-dos (if you feel like it) include a schooner cruise with the Connecticut River Museum, a visit to the Valley Railroad Company for a ride on a riverboat and an ol’ timey train, and — so long as you’re in relaxation mode — you might as well saunter down to the Spa of Essex. For eats, go for a Cuban sammy over at Marley’s, Porky Pete’s BBQ for comfort grub and Abby’s for just about anything overlooking that charming water view. For resting the noggin, the Griswold Inn is the way to go, but Essex makes a fine day trip to boot.

Where to Go: Roscoe, New York
Two hours by car
Known locally as “Trout Town USA,” Roscoe has, you guessed it, a great deal of trout fishing. A fella can make his own way or hire a guide to lead the charge. Additional attractions include a locomotive museum, the fantastically spooky Craig E-Clair castle and an oddball alpaca farm. The best part about a day of fishing is throwing a few back after (and during), though. For that, there's Roscoe Beer Co., the Catskill Brewery and the Prohibition Distillery all a stone throw’s away. For grub, head to the Riverside Cafe or picturesque Spiro’s, where you’ll dine on the back porch overlooking their apple orchard. And for a good night’s sleep you can’t go wrong with the sprawling Tennanah Golf and Tennis Club or the rustic Pepacton Cabins.

Where to Go: Highlands, New Jersey
One hour by ferry
To everyone already heading to the Highlands, our sincerest apologies for letting the world in on your secret. The beaches are delightful and tend to be pretty quiet. The days melt away lounging at quaint waterfront locales like Windansea, Inlet Cafe and Bahrs Landing, though Off the Hook takes the cake for solid, easygoing eats. Activities include Captain Dave’s fishing charters and a visit to the Twin Lights Lighthouse, while simply biking about and having a stop off at the Carton Brewing Company are both a must. And the Blue Bay Inn is simple but serene, and the sweet spot for a weekend escape.

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