New York has more mountains than any other state in the U.S., and therefore offers the largest amount of ski areas in a single state. From Lake Placid’s Whiteface Mountain, host of the 1980 Winter Olympics, to Hunter Mountain, the world’s first ski resort to produce top-to-bottom snowmaking, these are the best family ski resorts in New York.
Written by Amanda Geronikos
As for skiing, the mountain has it all -- 86 trails (a third of which are rated for expert skiers) and 11 lifts, which include a gondola. The resort's Play-n-Ski program is perfect for little ones. Kids are grouped according to ability and are out on the snow for hour-and-a-half increments. Between lessons, they are supervised in the Bear's Den Nursery, where they enjoy arts and crafts and games. Various other programs are offered, including the Junior Adventure Program, Teen Experience, and even a Future Medalist Program.
Unique to Whiteface Mountain is its Bobsled Experience. With a professional driver and brakeman, you'll speed faster than you can in a car through town, and want to do it all over again when you get to the finish line! Tubing, snowshoeing and boarding are also offered.
Recommended Hotel: Whiteface Lodge
Gore Mountain has traditional learning programs for beginners, but also features Mini Learning Park, where small snow features encourage faster development of balance and control for children ages 4 to 6. Gore Mountain also offers Holiday Camps (Martin Luther King Jr. Weekend and President's Day Weekend) to families, which feature two or three days of learning and exploring the mountain for one price.
Recommended Hotel: Wingate by Wyndham Lake George
Unique to Holiday Valley is the Mountain Coaster, a low-to-the-ground ride that's completely controlled by you, utilizing levers on the sides of the car. Children must be at least 3 years old and stand 36 inches to ride.
Holiday Valley offers nine different learning programs for kids, as well as daycare services. Adult lessons are offered.
Recommended Hotel: Tamarack Club
Another major draw of Greek Peak is Hope Lake Lodge, located just across from the slopes. The Northwood-style hotel features a 41,000-square-foot indoor waterpark and luxurious spa.
Recommended Hotel: Hope Lake Lodge
Snowboarding lessons are also available. Youngsters spend time at the Child Care Center, open Monday through Friday, which houses an indoor playground, rather than TVs and video games. Families also enjoy tubing and dining at four onsite eateries.
Recommended Hotel: Miami Resort Motel
Hunter Mountain also offers extensive accommodations for families and new skiers and snowboarders. Rookies utilize several specialized programs at the Learning Center, housed in its very own building. Little ones ages 6 months to 6 years spend time in PlayCare, located beneath the Learning Center.
Hungry families have several dining options, including Van Winkle's Restaurant (at the Kaatskill Mountain Club), and Scottie's Summit Lodge Cafe, which serves up comfort foods like soup and chili.
Recommended Hotel: Kaatskill Mountain Club
Children ages 2 to 7 hang out at the Children's Learning Center, where they enjoy indoor games, crafts and more. Families can choose from several onsite dining options, including The Waffle Cabin. Additionally, Windham Mountain owns Winwood Inn & Condos, located just a few minutes from the mountain. Complimentary shuttles are offered.
Recommended Hotel: Villa Vosilla
Tiny tots can spend time in childcare, and non-skiers should try their hand (well, feet) at snowshoeing. Consider visiting the mountain during its discounted days, on which each guest can ski for just $15, or during its themed events, which include a St. Patrick's Day Festival.
Recommended Hotel: The Roxbury
Today, the resort has 55 trails, eight lifts, plenty of thrilling parks and glades, and a following of thousands -- more than 175,000, to be exact -- from all over the world. Of course, it also has a special place for new skiers, called the Learning Zone, where both adults and kids can take lessons or enroll in camps.
Recommended Hotel: Emerson Resort & Spa
Song Mountain & Labrador Mountain
Song Mountain, which merged with Labrador Mountain in 2014, also offers an Intra-Mountain Passport, enabling families to ski both mountains for the price of one.
Labrador Mountain has 22 slopes and six lifts, plus two onsite dining options. It truly lends itself to family fun, too, with children's ski lessons, a kids' activity center and babysitting services.
Recommended Hotel: Country Inn and Suites by Carlson Cortland