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Why Fly to Albany?
Resting on the west bank of the Hudson River, Albany is the capital of the Empire State and the hub of the Albany-Schenectady-Troy tri-city area. Dating back to the early 17th century, Albany is one of the oldest cities in the U.S. Through extensive preservation efforts, much of this history has been saved and remains in the form of historic neighborhoods and landmarks. For instance, the Quackenbush House, built in 1736, exemplifies the Dutch Colonial brick mansion that was once typical of the area. But the oldest standing building in Albany is the Van Ostrande-Radliff House, which dates back to 1728. The city is also a commercial center for New York. Its high-tech industries, including its nanotechnology sector, attract business travelers from around the world. As for green spaces, the city boasts more than 60 public parks. The oldest park in Albany, Washington Park, has a history that stretches back to 1686. Today, the large green space is a popular place for sports, ice skating and outdoor festivals. If you're looking for a night on the town, head over to the city's Midtown neighborhood. This eclectic area is home to funky boutiques, unique restaurants, bars and nightclubs. As for the arts, the city often attracts national musical and theatrical acts. Its TU Center is the Albany's largest venue and frequently hosts sporting events, concerts and trade shows. As for shopping, the city boasts several trendy shopping districts and malls, including Lark Street, which features a number of locally owned novelty stores and gift shops. As for accommodations, business travelers and pleasure seekers alike can book reservations at the Albany hotels along the Hudson River. If you're looking for cheap flights, you can use Travelzoo's SuperSearch.
Which Airlines Fly to Albany?
The Albany International Airport (ALB) serves the Albany region. You can frequently buy discount airfare from New York City on Delta and US Airways. Or search for affordable plane tickets from Newark on Continental. Southerners can compare flight rates from Atlanta, Orlando, Fort Lauderdale and Tampa on Southwest and Delta. Meanwhile, Midwesterners can find cheap flights from Chicago, Cleveland, Detroit and Minneapolis on United, Southwest, Delta and Continental.
Popular Albany Flight Routes
Albany Flight Tips
Alternatively, you can search for flights to nearby Hartford, which is only a two-hour drive from Albany. Many airlines serve Hartford's Bradley International Airport (BDL), including American Airlines, American Eagle, Continental, Delta, Frontier, JetBlue, Southwest, United and US Airways. Or compare airfare to Syracuse, which is only two-and-a-half hours away. The Syracuse Hancock International Airport (SYR) receives flights from American Eagle, Continental, Delta, JetBlue, United and US Airways.
Quick Travel Guide to Albany
Begin your exploration of Albany with a visit to the main city square, Empire State Plaza. The open space, conceived by Governor Nelson Rockefeller, anchors the downtown area. It is flanked by a number of government buildings. Within the plaza, you will find The Egg, a major icon of the capital city. This unusually ovoid-shaped structure houses two amphitheaters and frequently hosts musical, dance and theatrical performances. The plaza connects to the New York State Capitol via an underground tunnel, while a pedestrian bridge links the square to the TU Center.
Walk north of the Empire State Plaza a couple blocks to the New York State Capitol. Completed in 1899, the beautifully ornate structure exemplifies a combination of Romanesque and Renaissance architectural styles. The elaborate building is open to the public.
For a nice walk, venture down State Street. This historic avenue is home to many historic homes that date back to the 19th century. State Street passes by the 81-acre Washington Park, which features a large lake as well as a handful of monuments, fountains and memorials. Continue walking southeast until you reach the Hudson River. Here, you can explore the Corning City Preserve, a five-mile long park. The park provides access to the Hudson River Bikeway, a long bike path that follows alongside the waterfront.
If the museum scene interests you, head to the New York State Museum. Located on the south side of the Empire State Plaza, the historical institution houses art and artifacts that reflect the state's cultural, natural and geological development. It is the nation's oldest and largest state museum. Exhibits include fossils, Native American crafts, a mineral collection and a fully functional turn-of-the-century carousel. Another museum option is the Albany Institute of History and Art. The gallery has more than 20,000 objects in its collection, including paintings, drawings, prints, sculptures, furniture pieces, ceramics and clothing.
For shopping, head to Crossgates Mall just outside Albany. The gigantic retail complex is the largest shopping center in the region. It boasts approximately 250 stores and restaurants as well as an 18-screen theater, which includes an IMAX Experience theater. For an upscale experience, visit Stuyvesant Plaza. This shopping center features some of the most exclusive boutiques in the area.