These are Rachel's top picks for easy and relaxing last minute summer trips that are only a 60 minutes outside of NYC via public transportation. Win win. 

Bear Mountain || Bear Mountain, which is super close to the city (approximately 1 hour and fifteen minutes by car), is another one of Rachel’s favorite spots for hiking. Nearby is Storm King Art Center, which is a real treat -- it’s experiencing art in a whole new way! Storm King is an outdoor museum so make sure to bring rain gear if the weather calls for it.

Beacon || Beacon houses the Dia Art Foundation, which is a museum that recognizes, promotes, and curates “artists who have potential to change the way we think about art and the world.” It’s a fantastic space and one of our favorites to visit. Metro North drops you off across the street, so you don’t need a car to experience this space. The train ride is gorgeous and a treat in itself.

Hudson || Just a bit north of Beacon is Hudson, which is thriving with artists, beautiful homes, cute bistros, and a wealth of shops. It is a great place to spend a day strolling, shopping, and nibbling on delicious food. Try to time your visit with a show or event at Basilica Hudson.

New Paltz + Mohonk ||  A little bit farther, about 2 hours away, but accessible by bus that drops you off right in New Paltz from midtown Manhattan. Rachel loves to hike the Shawangunk trails (“The Gunks”) and in Minnewaska State Park. After hiking, refuel at The Bistro on Main Street in New Paltz. If you plan to stay for a couple of days, the Mohonk Mountain House makes for a pretty dreamy weekend respite.

Rockaways || So the Rockaways are actually within NYC, but once you're on the beach it really does feel like you're out of town. Before hitting the beach, drop into De La Mer 1981 or Breezy Point Surf Shop to pick up anything you may have forgotten, like a swimsuit. It happens! Now it’s time to vamos a la playa! Our favorites are Fort Tilden and Jacob Riis. After a day on the sand stop by Riis Park Beach Bazaar cool down and catch some live music before heading to dinner. Why not stay a few days and grille for your yourself? Here is a round up of top notch airBNB spots in Rockaway!

Image via Lola Barksdale