On a recent road trip to the Finger Lakes Region in New York, I had the pleasure of staying at the Inn at Taughannock on the largest lake Cayuga. You can read all about my stay in my review below.

As you enter the Inn at Taughannock you are instantly greeted by the Victorian charm of the Inn’s main building. From the sitting room with a piano, to the dining room offering 180-degree views of Cayuga Lake the atmosphere instantly relaxes you.

When I wasn’t exploring the beautiful outdoors or fun things to do in the surrounding Finger Lakes Region like Ithaca and the amazing waterfalls, I was enjoying the laidback luxury of the amenities at the Inn at Taughannock.

Inn at Taughannock Rooms and Suites

At first many believe an Inn will be small or quaint, well the beauty of the Inn at Taughannock was the diversity of choices for the style and sizes of rooms. There are four unique buildings at this boutique hotel nestled right off the Finger Lakes Wine Trail and 7 miles from Ithaca, NY. The original Victorian Era house remains as the main building of the Inn, then the Hillside Residence offering suites, the Edgewood offering hotel-style rooms with lake-view balconies, and then Parkview offering the only rooms that allow pets!

The Hillside – Le Grande Suite

Sarah Fay travel blogger walking to the Hillside residence at the Inn at Taughannock.
Hillside Residence at Inn at Taughannock

It’s always nice when you stay at a hotel and feel right at home, and the Le Grande Suite made me feel just like that. The two-floor suite offered a dining room, beautiful kitchen, outdoor sitting area, a 65 inch TV with a beautiful living room that included a billiards table! It was the suite of my dreams since I am secretly a pool shark.

My favorite part of my room was the view of Cayuga Lake. From the long open windows natural light flooded the suite’s spacious rooms, and the outdoor nook was perfect for my morning coffee. It was hard leaving my serene room each morning.

Exemplary Service at the Inn at Taughannock

While some maybe weary of traveling during Covid, the Inn really exemplified cleanliness, social distancing, and Covid 19 protocols that still allowed a great experience while minimizing contact between guests and staff.

Social distancing and masks were required everywhere, while housekeeping was available on request. I definitely felt safe not only at the Inn, but throughout the entire Finger Lakes region do to new protocols to stop the spread.

Inn at Taughannock History

Inn at Taughannock sign on the property at the foot of the gorge trail at Taughannock Falls state park.
Inn at Taughannock path from the Gorge Trail at Taughannock Falls State Park.

Historically significant to Cayuga Lake and the Finger Lakes Region, the Inn at Taughannock got its’ start as a family home for the Jones’ who buil the original Victorian house in 1873 as their private home. Their land stretched from Taughannock Point where John Jones built a horse race track to the Taughannock Falls.

John Jones sold 800 acres of the land to New York State in 1923, which later became Taughannock Falls State Park. In 1935 the house was sold to the Agards who created Taughannock Farms Inn and the longest running dining establishment in the region.

The Inn was expanded to include the Hillside Residence as the private home for the Inn owners. Now it is where guests can experience the most luxurious room on the estate the Le Grande Suite. In 2015 the Inn was bought by former Ithaca College graduates whom have been expanding, renovating, and developing the Enchantment- a beautiful overlook garden and events space.

Dining at the Inn at Taughannock

One of the longest running restaurants in the Finger Lakes region is the Inn at Taughannock Restaurant. Due to covid 19, the restaurant was open on Friday and Saturday for dinner 5pm to 10 pm and lunch on Saturday.

Otherwise, the Inn was business as usual. They offered a great continental breakfast each morning with a choice of dining in the historic restaurant with 180-degree views or outdoors.

Each morning I woke up with a morning coffee in my suite before heading down to the main inn for breakfast. The egg frittatas, muffins, yogurt parfaits, and juice was the perfect start to active days exploring. Working off breakfast with a beautiful hike through Taughannock Falls State Park was a great way to start my day. The Inn offered private access for guests.

Breakfast in the Jones Dining Room at the Inn at Taughannock.
Continental Breakfast at the Inn at Taughannock dining room.

Taughannock Falls State Park

After a delicious breakfast at the Main Inn building in the Jones Dining room, I decided to take a hike down to Taughannock Falls. There is an easy and a hard option, I chose the gorge trail as I had already seen the falls from the rim trail the previous night from the Taughannock overlook.

Access to the park is free to the state park, as you don’t have to pay for parking. I just could imagine how beautiful a backyard this was for many years for the Jones. It is wonderful that the public can now enjoy this natural wonder.

Taughannock Falls is taller than Niagara Falls, and plunges 215 feet with cliffs up to 400 feet high. Beautiful in the Spring, summer, and fall for a hike as well as beautiful views. Once guests finish exploring Taughannock Falls State Park there are a few other state parks nearby to enjoy. Head to Buttermilk Falls State Park and Robert H. Treman State Park for an afternoon swim to cool off. Tip: The state park parking pass will cover you for not only Buttermilk Falls State Park, but also Robert H. Treman and Taughannock Falls State Park.

Robert H. Treman State Park Falls diving board and waterfalls swimming area in Finger Lakes.

Cayuga Lake

Just a short walk from the Inn at Taughannock is the Cayuga Lake beach area. Here you can rent kayaks from Paddle-N-More. Many guests come to the Inn at Taughannock for the Cayuga Lake Wine Trail. It includes 16 wineries in total and was the first organized wine trail in the United States est. 1983. While I did not indulge in this piece of history, I did enjoy the many outdoor activities in the area. 

Want to get out on the lake in a more relaxing setting? Then take a boat tour with Discover Cayuga Lake, they are open with lowered capacity due to covid.


Only 7 miles away is Ithaca, New York a wonderful college town on Lake Cayuga. Want to get outdoors and cycle? Close to the property is a beautiful 7-mile bike trail called Diamond Head. It can take you from Ithaca to the 215 ft falls.

There are restaurants in Trumansburg where the Inn is located like Hazelnut Kitchen. But it is nice to explore a variety of places to eat in Ithaca. I enjoyed visiting the Ithaca Farmers Market and visiting the many waterfalls. The market has been voted one of the best in the country. After a hike through Cascadilla Gorge and Ithaca Falls near Cornell, I got some ice cream at Purity Ice Cream.

Inn at Taughannock Review Final Thoughts

When you stay at Taughannock Falls you feel like you are a part of history. The Inn at Taughannock is a perfect location to explore the Finger Lakes, or relax with nature at your door. A stay at the Inn at Taughannock is the perfect way to escape for a weekend away. Guests can get out in nature, try farm-to-table food, and experience all the Finger Lakes has to offer. A stay here will make you feel at home and provides a truly relaxing vacation.  

Inn at Taughannock offers many areas to relax and take in the beauty of the Finger Lakes Region and Lake Cayuga.
Chess in a sitting room at the Main Inn building in Lake Cayuga.

When planning my trip in the Finger Lakes I consulted not only the wonderful staff at the Inn at Taughannock, but I also consulted the regional tourism website.

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An Honest Review of the Inn at Taughannock in the Finger Lakes Region of New York. The luxurious and charming Inn has some of the best views of Lake Cayuga and private access to Taughannock Falls State Park. #charminginns #victorianhomes #hotels #travel

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