Historical reenactment in Ulster County, NY

Our History

The county is named for the Irish province of Ulster, then an earldom of the Duke of York (later James II). The first European settlers called it Esopus.

By 1683, the Duke of York created 12 counties, which included Ulster. It became New York’s first capital of an independent New York in 1777.

From the site where the first meeting of New York State’s Senate took place, Senate House in Kingston, to Historic Huguenot Street in New Paltz, you can take a trip back in time to discover all the history that was made in Ulster County.

Gardiner, New York

Our Landscape

Ulster County has a quarter million acres of land protected for recreational use. With 350 miles of hiking and biking trails, streams for fishing, and 35 peaks for skiing and snowshoeing, Ulster County lures nature lovers year-round. The Hudson River provides cruises, kayaking, canoeing and sailing, with access from many locations.

Hang Around Our Towns

Quaint shops, local eats, breathtaking views, rich history — find all of this and more in our vibrant communities.

Friends hiking in Ulster County, NY

Visitor Health & Safety

We hope you’ll be happy and healthy during your stay. Just in case, this is how to get help if you need it.

Asian man enjoying nature in Ulster County, NY

Frequently Asked Questions

Whether you’re visiting for the first time or the 10th time, you may have a Q or two. That’s what we’re here for.

Contact Us

Learn how to reach us and other useful information about Ulster County.

Plan Your Visit

Get lost on purpose in this beautiful, historic and soulful area in the heart of the Hudson Valley.

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Things to Do

Choose from thrilling outdoor adventures, relaxing spa retreats, fruitful shopping excursions, or eclectic arts and culture activities.

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Enjoy happenings as diverse as the mountains, valleys, streams and rivers that dot our 250,000-acre landscape.

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Where to Stay

Posh hotels, retro-inspired inns, tricked-out cabins and cozy B&Bs are just some of the lodging options.

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Places to Eat & Drink

Find an abundance of fine restaurants, acclaimed chefs, hand-crafted beer and wine, and award-winning spirits.

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