- For other places with the same name, see Chautauqua (disambiguation).
- 1 Chautauqua , a tiny town that is home to the Chautauqua Institution.
- 2 Dunkirk , a port on Lake Erie
- 3 Fredonia , the home of State University of New York at Fredonia.
- 4 Jamestown , a small city, yet the largest in the county.
- 5 Mayville , a village that is the county seat.
Chautauqua Lake, the inland ribbon of water that gave the county its name. Most people visit in the summer, when the weather is best, but another popular choice is fall, as the leaves are changing color.
Chautauqua County is an area of rolling, wooded hills and small towns in the extreme southwest of New York State, much closer to Cleveland and Toronto than New York City. As a result, it has a somewhat Midwestern vibe.
- Chautauqua County/Jamestown Airport (JHW IATA)) is very small. Buffalo Niagara International Airport (BUF IATA) is larger, though further away. When you price shop, work in the cost of transportation from each airport into your calculation, as the distance between Buffalo and Chautauqua County is significant.
You will have trouble getting around the county without a car.
A total solar eclipse on Monday 8 April 2024 crosses the area from 3:17PM local time. The track of totality is northeast from Mexico and Texas to Ohio then straddling the Canada–New England border.
The most pleasant things to see in this county are the landscape and the wonder of the tremendous Lake Erie. Lake Chautauqua - much longer than it is wide, like the Finger Lakes, but not considered a finger lake - is also beautiful, but generally too cold to swim in even in the summer.
- Chautauqua-Lake Erie Wine Trail. There are 21 wineries along 40 miles of Lake Erie countryside.
- Skiing/Snowboarding: If winter sports are more your thing, there are many places in the hilly interior where you can carve your trail in the slopes.
If you like Buffalo wings, you will find them in many bars and restaurants.