Syracuse is a city in Central New York. With a population of 145,000 in city proper and 662,000 in its metro area, Syracuse is the fifth largest city in the state of New York, and the third largest in Upstate New York.
- Amtrak. Syracuse is served twice daily in each direction by the Empire Service (New York City to Niagara Falls), once daily in each direction by the Maple Leaf (New York City to Toronto, following the route of the Empire Service up to Niagara Falls), and once daily in each direction by the Lake Shore Limited (New York City or Boston to Chicago, following the route of the Empire Service up to Buffalo-Depew).
- Greyhound. Bus service from New York City (via Scranton, Binghamton, and Cortland), Boston (via Worcester, Springfield, Albany, Schenectady, and Utica), and Cleveland (via Erie, Buffalo, and Rochester). Very limited service to Ottawa, Fri/Sun only.
- Trailways of New York. Service from Buffalo (via Rochester) and New York City (via Scranton, Binghamton, and Cortland). A bus runs to Massena via Watertown and various points on US11.
- Megabus. Service from New York City, Rochester, Buffalo, and Toronto.
- 2 Syracuse Hancock International Airport (IATA: SYR), 1000 Colonel Eileen Collins Boulevard, Airport Information: +1 315 454-4330, City of Syracuse Department of Aviation: +1 315 454-3263. Mostly served by Delta Air Lines/Delta Connection, United Express, and American Airlines. Limited service from JetBlue. Although an international airport, the only international service offered is Air Canada to/from Toronto International.
Travel from the four cardinal directions is served by two Interstate highways.
- I-90 New York State Thruway E/W, with service to central Syracuse via I-690
- I-81 N/S
A car is probably the best way to get around Syracuse, especially if you are going to places away from downtown. Make sure you have a map and pay attention to the street signs. There are some streets in the downtown area that go from being two-way to one-way, which is not always clear on a map.
You can walk to most of the destinations in downtown Syracuse from a parking lot or the Centro bus terminal.
Most of the downtown area is relatively flat, but keep in mind that the University area has many steep hills and the residential areas surrounding downtown have quite a few hills as well. What some people will do is catch a ride on the bus downtown, placing their bike on the bike rack on the front of the bus and then use their bike once they reach downtown, thus avoiding the steep hills.
The Centro Bus System provides a fair alternative to driving to most locations, $2/passenger within Syracuse, additional fare to outlying suburbs, service from Syracuse to Oswego for $5 (as of 2015). If you have to transfer to another bus, be sure to ask the bus driver for a transfer card so that you don't get stuck paying double fares for the same trip. Discounts for senior citizens, persons with disabilities and children. The buses are accessible to people with disabilities and the bus drivers are instructed to let a person with a physical disability on before letting other passengers on.
- 3 Centro Transit Hub
There are several taxi services listed in the Syracuse phone book that you can choose from. It will usually take anywhere from 10 to 30 minutes for a taxi to come pick you up but it can be useful if you missed the last bus of the day. At the airport there is usually no wait, as there is a well-frequented taxi stand at the end of Terminal A. Ride-hailing services including Lyft and Uber are also available.
Up-to-date information about the happenings in Syracuse can most easily be found in the Syracuse New Times, available for free at bars or coffee shops. Syracuse's only major print newspaper, The Post-Standard, publishes a Weekend section in its Thursday publication containing upcoming events in the Central New York area.
Online calendars of upcoming events are offered by local media groups:
- Everson Museum, 401 Harrison St, ☎ , e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Erie Canal Museum, 318 Erie Blvd E, ☎ . The canal no longer passes through downtown Syracuse, but this museum celebrates its history. Features the last standing weighlock on the canal, a replica of an old canal freighter, and a number of historical exhibits.
- Museum of Science and Technology, 500 South Franklin St, ☎ .
- Onondaga Historical Association Museum, 321 Montgomery St, ☎ .
- Skä•noñh - Great Law of Peace Center, 6680 Onondaga Lake Pkwy, ☎ .
- 2 Rosamond Gifford Zoo (Burnet Park), One Conservation Pl (Geddes St to Seymour St to S Wilbur Ave), ☎ . Daily 10AM-4:30PM except Thanksgiving, 25 Dec, 1 Jan. A small but well-populated zoo at the top of a hill in Burnet Park with everything from reindeer, lions, tigers and a herd of Asian elephants to sand cats and peacocks and fossas. Fast food and souvenir shop in main building. Under 3 free, ages 3-18 $4, ages 19-61 $8, ages 62+ $5; all prices halved in Jan and Feb.
Live theatre and music
- The Landmark Theatre, 362 South Salina Street, ☎ .
- The Redhouse, 201 South West St, ☎ .
- Syracuse Stage, 820 East Genesee St, ☎ (box office). Administration: +1 315 443-4008
- Symphoria, 234 Harrison St., ☎ . Musicians from the Syracuse Symphony, a half-century-old ensemble bankrupted in 2011, formed Symphony Syracuse while trying to build support for a new professional orchestra. That group's successor, Symphoria, now performs at Crouse Hinds Theatre, Mulroy Civic Center at Oncenter, 800 South State Street.
- The Westcott Theater, 524 Westcott St, ☎ . One of the most popular live music venues in the city.
- 3 Lakeview Amphitheater, 490 Restoration Way Syracuse, NY 13209 (I-690 to exit 7), ☎ . Outdoor venue hosting big name acts.
- Syracuse Orange. The city's highest-profile sports institutions are the teams representing Syracuse University in seven men's sports and 11 women's sports. The Orange, members of the Atlantic Coast Conference along with 14 other schools in the eastern half of the country, are perennial national powers in men's basketball and men's lacrosse, and also have a rich football tradition. The main athletic facilities are all on campus, with the best-known being the Carrier Dome, home to the football, basketball, and lacrosse teams. The Dome, seating over 49,000 for football and lacrosse and over 33,000 for basketball, is by far the largest domed stadium on a U.S. university campus, and the world's largest facility by capacity regularly used for basketball.
- 4 Carrier Dome, 900 Irving Ave, ☎ , toll-free: . Lacrosse, soccer, basketball and football for Syracuse University.
- 5 The Syracuse Chiefs, NBT Bank Stadium, 1 Tex Simone Dr.. Syracuse's minor league baseball team, the AAA team for the Washington Nationals. You can see from all seats in the house! Tickets are cheap, ranging from about $5 for upper-deck seats to $8 for 100- and 200-level seating.
- Syracuse Crunch, War Memorial at OnCenter, 800 S. State St.. AHL minor league hockey team is the highest affiliate of the NHL's Tampa Bay Lightning.
Parks and outdoors
- 6 Green Lakes State Park, 7900 Green Lakes Rd, Fayetteville, ☎ . Two glacial lakes surrounded by upland forest, 18-hole Green Lakes State Park Golf course, snow-shoeing and 15 miles of cross-country ski trail in winter.
- Erie Canal Trail, ☎ . Canalway Trail for biking, walking and jogging. Although the historic waterway's route through the city was long ago filled in, access points exist in the neighboring Towns of Camillus 1 in the west and DeWitt 2 in the east.
- Beaver Lake, 8477 East Mud Lake Rd, Baldwinsville, ☎ . 9 mi (14 km) of winding trails for all seasons, more than 200 species of birds, over 800 varieties of plants, 200 acres (81 hectares) glacial lake; a migratory stop for thousands of Canada geese.
- 7 Onondaga Lake Park, 106 Lake Dr, Liverpool, ☎ . Vehicle-free trails, boat launch and marina, skate park, playground, Salt Museum, boat and bicycle rental.
- Oneida Lake. Fishing, boating, camping.
Syracuse has gained the nickname "the City of Festivals" for good reason. There are numerous festivals year round. The following are just a few of the festivals that are held in and around the City of Syracuse:
- Jazz in the Square This jazz festival is seen as a downtown replacement for the M&T Jazz Fest which has moved to the Onondaga Community College campus.
- Latin American Festival
- The Syracuse St. Patrick's Parade. Originally founded by an honored local journalist, Nancy Duffy, the parade has been celebrating St. Patrick's Day for over 25 years.
- Taste of Syracuse. A festival with several streets of booths containing samples of menu items from the variety of Restaurants in the Syracuse Area. free.
- M&T Jazz Fest at OCC. Originally hosted in Downtown Syracuse in Hanover Square and Clinton Square, it moved to the Onondaga Community College campus when Clinton Square was renovated and has stayed there ever since.
- Polish Fest.
- Juneteenth Celebration. One of the largest of its kind in Central New York, the occasion celebrates African American history and culture.
- St. Sophia Greek Cultural Festival. Dancing, music, food and shopping are the order of the day. Enjoy the food, music and dancing outside and then wander inside to find the shops, pastries and coffee. Guided tours, lectures, displays and a visual tour of the Greek Islands can also be found inside.
- Syracuse Middle Eastern Festival.
- New York State Blues Fest.
- Syracuse Arts & Crafts Festival.
- Syracuse Nationals Car Show. Claiming to be one of the largest car shows on the East Coast, this massive car show held at the New York State Fairgrounds features thousands of antique cars, hot rods, motorcycles, race cars and just about anything else with wheels and a motor. Common events held each year are the tractor pull, burnout competitions and music concerts.
- 8 Shakespeare-In-The-Park, Thornden Park Amphitheater (Thornden Park). Weekends mid-month. Live performance of one of Shakespeare's plays. free.
- Central New York Scottish Games and Celtic Festival, Long Branch Park, Liverpool (I-690 exit 4, then right on Long Branch Rd), ☎ . Aug 8, 9AM-6PM. Celtic and Scottish music, dancing, demonstrations, exhibits, and athletics. Adults $10, seniors $7, ages 5-12 $4, under 5 free.
- 9 The Great New York State Fair, 581 State Fair Blvd, Geddes. Annually, 12 days ending Labor Day; 10AM-10PM. The oldest state fair in the U.S., and still one of the largest. Dozens of free concerts from national touring acts populate the 12-day schedule, along with the expected midway rides, art exhibits, and livestock competitions. State agriculture is on display in the form of the annual butter sculpture, 25-cent cups of milk, and demonstration booths for everything from honey bees to hand-tooled wood work. During the fair, Amtrak adds a stop right outside the fair's gates, making it easy to get to from Buffalo, Rochester, or Albany even without a car. Adults $10 (Thursdays $3, Labor Day $1), under 13 free.
- The Great Syracuse Oktoberfest.
- Sound Garden, 310 W. Jefferson St, ☎ . Independent music shop, used and new, with CD players to listen to any open album for as long as you want. Movie selection on second floor. Open late.
- Ra-Lin's, 625 Burnet Ave, ☎ . Camera supplies
Souvenirs, gifts, novelties
- Balloons Over Syracuse, 441 S Salina St, ☎ . Bx 350.
- Enchanted Bazaar, 118 W Jefferson St, ☎ .
- Way Off the Beaten Path, 136 Walton St, ☎ .
Shopping areas and malls
- Armory Square. Franklin St., Walton St., Clinton St., A collection of shops and restaurants in the heart of downtown Syracuse near the Museum of Science and Technology (The MOST).
- 1 Destiny USA (Carousel Center), 9090 Destiny USA Dr, ☎ . The largest shopping mall in the Central New York Area, its former Carousel Center name came from the restored fully functional carousel that is its center piece in the food court. Has department stores, restaurants, arcades, and movie theaters.
- Downtown Farmers' Market, Clinton Square. Early June to mid Oct: Tu 7AM-3PM.
- Great Northern Mall, 4155 Route 31, Clay, ☎ . Department stores, restaurants, arcade, and movie theaters.
- ShoppingTown Mall, 3649 Erie Boulevard East, DeWitt, ☎ . Department stores, restaurants, arcade, and movie theaters.
- 3 The Brooklyn Pickle, 1600 West Genesee Street, ☎ . Open until 9PM every day except Sunday.. The biggest deli sandwiches around and a friendly mom and pop feel have created an almost cult following to this little sandwich shop.
- 4 Varsity Pizza, 802 S Crouse Ave, ☎ .
- 5 Heid's, 305 Oswego St, Liverpool, ☎ . Heid's is known for two things: long lines and the hot dogs that are responsible for those long lines. Ordering is simple: anything that isn't a hot dog or a coney gets ordered first after you get in the door, including their delicious grilled cheeses and super-thick milk shakes; at the end, once you get to the cash register, you simply order how many hot dogs and coneys you'd like. If the retro-style of the restaurant isn't to your liking, you can always cross the street and sit by Onondaga Lake.
- 7 Coleman's Authentic Irish Pub, 100 South Lowell Ave, ☎ . An authentic Irish pub with a leprechaun door next to the regular door. It holds an appeal for all ages. This place has a full menu as well as a bar. It is known for its participation in the annual St. Patrick’s Day parade and festivities. If you are in Syracuse on St. Patrick’s Day be sure to come here and try the green beer. It is in the Tipperary Hill neighborhood near the only inverted street light in the country with the green light at the top and red at the bottom.
- 8 Dinosaur Bar-B-Que, 246 W. Willow St, ☎ . This is the original Dinosaur Bar-B-Que restaurant. This restaurant is famous for its BBQ sauce and pulled pork sandwiches. Despite its popularity this restaurant maintains a certain small time charm. This is also a popular place for Blues concerts.
- Redfield's Restaurant, 701 E Genesee St (In Crowne Plaza hotel), ☎ . An American bistro setting.
- 9 Syracuse Suds Factory, 320 S. Clinton St, ☎ . Established in 1991 this well known micro-brewery and restaurant has several micro-brews but also an extensive list of other beers and a full dinner menu. Be on the lookout for live entertainment at this popular venue.
- 10 Lemon Grass Restaurant, 238 W Jefferson St (on Armory Square), ☎ , fax: . Great Thai food in a formal but not snobbish atmosphere. Pad Thai is fantastic as is the Green Curry.
- 11 Pastabilities, 311 South Franklin Street, ☎ . Nice and original Italian food, great wine list, and friendly service. Can be a bit expensive but worth every cent.
Syracuse has two major nightlife districts. The largest is Armory Square downtown, followed by Marshall Street on University Hill.
- Blue Tusk, 165 Walton St, ☎ .
- Clark's Ale House, 100 E Washington St, ☎ .
- Faegan's Cafe & Pub, 734 S. Crouse Ave, ☎ . A common hangout place for students at Syracuse University, usually not quite as hectic as some of the other bars near campus, this place has more of a relaxed sit down atmosphere.
- J. Ryans Pub, 253 East Water Street, ☎ . 11AM-2AM. 69 beers on draft at all times, an always changing selection. Full menu all day as well as $2 beer specials from open to close.
Coffeeshops & cafes
- 1 Cafe Kubal, 401 S Salina St, ☎ .
- 2 Freedom of Espresso, 115 Solar St.
- 3 Recess Coffee, 110 Harvard Pl, ☎ .
- 4 Strong Hearts, 719 E Genesee St, ☎ . All vegan cafe.
- 1 Best Western Syracuse Airport Inn, 900 Colonel Eileen Collins Blvd, ☎ , fax: . Located on the grounds of Hancock International Airport.
- 2 Comfort Inn & Suites Airport, 6701 Buckley Rd (I-90 and I-81), ☎ , fax: . Stay and Fly packages and free airport transportation service available.
- 3 Econo Lodge Airport, 5396 South Bay Rd (I-81 to exit 26), ☎ , fax: .
- 4 Red Carpet Inn, 2914 Brewerton Rd, ☎ . Budget priced motel.
- 5 Courtyard Syracuse Downtown at Armory Square, 300 West Fayette St, ☎ . Located in the Armory Square retail district.
- 6 Econo Lodge Downtown, 454 James St, ☎ , fax: .
- 7 Jefferson Clinton, 416 South Clinton St, ☎ . Located in the Armory Square retail district.
- 8 Hostelling International Syracuse (Downing International Hostel), 535 Oak St, ☎ . The only hostel in Syracuse. Only open during the summer months. Dorms $30, private rooms $55-75.
The University Hill neighborhood is directly adjacent to Downtown Syracuse and is home to Syracuse University, SUNY Upstate Medical University, and SUNY College of Environmental Studies and Forestry.
- 9 Crowne Plaza Syracuse Hotel, 701 E Genesee St, ☎ . Offers 276 rooms and 3 luxury suites.
- 10 Genesee Grande Hotel, 1060 E Genesee St, ☎ .
- 11 Parkview Hotel, 713 E Genesee St, ☎ .
- 12 Sheraton University Hotel & Conference Center, 801 University Ave, ☎ . Owned and operated by the University.
Several hotels are located near Carrier Circle in DeWitt, directly accessible from the New York State Thruway's Exit 35, and fifteen-minute drive to/from Downtown Syracuse during non-peak hours.
- Best Western Fairgrounds, 670 State Fair Boulevard, ☎ , fax: .
- Candlewood Suites, 6550 Baptist Way, ☎ .
- Candlewood Suites, 5414 South Bay Road, ☎ .
- Comfort Inn Carrier Circle, 6491 Thompson Rd, ☎ , fax: .
- Econo Lodge, 3400 Erie Boulevard East, DeWitt, ☎ , fax: .
- Holiday Inn, Farrell Rd at I-90 & I-690, ☎ .
- Quality Inn, 6611 Old Collamer Rd, ☎ , fax: .
- Residence Inn Syracuse, 6420 Yorktown Circle, ☎ , fax: . Extended stay hotel.
Radio stations serving the Syracuse area include:
- News/Talk: WAER 88.3 FM (NPR), WRVD 90.3 FM (NPR), WSYR 570 AM/106.9 FM (conservative)
Major television stations serving Syracuse include:
- WSTM Channel 3: NBC
- WTVH Channel 5: CBS
- WSYR Channel 9: ABC
- WCNY Channel 24: PBS
- WSYT Channel 68: Fox
Libraries are your best bet for public Internet access, unless you can find a Wi-Fi hot spot elsewhere. Fortunately, the city and its suburbs have an excellent network of libraries, the Onondaga County Public Library System. There are eleven library branches in the city, and more than twenty in the suburbs.
- Central Library, 447 S Salina St, ☎ . This is the main library for the county, and the biggest of the branches. It's in a large glass building called The Galleries.
|Routes through Syracuse|
|Buffalo ← Rochester ←||W E||→ Rome → Albany (Rensselaer)|
|Buffalo (Depew) ← Rochester ←||W E||→ Utica → Albany (Rensselaer)|
|Buffalo ← Farmington ←||W E||→ Utica → Albany|
|Watertown ← Pulaski ←||N S||→ Cortland → Binghamton|
|Buffalo ← Auburn ←||W E||→ Utica → Albany|