Top 15 Attractions In Rochester

Top 15 Attractions In Rochester

Rochester, New York is a city brimming with family-friendly attractions that are sure to delight both children and adults alike. From immersive museums and interactive play centers to picturesque parks and thrilling outdoor adventures, there is no shortage of fun-filled things to do. Whether you’re a local looking for new adventures or a visitor seeking memorable experiences, Rochester offers a diverse range of attractions that cater to all interests and ages. How many of these Rochester icons can you spy in our skyline art?

Sea Breeze Amusement Park

Entrance to the Seabreeze Amusement Park.

Seabreeze Amusement Park is a fun-filled destination that offers something for everyone with thrilling rides, refreshing water attractions and family-friendly entertainment. Sea Breeze is home to the Jack Rabbit, the oldest continuously operating roller coaster in North America. Whether you’re looking for an adrenaline rush or a relaxing day by the beach, Sea Breeze Amusement Park is a summertime must-visit in Rochester.

Seneca Park Zoo

Entrance to the Seneca Park Zoo.

Seneca Park Zoo is home to a diverse array of animal species from around the world. From majestic lions and playful monkeys to endangered species like red pandas and snow leopards, the zoo offers a unique opportunity to see these fascinating creatures up close.

The Strong National Museum of Play

The Strong National Museum of Play

The Strong National Museum of Play is the only museum in the world dedicated to the exploration of play. The museum showcases a vast collection of toys, games, and play-related artifacts. From classic board games and vintage arcade machines to life-sized playsets and hands-on exhibits, the Strong National Museum of Play sparks joy and ignites the imagination.

Rochester Museum & Science Center + Strasenburgh Planetarium

A mastodon skeleton with large tusks.

The Rochester Museum & Science Center is a must-visit destination for anyone seeking an engaging and enriching experience in science and discovery. The museum showcases a fascinating collection of artifacts, interactive displays and hands-on activities that are great for children. The Strasenburgh Planetarium features state-of-the-art technology that allows for stunning visual displays. Visitors can learn about breathtaking astronomical phenomena and learn about the mysteries of space.

Genesee Country Village & Museum

An old country house with picket fence.

History comes to life at the Genesee Country Village & Museum. Journey to the 19th century in the historic village and visit preserved shops and homes. There are events held throughout the year that can make for an extra special visit.

Memorial Art Gallery

Bright letters spell M-A-G outside of the Memorial Art Gallery.

The Memorial Art Gallery, or MAG, houses an impressive collection of over 12,000 works of art spanning various mediums and periods. The museum’s permanent collection features notable pieces by renowned artists such as Monet, Rembrandt and Warhol.

George Eastman Museum

The George Eastman Museum is at the stately residence of its founder.

The George Eastman Museum is a treasure trove of photography and cinema history. The museum is housed in the residence of George Eastman, the founder of the Eastman Kodak Company, and is the world’s oldest photography museum and has one of the largest film archives in the United States.

Eastman Theatre

The Eastman Theatre in Center City Rochester.

The Eastman Theatre was established by George Eastman as a center for music, dance, and silent film, with orchestral and organ accompaniment. Today, visitors can still enjoy performances by the Rochester Philharmonic Orchestra, or RPO, and more.

Highland Park

A path in a park with bright colored flowering trees.

Highland Park is nestled in glacial hills and valleys in Rochester. It is one of the many expertly-designed parks by Frederick Law Olmsted in 1881. Olmsted co-designed Central Park in 1858. By the end of the 19th century, Rochester was a well-known horticultural center. John Dunbar, Assistant Superintendent of Parks in Rochester, began planting different species of lilac bushes in Highland Park in the 1890s and it grew to 500 different species of lilac bushes. Lilac blooms for a short window in May and visitors from around the world have flocked to Highland Park for more than a century to view the collection of flowers. The Lilac Festival is held every May in Highland Park to celebrate the beautiful display.

The Lamberton Conservatory

A conservatory building with glass roof.

The Lamberton Conservatory sits adjacent to Highland Park. It was originally built in 1911 and named after Alexander B. Lamberton who was the President of the Parks Board from 1902 to 1915. By 2007, the building had deteriorated so badly, that the conservatory underwent a complete historic reconstruction in which the structure was carefully disassembled and rebuilt with contemporary materials to withstand the high temperatures and humidity needed for tropical displays. When you visit, you can view the unique plants as well as meet some animals, fish and turtles who live at the conservatory.

Genesee River High Falls

A waterfall in downtown Rochester.

The Genesee River flows south from Lake Ontario through Rochester. There were many waterfalls built along the river to power mills and industrial buildings. The 96-foot tall High Falls is the most popular waterfall as it sits in the heart of the city.

Susan B. Anthony Museum & House

A red brick house that was the home of Susan B. Anthony.

Civil rights leader Susan B. Anthony was a resident of Rochester. Today, you can tour the museum which was her home and the headquarters of the National American Woman Suffrage Association when she was its president.

Rochester & Genesee Valley Railroad Museum

An old locomotive.

The Rochester & Genesee Valley Railroad Museum is a non-profit educational organization. In 1971, Rochester Chapter of the National Railway Historical Society purchased an abandoned railroad depot and restored it as a museum. You can purchase your tickets for a train ride on Saturdays in the spring, summer and fall.

Charlotte-Genesee Lighthouse

A lighthouse stands next to a red brick house.

Built in 1822, the Charlotte-Genesee Lighthouse is the oldest surviving lighthouse on Lake Ontario. The lighthouse is open for tours on Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays from May to October.

Ontario Beach Park

A sandy beach and pier that stretches into Lake Ontario.

Who doesn’t love a day at the beach? Ontario Beach Park is along Lake Ontario but in addition to a sandy beach and pier, you will also find restaurants, a playground, new splash pad and the historic Dentzel Carousel. The carousel is open to riders in the summer months.