Best Things to do in the NORTH FORK, Long Island

Best Things to do in the NORTH FORK, Long Island

If you’re thinking of visiting the North Fork on Long Island, this is your sign! The North Fork is a beautiful place in New York that combines the best beaches, vineyards, and charming small towns like Greenport. Just think of it as rural charm sprinkled with luxury.

If you’re coming from NYC, planning a trip to this Hamptons-adjacent getaway is super convenient. It’s the perfect place to take a long weekend. And if you’re a Long Island local, it makes a fabulous day trip!

I went to the North Fork recently with my fellow travel blogger friend, Vicki. So I’m here to report back to you the best restaurants, hotels, and things to do!

No matter the season- summer, spring, winter, or fall, you’ll surely enjoy the North Fork!

Best things to do in the North Fork - Drinking wine in the North Fork, Long Island

First thing’s first- Where is the North Fork?

The North Fork is a collection of small towns and hamlets at the eastern-most part of Long Island. The land there splits off into a ‘fork.’ The southern part of the fork is what we refer to as the Hamptons. And the The North Fork is the upper part of this land mass. 

It's about a 2 1/2 hour drive from NYC (which is why staying for at least a few days is the best option.) You can also get there by ferry from Rhode Island or Connecticut. 

Is the North Fork the same as the Hamptons?

No, it’s not. Even though they’re very close, the North Fork is considered it’s own thing.

Why the North Fork?

The laid back vibes of the North Fork are legendary. It’s a not-so-well-kept secret of wealthy New Yorkers who want a luxury getaway, WITHOUT the flash and fuss of the Hamptons.  Much like the Catskills, it's a popular destination for New Yorkers who want to to relax and have a good time!

The North Fork is well known for its wineries and beaches, so if you can’t live without your wine-downs, you’ll definitely love it here. There are also no shortage of cute airbnb’s to stay at!

Vineyards and wineries on the North Fork

Did you know there are over 40 wineries in the North Fork? That definitely makes wine tasting a prevailing pastime here on this part of the island. In fact, you could spend your whole trip just cruising around, exploring different wineries, and doing tastings.

Some of my favorite vineyards I scoped out while I was there-
  • Mattebella Vineyard- A small sustainable, environmental-friendly farm. There is a ‘tasting cottage’ where you can make reservations, and they serve a variety of wine cocktails! Southold, NY
  • Mccall Wines - A vineyard and cattle ranch. They serve grass fed burgers! Cutchogue, NY
  • Croteaux Vineyards- I loved visiting this vineyard because they make only rose here! They have a sitting area where you can buy glasses, wine flights, and little bites.Southold NY
  • Pindar Vineyards - I loved this vineyard because they have a sunflower field right on the property! It’s perfect for grabbing photos while doing a tasting.

(PS, check out my Road Trip Travel Essentials List!)

Wine Flight at Croteaux Vineyards, Long Island
Demarchelier Restaurant in Greenport, Long Island

Where to eat in the North Fork

Dining options are plentiful here! There are many foodie city dwellers who either frequent the North Fork or live here part time. So you better believe there is some good food to go around!
  • Cases Place- A casual waterfront option. This restaurant serves up a seafood menu on paper plates, while overlooking the water. Eat outside on the deck for the full experience!
  • Claudio’s on Main- This is the speakeasy-turned-restaurant that I mentioned earlier! Located in the heart of Greenport, this restaurant is right on the waterfront. They do American cuisine with a focus on seafood.
  • Fortino’s Tavern - Also located in Greenport, this is another great waterfront option!
  • American Beech - This is a more trendy restaurant for the Instagram set. Located inside a boutique hotel of the same name, this indoor/ outdoor dining space serves modern American cuisine with local ingredients.
  • Demarchelier Restaurant - This cute bistro strives to bring a little bit of France to New York! A family run restaurant serving a traditional French menu. Reservations by phone.

Case's Place seafood platter on the North Fork, LI

Things to do in Greenport

You can’t miss the town of Greenport if you’re visiting the North Fork! It’s the picturesque vision of a small town. Complete with cute restaurants, shops, and cafes.

Greenport is very small, with only 2200 residents. And interestingly enough- it was an infamous for rum-running and speakeasies during prohibition times! Because of its fortuitious location on the water, the locals knew the area well. They were able to outrun the coastguard most of the time, and smuggle in alcohol for the residents to enjoy.

For historic activities-
  • Eat at at Claudio’s, which was one of the aforementioned speakeasies.
  • Ride the carousel which dates back to the 1920’s
  • Visit the Blacksmith House- a historic museum which on the weekends has a ‘blacksmith’ working.
  • Drink at Greenport Harbor Brewing Company
  • Walk around and look at the pretty houses

Main Street in Greenport, Long Island

Houses in Greenport, Long Island

What else is there to do in the North Fork?

Lavender by the Bay

I’m sure you’ve seen pictures of this place on Instagram! It’s a 17 acre lavender field located in East Marion.

Visiting Lavender By the Bay has been on my bucket list for a LONG time, and it was everything I dreamed it would be. It smells absolutely wonderful, and purple blossoms as far as the eye could see.

The thing is, you need to make sure and visit during mid-June, early July or late Summer/early Fall. Here’s a good trick to figure out if it’s in bloom- just visit Instagram and click on the recently tagged photos.

Lavender by the Bay, Long Island New York - Lavender by the Bay Tickets - Lavender Farm - Best time to visit

Visit farmsteads

As you go down the North Fork, you’ll notice an abundance of farm stands. Not only do these provide a great photo opportunity, you’ll get unparalleled produce from local farmers.

A favorite is Brimiere Farms- which is famous for its pastries and pies! I can’t think of a better way to end the day.

Visit a Sunflower maze

Have you ever heard of a vineyard that had a sunflower maze? Because that’s exactly what you can do here! Pindar Vineyards no doubt put the sunflower maze up in order to attract people… and it worked!

So while you’re doing a tasting or sitting and having a glass of wine at Pindar Vineyards, you can wander over to the maze and get some Instagram pics as well.

Pindar Vineyards sunflower field, Long Island NY - Sunflower fields Long Island - Sunflower fields near me

Go to Orient Beach State Park 

Located on the tip of the North Fork of Long Island in the town of Southhold. This park is over 45,000 square feet. This includes a beach, picnic tables, a playground, nature trails, and hiking.

It wasn’t very crowded at all on the day we went, the waves weren’t intense, and it seems like a really chill place to spend a day. A hidden gem for sure!

Where to stay in the North Fork

We had a great experience staying at the Harvest Inn Bed and Breakfast! Located conveniently across from Pindar Vineyards, you don’t even have to drive to get your wine fix.

Not only was it gorgeous and conveniently located, but I was pleasantly surprised at the breakfast that they serve! Upon check-in, they ask your preferred service time. When it’s time for breakfast, you’re seated outside on the beautiful porch (weather permitting).

After that, you’ll be served a (very) full three courses, complete with a “health shot” of the day, fresh juice, and coffee.

Looking for Travel Packing Inspiration?

Harvest Inn Bed and Breakfast NY - Hamptons bed and breakfast winery - Harvest Inn NY

Harvest Inn Bed and Breakfast NY - Hamptons bed and breakfast winery - Harvest Inn NY

So are you planning a trip to the North Fork soon?

Lavender by the Bay, Long Island New York - Lavender by the Bay Season - Lavender by the Bay Tickets - Lavender Farm - Lavender by the Bay Best time to visit

Harvest Inn Bed and Breakfast NY - Hamptons bed and breakfast winery - Harvest Inn NY

North Fork Long Island - North Fork Long Island Wineries -

♥♥♥ Follow me on Instagram!  @chantillysongs


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