While our Capital Region cities have so much to offer, there is something extra special about our small towns here in the area. One of those gems is getting recognition as the most charming town in the Empire State.

What are the ingredients that make up a charming small town? There are many finer qualities we could talk about here, but a few must-haves come to mind:

  • A stunning downtown with an old-school feel.
  • Lots of great shops in that downtown!
  • Great restaurants and bars.
  • A storied history...

When I think of those 4 elements, there are a couple Capital Region local towns that come to mind that did not receive this honor, but are certainly deserving.


Google Maps Streetview
Google Maps Streetview

For great shops, a quaint downtown, and awesome restaurants, Chatham is always a winner. Plus, the journey to get there through the beautiful rolling hills of Columbia County is breathtaking.

And then being a Clifton Park resident, there is my personal local favorite...

Ballston Spa!

Google Maps Streetview
Google Maps Streetview

Ballston Spa not only has an amazing walkable downtown, but you could make the argument that the town's collection of amazing restaurants makes up the best foodie scene in Upstate New York!

While both of these towns and maybe some you are thinking of are all deserving of the title of New York's "Most Charming," it's a riverside gem south of Albany that has received this high honor.

Hudson Is New York's Most Charming Small Town

Hudson possesses all the necessary elements of charm mentioned above and the travel website Trips to Discover agrees wholeheartedly! Here is what they had to say about this Capital Region gem on the Hudson River:

...Hudson offers picturesque views of the Hudson River and a charming downtown area with lots of antique stores, boutiques, and shops selling artisan goods. It also boasts a fantastic culinary scene with many farm-to-table eateries ...

The culinary scene in Hudson has become particularly robust in recent years, with one of the towns newest eateries recently being named one of nation's best by the New York Times.

This is not the first time either that the town of Hudson has been honored as an amazing desitnation. If you check out the Visit Hudson website, you'll see the town has received national honors from Conde Nast, Travel + Leisure, and more.

And one other beautiful thing about of visiting Hudson? You can make the drive down, or hop and Amtrak train to make the excursion south.

You've Seen the Best - Now Here's NY's 10 Worst Small Towns

A Capital Region town has topped Roadsnacks 2022 rankings of the worst small towns in the Empire State. Just like any list created by folks not living in New York, these rankings in no way reflect how we feel about these towns and you should take these rankings with a grain of salt. That said, these rankings were formulated based on census data like median income, home values, unemployment rates, crime rates, education, and population density. and more from the state's 466 smallest towns

3 New York Cities Ranked Among 50 Worst To Live In US

Whether you agree or disagree, Roadsnacks has put together their list of the 50 Worst US Cities to live in based on crime rates, poor quality of life, weak job market, and their overall lack of culture. We 100% disagree with these rankings as all three of these cities are full of life and have so much to offer. Not to mention - how many times have we actually made these cities a destination for a getaway of some sort?

So feel free to pick apart this list and sneer as you read it! You will find each of the NY cities included on this list below, with their rank among the 50 worst in the United States.

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