Tube Down the Esopus Creek

About two and a half hours from the city lies Phoenicia, a rural speck of a village (population 381) with a reputation as a 'tude-free summer antidote to Hamptons glitz. (Don't worry: the locals still strain to tolerate city folks.) More than a fedora's throw away from Williamsburg-on-the-Hudson and 20 minutes removed from the incense and tchotkes of downtown Woodstock, Phoenicia's attractions could be counted on one hand, which is why it remains a quiet top getaway draw.

It's not all sleepy. The 65-mile long Esopus Creek, a Hudson River tributary, runs parallel to the Ulster Country hamlet. And the Esopus has become an inner-tubing destination and notable Catskills area attraction. Tubing the Esopus is about as no-frills an athletic adventure as one can choose, and participants can determine the intensity of their ride, to a point. (The Esopus isn't a lazy river, and children under 12 can't join in the fun.) The water will be cold, and the group behind the activity, Town Tinker, prohibits drinking as you speed along the surface. Good thing that Phoenicia, though small, isn't completely devoid of liquid options when you're back on land.

To get to Phoenicia by bus, take Trailways ($63 round trip) from the Port Authority to the village's Main Street. If you've got a car, here are directions.

This is Get Out of Dodge, where we lead you to the best places to Eat, Shop, and Play just outside of, yes, Dodge.

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