Of the various towns on the fringes of the mountains, KINGSTON is one of the most pleasant and convenient places to stop. An agreeable mix of well-preserved old houses and neat little businesses lines Greenand Crown streets at the center of town, much of which dates from the late eighteenth century, when Kingston played a vital political and military role in the fight for American independence.
Kingston is very easy to reach – it's just off I-87 (exit 19), and Adirondack Trailways buses heading north from New York City stop ten minutes' walk from the center. The town's two visitor centers, on Clinton Avenue (tel 845/331-9506, www.ci.kingston.ny.us
) and Broadway (tel 845/331-7517), have leaflets for suggested walking tours around the historic sights. If you want to stay, the large Holiday Inn, 503 Washington Ave (tel 845/338-0400; $100–130), is probably the best value, complete with sauna, pool and games area, though its rates rise on summer weekends. The Market Basket Deli, 308 Wall St (tel 845/338-2755), serves fresh breads and bagels, while the town's brewpub, the Woodstock Brewing Co, 20 St James St (tel 845/331-2810), does good big platters of food as well as a range of home-brewed ale. Further food and drink options can be found across the river in Rhinebeck.