city in and county seat of Onondaga County, New York, United States

Syracuse is a city in Central New York. With a population of 149,000 in city proper and 662,000 in its metro area (2020), Syracuse is the fifth largest city in the state of New York, and the third largest in Upstate New York.

Downtown skyline with Onondaga Lake visible in the background

Get in edit

By train edit

See also: Rail travel in the United States

By bus edit

Intercity buses stop at William F. Walsh Regional Transportation Center, see "By train" above.

By plane edit

  • 2 Syracuse Hancock International Airport (SYR IATA), 1000 Colonel Eileen Collins Boulevard, +1 315-454-4330 (Airport Information), +1 315-454-3263 (City of Syracuse Department of Aviation). Mostly served by Delta Air Lines/Delta Connection, United Express, and American Airlines. Limited service from JetBlue. Although an international airport, the only destinations served are domestic.    

By car edit

Travel from the four cardinal directions is served by two Interstate highways.

Get around edit

Map of Syracuse (New York)

By car edit

A car is probably the best way to get around Syracuse, especially if you are going to places away from downtown. Thanks to its many Interstate highways (I-90, I-81, I-481, and I-690), nearly everywhere in the Syracuse area can be reached within a 20-minute drive. Make sure you have a map and pay attention to the street signs. There are some streets in the downtown area that go from being two-way to one-way, which is not always clear on a map.

On foot edit

You can walk to most of the destinations in downtown Syracuse from a parking lot or the Centro bus terminal.

By bicycle edit

Most of the downtown area is relatively flat, but keep in mind that the Syracuse University area has many steep hills and the residential areas surrounding downtown have quite a few hills as well. What some people will do is catch a ride on the bus downtown, placing their bike on the bike rack on the front of the bus and then use their bike once they reach downtown, thus avoiding the steep hills. E-bike rentals are available throughout the downtown area via Sync Bike Share[dead link].

By bus edit

The Centro Bus System provides a fair alternative to driving to most locations, with a fare of $2 within Syracuse and additional fares to outlying suburbs, such as to Auburn for $4 and to Oswego for $5. Buses can come sporadically, especially if you plan to ride the bus outside of Downtown Syracuse, so check the bus schedule online in advance. If you have to transfer to another bus, be sure to ask the bus driver for a transfer card so that you don't get stuck paying double fares for the same trip. Centro offers discounts for senior citizens, persons with disabilities and children. The buses are accessible to people with disabilities and the bus drivers are instructed to let a person with a physical disability on before letting other passengers on.

  • 1 Centro Transit Hub, 599 S. Salina St. Information booth open M–F 6AM–6PM, Sa 8AM–5PM, closed Su. The central hub for all Centro bus routes, located right in Downtown Syracuse. Offers public restrooms, bicycle racks, and an information booth.

By taxi edit

There are several taxi services listed in the Syracuse phone book that you can choose from. It will usually take anywhere from 10 to 30 minutes for a taxi to come pick you up but it can be useful if you missed the last bus of the day. At the airport there is usually no wait, as there is a well-frequented taxi stand at the end of Terminal A. Ride-hailing services including Lyft and Uber are also available.

See edit

Onondaga County Courthouse at Columbus Circle
Onondaga Park

Up-to-date information about happenings in Syracuse can most easily be found in the weekly Syracuse New Times, available for a fee at supermarkets and convenience stores. Syracuse's only major print newspaper, The Post-Standard, publishes a Weekend section in its Thursday edition containing upcoming events in the Central New York area.

Online calendars of upcoming events are offered by local media groups:

  • A total solar eclipse on Monday 8 April 2024 starts at 3:23PM local time and lasts 1 min 40 sec. The chances of a clear sky are 35%. The track of totality is northeast from Mexico and Texas to Ohio then straddling the Canada–New England border.

Museums edit

  • 1 Everson Museum of Art, 401 Harrison St, +1 315-474-6064, fax: +1 315-474-6943, . Su W F noon–5PM, Th noon–8PM, Sa 10AM–5PM, closed M Tu; open noon–8PM on the first Friday of every month. Houses 11,000 works of American art, with an excellent permanent collection of ceramics, in a building designed by architect I.M. Pei. Adults $8, seniors/students $6, free for children ages 12 and under, pay-what-you-wish every Wednesday.    
  • 2 Erie Canal Museum, 318 Erie Blvd E, +1 315-471-0593, fax: +1 315-471-7220, . M–Sa 10AM–5PM, Su 10AM–3PM. The canal no longer passes through downtown Syracuse, but this museum celebrates its history. Features the last standing weighlock on the canal, a replica of an old canal freighter, and a number of historical exhibits. Free; suggested donation $5.    
  • 3 Milton J. Rubenstein Museum of Science and Technology (The MoST), 500 S Franklin St, +1 315-425-9068. W–Su 10AM–5PM, closed M Tu. A kid-friendly science museum and learning center, equipped with an interactive rock-climbing wall, geologic cave, flight simulator, and a giant, multi-level indoor playhouse, among other exhibits. Also includes a domed IMAX theater and planetarium. Exhibits only: $12 adults, $10 seniors/children (ages 2-11); Exhibits & IMAX: $17 adults, $15 seniors/children; free for children under 2.    
  • 4 Onondaga Historical Museum, 321 Montgomery St, +1 315-428-1864, fax: +1 315-471-2133. W–F 10AM–4PM, Sa Su 11AM–4PM, closed M Tu. Permanent and temporary exhibits on local history. Free admission.
  • 5 Skä•noñh - Great Law of Peace Center, 6680 Onondaga Lake Pkwy (along the Onondaga Lake shore), +1 315-453-6767. W–F 10AM–4PM, Sa Su 11AM–4PM, closed M Tu. Heritage center describing the history of the Haudenosaunee (Iroquois) Native Americans from Central New York. $5 adults; $4 seniors, students, and children (ages 9-17); free for children under 9.
  • 6 Salt Museum, 106 Lake Dr (in Onondaga Lake Park; see below), +1 315 453-6715, . Early May–early October, Sa Su only noon–5PM. Small museum featuring exhibits and artifacts on Syracuse's historical salt industry. Free admission; donations accepted.
  • 7 ArtRage Gallery, 505 Hawley Ave, +1 315-218-5711, . W–F 2–7PM, Sa noon–4PM, closed Su–Tu. Small gallery exhibiting the work of artists creating art promoting social justice and activism.
  • 8 Community Folk Art Center, 805 E. Genesee Street, +1 315-442-2230, fax: +1 315-442-2972, . An artistic and cultural center promoting artists of the African Diaspora. Run by Syracuse University's College of Arts & Sciences.

Parks and outdoors edit

Dr. E. M. Mills Rose Garden in Thornden Park
  • 9 Green Lakes State Park, 7900 Green Lakes Rd, Fayetteville (20 minutes east of downtown), +1 315-637-6111. Open dawn to dusk. Two glacial lakes, offering kayak rentals and swimming during the summer, surrounded by upland forest, an 18-hole golf course, cabins and campsites, nature trails, and 15 miles of cross-country ski trails & snowshoeing in the winter. $8 entrance fee for cars between Memorial Day and Labor Day.    
  • Erie Canal Trail, +1 518 449-6038. Canalway Trail for biking, walking and jogging. Although the historic waterway's route through the city was long ago filled in, access points exist in the neighboring Towns of Camillus in the west and DeWitt in the east.    
  • 10 Beaver Lake Nature Center, 8477 East Mud Lake Rd, Baldwinsville (20 minutes northwest of downtown), +1 315-638-2519, fax: +1 315-638-7488, . Daily 8AM–8:15PM. Contains 9 mi (14 km) of winding trails for year-round usage, more than 200 species of birds, over 800 varieties of plants, and a 200-acre glacial lake – a migratory stop for thousands of Canada geese. $5 car entrance fee.    
  • 11 Onondaga Lake Park, 106 Lake Dr, Liverpool, +1 315-453-6712, fax: +1 315-453-6764, . Daily 6AM–sunset; open 1/2 hour after sunset Apr–Oct. A waterside park offering 4 vehicle-free trails along the Onondaga Lake shore, a boat launch and marina, skate park, playground, dog park, the Salt Museum (see above), boat and bicycle rental, and archery. Free entrance.    
  • 12 Rosamond Gifford Zoo (at Burnet Park), 1 Conservation Pl (Geddes St to Seymour St to S Wilbur Ave), +1 315-435-8511, fax: +1 315-435-8517, . Daily 10AM–4:30PM, except Thanksgiving, Christmas, and New Year's Day. A small but well-populated zoo at the top of a hill in Burnet Park with everything from reindeer, lions, tigers, penguins, and a herd of Asian elephants to sand cats, flamingos, peacocks, and fossas. Fast food and souvenir shop in main building. $9 adults, $5 seniors/youth (ages 3-17), children 2 and under free; half-price Jan–Feb.    
  • 13 Clark Reservation State Park, 6105 E Seneca Turnpike, Jamesville (15 minutes southeast of downtown), +1 315-492-1756. Daily 7AM–sunset. A 377-acre nature park encircling a glacial lake. Offers 5 hiking trails – including one with a 175-foot ledge overlook – and guided nature walks. $5 vehicle entrance fee weekends & holidays from Memorial Day weekend through Labor Day.    

Do edit

  • 1 Sky Zone Syracuse, 3179 Erie Blvd E, +1 315-928-3737. M–F 10AM–8PM, Sa 10AM–10PM, Su noon–8PM. Indoor trampoline park and obstacle course chain. Tickets range from $10 to $23.

Live theater and music edit

  • 2 Landmark Theatre, 362 S Salina St, +1 315-475-7979. Box office M–F 10AM–5PM, closes at 4PM in summer. Opened in 1928, this extravagant Roaring Twenties-era performing arts theater hosts many live musical & theatrical productions throughout the year. Offers nearly 3,000 seats surrounded with golden decor.    
  • 3 The Redhouse, 400 S Salina St, +1 315-362-2785, . Box office M–F 10AM–4PM, open Sa prior to shows 10AM–2PM. Arts center displaying year-round theatrical productions.
  • 4 Syracuse Stage, 820 E Genesee St, +1 315-443-3275 (box office), +1 315-443-4008 (administration), . Box office M–F 10AM–5PM. Professional theater hosting plays and musicals.
  • Symphoria, 450 S Salina St #100 (performs at the Crouse-Hinds Theater, in the John H. Mulroy Civic Center at the Oncenter, at 411 Montgomery St.), +1 315-299-5598. Musicians from the Syracuse Symphony, a half-century-old ensemble bankrupted in 2011, formed Symphoria, Syracuse's musician-led symphony orchestra. Offers more than 50 annual concerts in the Crouse-Hinds Theater and throughout the local community. Children under 18 free, college students (with ID) $5.
  • 5 The Westcott Theater, 524 Westcott St, +1 315-299-8886, . One of the most popular live music venues in the city.    
  • 6 St. Joseph's Health Amphitheater at Lakeview (formerly the Lakeview Amphitheater), 490 Restoration Way (Parking: I-690 to exit 7; free shuttle buses run to amphitheater on concert days), +1 315-435-5100. Outdoor venue hosting big-name acts. Near the New York State Fairgrounds (see below).    

Sports edit

  • Syracuse Orange. The city's highest-profile sports institutions are the teams representing Syracuse University in seven men's sports and 11 women's sports. The Orange, members of the Atlantic Coast Conference along with 14 other schools in the eastern half of the country, are perennial national powers in men's basketball and men's lacrosse, and also have a rich football tradition. The main athletic facilities are all on campus, with the best-known being the JMA Wireless Dome (historically Carrier Dome), home to the football, basketball, and lacrosse teams. The Dome, seating over 49,000 for football and lacrosse and over 33,000 for basketball, is by far the largest domed stadium on a U.S. university campus, and the world's largest facility by capacity regularly used for basketball.    
  • 7 JMA Wireless Dome, 900 Irving Ave, +1 315-443-2121, toll-free: +1-888-366-3849. Lacrosse, soccer, basketball and football for Syracuse University.    
  • 8 Syracuse Mets, NBT Bank Stadium, 1 Tex Simone Dr.. Syracuse's minor league baseball team, the AAA team for the New York Mets. You can see from all seats in the house! Tickets are cheap, ranging from about $5 for upper-deck seats to $8 for 100- and 200-level seating.
  • Syracuse Crunch, War Memorial at OnCenter, 800 S. State St.. AHL minor league hockey team is the highest affiliate of the NHL's Tampa Bay Lightning.
  • Le Moyne Dolphins. Sports teams of Le Moyne College, one of the newest members of Division I. This small Jesuit school in the adjacent suburb of DeWitt started a transition from Division II in July 2023 as the newest member of the Northeast Conference. Unlike the Orange, the Dolphins don't play football; their signature sport during their D-II days was lacrosse. Still, if you want to see Division I sports without the costs of seeing the Orange, here's your chance.    

Festivals edit

Syracuse has gained the nickname "the City of Festivals" for good reason. There are numerous festivals year round. The following are just a few of the festivals that are held in and around the City of Syracuse:

February edit

Ice skating in Clinton Square

March edit

  • The Syracuse St. Patrick's Parade. It was founded by an honored local journalist, Nancy Duffy. The parade has been celebrating St. Patrick's Day since the early 1980s.

June edit

  • 9 Taste of Syracuse, Clinton Square. A festival with several streets of booths containing samples of menu items from the variety of restaurants in the Syracuse area, held in downtown. Free.
  • M&T Jazz Fest at OCC. Hosted at the Onondaga Community College campus.
  • Polish Fest.
  • Juneteenth Celebration. One of the largest of its kind in Central New York, the occasion celebrates African American history and culture.
  • 10 St. Sophia's Greek Cultural Festival, 325 Waring Rd. Dancing, music, food and shopping are the order of the day. Enjoy the food, music and dancing outside and then wander inside to find the shops, pastries and coffee. Guided tours, lectures, displays and a visual tour of the Greek Islands can also be found inside.

July edit

August edit

Midway at the Fair
  • 13 Shakespeare-In-The-Park, Thornden Park Amphitheater (Thornden Park). Weekends mid-month. Live performance of one of Shakespeare's plays. free.
  • Central New York Scottish Games and Celtic Festival, Long Branch Park, Liverpool (I-690 exit 4, then right on Long Branch Rd), +1 315-463-8876. Aug 8, 9AM-6PM. Celtic and Scottish music, dancing, demonstrations, exhibits, and athletics. Adults $10, seniors $7, ages 5-12 $4, under 5 free.
  • 14 The Great New York State Fair, 581 State Fair Blvd, Geddes, +1 315-487-7711. Annually, 13 days ending Labor Day; 10AM-10PM. The oldest state fair in the U.S., and still one of the largest, with over a million annual visitors. Dozens of free concerts from national touring acts populate the 13-day schedule, along with the expected midway rides, art exhibits, and livestock competitions. State agriculture is on display in the form of the annual butter sculpture, 25-cent cups of milk, and demonstration booths for everything from honey bees to hand-tooled wood work. During the fair, Amtrak adds a stop right outside the fair's gates, making it easy to get to from Buffalo, Rochester, or Albany even without a car. Adults $10 (Thursdays $3, Labor Day $1), under 13 free.    
  • The Great Syracuse Oktoberfest.

September edit

Buy edit

Franklin Square in April
  • Sound Garden, 310 W. Jefferson St, +1 315-473-4343. Independent music shop, used and new, with CD players to listen to any open album for as long as you want. Movie selection on second floor. Open late.
  • Ra-Lin's, 625 Burnet Ave, +1 315-472-7872. Camera supplies

Souvenirs, gifts, novelties edit

Shopping areas and malls edit

  • 1 Armory Square. Franklin St., Walton St., Clinton St., A collection of shops and restaurants in the heart of downtown Syracuse near the Museum of Science and Technology (the MOST).    
  • 2 Destiny USA (Carousel Center), 9090 Destiny USA Dr, +1 315-466-6000. The largest shopping mall in the Central New York Area, its former Carousel Center name came from the restored fully functional carousel that is its center piece in the food court. Has department stores, restaurants, arcades, and movie theaters.    
  • Downtown Farmers' Market, Clinton Square. Early June to mid Oct: Tu 7AM-3PM.
  • 3 Great Northern Mall, 4155 Route 31, Clay, +1 315-622-4449. Department stores, restaurants, arcade, and movie theaters.  
  • City Market. 10AM-4PM second Sunday of the month, May-Oct. Antiques and local crafts are sold at this open air market behind the Everson Museum of art in Downtown Syracuse. Free.
  • 4 CNY Regional Market, 2100 Park Street, +1 315-422-8647. 7AM-2PM Saturday Farmer's Market, Sunday Flea Market, Thursday Farmer's Market May-Nov.    

General retail opportunities like supermarkets, big-box stores, and casual dining can be found in Syracuse’s immediate suburbs on commercial strips including:

To the west: West Genesee St in Camillus.

To the north: US 11 (Brewerton Rd) in Salina, West of Syracuse Airport.

To the east: NY 5 (Erie Blvd E) in DeWitt.

Eat edit

View from University Hill

Diner edit

Budget edit

  • 3 The Brooklyn Pickle, 1600 West Genesee Street, +1 315-487-8000. Open M-Sa until 9PM. The biggest deli sandwiches around and a friendly mom and pop feel have created an almost cult following to this little sandwich shop.
  • 4 Varsity Pizza, 802 S Crouse Ave, +1 315-469-3171.
  • 5 Heid's, 305 Oswego St, Liverpool, +1 315-451-0786. Heid's is known for two things: long lines and the hot dogs that are responsible for those long lines. Ordering is simple: anything that isn't a hot dog or a coney gets ordered first after you get in the door, including their delicious grilled cheeses and super-thick milk shakes; at the end, once you get to the cash register, you simply order how many hot dogs and coneys you'd like. If the retro-style of the restaurant isn't to your liking, you can always cross the street and sit by Onondaga Lake.

Mid-range edit

  • 6 Alto Cinco, 526 Westcott St, +1 315-422-6399.
  • 7 Coleman's Authentic Irish Pub, 100 South Lowell Ave, +1 315-476-1933. Daily 11:30AM-2AM. Don't be fooled by the name - this is a kitsch pseudo-Irish-themed bar with a leprechaun door next to the regular door. It holds an appeal for all ages. This place has a full menu as well as a bar. It is known for its participation in the annual St. Patrick’s Day parade and festivities. If you are in Syracuse on St. Patrick’s Day be sure to come here and try the green beer. It is in the Tipperary Hill neighborhood near the only inverted street light in the country with the green light at the top and red at the bottom.
  • 8 Dinosaur Bar-B-Que, 246 W Willow St, +1 315-476-1662. This is the original Dinosaur Bar-B-Que restaurant. This restaurant is famous for its BBQ sauce and pulled pork sandwiches. Despite its popularity this restaurant maintains a certain small time charm. This is also a popular place for Blues concerts.    
  • Redfield's Restaurant, 701 E Genesee St (In Crowne Plaza hotel), +1 315-479-7000. An American bistro setting.
  • 9 Syracuse Suds Factory, 320 S. Clinton St, +1 315-471-AALE (2253). Established in 1991 this well known micro-brewery and restaurant has several micro-brews but also an extensive list of other beers and a full dinner menu. Be on the lookout for live entertainment at this popular venue.
  • 10 The Fish Friar, 239 E. Genesee St., +1 315-468-3474. Tu-Th 11AM-10PM, F Sa 11AM-11PM, Su 11AM-9PM. In the historic Courier Building next to City Hall. It offers Maine caught seafood.
  • Funk 'n Waffles, 307-13 S Clinton St, +1 315-474-1060. This unique and interesting restaurant routinely hosts funk music performances and serves high quality waffle and topping combinations as well as coffee and tea drinks.

Splurge edit

  • 11 Lemon Grass Restaurant, 238 W Jefferson St (on Armory Square), +1 315-475-1111, fax: +1 315-475-3287. Great Thai food in a formal but not snobbish atmosphere. Pad Thai is fantastic as is the green curry.
  • 12 Pastabilities, 311 South Franklin Street, +1 315-474-1153. Nice and original Italian food, great wine list, and friendly service. Can be a bit expensive but worth every cent.
  • 13 Scotch 'N Sirloin, 3687 Erie Boulevard E, +1 315-446-1771.

Drink edit

Syracuse has two major nightlife districts. The largest is Armory Square downtown, followed by Marshall Street on University Hill.

  • Faegan's Cafe & Pub, 734 S. Crouse Ave, +1 315-472-4721. A common hangout place for students at Syracuse University, usually not quite as hectic as some of the other bars near campus, this place has more of a relaxed sit down atmosphere.

Coffeeshops & cafes edit

Sleep edit

Airport edit

Downtown edit

University Hill edit

The University Hill neighborhood is directly adjacent to Downtown Syracuse and is home to Syracuse University, SUNY Upstate Medical University, and SUNY College of Environmental Studies and Forestry.

Suburbs edit

There are several hotels near Carrier Circle in DeWitt, directly accessible from the New York State Thruway's Exit 35, and 15-minute drive to/from Downtown Syracuse during non-peak hours.

Cope edit

Radio edit

Radio stations serving the Syracuse area include:

  • News/talk: WAER 88.3 FM (NPR), WRVD 90.3 FM (NPR), WSYR 570 AM/106.9 FM (conservative)

Television edit

Major television stations serving Syracuse include:

  • WSTM Channel 3: NBC
  • WTVH Channel 5: CBS
  • WSYR Channel 9: ABC
  • WCNY Channel 24: PBS
  • WSYT Channel 68: Fox

Connect edit

Libraries are your best bet for public Internet access, unless you can find a Wi-Fi hot spot elsewhere. Fortunately, the city and its suburbs have an excellent network of libraries, the Onondaga County Public Library System. There are eleven library branches in the city, and more than twenty in the suburbs.

  • Central Library, 447 S Salina St, +1 315-435-1900. This is the main library for the county, and the biggest of the branches. It's in a large glass building called The Galleries.

Go next edit

Routes through Syracuse
BuffaloRochester  W    E  RomeAlbany (Rensselaer)
Buffalo (Depew)Rochester  W   E  UticaAlbany (Rensselaer)
BuffaloFarmington  W    E  UticaAlbany
WatertownPulaski  N   S  CortlandBinghamton
BuffaloAuburn  W   E  UticaAlbany

This city travel guide to Syracuse is a usable article. It has information on how to get there and on restaurants and hotels. An adventurous person could use this article, but please feel free to improve it by editing the page.