If your Instagram grid is filled with farmers markets, scenic hikes and road trips all featuring your darling doggo, then Country Chic B&B is a must-stop on your adventure dog itinerary. Keep reading to join Magnolia and I on an overnight getaway in the heart of Cortland County's mountain country.
It's the beginning of September, the warm days and cool nights are just begging for a road trip, and who better to share the adventure with than my favorite co-pilot, Magnolia Pie, travel dog extraordinaire?! No sooner than I could toss an overnight bag, Maggie's dish and bed into the back, she hopped up on the passenger seat, tail wagging in anticipation. I pointed the truck towards Virgil, NY, rolled down the windows and turned up the radio. With nothing in front of us but big blue skies and a county road, we settled in for an evening drive.
Along the route to our stay, we spotted Mountainside Cones, Virgil's newest ice cream shop. I hit the brakes and rolled up the gravel drive. Ice cream definitely qualifies as a respectable dinner when you're on vacation. I bought Maggie a vanilla bean pup cup and myself a coffee milkshake. Apparently, dogs aren't suspectable to brain freeze because Maggie slurped up her sundae with gusto! My shake was rich and creamy and hit the spot. If you're looking for a proper meal, I recommend Trax Bar & Grill. Their menu is delicious, and their back deck is dog-friendly and offers fantastic views of the mountain.
Milkshake in hand, we headed further down the road when I spotted a charming roadside farm stand. Feeling a bit guilty about dinner, I loaded up on some fresh, local veggies, and we continued to make our way toward our stay. It's said that all dogs go to heaven, but as we pulled up the long farm drive to Country Chic B&B, I couldn't help but wonder if we were already there.
The grand old farmhouse sits perched atop a hill, the drive wrapping below it, cutting through swaying corn and hay fields. I am greeted by Celeste, her son Zen and their sweet pup. Celeste has a basket for me, brimming with baked goods and fruit. Zen proudly shows Maggie the fresh eggs he's collected for my breakfast from their hens on the farm.
After a stroll and sniff around the farm, Maggie and I made our way back to the bed & breakfast. I had a good book and a bottle of wine calling my name. Imagine my surprise when I discovered Press Gurwitz Perfumerie masks, lotions, soaps and perfumes stocked in all three bathrooms! So, Maggie and I did what every girl would do- spa night! I indulged in a hair and facemask and Maggie a peanut butter kong. Feeling refreshed, I grabbed my glass of wine, and we stretched out on the porch to take in the most spectacular sunset.
The show certainly didn't end with the setting sun. When the last rosy rays faded into inky black, the Milky Way slashed across the night sky directly overhead. We admired the stars until our eyes refused to stay open and quietly padded our way to the downy queen bed. (The second bedroom hosts two twin beds, making Country Chic B&B perfect for traveling families as well.) I fell asleep to frog songs and the scent of fresh lavender drifting in from the garden outside my window.
I awoke to warm sunbeams and dog breath. Maggie needed a walk, and I needed coffee. Using the gorgeous farm eggs and the veggies from yesterday's farmstand stop, I whipped us up an omelet. We ate breakfast, and watched the morning fog melt off the hills. I hated for our getaway to end, so after breakfast, I packed up my pup and headed for Hope Lake Park, just a few minutes down the road.
Hope Lake Park offers boating, swimming and disc golf. But in the early morning hours, it becomes Cortland's unofficial dog park. The paved path around the lake is filled with dog walkers and their pups soaking up the sights and sniffs as they meander over bridges, through the woods, meadows and along the beach. It was the perfect way to begin the day before heading back to say goodbye to Country Chic B&B.
Getting off the farm: Country Chic B&B is located in the heart of Virgil, making adventure just a hop, skip and jump away! If you are traveling with family, Greek Peak's Adventure Center and Ski Resort make for fantastic year-round fun. For those of you with furry friends, hiking is abundant! The Virgil Mountian Loop is a 4.7-mile loop hike that takes you up to the highest point in Cortland County on Virgil Mountain (2132 feet)! Tuller Hill boasts 2440 acres and more than 20 miles of trails, including horse trails. So, it's best to keep Fido on a leash.
If your tummy is rumbling, Mountainside Cones and Trax Pub & Grill offer pet-friendly outdoor seating. Hollenbeck Cidermill, a local favorite, also offers outdoor seating as well as delicious pies, local charcuterie, donuts and cider to-go. If you are traveling sans pet, Carvers Steakhouse never disappoints. However, you can always order it to-go and share your steak with your favorite co-pilot back at Country Chic B&B.
If you're looking for an unusual adventure, check out some of the local stops on the Cortland Curiosities Trail, many of which are pet-friendly.
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