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7 Best Places to Live in The Adirondack Mountains in 2024

by Staff

The Adirondack Mountains are home to 101 towns and 123,000 residents who live, love, and celebrate the region all year round. With over 30,000 miles of streams and rivers, 3,000 lakes, and wetlands native only to Adirondack, the area is a natural wonder. Residents are never far from the great outdoors, with hiking, biking, climbing, paddling, and running as a few of their favorite pastimes.

With each new season comes a plethora of new events. For example, the summertime Adirondack Music Folk Festival, winter’s Northern Challenge Ice Fishing Derby, and Adirondack Balloon Festival are hosted each fall. You will never be bored. While housing is not cheap, the crime rate and taxation in the region are low, and the quality of life is high. Keeping these things in mind, learn more about the seven best places to live in the Adirondack Mountains in 2024.

Lake Placid

Peak fall foliage in Lake Placid, Adirondacks, New York.

As a small mountain village, Lake Placid is undeniably beautiful. It has sweeping mountain views, lush green valleys, and beautiful blue lakes. To live in Lake Placid is to be part of a unique community of only 2,280 residents.

This small town is ideal for families or individuals who enjoy getting outdoors. You will be amidst nature at every turn. From enjoying a day at Mirror Lake to hiking up the High Peaks or skiing down Whiteface Mountain, there is a plethora of activities to keep you entertained.

Schools in Lake Placid are above average; classrooms are not overcrowded, with an 8 to 1 student-teacher ratio. The median cost of a home in Lake Placid is $374,400, which is higher than the national average of $281,900. However, the average rent is lower than the national average at $938.

Lake Placid is ranked 281 on Best Places for Young Professionals in New York. With zero instances of motor vehicle theft, murder, and robbery, this village town is relatively safe to live in.

There are several annual community events to keep residents entertained. Ironman and the Empire State Winter Games are great for active individuals. One popular event hosted during the warmer months is the Flaming Leaves Festival, an annual music fest at Mirror Lake.

Saranac Lake

Autumn reflection in Saranac Lake, Adirondacks, New York.

Autumn reflection in Saranac Lake, Adirondacks, New York.

Dubbed the best place to live by the National Geographic Adventure Magazine, Saranac Lake is not without beauty. But it also has a thriving art and food scene. Many artists choose to move to Saranac to live, work, and sell their creations downtown. Besides, many locally-owned brewpubs and restaurants serve delicious food, such as Blue Moon Cafe, Ray Brook Brewhouse, or the 1892 Bar and Grille.

There are only 5,079 residents in the area, and many rent their homes, as rent at $781 is far lower than the national average of $1,268. Despite this, the cost of housing is also relatively low at $175,700. Saranac is ranked 130 out of 893 on the list of Places with the Lowest Cost of Living in New York. The eastern part of Saranac is considered the safest, with a 1 in 115 chance of being the victim of a violent crime.

During winter, the Mount Pisgah Recreation Center is the place to be for skiing, snowshoeing, and snowmobiling. As another adventure, many residents choose to hike along Ampersand Mountain. Popular events in the region include the Feb Winter Carnival and the North Country New Year, Saranac’s beloved New Year’s Eve celebration.

Tupper Lake

Foggy autumn morning on Tupper Lake, Adirondack Mountains, New York.

Foggy autumn morning on Tupper Lake, Adirondack Mountains, New York.

Nestled in the heart of Adirondack Park, Tupper Lake, with its central location, is often referred to as the Crossroads of the Adirondacks. Named after Ansel Tupper, the surveyor who found it, Tupper Lake has been settled since the 19th century.

Once a logging town, Tupper Lake pays homage to its humble beginning with its annual Woodsmen’s Days festival. It celebrates ax throwing, chainsaw carvings, logrolling, and more.

The most prominent feature of the town, apart from Tupper Lake, is The Wild Center. It is a family-friendly preserve, museum, and adventure park. Hiking, paddling, swimming, snowmobiling, and birdwatching are just a few of the outdoor activities you can enjoy if you move here.

With 5,177 residents, this small town offers both a rural and suburban feel. Many families are living in the region and 70% of residents own their homes. Housing costs are valued at an average of $124,100, while rent is roughly $649.

Old Forge

Enchanted Forest Water Safari entrance in Old Forge, New York, USA.

Enchanted Forest Water Safari entrance in Old Forge, New York, USA. Editorial credit: debra millet /

Situated in Herkimer County, in the Western Adirondacks, Old Forge is a safe, suburban town with only 638 residents. While homes in this small town are priced higher than the national average at $335,200, most residents own their homes. Rent is on the cheaper side, at $486 on average.

Old Forge sees a lot of tourism, but the residents get to enjoy the town’s fresh air, 200 clear blue lakes, and all the activities that come with living in the lap of nature all year round.

Old Forge is home to the Enchanted Forest Water Safari, the State’s largest water park. It has over 50 rides. Alternatively, spots like Nicks Lake Loop Trail, Bald Mountain, and Gull Lake Trail appeal to resident hikers and bikers. Paddling is a well-loved sport in the region, with the town hosting the 90-mile annual Adirondack Canoe Classic.

While the town has only a few residents, there is no shortage of places to grab a bite. As a resident, you will enjoy Billy’s Italian-American Restaurant, Slickers Adirondack Tavern, The Front Door Diner, and Mountainside Smokehouse and Grill.

Most residents in this small town earn a good living, with the median income being $93,482. The largest industries in this region are food, accommodation, recreation, arts, and entertainment.

Lake George

The Northern end of Lake George and the Tongue Mountain Range seen from a lookout on Black Mountain in the Adirondack Mountains of New York.
The Northern end of Lake George and the Tongue Mountain Range in the Adirondack Mountains of New York.

Lake George is a town of 3,507 residents, and during winter, it is the top destination for skiers from across the country. The town has three major ski resorts – Hickory Ski Center, Gore Mountain, and West Mountain. Snowboarding and ice skating are other popular winter pastimes.

The town is a mix of rural and suburban, has a relatively low crime rate, and offers residents over 300 bars, restaurants, and coffee shops to dine at. Food is celebrated in the town with annual events such as the Smoke Eaters Jamboree and the Glens Fall Wing Fest.

The schools in this area are highly ranked. However, the town is also home to many retired individuals. Most Lake George residents own their homes, but the cost is higher than the national average of $344,800. Rent in this small town will cost you approximately $1,119 on average. In terms of household income, the median rate is $94,875, which is higher than the $75,149 national average.

Like all the other towns in the Adirondack Mountains, there is no shortage of outdoor activities in Lake George. Residents can enjoy hot air balloon rides, go whitewater rafting down the Hudson River, or parasail over glistening lakes and greenery. Mountain biking is a favorite in the region, with several designated trails, such as the Gurney Lane Mountain Bike Park and the Warren County Bikeway.

Schroon Lake

Aerial shot of Adirondack Mountains, Upstate New York, featuring Schroon Lake and changing fall foliage.

Aerial shot of Adirondack Mountains, Upstate New York, featuring Schroon Lake and changing fall foliage.

A small yet beautiful town, Schroon Lake has a total population of 926 residents. With its rural feel, it is a great place to live for those seeking an escape from the hustle and bustle of city life. The town has a safety rating that is lower than the national average. The southwest region of the town is considered to be the safest.

The town is very hospitable, with many young professionals and retirees calling it home. 66% of the people in Schroon Lake own their homes, and the median cost of a house is $239,800. On average, rent will cost you $492.

Schroon Lake is a picturesque town that is excellent for families. The public park and beach offer residents a variety of family-friendly activities such as parasailing, golfing, fishing, water skiing, boating, paddling, and hiking. Adirondack Park, with its 6 million acres, offers countless trails for hikers of varying difficulty, many of which are kid-friendly.

For running enthusiasts, the town hosts the Adirondack Marathon every September, with competitors running along a scenic 26-mile-long trail. Alternatively, snowmobiling during the winter is another well-loved activity among Schroon Lake residents.


Whiteface Mountain in Wilmington, New York.
Whiteface Mountain in Wilmington, New York. Editorial credit: nyker /

With 931 residents, Wilmington is an ideal place to live for people seeking peace, quiet, and fewer crowds as compared to city living. However, keep in mind that rent and the median home value are both close to the national average.

The average cost of a home is $248,000, while rent, on average, will cost you $1,155. Most people (85%) own their homes in Wilmington while a mere 15% of residents rent. Most residents rate the town highly, and there are opportunities to work and earn in the region. The average household income in Wilmington is $83,750.

Despite being a small town with few residents, there is no lack of great places to eat or shop. Residents enjoy dining at Rudy’s Scar Bar and Grille, the Twisted Raven, and the ADK Food Oasis among others.

The Adirondack High Peaks surround Wilmington. Therefore, you will always be immersed in nature if you move to this town. Skiing, snowshoeing, and snowboarding are popular activities on Whiteface Mountain during winter.

In summer, residents keep active by fishing, swimming, biking, and boating. The High Falls Gorge and The Flume (a series of waterfalls) are a couple of the most popular places to hike and spend time.

Discover Your Perfect Adirondack Home

From Lake Placid to Wilmington, each of the places would make an excellent frontrunner on your list of places to move to. They all abound in natural beauty, offer plenty of adventure, and are welcoming small communities where you will no doubt feel at home.

Making your choice would depend on tax laws, housing costs, and your needs as an individual or family; however, consider these 7 best places to live in the Adirondack Mountains in 2024 when choosing a place to call home this year.

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