Tour Time: Rochester’s Most Historic Sites


Founded back in 1778, Rochester has quickly become one of the most popular New York state tourist spots outside the Big Apple.

With its outstanding natural beauty, long-spanning history of culture and industry, as well as beautiful architecture, there’s plenty to explore in the beautiful Monroe County.

History of Rochester

After the Seneca Tribe of Native Americans lost their claim to the land in 1797 with the Treaty of Big Tree, the Rochester area began to develop after the American Revolution, cultivated by English Puritan immigrants. Whilst the area only had a population of 15 up until 1811, the area became the third most populous city in New York state over the next 200 years due to its flour mill, booming industry, and popular arts university.

If you’re visiting one of the many hotels in Rochester NY, what are the best spots for a deep dive into the city’s culture? Keep reading to find out.

Susan B Anthony House

Susan B.AnthonyThe Rochester home of the famous suffragette and leading figure of the American Women’s Rights Movement is a must-visit in Rochester.

Since then, her home has been converted into a museum and educational center for residents and tourists to learn more about her life and work. The beautiful house is open from Tuesday to Sunday from 11 AM-5PM and is located at 17 Madison Street, not far from some of the best Rochester accommodation.

George Eastman Museum

Eastman-MuseumOpened on the estate of the founder of the Kodak company, it’s not surprising to find that this museum is dedicated to the art of photography.

With an in-depth exploration of the history of the art form, the center also holds one of the world’s oldest film archives, positioning the museum as one of the innovators of modern photograph preservation.

If that’s not enough, the museum is also home to the Dryden Theatre, a cinema dedicated to restorations, foreign films and film festivals. Better still, the museum is located near plenty of places to stay in Rochester NY, meaning you won’t have to travel far to enjoy it!

Genesee Lighthouse

Genesse river lower fallBuilt in 1822, the Charlotte-Genesee Lighthouse is located right next to Lake Ontario, giving you a beautiful view of the Great Lake whilst also giving you easy access to the city through the mouth of the Genesee River.

Back in the mid-20th century, students at a local school saved the lighthouse from demolition through a letter-writing campaign. Just as well, because nowadays it’s one of the most iconic emblems of Rochester.

Little Theatre

This movie theatre founded back in 1928 is one of the oldest in the world to specifically be built to project movies.

This cinema is especially unique in that it focuses mostly on films which don’t make it to mainstream cinemas. With a wide range of revivals, foreign and independent films, the Little Theatre is a pocket of nostalgia, progressive values and beautiful, neon-lit architecture all in one theatre.

Genesee Country Village and Museum

The Genesee Country Village and Museum is an interactive historic village that gives visitors a taste of 19th-century life in upstate New York with a range of activities such as weaving, cooking, and blacksmithing. With actors and professionals taking part in village activities every day, there’s plenty to learn during your absorbing visit.

If you’re staying at a pet-friendly hotel in Rochester, be advised that only service dogs are allowed at Genesee Country Village and Museum.