9) Shelter Island, New York
On the eastern end of Long Island is Shelter Island. A small and secluded getaway known for its impressive nature preserves. The best time to visit is in spring or summer as the mild weather makes outdoor exploration more enjoyable. Shelter Island best suites those who enjoy being at one with nature. In fact, one third of the island is owned by The Nature Conservancy. Known as Mashomack Preserve, this area is fully protected in its wild state. Visitors can enjoy multiple nature and birdwatching trails, varying anywhere from 1.5 to 11 miles. The Haven House, built almost two centuries ago, is a must-see. In the summertime, visitors can expect farmers’ markets and weekend fairs. Kayaking the bays of the island is a recommended way to take in all the natural beauty from sea level. In the evening, unwind in classy yet unpretentious bars and enjoy a classic meal.