A group of cities and tourism boards in upstate New York are rebranding themselves to promote travel along the Erie Canal, and are looking to connect with travel agents and tour operators interested in highly curated experiences for their clients.
The Erie Canal stretches 363 miles from Albany to Buffalo, connecting cities and regions that are increasingly popular for foodies, wine enthusiasts and beer lovers. The canal is currently in the middle of its 100th anniversary celebration.
A group of tourism officials from Rochester, Albany and other cities along the Canal's route were in New York recently to promote Norman Rockwell-like downtown districts and rural getaways ideal for a traveler looking for sophisticated local dining and shopping experiences.
Travelers can tie in attendance to events like the Albany Jazz Festival every September, visit local wineries in the Finger Lakes region and experience history in Saratoga Springs.
Canal NY marketing chair Lori Solomon said the cities and destinations are looking to partner with agents to help them curate itineraries based on the local organizations' knowledge of things to do, out of the way venues and dining options, to make agents more efficient in serving their clientele.