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Downtown Ithaca Commons, or simply "The Commons," at the corner of West State and Cayuga streets, is a pleasant area of shops and restaurants along a wide pedestrian boulevard. It's packed with gift shops, clothing stores, bookstores, and art galleries. If you're interested in touring art studios and galleries, pick up a copy of Greater Ithaca Art Trail (www.arttrail.com), a guide to the studios of 49 local artists; open studio weekends are held in October. For a good sense of the region's agricultural and artsy roots, visit the Ithaca Farmers Market, Route 13 at Steamboat Landing (Third St.); it's open April through December on Saturday from 9am to 3pm, and June through October, Sunday from 10am to 3pm (tel. 607/273-7109; www.ithacamarket.com). A cooperative with more than 125 local members, the market, in a covered pavilion on the waterfront, delivers a fabulous and entertaining array of produce, food vendors, music, art, and crafts. Cheese heads and others interested in local farm products should make the short trek to Bronson Hill Cheesery, 5491 Bergen Rd., Mecklenburg (on the west side of Cayuga Lake; tel. 607/387-3108), a family farm that specializes in fresh, handcrafted cow-milk cheeses.

Note: This information was accurate when it was published, but can change without notice. Please be sure to confirm all rates and details directly with the companies in question before planning your trip.