A car is probably the best way to get around Syracuse, especially if you are going to places away from downtown. Make sure you have a map and pay attention to the street signs. There are some streets in the downtown area that go from being two-way to one-way, which is not always clear on a map.
Another alternative to driving is to get around Syracuse by bicycle, most of the downtown area is relatively flat but keep in mind that the University area has many steep hills and the residential areas surrounding downtown have quite a few hills as well. What some people will do is catch a ride on the bus downtown, placing their bike on the bike rack on the front of the bus and then use their bike once they reach downtown thus avoiding the steep hills.
While taking a little longer than driving in a car the Centro Bus System does provide a fair alternative to most locations in and around Syracuse. Bus fare is $2. Note, though, if you have to transfer to another bus to get to your destination be sure to ask the bus driver for a transfer card so that you don't get stuck paying double fairs for the same trip. In addition there is also a 30 Day Unlimited Ride Pass and Centro Debit Card as alternatives to the cash fare. There are also discounts for senior citizens, persons with disabilities and children. The buses are accessible to people with disabilities and the bus drivers are instructed to let a person with a physical disability on before letting other passengers on.
There are several taxi services listed in the Syracuse phone book that you can choose from. It will usually take anywhere from 10 to 30 minutes for a taxi to come pick you up but it can be useful if you missed the last bus of the day. At the airport there is usually no wait, as there is a well-frequented taxi stand at the end of Terminal A.
Rosamond Gifford Zoo (Burnet Park), One Conservation Pl (Geddes St to Seymour St to S Wilbur Ave), ☎ +1 315 435-8511, . Daily 10AM-4:30PM except Thanksgiving, 25 Dec, 1 Jan. At the top of a hill in Burnet Park sits a small but well-populated zoo. With large animals like reindeer, lions, tigers, and a herd of Asian elephants; small animals like sand cats and peacocks and fossas; and a number in between; there's enough to see to occupy at least a couple of hours. There's a small gift shop and some decent fast food in the main building.Under 3 free, ages 3-18 $4, ages 19-61 $8, ages 62+ $5; all prices halved in Jan and Feb. edit
Symphony Syracuse, P.O. Box 932, ☎ +1 315 218-0310, . Musicians from the Syracuse Symphony, a half-century-old ensemble that dissolved in 2011, formed Symphony Syracuse to keep the tradition going while trying to build support for a new professional orchestra. Many of the concerts they sponsor are free.edit
Syracuse Orange — The city's highest-profile sports institutions are the teams representing Syracuse University in seven men's sports and 11 women's sports. The Orange are currently members of the Big East Conference along with 14 other schools in the eastern half of the country, but will move to the Atlantic Coast Conference in July 2013. They are perennial national powers in men's basketball and men's lacrosse, and also have a rich football tradition. The main athletic facilities are all on campus, with the best-known being the Carrier Dome, home to the football, basketball, and lacrosse teams. The Dome, seating over 49,000 for football and lacrosse and over 33,000 for basketball, is by far the largest domed stadium on a U.S. university campus, and the world's largest facility by capacity regularly used for basketball.
The Syracuse Chiefs, Alliance Bank Stadium, 1 Tex Simone Dr., . Syracuse's minor league baseball team, the AAA team for the Washington Nationals. Tickets are cheap, ranging from about $5 for upper-deck seats to $8 for 100- and 200-level seating.You can see from all sealts in the house!
Syracuse Crunch, War Memorial at OnCenter, 800 S. State St., . AHL minor league hockey team is the highest affiliate of the NHL's Tampa Bay Lightning
Syracuse has gained the nickname "the City of Festivals" for good reason. There are numerous festivals year round. The following are just a few of the festivals that are held in and around the City of Syracuse:
Central New York Scottish Games and Celtic Festival, Long Branch Park, Liverpool (I-690 exit 4, then right on Long Branch Rd), ☎ +1 315 463-8876, . Aug 8, 9AM-6PM. Celtic and Scottish music, dancing, demonstrations, exhibits, and athletics.Adults $10, seniors $7, ages 5-12 $4, under 5 free. edit
The Great New York State Fair A large scale fair with many events including music concerts, art exhibits, livestock competitions, carnival rides, a butter sculpture, and demonstration booths for everything from honey bees to hand tooled wood work.
The Great Syracuse Oktoberfest
Jazz in the Square This jazz festival is seen as a downtown replacement for the M&T Jazz Fest which has moved to the Onondaga Community College campus.
Juneteenth Celebration One of the largest of its kind in Central New York, the occasion celebrates African American history and culture.
Latin American Festival
M&T Jazz Fest at OCC Originally hosted in Downtown Syracuse in Hanover Square and Clinton Square, it moved to the Onondaga Community College campus when Clinton Square was renovated and has stayed there ever since.
St. Sophia Greek Festival Dancing, music, food and shopping are the order of the day. Enjoy the food, music and dancing outside and then wander inside to find the shops, pastries and coffee. Guided tours, lectures, displays and a visual tour of the Greek Islands can also be found inside.
The Syracuse Nationals Car Show Claiming to be one of the largest car shows on the East Coast, this massive car show held at the New York State Fairgrounds features thousands of antique cars, hot rods, motorcycles, race cars and just about anything else with wheels and a motor. Common events held each year are the tractor pull, burnout competitions and music concerts.
The Syracuse St. Patrick's Parade Originally founded by an honored local journalist, Nancy Duffy, the parade has been celebrating St. Patrick's Day for over 25 years.
Taste of Syracuse A festival with several streets of booths containing samples of menu items from the variety of Restaurants in the Syracuse Area.
Sound Garden, 310 W. Jefferson St., +1 315 473-4343, , One of the best independent music shops around. Great selection of used and new featuring CD players where you can listen to any open album you want for as long as you want. Plus a nice movie selection up on the second floor with generally low prices. Open late for convenient pre- and post-bar splurging.
Armory Square, Franklin St., Walton St., Clinton St., , A collection of shops and restaurants in the heart of downtown Syracuse near the Museum of Science and Technology (The MOST).
Destiny USA, 9090 Destiny USA Dr., +1 315 466-6000, , The largest shopping mall in the Central New York Area, it was previously nammed Carousel Center, from the restored fully functional carousel that is its center piece in the food court. Has department stores, restaurants, arcades, and movie theaters.
Great Northern Mall, 4155 Route 31, Clay, +1 315 622-4449, , Has department stores, restaurants, arcade, and movie theaters.
Shoppingtown Mall, 3649 Erie Boulevard East, Dewitt, +1 315 446-9159 , Has department stores, restaurants, arcade, and movie theaters.
The Brooklyn Pickle, 1600 West Genesee Street, +1 315 487-8000. The biggest deli sandwiches around and a friendly mom and pop feel have created an almost cult following to this little sandwich shop. Open until 9PM every day except Sunday.
Robbie T's Pizza, 4625 North St., Jamesville, +1 315 469-3171.
Heid's, 305 Oswego St., Liverpool, +1 315 451-0786. Heid's is known for two things: long lines and the hot dogs that are responsible for those long lines. Ordering is simple: anything that isn't a hot dog or a coney gets ordered first after you get in the door, including their delicious grilled cheeses and super-thick milk shakes; at the end, once you get to the cash register, you simply order how many hot dogs and coneys you'd like. If the retro-style of the restaurant isn't to your liking, you can always cross the street and sit by Onondaga Lake.
Coleman's Authentic Irish Pub, 100 South Lowell Ave. +1 315 476-1933, . An authentic Irish pub with a leprechaun door next to the regular door. It holds an appeal for all ages. This place has a full menu as well as a bar. It is known for its participation in the annual St. Patrick’s Day parade  and festivities. If you are in Syracuse on St. Patrick’s Day be sure to come here and try the green beer. It is in the Tipperary Hill neighborhood near the only inverted street light in the country with the green light at the top and red at the bottom.
Dinosaur Barbeque, 246 W. Willow St., +1 315 476-1662, . Where it all started, this is the original Dinosaur Barbeque restaurant. This restaurant is famous for their BBQ sauce and pulled pork sandwiches. Despite its popularity this restaurant has still managed to maintain a certain small time charm. This is also a popular place for Blues concerts.
Redfield's Restaurant, 701 E Genesee St, +1 315 479-7000, . An American bistro setting.
Syracuse Suds Factory, 320 S. Clinton St. +1 315 471-AALE , . Established in 1991 this well known micro-brewery and restaurant has several micro-brews but also an extensive list of other beers and a full dinner menu. Be on the lookout for live entertainment at this popular venue.
Clark's Ale House, 122 W. Jefferson St. +1 315 479-9859.
Faegan's Cafe & Pub, 734 S. Crouse Ave. +1 315 472-4721 A common hangout place for students at Syracuse University, usually not quite as hectic as some of the other bars near campus, this place has more of a relaxed sit down atmosphere.
J. Ryans Pub, 253 East Water Street, ☎ 315-399-5533, . 11am - 2am. 69 beers on draft at all times, an always changing selection. Full menu all day as well as $2 beer specials from open to close.edit
Hawthorn Suites Syracuse, 416 South Clinton St, Tel: +1 315 425-0500. . Currently the only hotel in Downtown Syracuse, located in the Armory Square retail district. Very nice rooms and was recently named best Hawthorn in America.
SpringHill Suites Syracuse Carrier Circle, 6580 Weighlock Drive, Tel: +1 315 437-0056. . Located just outside of downtown Syracuse and near Syracuse University.
HI - Downing International Hostel, 535 Oak St, +1 315 472-5788. Beds start at $14 per night
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