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Today we’re profiling Livingston Manor, a hamlet in Sullivan County on the banks of the Willowemoc River, the birthplace of fly fishing in America. With a little more than 1,000 full time residents, this charming small town is well-appointed with local breweries, top-notch restaurants and, to its East, the entire Catskills park in Livingston Manor’s backyard.
Brick ovens, outdoor fire pits, and an amazing selection of craft brews from the nearby Catskill Brewery (check out the Darbee’s Irresistible Pale Ale). The Kaatskeller serves up world-class pizzas (“Wild One” pie is a HUTS favorite) in a low-key setting with a surprisingly refined cocktail menu. At first you’ll feel strange about eating there three days a week. Then, you’ll come to your senses, and realize you’re just living your best Livingston Manor life.
Every June, Livingston Manor hosts the Trout Parade, so it’s no surprise that any visit to Livingston Manor should come with a try at the artful craft of fly fishing. For almost 100 years, Dette Flies on Main Street has been supplying expert and novice anglers with tackle, flies and insider knowledge. Livingston Manor Fly Fishing Club also offers guided fly fishing, riverside saunas and nature experiences to guests staying at their sister company Homestedt. Get started with their 2 hour intro to fly fishing class before hitting the river for a guided expedition.
When we said the Willowemoc is all about fly fishing, we weren’t kidding. It’s time to nerd out at the Catskill Fly Fishing Centere & Museum. Learn first hand about river conservation and local fishery management. Stick around to visit the Hall of Fame of Fly Fishing (which is something…).
We have two recommendations here, both from the same hospitality group, Foster Supply Co.
For a more casual experience, head up for a weekend stay at The Arnold House and get a feel for life in Livingston Manor and the Western Catskills. Up from the town on Shandalee Mountain, The Arnold House sits on 80 meadow-y acres with mountain views galore. On site tavern, greenhouse, hiking trails and a laid back vibe will give you a great intro to country living in Sullivan County.
For a higher end getaway, book at The DeBruce. Beautiful guest rooms, direct access to hundreds of acres of private land spanning two mountains, the river, several ponds and a private pool – it’s just a stunning property. And with one of America’s best restaurants, you’re in for a memorable stay.