Visiting the Mohawk Valley is an adventure in time. Some of the earliest settlements in New York State occurred along the Mohawk River. The engineering marvel known as the Erie Canal opened easy travel to the Western frontier. Our Visitor’s Center, Gems Along the Mohawk, encapsulates the history of the Mohawk Valley with its location along the Canal and its information on the contiguous counties surrounding the Mohawk Valley. We would be glad to package your visit along Route 28 and the surrounding area for Miles of Smiles.
Of key importance is the strategic location of Gems Along the Mohawk. Located in the heart of New York State and the beginning of the Miles of Smiles Trail, Gems is a great place to start your journey. It is a perfect stop if you are traveling eastbound or westbound at exit 30 on the NYS Thruway. It is the only place in the entire State of New York where the water meets the road in such a convenient, attractive manner.
Gems Along the Mohawk encourages visitors to experience the many recreational, historic, natural and commercial resources of Central New York. Further, it reminds local residents as well of the rich history of their counties. By promoting products historically manufactured in Central New York, the project highlights both the rich agricultural and industrial history of the region. We now have 70 associates in the retail area; cumulatively the retail area showcases over 10,000 years of manufacturing and agricultural experiences! Each associate has a remarkable story that unfolds.
Our restaurant, The Waterfront Grille, is a gem of a local culinary experience. With a waterfront view and open year round, the restaurant has been a tremendous success since our opening in November, 2002. The restaurant menu is designed to use seasonal local produce as well as locally manufactured commodities, truly guaranteeing a “Taste of Central New York”.
The Lil’ Diamond III, a 120-passenger boat and The Lil’ Diamond II, a 60-passenger boat, both docked here at the Herkimer Marina, offer a ninety minute “lock thru” tour of the Erie Canal as well as private party options. Our daily cruises are fully narrated and provide a historic overview of the Erie Canal as well as information about the operation of the Canal locking system. We also offer specialty cruises throughout the season.
Our Sister Attractions, Herkimer Diamond Mines and KOA Campground, located only seven miles north, combined with our activities here at Gems make a wonderful weekend getaway for anyone visiting the area. We encourage you to visit us. Gems is open every day throughout the year with the exception of Thanksgiving Day, Christmas Day and New Year’s Day.
To Make You Smile
• Visitor Information
• Erie Canal Cruises
Rock the Canal (June)
Harvest Festival (October)
Holiday Celebration (December)