Horan's Landing, Sleepy HollowHoran’s Landing, 9 River Street, Sleepy Hollow, NY 10591, 914-366-5109. This one-acre park owned by the village of Sleepy Hollow doesn’t get nearly the attention of the larger Kingsland Point Park located a little further north, and that’s a shame. What it lacks in ambiance (great views of the Castle Oil tanks next door!), this pocket-sized park makes up in a rare commodity: direct and perfectly legal public access to the Hudson River. The park has a riverside path, boat launch site, sandy beach at mid-to-low tide (no swimming), and picnic tables.

The boat launch is restricted to car-top boats (sorry, no trailers). Launch your canoe or kayak here to explore the Tarrytown and Sleepy Hollow waterfronts and the Sleepy Hollow Lighthouse. The more intrepid, such as experienced touring kayakers, can cross the Hudson to wander through the meandering channels of Piermont Marsh or paddle upriver to Croton Point Park. Pick up a copy of the Hudson River Water Trail Guide to help you plan your river adventure.

Parking: limited parking on site, additional metered parking on Beekman Avenue.

Kingsland Point Park, 299 Palmer Avenue, Sleepy Hollow, NY 10591, 914-366-5109. This 18-acre waterfront park is owned by Westchester County and operated and maintained by the village of Sleepy Hollow. There are ballfields, children’s play areas, a dog run (permit required; leashed dogs are allowed elsewhere in the park), benches overlooking the Hudson River, picnic areas, and a 1926 bathhouse that is being renovated into an education center. The pavilion, gazebo, and picnic areas can be reserved through the village recreation department.

The Sleepy Hollow Lighthouse (aka Tarrytown Lighthouse and Kingsland Point Lighthouse) is in the southwest corner of the park. The village recreation department occasionally opens the 1883 light for tours.

There is no direct access to the river from Kingsland Point Park. For boat launches, see Horan’s Landing and the Washington Irving Boat Club and Tarrytown Boat & Yacht Club.

Pierson Park, 238 West Main Street, Tarrytown, NY 10591, 914-631-8347. Popular waterfront park has a playground, picnic pavilion, tennis and basketball courts, and great views of the Hudson River and Tappan Zee Bridge. This is a great spot to watch the sun set over the river. Occasionally the village recreation department hosts music and other events here. Open sunrise to sunset.

Tarrytown Boat & Yacht Club, 236 Green Street, Tarrytown, NY 10591, 914-631-1300. Offers reciprocity to Yachting Club of America members. The restaurant on premises, Striped Bass, is open to the public. The waterfront dining and bar are popular their sunset views; music Friday and Saturday nights 9:30PM-1:00AM. The waterside Cabana Bar & Grill (cash-only) opens for the season in April 2012.