101 GuidescityTravel

Buffalo, NY City Guide

by Maxwell Tielman

Whenever somebody asks me where I’m from, I often find myself bracing for their reaction when I say Buffalo. If the person is polite, the response might be something like, “Wow! You must get lots of snow!” If they’re feeling a bit more forward, it’s likely something along the lines of “I bet you’re glad you got the hell out of that dump!” In most cases, this sort of conversation would be qualified as “small talk,” and the proper retort would be none at all — just a simple “I guess” and a shrug. Because of this, the person I’m interacting with, expecting the monosyllabic replies of typical small talk repartee, is in no way prepared for the robust counterattack I’m prepared to inflict. Something that usually begins with, “BUFFALO IS THE BEST CITY EVER!” And I mean it.

Though it has borne the brunt of years of economic hardship and post-industrial population loss, Buffalo has maintained a rich, diverse community and a wonderful array of cultural treasures, ranging from architecture and art to public parks and public theater. Known as “the City on the Lake,” Buffalo is home to lush, temperate summers and dazzling white winters, springs that show off the city’s penchant for beautiful gardening and crisp autumns perfect for jaunts at the farmer’s market. The city has a long-standing and surprisingly active arts community that has, over time, nurtured the creativity of such talents as Cindy Sherman, Charles Burchfield, Ani Difranco and even Mark Twain. In recent years, with the economy favoring more down-to-earth locales, Buffalo has blossomed. Fabulous new businesses have sprung up like daisies while preservation groups and vivacious urban planners have transformed Buffalo’s historic neighborhoods and architectural gems. Although Buffalo’s most common claims to fame are snow and chicken wings, it seems this is soon to change. With more artists and designers choosing the city as a place to live because of the cheap rent and the tight-knit community, Buffalo’s future is brighter than ever. Looking for a beautiful and shockingly affordable place to visit? Look no further than Buffalo, New York. — Max

Read the full guide after the jump . . .

Above images, left to right: A vintage Buffalo postcard (from the collection of Timothy Tielman), one of Buffalo’s many historic grain elevators, one of Buffalo’s beautiful small cottages, an I-heart-the-Sabres sign (Buffalonians love their sports!), some street art in the shape of the Great Lakes, one of Buffalo’s many magnificent gardens, bubbles courtesy of the Allen Street Bubble Man who can be seen nearly every day blowing bubbles from his apartment window (photo by Lydia Fisher)

Above images, left to right: Eliel and Eero Saarinen’s Kleinhans Music Hall, H. H. Richardson’s Buffalo Psychiatric Center, the now abandoned but always beautiful Central Terminal train station, columns on the front facade of Buffalo’s brilliantly Art Deco City Hall (image courtesy of Timothy Tielman), Frank Lloyd Wright’s Darwin Martin House (image courtesy of Timothy Tielman), Louis Sullivan’s Guaranty Building


Frank Lloyd Wright’s Darwin Martin House Complex — Although it has historically been overshadowed by such Wright masterpieces as Falling Water and Chicago’s Robie house, Frank Lloyd Wright’s 1905 Darwin Martin House is one of the architect’s most impressive achievements, with an inventive interior plan and a vast, sprawling property containing several buildings. The complex is also inextricably tied to Buffalo’s manufacturing history. Commissioned in conjunction with the now demolished Larkin Building by the Larkin Soap millionaire Darwin Martin, the home is one of the few Wright projects that had an almost unlimited budget. The result is a spectacular and luxurious piece of proto-Modernist architecture. Be sure to check out one of the Martin House’s informative guided tours! 125 Jewett Parkway. 716-856-3858.

Eliel and Eero Saarinen’s Kleinhans Music Hall — The permanent home of the Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra, Kleinhans music hall is not just a place to take in some excellent music; it’s also an architectural masterpiece. The hall was designed in 1939 by the Modernist father-son duo Eliel and Eero Saarinen (the latter of TWA Terminal fame) with custom furniture by Charles Eames. A stunning example of Streamlined Modernism and acoustic architecture, this is a must-visit for any fan of midcentury design or classical music. While there are no guided tours of the interior, you can stroll around on your own by attending one of the BPO’s many concerts. 3 Symphony Circle. 716-883-3560.

City Hall — One of Buffalo’s most iconic structures, City Hall is a towering, 32-story example of Art Deco at its best. Be sure to check out the jaw-dropping Common Council Chamber, the rooftop observation deck for panoramic views of the city, and one of the free guided tours that takes place every weekday at noon. 65 Niagara Square. 716-851-4200.

Louis Sullivan’s Guaranty Building — One of America’s first skyscrapers and arguably the most iconic building from Louis Sullivan, the man behind the “form follows function” dictum. A common fixture in most architectural history text books, this building is required material for any design enthusiast. 28 Church St. 716-854-0003.

The Olmsted Park System Buffalo is home to not one but six stunning parks designed by the master landscape architect Frederick Law Olmsted. Interconnected by a system of lush parkways, the Olmsted Park System in Buffalo is an amazing example of early modern town planning. Be sure to visit Delaware Park, the largest of the six and home to Shakespeare in the Park, summertime rowboating, and sledding in the winter. South Buffalo’s South Park is home to the Buffalo and Erie County Botanical Gardens, which is perfect for brightening up a gray winter day.

Erie Canal Harbor — As the song goes, the Erie Canal spanned all the way “from Albany to Buffalo.” Here, you can see the terminus of the legendary waterway and take in some views of Lake Erie. The area is also home to the summertime Thursday at the Harbor, an epic concert series with acts that never fail to bring massive crowds. Also nearby is the Buffalo Naval Park, equipped with real-life warships and submarines, open for touring. 95 Perry St. 716-846-8200.

Also worth checking out: The H. H. Richardson Complex on Forest Ave. and the abandoned but stunningly beautiful Art Deco Central Terminal Train Station.

Above images, left to right: The front facade of The Albright Knox Art Gallery, George Segal’s “Cinema” (at the Albright Knox), George Seurat’s “Le Chahut” (at the Albright Knox), Nancy Rubin’s “Canoes” (at the Albright Knox), Charles Burchfield’s “Early Spring,” 1966-67 (Collection of the Burchfield Penney Art Center, Gift of Charles Rand Penney, 1994), Cindy Sherman’s “Untitled Film Still #11,” 1978 (Collection of the Burchfield Penney Art Center, Purchase supported by a grant from the National Endowment for the Arts and the Burchfield Penney Art Center Collector’s Club, 1989), Paul Sharits’ “Frozen Film Frame Series, 1971-76 (Collection of the Burchfield Penney Art Center, Gift of Christopher and Cheri Sharits, 1994)


The Albright Knox Art Gallery – Buffalo’s preeminent art museum, The Albright Knox boasts a world famous collection that reads like a who’s who of modern artists and their work. The museum features a rotating lineup of impressive exhibitions along with permanent pieces by such artists as Gauguin, Seurat, Matisse, Robert Rauschenberg, Andy Warhol, Sol LeWitt, Jackson Pollock, Chuck Close, James Rosenquist, Frida Kahlo, Fred Tomaselli… the list is endless. Also— Friday nights are free! 1285 Elmwood Ave. 716-882-8700.

The Burchfield Penney Art Center – Located directly across the street from The Albright Knox, The Burchfield Penney Art Center’s mission is to promote and exhibit the art of Buffalo and Western New York artists and craftspeople. In addition to works by such artists as Milton Rogovin and Buffalo State alum Cindy Sherman, the museum displays numerous works by its world-famous namesake: Charles Burchfield. An added perk for Burchfield fans is the museum’s life-size replica of the artist’s painting studio. 1300 Elmwood Ave. 716-878-6011.

Hallwalls Contemporary Arts Center – Founded in 1974 by a group of young art students, Hallwalls is a multimedia exhibition space that specializes in boundary-pushing works by regional and national artists. Recently relocated to Ani Difranco’s Babeville performing arts space, Hallwalls is home not only to visual arts, but music and literary events. 341 Delaware Ave. 716-854-1694.

Buffalo Arts Studio – A non-profit organization that aims to provide cheap studio space for artists, Buffalo Arts Studio also holds regular exhibitions highlighting the work of talented Buffalonians as well as national and international artists. 2495 Main Street, Suite 500. 716-833-4450.

Art Farms – ArtFarms is an ongoing project that seeks to build sculptural houses for community gardens and farms in Buffalo’s East Side, a region formerly known only for its vacant lots. “ArtFarms,” the organization’s website states, “turns the area’s vacant properties into a new landscape of growing sculpture.” Located throughout Buffalo’s East Side.

Above images, left to right: The amazing Open-Air Autobus, three photos of Buffalo’s iconic Voelker’s Bowling Alley, kayakers exploring Buffalo’s grain elevators (photo by Chris Hawley), cyclists attending the Midnight Bike Ride (photo by Bernice Radle)


OpenAirBuffalo Bus Tours — The Open-Air Autobus is a tour bus owned and operated by the Campaign for Greater Buffalo, a local preservationist group, which, full disclosure, happens to be run by my father. All nepotism aside, I guarantee that this will be the strangest, most unusual tour bus you will ever have the pleasure of riding. Built from a vintage school bus and retrofitted to be sans-roof, the Open-Air Autobus sports leopard-print seats and has some of the most enthusiastic architectural tour guides this side of the Erie Canal. Hop on and get ready to feel the wind! Don’t worry — there’s a plastic roof and ponchos in case of a storm. 716-854-3749.

The Midnight Bike Ride — No lie, attending Buffalo’s legendary Midnight Bike Ride is probably the most fun I’ve had in Buffalo — or any city for that matter. Every Sunday at midnight (during warm months, rain or shine), 200+ cyclists gather at the corner of Allen St. and College St. before embarking on an all-night adventure of biking and general debauchery. The route changes every week, so don’t be surprised if you suddenly end up at a beach bonfire, in an abandoned grain elevator, or skinny-dipping in a public fountain. The legality of the entire event is highly questionable and there’s no telling where you’ll end up, so proceed at your own risk! Grab some drinks at Allen Street Hardware beforehand and get ready for the (bike)ride of your life!

BFLO Harbor Kayak — Explore Buffalo’s waterfront and historic factories in style — in a kayak! Located at the Erie Canal Harbor, BFLO Harbor Kayak rents kayaks starting at $15 an hour. 1 Naval Park Cove. 716-228-9153.

Voelker’s Bowling Alley — A Buffalo landmark, Voelker’s has served North Buffalo for generations. Seemingly unchanged over the decades it has been open, Voelker’s is the perfect place to go for a good old-fashioned time. With dozens of retro arcade games, a menu filled with delicious junk food and beer pitchers, and lanes that are open until 4am, you’re practically guaranteed an awesome night! 686 Amherst St. 716-876-6020.

Queen City Roller Girls — Although games don’t technically take place within the city limits, Buffalo’s roller derby scene is just too awesome not to include in this guide. With most events taking place in nearby North Tonawanda’s old-fashioned Rainbow Roller Rink, these roller derby events are a great way to take in some cheap beer, snacks, and lighthearted spectacle.

The Buffalo Zoo — Opened in 1875, the Buffalo zoo is the third oldest zoo in the United States. With a beautiful nineteenth century setting and dozens of indoor and outdoor attractions including bears, birds, reptiles, and (of course) bison, this large zoo makes the perfect activity for outings with family or friends. 300 Parkside Ave. 716-837-3900.

Above images, left to right: Sloan’s Antiques, a stuffed chicken at Sloan’s Antiques, Allentown’s Antique Man, Vintage LPs decorate the shop windows of The Antique Man, furniture for sale at ReImagine, a cute tumbler set at ReImagine, plates at Room, the store interior at Room 2, a typographic poster from the Western New York Book Arts Center, Rust Belt Books


Sloan’s Antiques — Looking for amazing vintage finds? This is the place for you. Sloan’s Antiques, located in Buffalo’s East Side is the end-all and be-all of vintage furniture stores. A colossus of knickknacks and period pieces, Sloan’s is comprised of three massive multifloor warehouses stacked to the rafters with amazing, affordable finds. Definitely not for the faint of heart, expect to wade and climb through heaps of buried objects. Sloan’s is open somewhat sporadically, so call ahead before you visit. 730 William St. 716-856-6057.

ReImagine — For those seeking a more easily digestible collection of fabulous vintage finds, check out ReImagine, a midcentury furniture store located in the heart of Buffalo’s Elmwood Village shopping district. ReImagine is home to an ever-rotating cast of modern masterpieces, revamped classics, and stunning discoveries. 732 Elmwood Ave. 716-240-9387.

Room — Buffalo’s latest and greatest one-stop shop for all of your contemporary living needs. Room is home to gorgeous modern furniture, lovely accessories, and charming decorations for your home. An instant success, Room has birthed two more locations: Room 2 inside the new Hotel Lafayette and Baby Room, a shop specializing in chic decor for little ones. 1400 Hertel Ave. 716-939-2692. Baby Room: 1376 Hertel Ave. 716-886-3541.

Antique Man — A charming and somewhat offbeat antique store in the heart of the Allentown district, Buffalo’s more bohemian enclave. Home to an assortment of beautiful, old pieces in addition to an impressive collection of vintage records, books, and comics. 234 Allen St. 716-883-2121.

Rust Belt Books — One of Buffalo’s longest-running used book shops, Rust Belt Books is home not only to a massive collection of beautifully aged reading material, but also weekly poetry readings, local zines, and an assortment of rare books and first editions. Exactly the sort of charming atmosphere you’d want from a used bookstore, you’ll want to linger long after you’ve found something to buy. 202 Allen St. 716-885-9535.

Talking Leaves Books — Who says print is on its way out? Talking Leaves, one of the few local bookshops left on the planet, is a small but well-stocked temple for the printed page. With employees that are more than happy to offer advice on good reads and a location in the midst of numerous cafés and a scenic parkway, Talking Leaves is the perfect antidote to our Kindle culture. 951 Elmwood Ave. 716-884-9524.

Spiral Scratch Records — Like printed books, physical albums, especially on vinyl, seem to be a thing of the past. Not so at Spiral Scratch Records, one of Buffalo’s only independent record stores. While the shop sticks primarily to the old-school vinyl format, they also sell CDs and gifts like books, clothing, zines, and vintage stereo gear. 291 Bryant Street. 716-882-3200.

Second Chic — As its name suggests, Second Chic is a store specializing in hip, chic consignment clothing for both men and women. Perfect if you’re trying to achieve that retro look or even if you’re just in the market for a cute new outfit. 810 Elmwood Avenue (in the Neighborhood Collective Building). 716-882-8222.

WNY Book Arts Center — Located in downtown Buffalo, the WNY Book Arts Center is a shop/exhibition/workspace that promotes old-school forms of book making, typography, and printing. The WNYBAC offers workshops in topics such as letterpress, paper making, and silkscreening and sells the printed works of local artists and designers. 468 Washington Street. 716-348-1430.

Can Can Candy — Styled like a mom-and-pop candy shop from a bygone era, Can Can Candy is sure to bring out your inner child with classic treats and penny candy in addition to some contemporary favorites. 822 Elmwood Ave. 716-883-3489.

The Tree House — While you’re out treating your inner child, swing by the Tree House, Buffalo’s biggest and most adorable independent toy store. With nary a Barbie or Bratz Doll in sight, the Tree House carries classics that will stand the test of time, whether they be brain-building board games, DIY craft kits, beautiful stuffed animals, or buckets of fun knickknacks. Visiting kids in Buffalo? Don’t forget to stop here first! 739 Elmwood Ave. 716-882-1322.

Above images, left to right: The interior of Five Points Bakery (images 1–4), Downtown Buffalo’s Swannie House, the West Side’s Santasiero’s Italian restaurant, Betty’s, sodas at Sweetness 7 cafe (photo by Jill Greenberg), the interior of Sweetness 7 (photo by Timothy Tielman)


Five Points Bakery — One of Buffalo’s newest locavore haunts, Five Points Bakery made its name by selling local, organic, and great-tasting bread at affordable prices. In addition to selling delicious baked goods, Five Points offers locally sourced dairy, meat, eggs, and dry goods. With ample seating and a charming interior, it makes the perfect location for a morning coffee and pastry. 426 Rhode Island St. 716-884-8888.

Sweetness 7 — A funky coffee shop located on Buffalo’s up-and-coming Grant Street. With a giant communal table, stacks of boardgames, delicious food, and an interior that’s as sweet as its name, you’ll want to bring a friend, a novel, or your laptop and stay all day. 220 Grant St. 716-883-1738.

Betty’s — Located in a red brick house on the corner of a tree-lined street, Betty’s is a picture-perfect spot for lunch, dinner, or my favorite, Sunday brunch. With a sun-drenched dining room that doubles as an art gallery and a flower-lined patio facing the street, Betty’s offers equally delicious atmosphere and food. 370 Virginia Street. 716-362-0633.

The Swannie House — A Buffalo fixture for several decades, the Swannie House is located somewhat off the beaten path, in downtown Buffalo’s industrial “Silo City.” A charming classic bar and a great place to grab some Buffalo staples like chicken fingers, wings, or a fish fry. Fabulous nearby views of factories and the Buffalo Fire Department’s fire boat. 170 Ohio Street. 716-847-2898.

Santasiero’s — If you’re looking for an authentic family Italian joint with some serious rust belt cred, Santasiero’s is your place. Seemingly ripped from the film reel of a classic mobster movie, this restaurant is a bare bones, purely Buffalo experience — usually packed with people and smelling of garlic bread and delicious Italian dishes. 1329 Niagara Street. 716-886-9197.

Trattoria Aroma — For a more upscale alternative to Italian dining, check out Trattoria Aroma, located on Buffalo’s charming residential Bryant Street. With a beautiful atmosphere, a charming front patio, and wonderful dishes, this restaurant makes for a perfect lunch or dinner date. 307 Bryant Street. 716-881-7592.

Jim’s Steakout — This sub/snack shop is pretty much the place to grab some truly authentic Buffalo eats, namely the should-be-world-famous Chicken Finger Sub. A delicious/disgusting-in-a-good-way treat that entails fried chicken tenders slathered in butter, hot sauce, and bleu cheese, no trip to Buffalo is complete without tasting this local delicacy. Open until 5am to cater to Buffalo’s bar scene, Jim’s is the perfect place for some shameless after-drinks eating. 194 Allen St. 716-886-2222.

La Nova Pizza — Voted the number 1 independent pizzeria in the country, La Nova, in business since 1957, has become internationally famous for their mouthwatering thick crust pizza and chicken wings. So famous, in fact, that they now ship their food overnight to anywhere in the country. While Buffalonians can get pretty defensive of their neighborhood pizzerias, I’m going to go ahead and say that this one’s probably the best. 371 West Ferry St. 716-881-3303.


Allen Street Hardware — Opened in 2004 after it was converted from an old hardware store, Allen Street Hardware Café has become an instant classic for Buffalo barflies. A delicious restaurant by day, Hardware becomes truly alive at night, with a charming interior, live music, and ample floor space to dance. Located on Allen Street, one of Buffalo’s main bar crawls, there are dozens more watering holes within a very close distance. 245 Allen St. 716-882-8843.

Essex Street Pub — A cute, laid back bar that’s often home to Buffalo’s more bohemian crowd, this place is a nice alternative to the jam-packed bars and clubs on Allen Street and downtown’s Chippewa Street. 6 Essex St. 716-883-2150.

Above images: Buffalo’s newly remodeled Hotel Lafayette


Hotel Lafayette — After decades of functioning as an apartment building and halfway house, downtown Buffalo’s old Hotel Lafayette was recently purchased and restored from the ground up to become an absolutely stunning boutique hotel. With a beautifully restored Art Deco lobby, masterfully redesigned bedrooms, and shopping/dining on the first floor, the new Hotel Lafayette makes a wonderful alternative to the surrounding chain options. 391 Washington St. 716-853-1505.

Hostel Buffalo Niagara — Voted the best hostel in the United States by Hosteling International, the Buffalo hostel is a multistory delight for those looking to save a few pennies. The hostel features a spacious kitchen, clean bathrooms, inviting common spaces, and both private and shared bedrooms. It also has the added benefit of being located in downtown Buffalo’s theater district with dozens of entertainment options in walking distance. Chippewa Street, downtown’s clubbing hotspot, is also only blocks away. 667 Main Street. 716-852-5222.


Garden Walk Buffalo — Every spring, residences across Buffalo open up their gardens to the public for one weekend. Now with more than 350 gardens, this is a wonderful way to become familiar with Buffalo’s neighborhoods and beautiful homes. 716-879-0123.

The Buffalo Small Press Book Fair — A one-day event held every year, the Buffalo Small Press Book Fair takes place in the Karpeles Manuscript Museum and features the work of local printmakers, craftspeople, zine publishers, and artists. A fabulous way to become acquainted with Buffalo’s independent arts scene.

Shakespeare in the Park — Every summer, you can see a gigantic stage being built in Delaware Park. This is the seasonal home for Shakespeare in Delaware Park, one of the country’s oldest and most successful free outdoor Shakespeare companies. Each summer, SDP features two plays from the legendary playwright’s oeuvre and shows each week Tuesday–Sunday. Pack your blankets, some wine, and cheese, and be ready to be entertained under the stars. Shakespeare Hill, Delaware Park. 716-856-4538.

Taste of Buffalo — The country’s largest two-day food festival, Taste of Buffalo brings over 50 restaurants and seven wineries to downtown for a weekend of delicious, decadent delight.

So, that’s my list, but it in no way encompasses all of the amazing things to do in America’s “City of Good Neighbors.” If you’re a fellow Buffalonian or Buffalo expat, don’t hesitate to drop some of your favorites into the comments section below! Happy travels!

Special thanks to Erin HabesJill Greenberg, Chris Hawley, Aaron Rubin, Bernice Radle, Catherine WillettLydia Fisher, and my father, Timothy Tielman, for contributing photos and suggestions to this article. Also, thank you to my lovely mother, Susan McCartney, and my ever-patient boyfriend, Daniel Kanter, for driving me around all day to get the photographs for this guide. You guys rock!

Suggested For You


  • Buffalo is awesome. Like thousands of others, I moved away as a child in the early ’90s but it will always be home in my heart. Thanks for being such a proud and outspoken Buffalonian. Go Sabres!

  • I heart Buffalo! Miss it so much now that I am gone, would LOVE to move back. This cityguide is fab! Went home a few weeks ago to visit family and declared it a “Buffalo Weekend” – and did some of my fave’s: Beef on Weck Friday night, breakfast @Sweetness7, hit the Bidwell Farmers Market, West Side street tour, went to Canal Park, nosh and beer at Hotel Lafayette then hit shops on Hertel – perfect.

  • I loved this post! Being from Buffalo-I get the gasps when I proudly say “I’m from Buffalo”. There is so much beauty in the city, people tend to overlook it. Thanks for showing Buffalo offers so much more than crappy sports teams and lake-effect snow.

  • Aw, I love this guide! My husband and I live in Seattle now but we decided to have our wedding back in Buffalo where my family is. I’ve always loved Western New York and our friends who made the long trip out were totally charmed. :)

  • Thank you, Max. I have never been to Buffalo, and confess it hasn’t been on my list, but you are a great ambassador. I grew up in Western Kansas, so well know the smirks and disdain people give when you tell them where you are from. My response was always a polite, “Oh, you’ve been there?” And of course, they never had been there and were instantly chastised and receptive to my descriptions of its attributes.

  • This is absolutely wonderful, excited to finally see the Buffalo city guide live. Max did a great job with this—living in San Diego for 4 years I faced the “lots of snow” and/or “what a dump” comments almost daily, and loved coming back with how amazing the city actually is, I moved back a little over a year ago and have never been happier. Great things to come.

  • This is a great profile on my hometown! I feel the same way when people ask where I am from, but it truly is a great place to grow up, raise a family and I too am proud of our city! Awesome round-up!

  • So happy to see this! I feel like I’m always defending Buffalo, but we really have so many great things. And the real estate price point cannot be beat.

  • Great guide, Max! Thanks for getting the word out…Buffalo is a GREAT PLACE TO LIVE!!!
    Buffalo Citybration (Citybration.com) shows it all off during the last week of June each year and there are more and more beautiful books about Buffalo (BuffaloHeritage.com) these days, too.
    I am so glad to be back home in Buffalo (it only took 32 years…)

  • I agree wholeheartedly that Buffalo is amazing, but you forgot to mention that the people are one of the most incredible parts of the city. Known as the city of good neighbors, you will find unparalleled kindness and willingness to help- whether you’re shoveling, trying to move a couch up stairs, looking for a lost dog or scrounging for a quarter for the parking meter (I speak from experience), a kind passer by will most certainly offer you help with a smile.

  • What a great style guide, Max. I might have just added: BlackRock Kitchen & Bar, Sea Bar, The Roycroft Campus, CEPA, Lexington Co-Op, Elm Street Bakery, Knox Farm, Griffis Sculpture Park, Big Orbit, WNY Book Arts, The Mansion, Nina Freudenheim Gallery and echo Art Fair (shameless self promo) to the mix.

  • I’m originally from Batavia NY, and when I meet someone from Buffalo, the first thing out of my mouth is “Go Bills” It just pops out. My Father trained me well.
    My Uncle was at the Democratic Convention this past year and talked to Wolfe Blitzer (I’m sorry Wolfe if I spelled your name wrong) a Buffalo Boy who uttered “Go Bills” when he found out my Uncle was from Buffalo.

  • Like many of the commenters, I too moved away from Buffalo when I was younger but it still holds my heart. It is such a wonderful unique city filled with the nicest people I have ever come across. This guide is fantastic and I need to schedule my long awaited homecoming to reconnect to my beloved roots. I have yet to find an transplanted Buffalonian who doesn’t proclaim their love of Buffalo, I know I don’t take any flack from outsiders! Now if we could only get those Bills on track…

  • Despite having vacationed for years about an hour south of Buffalo (and despite having been conceived there, as well!), I visited Buffalo proper for the first time ever this summer. It’s a fantastic city. We packed a ton into just two days (Albright-Knox, Shakespeare in the park, Darwin Martin complex…) and we even found a few of your mentions on our own (The staff at Talking Leaves Bookstore on Elmwood were incredibly nice and helpful).

    Thanks for the recommendations; more things to explore when I take another mini-trip up to Buffalo next summer!

  • Buffalo is totally the best!!! Cafe Taza in Allentown is my absolute favorite place to crab coffee and a bagel! It’s an adorable and cozy space and the owner, Brena, is a delight to know. They have dog biscuits outside for all the pups that walk by too!

  • Great guide to our wonderful city. When I travel I am always proud to say that I am from Buffalo. We are a strong survivor city with so many wonderful features that make it a great place to live and visit.

  • What a wonderful write up – it makes me want to return. I worked in Buffalo from 1984-1992 and lived in Allentown. Now I really want to go back for a visit!

  • It’s not really a destination, but Maureen’s wholesale flowers downtown has an amazing array of beauties and super- helpful sales staff, in a wonderfully vintage storefront. Great prices too. You don’t have to buy in quantity. Open to the public.

  • LETS GO BUFFALO! I grew up in Buffalo, moved away for college and stayed planted here after graduation. I miss Buffalo constantly, I think there is a certain, comfortable charm there that only people from there understand. We lack pretentiousness, we appreciate the little things, and we hope with big hearts. I’m not sure if I’ll ever live their again but every time I go home to visit family, I wish I could stay much longer. I wish their was more job opportunity there or I would consider moving back!

  • Ah, visited for the first time this year and what an amazing city! People had the same reaction when we told them where we were going for a trip: Buffalo? Why?

    Addition: Broadway Market! (Esp at easter!) all Polish and festive in the middle of a pretty interesting (and rough) neighbourhood . And they sell butter lambs..which i never knew was a thing.

  • I loved reading this – as an avid reader of Design*Sponge it is nice to see that one of the contributors is “one of us”. Boston can “try” to be Buffalo but it won’t ever succeed for me. I don’t know if I will ever be able to move back, but I do love going home.

  • Great guide! I live near Buffalo (in Canada) and I take day trips there all the time. I am constantly trying to convince my Canadian friends that there’s so much more to Buffalo than the Galleria and Target (which is where we all go when we cross the border).

  • Wonderful guide to Buffalo! I love my hometown, and it’s so awesome to see that others love it as much as I do. I agree with Kay – the old Pink needs to be added to the drink list!

  • Great article, Max! Glad to see you’re still around and sharing all the Buffalo has to offer. Hope all is well! :)

  • Moved in 3 years ago and I’m hooked! Love this city, great job summing up some of the greatest aspects! Visitors- check out Buffalo Spree and the Artvoice for current happenings. Additions to the list: Sportsman Tavern on Amherst for some tunes, Cantina Loco for margaritas and nachos, and check out listing for estate sales while you’re in town! My mother now expects almost a full Saturday of estate sale-ing when she visits :)

  • Love this! Maybe there’s a reason why Buffalo is such a well-kept secret? We don’t need everyone with their negative attitudes coming in and ruining what we have going on here!!

  • After moving away from Buffalo over 24 years ago, I have never found a place where people can be as friendly, kind and helpful as Buffalonians (sp?). Although I have been settled in Maine for over 13 years and love it here, when I tell friends I am going “home” they ask aren’t I home already? Not quite….plus people still laugh when I ask for a pop, not a soda. Go Bills!

  • Awesome post. I have always been secretly attracted to places in upstate NY like Buffalo, and Ithaca and Albany and Hudson. I’m dying to visit one day.

  • So nice to see something positive about my home town. It’s not just about the snow. I haven’t lived there since high school but my family’s still there and I love going home to visit.

  • It won’t be long until the Buffalo secret is no more! So much going on in this city, especially in the last few years.

  • I have to say that I am proud to be a true buffalonian born and raised. Yes we have been going through some really tuff financial hard times but our spirit and drive for community is amazing. Our art and design outlets are top notch, and our diversity in food (and yes that means we don’t just have chicken wings)is like a huge melting pot. We have the best of both worlds being just about 2 hrs from Toronto and Niagara Falls is literally in our backyard. Bonnie, I feel so honored that this post made it to your blog and I hope more and more people see Buffalo not for it’s post industrial struggles but for it’s ever growing community and economy.

  • Though I moved out of Buffalo to San Francisco almost 7 years ago – whenever anyone asks me where I’m from, I always say BUFFALO NY with pride. My family’s DNA has been a part of Buffalo for generations and there truly is no better place to have grown up. I love coming home for Thanksgiving and watching the Turkey Trot, going to a Sabres game, or enjoying it’s gorgeous waterfront. Thank you for writing this great post about such a gem of a place.

  • I live in NYC but on a trip to western NY eight years ago I ended up eating at Tempo (Delaware Ave.) in Buffalo and it has become my all-time favorite restaurant. Yes – tops many of my favorites in NYC! Definitely should be on this list!

  • As so many other people have posted here, I grew up in Buffalo and had to move. We live in a city that always ranks near the top of those “best places to live” lists, but Buffalo is way better!

  • I grew up in Rochester (would love to see a Rochester guide someday!!) but am so happy to see some attention paid to upstate NY. Living in Brooklyn now, I laugh when people refer to “upstate” as Westchester. Very proud of our corner of the world/state – and this guide was an amazing tribute to Buffalo. Job well done!

  • I’ve been patiently waiting three years for this Buffalo city guide to happen! I’m so happy it finally did and we’re able to share what a fabulous city we have with others! I’m not from here originally and when all my friends were moving away to NYC for college, I chose Buffalo and have happily been here for eight years. It just keeps getting better and there isn’t a day that goes by that I don’t discover something new!

  • Really enjoyed this tour. I was born In Buffalo, attended School#39 and East High. We moved to Miami, Fl when I was 15…talk about a culture shock. That was many years ago, but seeing all these pictures brought back lots of memories. Told someone just yesterday about an unforgettable visit to Kleinhans Music Hall. Live near Atlanta, Ga now, but still think of Buffalo. NO, I do not miss the snow.

  • i’ll have to join the masses and label myself an expat as well. always proud to say where i’m from and always looking for a way to get back. excellent write up max.

  • Moved to the B-lo from NYC in 2006. Best decision ever! I live just north of allentown and it is a truly awesome place. Most underated city in U.S. A big city with small town amenities.

  • My husband left Buffalo and then returned. We catch flack even from other Western New Yorkers for living right in the city, but we love it. There is a lot going on, even when it snows. It’s a great place to live. Nice guide!

  • I lived on Parkside across from the city zoo while my husband was in dental school. Buffalo is one of the best cities especially for families. I loved taking my two kids to school, Delaware Park, and the zoo. The estate sales the museums, Wegmans! I loved this post because it has been four years since we left Buffalo and I was reminded of what a special neighborhood we lived in. Thanks.

  • West Side till the death….you can take the girl out of Buffalo but you can’t take the Buffalo out of the girl….You missed Gercio’s and La Nova but we can’t all be perfect…Thanks and Much love to the author for showing the real side of “Buffalove”.

  • I grew up in East Amherst and loved living there! Buffalo is a great city with lots of charm.

  • Wow! You’ve covered so much, but still haven’t even captured half the excellent things there are to see and do in Buffalo… let alone the thousands of places within an hour’s drive of the city. Buffalo always seems to have a pleasant surprise hidden just around every corner, you can have as much fun going by the guidebook as you can exploring on your own. Even some of the sites that are ‘abandoned’ still offer fascinating tours and host events, on or off the published schedule. It’s got that great mix of fast-paced cosmopolitan action combined with small-town charm and generous sprinkles of pastoral natural beauty. Thanks for writing this up! And to everyone reading it, consider this a starting point, not an all-inclusive list!

  • My husband is from Buffalo and most of the time we went to visit his family, I thought Buffalo was just OK. We were there last Fall and actually ventured downtown (he is from East Aurora, check out Vidler’s Five and Dime for some old-fashioned fun) and I have a newfound appreciation for they city. We live in Chicago and Buffalo’s turn of the century architecture and mansions are better than Chicago’s. We went to the Martin House (a must see). And I just LOVE Althea’s sponge candy (if you can’t make it to Althea’s, you can find it at the airport).

  • Like many others, I moved away from Buffalo wayyyy back in 1963 – spent 47 years living in Las Vegas and always missed my hometown. I moved back home in 2010 and the move has far exceeded my expectations. I love the seasons, the best summer weather on the planet, and the people. I’ve reconnected with childhood friends and have made so many new ones… it truly is the city of good neighbors, and there’s so many activities packed into the beautiful summer months than you can’t even attend them all. Great history, great people, and yes, great weather…and…. you really appeciate lush vegetation when you’ve spent so many years in the middle of the mojave desert!

  • I recently got a consulting gig in Buffalo and was really not looking forward to traveling there. To my surprise, I’ve fallen in love with the city!! There’s so much to see and do -great culture with museums, etc., love the architecture, good restaurants and shopping and the people are sooo nice. Now, I keep hoping for more returns trips. This jaded New Yorker is a convert. Great article, you’ve armed me with more things to do next time!

  • So happy to see this proclaimed to the world! This post really could have gone on for days just in the eats category….Buffalo has an amazing array of the best local restaurants- Left Bank definitely should have made the list! And with the dawn of all of the city’s revitalization projects, it’s an exciting place to be!

  • Love this guide and love Buffalo even more after reading it. Great job Max! I moved to Bflo from Minneapolis a decade ago on a whim at age 25 with no job. I had visited once two years prior, got a sugar-coated tour and was hooked. Fast forward to 2012, and I have a partner of 10 years, a great job at a 100+ year old non-profit, and own a fabulous century old house in a great city neighborhood that we’ve been renovating meticulously for six years and counting. The point is this place gets an unfounded bad rap, and I am a success story of a random transplant. All of us who love it need to change it with positive press and personal investment. Twenty-somethings, please invest in Buffalo. There are jobs here! Empty nesters, move back to the city!

    Buffalo is a amazingly well kept secret that needs to be shared. Hey, NYC and everyone everwhere , come visit. You’ll leave impressed if you see half the locales mentioned by Max.

  • Moved back here after we retired. After 40 years away, it is still the home of the greatest people ever, and now that its history and hidden treasures are being discoverd, it just becomes more fantastic – thaks for the great guide – we have added some of the places we haven’t been yet to our bucket list!

  • I’ve been living here for 8 years, I’m from New England originally (Boston, Providence, New Haven) and I find a lot of truth in almost all the comments. The thing that struck me about Buffalo as an outsider when I first came here was the architectural beauty and the park system. Not only the iconic buildings mainly downtown, but the homes, the Victorians, the Arts & Crafts, etc. Then I bought one for a really reasonable price. As an outsider, there are a couple nits I pick about the place (pizza, for one; sorry, I was raised on New Haven-style). And a lack of certain ethnic foods (Mexican, etc., this may be changing) but the restaurants are great, especially Mike A’s, Rue Franklin, SeaBar, Hutch’s etc.

    Friends that visit rave about the Blue Monk (the most amazing beer bar I’ve ever been to), Founding Fathers Pub (great conversations), Albright Knox (relaxing venue for great art), Hallwalls (catch a jazz show there), free music at the harbor, literary readings all over town, Talking Leaves on Main Street (bigger and better than Elmwood), Niagara Falls very nearby, ArtPark, Niagara gorge, etc.

    About the weather: late last February the temperature suddenly rose to a balmy mid 40s. In March, we hit mid-50s and even a string of days in the 60s. April 50’s and 60s/May 60s. June through August 80s. Hardly any snow last winter, no storms, tornadoes, hurricanes. Here on the west Side of Buffalo, we experience what I call reverse Lake Effect. Always sunny skies because clouds roll off the lake and don’t stall until you’re about 4 or 5 miles inland (roughly near I-90). Buffalo has the best weather of any city I’ve ever lived in, and I’ve lived in 10+ major ones.

  • YES!!!!!!!! All of the places we loved when we lived in Buffalo (with the exception of Guercio’s). Excellent city guide..and three cheers for WNYBAC!

  • Love this! What a creative tool to improve the views of many. The people here are the best!
    I moved here from central new york but had lived out of state. Proud to say that I have been here almost 20 years. I now have buffalo’s past and present in my everyday life. Check us out!


  • Well done, Max, so much offered here and embodying our signature underdog passion – good fodder for Buffalo Repats to show why we moved back to the City of Good Neighbors from assumed greener grasses. But you forgot to mention…the fact that one could make a great week full of stuff not even on this wonderful list – we got a great big city, we just act like it’s a small town…cheers!

  • Great essay and great pictures! I’ve lived here for all of my “working life”, and love living in Buffalo. But another thing you forgot to mention in your description of Buffalo’s assets is its world class orchestra, the Buffalo Philharmonic! It’s opportunities like being able to be regularly entertained and inspired with great music that convinces talented people to come to Buffalo!

  • Thanks for the beautiful pictures and essay on Buffalo. I’ve lived in Buffalo for all of my “working life”, and love it here!
    One more thing you forgot to mention in your description of Buffalo’s assets is its world class orchestra, the Buffalo Philharmonic. It is opportunities like being able to be regularly entertained and inspired by great music that brings talented people to Buffalo.

  • I just revisited this article after reading it yesterday, and reading the burst of comments warmed my heart. As a recent “repat” myself, I’m thrilled to know I’m not alone in my persistent “Buffalove”. Since moving back to Buffalo (about 3 months ago), I’ve: seen conceptual theater in a grain silo, rode my bike 20 miles on the waterfront, seen three national music headliners for free, drank wine and read a book in a park across the street from my house, seen amazing stand-up comedy I want to keep a secret from the rest of the world for a little while longer, attended a multi-day arts festival (two), ate the best wings of my life while watching the Bills in my local pub, saw a bluegrass band in a giant backyard in the middle of the city (Emile Latimer guested on drums), rode a ferry along the waterfront, traversed the Niagara Wine Trail (several times), saw the Buffalo Philharmonic for free in Delaware Park, saw Richard III for free in Delaware Park, saw the Cirque du Soleil for the first time, saw a live band on the rooftop of Broadway Market, volunteered at the WNYBAC, gotten fresh eggs and produce from my co-workers, and about a hundred other things I’m forgetting. AND, I spent a good amount of time just chilling in my apartment w/ my lovely neighbors, too. I love it here.

  • I went to college in Buffalo and fell in love with the City, stayed on for a few years but economic reality caused me to leave. Recently I moved back there after many years and found most of what I loved and more thriving. Thank you for this wonderful, wonderful post!

  • This is my hometown, and leaving it has made me realize how special and amazing this city is. So glad to have this incredible guide. I’m looking forward to kayaking the harbor next summer when I’m back home.

    The only thing I would add is a good place to get beef on weck. My favorite place is Schwabl’s, but that’s outside the central city.

  • Buffalo is special because the people make it that way–project by project, neighborhood by neighborhood. I’ve never seen this level of civic engagement in my life.

    The elephant in the middle of the living room, however, is that the city suffers (and has suffered for quite some time) from a lack of competent political and leadership–I am speaking of people with integrity and vision.

    Can you imagine if Buffalo had leaders who actually ENABLED and SUPPORTED the fine people working endlessly to rebuild? Set a clear, progressive and strategic vision for the city? If they did, Buffalo would be closer to Pittsburgh or Portland.

    Instead, the powers that be impede, obstruct and try to see what is in it for them. There needs to be a house cleaning/restart.

  • I used to arrange travel for business associates traveling to Buffalo, NY, on a regular basis and we always booked them at either the Salvatorre’s Garden Place Hotel (business rate is under $100 and it’s just a cultural experience) or the Salvatorre’s Grand Hotel (newer and nicer for about the same price). Rumor has it that there’s some kind of family fued behind why there are two so near each other. Also, Russell’s Steak House, at Salvatorre’s Grand Hotel, is pricey, but everyone raves about it! If you want the taste but don’t want the price, you can order a Philly Steak and Cheese Sandwich (made from Prime Rib!) with handcut fries was about $15 from Russell’s at the hotel bar or have it delivered to your room; I’ve been told it’s well worth it! http://www.salvatoresgrand.com

  • I also moved away from Buffalo for college and then job prospects and always miss the area. A beautiful town with amazing arts/architecture/lifestyle. One of the best parts is the connection you get with other people who moved away from Buffalo, wherever you meet them. It seems like everyone has only fond memories of the city and loves to talk about it with other ex-Buffalonians.

  • I am a Torontonian who had the pleasure of travelling to Buffalo monthly for business over the past year. I really fell in love with this place. The people are so friendly, the architecture is PHENOMENAL, and the food is out of this world. I wish I had this guide earlier, though i managed to find a bunch of great places on my own and through the recommendations of great locals. I really think Buffalo should do more to promote tourism to Torontonians and Southern Ontarionians (and not just for suburban mall shopping!).

  • Thank YOU, for such a wonderful, and personal Guide to Buffalo. I moved from Buffalo in 2009, having lived there from my birth at Children’s Hospital in 1947 to moving from my North Buffalo home in 2009. Love that you included in the “Dining” section, my all time fav place to eat – Santasiero’s . I left my Heart in Buffalo, and wish for the city only good things in the future. I hope that people who may have never visited or thought of visiting Buffalo and the WNY area (can’t beat our Parks in WNY area – visit Letchworth and Allegany, and Akron Parks for an eyeful of beauty), will be inspired by your article and take the time to explore all it has to offer. Fall and Early summer are the best times to visit. But if you’re a skier or enjoy Winter, you’ll find the city a warming & welcoming place to visit at that time of year as well.

  • I love Buffalo! I grew up in Philly but have lived in Rochester for the last 20 years. I met my husband when he lived in Buffalo and got to know the city in the neighborhoods around where he lived (Allentown/Elmwood/North Buffalo). I was just astounded at how amazing Buffalo is–not at all what people think. My husband moved to Rochester when we married but I will always be a “Buffalo Ambassador”.

  • So cool! I’m a SoCal girl and I’ve never had anything against Buffalo but now I can’t WAIT to visit! I will definitely add Buffalo to my itinerary the next time I’m able to visit back east. Thank you for sharing your hometown with us!

  • I can’t believe that you did not mention Teds Hotdogs. Its in the top 10 of the US according to the food channel. That is the place I beat feet too each time I visit home.

  • This is actually one of the best guides to Buffalo I’ve ever seen. Some of the usual suggestions and a few I would never have thought to give! Can’t wait to get back at Thanksgiving!

  • Just in time! I was initially bummed about my trek up to Buffalo for a wedding next weekend, but now I’m totally pumped! Thanks, Max!

  • This is so much more interesting, edgy, and authentic than what a convention bureau can produce–congrats to the author.

    I agree that Buffalo is an amazing place–a long-forgotten city, which is experiencing a nice revival. However, as someone else pointed out, smart leadership should steer smart growth of the city: public transport, density, walkability, historic preservation, eco-movements, lighter-quicker-cheaper initiatives (as opposed to silver bullets), immigration in-migration, restricted sprawl growth (as cities like Portland have done).

    Otherwise, Buffalo will just gentrify and become everywheres-ville…like many other places have experienced.

  • Great guide. My response to comments has aways been, “Yep, Buffalo is an armpit.” But after reading this, I look forward to going back and checking out these places. I think the biggest reason I’ve never liked Buffalo is because the people aren’t very friendly (compared to super friendly New Mexico where people go out of their way to help out strangers – where I live now). I’m happy to have a reason other than family to visit now!

  • Great article! It’s great to see my hometown get so much love. Truly an awesome city!

  • Thank you so much for this beautiful piece about such a special place. I laughed so hard at the “must get a lot of snow” comment. If I had a nickel for every time…. I moved away to Boston 35 years ago but still visit my mom there regularly. You can’t beat the architecture, the home cooked food, and, above all, the people. This is TRULY the city of good neighbors.

  • Thanks so much for this post. I transplanted to New Mexico last year, and can’t get back to Buffalo often enough to suit me. When I get that initial negative response to where I’m from, I love to explain all the things I love about Buffalo, and why I’m proud it’s my home. Dragged my New Mexican boyfriend up to meet my family and WNY this summer: I’m not sure what he expected, but he was utterly charmed. Can’t wait until we can go back, and I can show him even more of Buffalo’s under-rated loveliness.

  • My hometown! Thanks for the great write-up about this underrated little gem of a town.

    I would have added some more lodging options, such as the Mansion on Delaware and the Hyatt. I used to work at the Hyatt downtown years ago, and I loved that hotel. It’s worth noting that it made use of a gorgeous old E.B. Green skyscraper, another architectural jewel of Buffalo. Remember when they used to have the walk-through gingerbread house around Christmas?

    God, I miss LaNova’s and Jim’s Steak Out!!!

  • It sure is a great place and always was. I miss it. It’s still “home” to me even though I’ve been away 50 years.

  • It truly is a wonderful place and always was. It will always be “home” to me even after being gone 50 years.

  • Thank you for posting this! I’d also add Larkinville to the list for lunch, happy hour and Wednesday night summer concert series and market. Buffalo is really getting better and better all of the time. Come visit and check out the development and renovation of our beautiful, historic and architectural gems! I never thought I would love being home so much, it is amazing and we are truly on the tipping point!

  • Don’t forget about the annual Buffalo Kissing Booth. What other city has that?

  • Dude. I’m ALWAYS Talkin’ Proud! When I moved to LA from Buffalo, I was always a little nervous to admit where I was from. People wouldn’t stop talking about the damn Buffalo Bills! Regardless, thanks for this article!!

  • I soooo wish I had seen this last week as I had an opening at WNYBAC friday night of a Buffalo alphabets A-Z and you and I share a lot of the same reference points. I love this and am so glad to see so many postive comments about a town I’ve come to love. I have been here 13 years and am a Buffalonian by Choice! It would have been so much fun to have had you come to the opening.

  • I bought a home in South Buffalo, having grown up in Tonawanda. I have lived on all four sides of the city and in the very heart of it as well over the last 40 years. I love all of Buffalo! I have developed a special place in my heart for South Buffalo. It is very quiet, family friendly and has a small town way about it that’s akin to ‘old’ Buffalo. There are so many reclaimed lands made into parks and parks made over into wonderful little sanctuaries placed right in the shadows of the grain elevators and the Buffalo River’s former Industrial Age. My next thing is to buy (or rent) a kayake! Fifteen to twenty minutes from skiing isn’t too shabby either! Visit my videos promoting SoBuff! http://www.youtube.com/NoPointNLying
    I am trying to start a business which is going to take advantage of all these nice, new venues for sport and leisure. Cannot wait to get it up and running soon! The free Entrepreneur Classes abound around the city to help anyone out who wants to be a part of all this! Free classes for buying a home in the city too…”Come Home and Explore! We need more!” LOVE BUFFALO!!!
    Great Job Max!

  • My husband and I are from Hamilton, Ontario, and we are headed to Buffalo next week for the Sufjan Christmas Concert. We were coming up short with places to explore in the city, but we knew there must be some awesome movement of amazingness that we hadn’t discovered yet! Now I’m so excited to check some of these places out!! Thanks so much.

  • Thank you for the memories…my Buffalo roots go back to 1872 when my great-grandparents arrived there, and I was born there myself. Although I haven’t been back in some years (most of my family is now in Forest Lawn), I am fiercely proud of my hometown. Love snow? Heck, YEAH! Love the only New York football team that actually plays in New York? Heck, YEAH! Love the working-class feel of this gracious old town? Heck, YEAH. I will always be a Buffalonian! Architecture, trees, Erie Canal, World’s Fair, Electrification…the reasons to admire and love Buffalo and its glorious history go on and on.

  • Wow I had no idea! Buffalo looks amazing!!! Would love a weekend there. If I ever make a trip back to the USA I will definitely make a trip to Buffalo….

  • Great article. My family goes back to both the German & Irish ( first ward) Buffalo history. Working on talking my husband into living there. Thanks for the help!

  • This was a surprising find. I’ve been fortunate to check out a few of the museums here, which were fantastic, but this guide offers a few other sites I have yet to explore. It’s been great in general to see the new businesses popping up and the recent influx of artist / creative types coming to the area. Love the farmer’s market too – can’t wait to see more this Spring!

  • It’s amazing what has happened in the two short years since this article was written. Buffalo;s resurgence has brought even more to our incredible city.

  • I’ve lived all over NY and I gotta say the Albright Knox gallery is definitely one of the best. I never get bored in visiting there :)

    It’s been a real treat too this last year to brag to friends from home regarding the development of the harbor – the revival of Buffalo’s music scene has been spectacular!

  • I’m getting married in Buffalo this summer and am excited to share this post with with our guests coming in from out of town! On a related note, can anyone recommend a good florist in the city? Thanks!

  • Love this article!! I’ve been reading your blog for years, and since I’m moving with my family from Stockholm to Buffalo and have never been there and know nothing about it , I googled it and this came up!! So now I feel so much more relaxed about the move! I know someone I look up to love it ! Any recommendations on where to live ? Or any other tips?Thanks so much!!

    • Hi Mia!

      Sadly Max moved on to West Elm a few years ago so he’s not here anymore to share his expert Buffalo advice (I live about 5 hours south in the Hudson Valley). If I find any information I will pass it along. Best wishes for a safe move! :)