Crisp autumn air, festive atmosphere, pulling out sweaters, the smell of apple cider, days getting shorter with mist, nature swaying into oranges and yellow, and wondering what to do in this beautiful season of Fall / Autumn in the USA. Check some of the best fall destinations in the USA – the best places to see fall foliage in the USA. Enjoy the dazzling display of oranges, yellows, and browns, and check out some fantastic fall vacations in the United States of America.
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- West Coast USA itinerary – Stunning California Road Trip Itinerary 21 – 25 days
Autumn/Fall colors at UIUC Campus – Pic Credits – My son
It has been rightly quoted “Autumn is a second spring when every leaf is a flower” by Albert Camus. Therefore grab your hoodies and plan for a bonfire under the yellow-leaved trees, to admire the beauty of nature.
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Best Fall Destinations In USA – Best Places To See Fall Foliage In USA
The Adirondack Mountains in New York
If you’re exploring New England in the fall, the Adirondack Mountains in New York are a must-visit! From beautiful shades of yellow, orange, and reds, beautiful hikes everywhere, to stunning lakes surrounded by fall foliage. When exploring the Adirondack Mountains, stay in Lake Placid, it’s a cute mountain town that’s known for it’s Winter Olympics venue.
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- There are a variety of restaurants, bars, hotels, shops, and things to do.
- There are also so many places to hike in the area, and you can go kayaking or canoeing on Mirror Lake.
- Lake Placid is also close to the High Peaks, the highest mountain in New York.
- Hike to Indian Head, which overlooks Lower Ausable Lake.
- It’s a 10.5-mile round trip hike with around 1,700 feet of elevation gain and roughly takes 5 hours to finish. Read through this guide for more places to visit on your fall foliage trip to New England.
Suggested by Jenny Kotlyar from Camp Sites Vibes Blog.
Fall at Colorado
Colorado is one of the most beautiful destinations for fall foliage in the United States. All over the state, countless aspen trees light up in incredible golden colors creating some of the most astonishing scenery around trails, passes, and mountain towns. However, you don’t have to drive for hours to see Colorado fall in all of its glory. There are plenty of places to see the fantastic fall colors within 1,502 hours from Denver, the central transportation hub of Colorado. Fall in
Colorado is one of the most beautiful places in the fall.
- If you don’t have time to drive around Colorado, check out Kenosha Pass, Guanella Pass, Peak-To-Peak Highway, and Rocky Mountain National Park.
- All of these places are less than two hours away from Denver, and yet, they offer some of the best fall scenery in the state.
- For example, you could combine Peak-To-Peak Highway with a visit to the Rocky Mountain National Park, and Kenosha Pass with Guanella Pass before arriving at Georgetown along Interstate-70 via Guanella Pass.
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Suggested by Daria (Stacy) from The Discovery Nut blog.
Napa Valley, California
Napa Valley is a beautiful Northern California destination for fall. Fall comes later here though, so if you visit Napa Valley in November, you will have the best chance of seeing fall colors near their peak.
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- In Napa Valley, ride the Napa Wine Train, where you can relax in a Pullman car and have a four-course gourmet meal.
- Walk around the towns, which are decorated for the holidays, and enjoy farm-to-table fare at world-class restaurants.
- Go for a balloon ride over the valley if you enjoy an adventure.
- Drive around the valley to leaf peep, and tour area wineries, some of which have beautiful fall leaf displays.
- Most wineries have outdoor areas for wine tastings and picnic meals.
- Also visit the state parks, where you can hike and see leaf colors.
- While daytime temperatures are pleasant, you should plan on wearing layers when you visit, and you will need a jacket for the cooler evenings.
Suggested by Dhara from Roadtripping California
Urbana Champaign, IL
Not only national parks or natural places in the USA are covered with fall vibes, but the urbanscape or small towns or counties are full of fall – autumn vibes. Champaign county which is known for its agricultural and parks makes a wonderfully photogenic place to spot fall colors in full bloom.
You can find shades of yellow, oranges, burnt red in the whole of the country. As Champaign is popularly known as a University town due to the presence of the world-famous University of Illinois Urbana Champaign (UIUC), even the campus region is fully covered with fall colors. UIUC campus is having famous trees, and also the largest Yellowwood in the state.
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- Champaign is at 2 hours drive from Chicago which is at 136 miles.
- The best way to explore Champaign is by walking tour.
- The main campus or Main Quad is the hotspot to take photos of fall colors.
- There are many nearby parks, lakes, forest, pumpkin patches, apple farms, cornfields which you can explore. For a complete guide on things to do at Champaign Urbana, read my complete guide on it.
Suggested by me (Yukti Agrawal) from Travel with me 24 x 7 blog.
Whimsical Woodstock, Vermont is a must-see for autumn enthusiasts. While this quaint central-Vermont village offers something special in all seasons, it comes to life when vibrant foliage spreads across the sweeping vistas and pretty porch pumpkins abound!
- This historic Vermont town is rich in farmland, offering ample opportunities for leaf-peeping and other seasonal delights.
- From photographing famous Sleepy Hollow Farm to experiencing an outdoor history museum at Billings Farm, to sampling Vermont syrup and cheese at Sugarbush Farm, there’s no shortage of agricultural amusements.
- Woodstock also offers easy access to numerous trails perfect for fall hiking, including Mount Tom, the Ottauquechee River Trail, and neighboring Quechee Gorge.
- Those looking to enjoy fall’s beauty while keeping toasty can drive through the area’s historic covered bridges, including Middle Covered Bridge and Lincoln Covered Bridge. Additionally, drivers can venture to the outskirts of town to Taftsville Covered Bridge and Quechee Covered Bridge.
- After an adventure-packed day, head to Woodstock Farmer’s Market for some fresh fall treats. While in town, enjoy a relaxing stay at the popular Woodstock Inn & Resort and unwind with a spa treatment. Or, for a budget-friendly alternative, check into The Ardmore, the area’s beloved bed and breakfast.
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Contributed by Elena from The Carry-On Chronicles blog.
Columbia Gorge, Washington & Oregon
The Columbia Gorge is a 90-mile stretch of the canyon that separates the Washington and Oregon state lines. It’s about an hour east of Portland and 3.5 hours from Seattle, making it an easy destination for a fall road trip. You can expect to see some beautiful fall foliage thanks to the trees, brush, and drying wildflowers dotting the canyon on either side as it drops down to the Columbia River below.
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- Hikers will have plenty of opportunities for leaf-peeping while visiting the Columbia River Gorge.
- There are a ton of waterfalls in this area and hundreds of hikes to choose from. Catherine’s Creek Trail is a great option because it offers gorgeous views with minimal exertion.
- Foodies will love the food and drink scene in Columbia Gorge. There are 12 breweries and more than 20 Gorge wines that make perfect pit stops between fall viewpoints.
- There are also a lot of farmers’ markets and farms you can visit on the Hood River Fruit Loop.
- To make the most of the area, stay in the towns surrounding Hood River. One unique option is The Society Hotel in White Salmon, WA about 15 minutes from Hood River. It’s a refurbished historic elementary school that was turned into a quirky and affordable hotel with decor that nods to the building’s academic roots. There is a ton of vintage charm and breathtaking views of the hills dotted with wildflowers year-round, plus there’s a Scandinavian-style spa perfect for relaxing after a day of hiking.
Contributed by Adria Saracino from Emerald Palate blog.
One of the best times to visit Sedona, Arizona is during the Fall. The weather is much milder in the fall and there are a lot fewer people on the hiking trails. Sedona is a two-hour drive from Phoenix but it feels a world away with a completely different vibe.
- One of the best things to do in Sedona is to go hiking.
- The two best hikes in Sedona are Cathedral Rock and Devil’s Bridge.
- Cathedral Rock is a fantastic place to hike to at sunset. You cannot get a better view of the sunset than at Cathedral Rock. It is only a 1.2-mile trail and reasonably easy but makes sure you bring plenty of water.
- Devil’s Bridge is another excellent hike where it is primarily flat and an easy trail that is 4.2 miles.
- Or if hiking isn’t your thing you could go on a Sedona Pink Jeep Tour. Why not try the Sedona Vortex Experience which takes you to the famous vortexes around Sedona. This is a great option if you don’t want to hike to the vortexes. Vortexes are an area with energy that you can feel when you are there. The Pink Jeep Tours will tell you more about this phenomenon and take you to some amazing places.
- Lastly, make sure you check out the Coffee Pot cafe for an amazing breakfast on the patio.
- Sky Rock Inn of Sedona has some amazing views with beautiful rooms. Sky Rock Inn is one of the best places to stay in Sedona.
Contributed by Nicole from American SW Obsessed.
Hudson Valley, New York
The Hudson Valley in New York State is one of the best fall destinations in the USA. There are so many lovely little towns in this area to explore that it’s impossible to get bored. The Hudson Valley also has world-class hiking trails that show the colorful leaves off to full advantage. Plus trains run in between most towns, so even those without a car will have a wonderful time seeing the sights.
- The journey starts in the charming town of Cold Spring. This place is full of wonderful antique shops, restaurants, and an excellent bed and breakfast called The Pig Hill Inn. It makes a great base for hiking Hudson Highlands State Park.
- Next, there’s Tarrytown and the home of The Legend of Sleepy Hollow writer Washington Irving all decked out for Halloween. It’s even possible to see a glimpse of the Headless Horseman here!
- Beacon, NY is famous for the fascinating contemporary art museum Dia: Beacon.
- Finally, Croton-on-Hudson is a must-visit destination for the annual Great Pumpkin Blaze.
- In the evening, one of the local historic homes is covered with amazing jack-o-lantern sculptures that light up the night to perfection.
Contributed by Stella Jane from Around the world in 24 hours blog.
Acadia National Park
Fall is one of the best times to visit Acadia National Park when it is abundant with foliage colors. The best way to explore is to drive the 27-mile-long Park Loop Road across the park. The National Park is located off the coast of the Atlantic Ocean in the northeasternmost state of Maine. Acadia is famous for its diverse terrain of ponds, rocky cliffs, mountains, and beaches making it a spectacular sight, especially during fall.
- There are many scenic spots like Thunder Hole, Sand Beach, Otter Cliff that are worth visiting along the drive.
- Another great way to explore the fall is to hike the trails across the park.
- Hike or drive at the summit of Cadillac mountain to get a breathtaking view of the park, the lakes, and the mountains in colors of red, yellow, and orange.
- The best time to visit to see the fall colors is by end of September to October. The weather turns to get cold and carrying jackets/ winter wear is advisable.
- The best place to stay is in Bar Harbor, especially at the Bar Harbor Inn & Spa.
Recommended by Neha from Travel Melodies Blog.
Jackson Hole, WY
Jackson, Wyoming is one of the most incredible places to visit in the fall. Jackson Hole has so much to offer as the tourist season slows after Labor Day and the aspen groves start to turn a bright golden color in late September. Fall is a great time to explore Grand Teton National Park, just 30 minutes North of Jackson, with abundant wildlife, hiking trails, water activities, and viewpoints.
- Grand Teton National Park is one of the most accessible national parks with vistas and wildlife viewing along the main roads.
- Renting e-bikes in town and riding The Grand Loop, a 33-mile ride through some of the most scenic areas of Jackson is another one of The Best Things to do in Jackson Hole.
- The Wyoming Inn of Jackson Hole is a great Western-style hotel with cozy in-room fireplaces to make Jackson feel like home.
Suggested by Rachel & Clark from Seeking Our Someday
Central Park, NYC in Fall
If you have ever seen a movie where a beautiful girl is strolling through Central Park and the trees are lush, chances are she is enjoying the Fall weather. There is no better time to truly experience the magic of New York City in the fall. Fall gives you the BEST opportunity to walk around and explore nature without the sometimes extreme cold and wet winter months. Central Park is one of the finest outdoor places where visitors can relax, soak up some culture, and enjoy nature all in one place. We hope you have a fantastic time exploring this iconic Manhattan destination.
- While in Central Park, don’t forget to enjoy the lake. You can row your boat, or, if you prefer, you can hire a gondola and relax and enjoy the ride.
- If you are looking for some stunning panoramic views, be sure to check out the viewing deck of the Belvedere Castle, yes, it’s a bit of a walk, but you will not only get your steps in, you will also be rewarded with some incredible views.
- Perhaps the most famous promenade is the famous Mall and Literary Walk, if you are an avid reader make sure to check out the famous literary statues that gave this promenade its name.
- The canopy of elm trees makes for a stunning backdrop for some truly gram-worthy photos.
- You will be near America’s largest museum the MET so be sure to carve out some time to explore the extensive collections housed within.
- The park is MASSIVE, 840 acres, so dress for walking and make sure you look at where you are entering the park and create a “game plan” of what attractions you want to see so you are not wandering around without direction.
Suggested by Sophia Bawany of Fly Eat and Repeat from Fly and Repeat blog
Park City, Utah | Fall Destinations In USA – Fall In The USA
Being a small town nestled into the Wasatch Mountains, Park City is a perfect place to visit during the fall. The fall colors tend to be at their peak in early October, allowing you to enjoy beautiful scenic drives around the area. For accommodations, there are several lodges and hotels at a fraction of the cost of their winter rates. For example, the Westgate Park City Resort & Spa is well-located and has heated pools perfect for any sunny day. Park City is full of fun activities in the fall.
It is one of the most beautiful places to visit in the fall.
- If you are looking for more active outdoor activities, go mountain biking and fly fishing.
- The ski lifts provide fantastic access to over 400 miles of trails for hiking or biking.
- The downtown area is a perfect place to shop or get something to eat.
- Additional thrills can be found at the Park City Resort Adventure Park where there are zip lines, an alpine coaster, a mountain coaster, and lift rides.
- At the Olympic park, you can watch skiers jump or even bobsled on the 2002 Olympic Sliding Track where the bobsleds are modified to roll on the track’s concrete surface.
Suggested by Dan Bagby Cabin Critic blog.
“Every leaf speaks bliss to me, fluttering from the Autumn tree” – Emily Bronte
I would love to know about your favorite Fall Destinations In the USA – Best Places To See Fall Foliage In USA. So till then enjoy all fall vibes, best wishes to the upcoming festive season, cooler weather, misty nights, colors in nature, bonfires, road trips along a red and orange backdrop, and much more exciting seasonal stuff. Will bring you more destinations for the upcoming winter season.
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Sweater weather is my favorite time of year, hot apple cider is a bonus. I recently visited Blue Ridge Parkway and it was gorgeous. I plan to be in Sedona next week and hope the leaves haven’t all fallen. I hadn’t considered the Adirondack Mountains as a Fall destination but it is gorgeous!
Wow I have no clue from where to start. The places shown in this picture are jaw dropping. Though I love all seasons, fall has a different meaning for me where one let go off something that was held so close for long. I am yet to experience a fall like the one shown in your pictures and I know Canada or USA is the best place for that. My favorite out of the list is Woodstock…Sleepy Hollow Farm, history museum at Billings Farm, to sampling Vermont syrup and cheese at Sugarbush Farm, they all sound so tranquil. Look forward to your winter destination list too
Thanks Monica for loving it.
The peak is over where I live in VA. There’s still some color on the trees, though! I had NO idea that Arizona even had a fall change – I always just think of it as being rocky out there. I love the East Coast, but it would be fun to explore out west and see foliage. So pretty, and you made a great list!
Thanks for loving it and yes west coast too looks equally worth visiting as east coast.
Recently I began to truly admire fall foliage, taking my camera with me whenever I go out. I would be itching to get to all these wondrous places on your list if I could – the Colorado mountains with the trees are amazing! Central Park looks so very good too.
I am too itching out to look out for these riots of colors.
Wow! These are beautiful destinations. To be honest, I have never visited US during fall but after reading your post, I would love to see these fall foliage. The Adirondack Mountains is just breathtaking and I am excited since my family is based in NY so I think it’s possible we can visit next time.
Those yellow leaves are just incredible. Fall is most definitely my favourite season and the great outdoors are the place to be. Adirandock mountains look incredible. Hiking all the way up for this incredible view is totally worth it! Seeing the vineyards during autumn at Napa Valley would be great too! Ofcourse New York Central Park is totally worth an autumn visit. Can’t miss it at any season!
This is such a great list. The Adirondack Mountains and Vermont are without a doubt some of the more beautiful locations for fall foilage. I think the Blue Ridge Mountains in Virginia and North Carolina are some strong contenders too!
I desperately miss the fall foliage back in the USA, so thoroughly lived traveling vicariously through this article and photos. Woodstock has long been one of my favourite places to visit in Vermont, loved how you captured it here. Brattleboro, in southern Vermont, is another great destination for the East Coast.
I know as there is huge land and nature in USA, so the beauty of fall can be seen there everywhere and also the atmosphere is very festive and cooler too.
Fall is my favorite season. I love to see Fall Foliage, so I’m impressed by your list of Best Places To See Fall Foliage In the USA. I was in the USA a few times during fall to admire this beautiful scenery, but there are still many places I haven’t seen yet. The Adirondack Mountains in New York are still on my bucket list, The Hudson Valley too. As well as Acadia National Park. Your post is so inspiring.
Thanks for loving it and yes Fall is amazing with so many shades of yellow and red