While you’re drinking your hot cider, lacing up your boots, and tying your scarf, don’t forget about one of the best parts of the season: the leaves! Journey to any one of these destinations to make the most of this warm and cozy time of year.
The Green Mountain State is perhaps the most iconic leaf-peeping locale. It’s just bursting with picture-perfect foliage that’s fit for a postcard, along with classic New England farm stands, antique shops, and more. You really can’t go wrong this time of year, but VT 100 is an ideal scenic route that will give you a taste of the beauty that Autumn has to offer.
2. New Hampshire
For perhaps the best views in the state, look no further than the Kancamagus Highway, a 37-mile stretch of road that winds all the way through the White Mountains. While the famous Old Man of the Mountain has been dearly departed for some years now, the gorgeous, colorful landscapes more than make up for his absence.
Head to the Berkshires, in the western part of the Bay State, to see tons of stunning leaves in all of their red-and-gold glory. While the Mohawk Trail (Route 2) is one of the most popular choices, those looking to skip the crowds might prefer taking Route 7, which extends from Sheffield to Williamstown. The manmade Stockbridge Bowl, or Lake Mahkeenac, is also worth a visit.
The gorgeous Shenandoah Valley is home to brilliant Autumn colors that can be seen with a leisurely drive down the Blue Ridge Parkway. If you can hold off until late in October, however, it gets even better; several varieties of vibrant wildflowers emerge to complete the pretty scene.
Gorgeous hues abound in the Pocono Mountains, and numerous seasonal celebrations in the area — including Oktoberfest, Pumpkin and Harvest Festivals — just add to the magic. For a truly unforgettable experience, relax with an old-fashioned train ride on the Lehigh Gorge Scenic Railway and watch the kaleidoscope of trees whiz past.
6. North Carolina
You may be in the South, but fear not! There’s still plenty of fall flavor to be found here. Cruise around the cool city of Asheville, which is located in Smokey Mountain National Park, and is also home to the Biltmore Estate. Other parks in the state also offer worthy vistas, including Chimney Rock and Hanging Rock.