Now that sweater weather is in full swing you may be searching for the best place to get a glimpse of fall scenery. As the temperatures drop, it’s the perfect time to throw on a cozy flannel, grab a warm cup of cider, and head outside to admire the vibrant hues of changing leaves.
Picturesque autumn scenery is one of the most beloved aspects of fall, but many people don’t live in places where they get to enjoy it. Luckily, throughout the United States, many magical destinations truly embrace the fall time feel.
So if you’re looking for a leaf-gazing spot where you can lose yourself in the autumn scenery then look no further than these top 10 destinations.
New England is well known as a mecca for fall time colors. If you get the chance to go visit Stowe, Vermont you will be amazed by the rich golds and vibrant reds. Most of these colors are gifts from the native maple trees.
Other trees such as oaks, basswoods, and alders add some light yellow and orange hues into the mix. Stowe is filled with excellent biking and hiking opportunities to give any traveler a chance to explore the beautiful mountains.
The autumn scenery here is so spectacular that it draws in a lot of visitors. So be sure to book your stay in advance before it fills up.
The Blue Ridge Parkway
The Blue Ridge Parkway is a great place to visit any time of year. Filled with breathtaking views, winding canopy roads, and ample trails to explore, this parkway is perfect for any nature lover.
But this scenic road that stretches from North Carolina to Virginia comes alive as soon as the temperatures start to drop. With a large range in elevation and landscape, the diverse terrain provides the perfect fall color pallet.
Zion National Park, Utah
Zion National Park is a popular tourist spot during the warm summer months, but as the temperatures lower so does the foot traffic, making fall the perfect time to visit this area.
You may not think of the desert as an ideal place for color-changing leaves. But there are surprisingly vibrant patches of burnt orange, crimson red, and sunny yellows waiting to be discovered.
Although you won’t see these colors blanketed across the landscape as you do in New England, the contrast between the fiery colors and the pale rocks in Zion is a sight worth seeing.
It’s no surprise to see Telluride on a list of top destinations to visit. All year long this location draws people in, with a peak season during summer and winter.
But in between the fun festival season and the action-packed ski season is the most beautiful season of all. The autumn scenery here is nothing short of a golden paradise when all the aspen trees change color.
Telluride also has a public gondola that takes you up the mountains from the valley floor so you can take in the golden trees from above before hiking back down.
Columbia River Gorge, Oregon
Most of the west is well known for its rich evergreen forests. But this doesn’t mean that autumn colors don’t make their appearance.
If you follow the Columbia River Gorge located just outside of Portland you will be dazzled by the fall colors from three varieties of maple trees. These rich colors frame the waterfalls located in the gorge for a truly picture-perfect experience.
Western New York
New York is well known for its breathtaking autumn scenery and incredible vista views. The forest this time of year is electrified with an abundance of orange, red, and yellow leaves.
This fall time feel is also accompanied by the local autumn harvest. Meaning not only will you get the chance to explore through dozens of state parks but you’ll also get to enjoy browsing through bountiful farmer’s markets.
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For a less traditional fall experience, consider traveling to the land of 1000 lakes. Stillwater, Minnesota sits on the banks of the St. Croix River and is well known for its paddlewheel steamboats.
This old-timey town is a hidden gem for fall scenery. The surrounding hills are ablaze with bright colors perfectly framing the town.
You can enjoy the autumn views on a nice stroll across the bridge or from the riverboat cruise.
If you enjoy both city life and nature, consider visiting Louisville to take in some colorful foliage.
Kentucky’s largest city is not only home to great bourbon and Victorian-style homes but it is also a host for vibrant color changes in the fall that can be enjoyed from within the city.
Louisville also has tons of hiking and bike trails along the Ohio River if truly wish to surround yourself with nature.
The Great Smoky Mountains
The Great Smoky Mountains National Park is beloved by many travelers, and for good reason. With over 100 different species of trees, this area puts on a lively autumnal display.
With colors ranging from bright golds and orange to deep red and even some purple, the smokies are a must-see for any fall time lover. This area ranges from North Carolina to Tennessee and has over 800 miles of scenic drives and hiking trails.
These breathtaking forests gift you days worth of exploring and colorful things to see.
Glacier National Park, Montana
For the true nature lover and adventurer, visit Glacier National Park in Montana. When the air gets crisp and the temperature starts to drop, the park becomes an almost private getaway.
With bright yellow larch trees and evergreens in the foreground of the snow-covered peaks, these views are one of a kind. This park is also filled with abundant wildlife including elk, mountain goats, and sheep making this the ideal rugged experience.
Enjoying Autumn Scenery
Fall is truly the greatest time of year and it’s incredible to see the vibrant show put on by the trees. No matter which on these destinations you choose, you’ll be blown away by the breathtaking autumn scenery.
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