fall leaves road trip

Plan your autumn travels with this tour of the best places to view fall foliage. (Photo: Getty Images)

Tips + Trends

How to Plan Your Fall Foliage Tour this Autumn

It’s time to unpack the scarves, opt for pumpkin-flavored beverages and set out to see some of the amazing sights nature has to offer with the perfect fall foliage tour.

With changing temperatures and colorful foliage ready to make its debut, travelers can embrace and experience seasonal autumn activities that include apple picking, hayrides and more.

From cozy weekend getaways with breathtaking views to local exploration, there are plenty of ways to enjoy the return of cooler weather across the country.

Where can you experience the finest fall foliage?

We’ve mapped 14 locations across the U.S. and Canada which are home to some of nature’s most riveting Autumn attractions. Plan ahead and book your first getaway of the season to witness the pinnacle of fall foliage along with events and happenings in the coming months.

Late September/Early October

Fulfill your fall fantasy with a trip to Vermont. If the breathtaking foliage isn’t reason enough, try classic fall activities such as pumpkin and apple picking, corn mazes, hayrides and more.

The Equinox, A Luxury Collection Golf Resort & Spa is located in Manchester in the heart of the Green Mountains. The resort offers an apple picking package. Additionally, the hotel has an amazing webcam that will show the colors of fall.

Set among the rolling foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains sits MeadowView Marriott Conference Resort and Convention Center located in Northeast Tennessee. With a stunning backdrop, the hotel boasts the ideal location for a fall color road trip as you make your way down to the Smoky Mountains in Gatlinburg. The hotel offers golf packages to make the most of the time outdoors.

Few regions are as breathtaking year-round as the Colorado Mountains. The mountains are an ideal vacation spot for those seeking crisp fall weather, picturesque foliage, and fresh mountain air.

Element Basalt-Aspen is in the center of the Roaring Fork Valley for a one-of-a-kind look at some of the country’s most incredible landscapes from the mountains of Aspen to the red canyons of Glenwood Springs, and all the valleys in-between.

Nestled between the shores of Georgian Bay and the heights of the Niagara Escarpment, Blue Mountain is a breathtaking Canadian getaway. Enjoy an unmatched view of the changing leaves from Ontario’s only open-air gondola, or bite into a little slice of heaven on the Apple Pie Trail, Ontario’s largest apple-growing region with a stay at The Westin Trillium House, Blue Mountain. Other activities include the Wind Rider Zip line, the Ridge Runner Ontario’s first mountain coaster and mountaintop Segway tours.


Bundle up with a sweater and hold hands with a loved one while strolling around this charming and historic city. A walk along the Boston‘s Freedom Trail can also be a foliage tour seeing attractions and vibrant leaves. Finish the day overlooking the Boston Harbor with a seasonal cocktail or with an October ale in front of the fireplace at Renaissance Boston Waterfront Hotel.

Head out to New Mexico to see the mountains transform with the colors of fall. Locals recommend the Santa Fe National Forest Scenic Byway for a gorgeous drive and amazing foliage. Set on six beautifully landscaped acres, La Posada De Santa Fe, A Tribute Portfolio Resort & Spa is the only resort in downtown Santa Fe.

If there is one place that comes to life when the leaves start to fall, it’s Wisconsin, the Badger State. The fall is the start of football season and is also widely considered the beer capital of the U.S. Be sure to visit one of the many Oktoberfest celebrations in Madison and take a break from the excitement at AC Hotel Madison Downtown.

Canada‘s foliage is the highlight of the fall season. For over a century, The Algonquin Resort St. Andrews by-the-Sea, Autograph Collection has offered travelers a memorable place to stay in New Brunswick. Spend an Autumn afternoon exploring by foot at a local farmer’s markets, by car with a road trip to see the foliage or by boat to see the whales and wildlife that the Passamaquoddy Bay is known for.


Immerse yourself in the beauty of The Ritz-Carlton, Lake Tahoe, and take in the foliage during a day of smooth sailing on majestic Lake Tahoe. Enjoy some fresh air with a morning yoga class and finish the evening crafting s’mores around the fire pit. Luxurious guestrooms and suites with in-room gas fireplaces and floor-to-ceiling windows will be a constant reminder of the gorgeous surroundings.

Known as the City of Brotherly Love, you’ll find more than one way to fall in love with Philadelphia. As the primary city where the United States of America was formed, Philadelphia is full of rich historical sites such as Independence Hall, where both the Constitution and Declaration of Independence were adopted, and the Liberty Bell.

More modern activities are also available for fall travelers, such as Bloktoberfest – Philly’s take on Oktoberfest spanning 4 blocks – and the Philadelphia Cheesesteak Festival, a celebration of the city’s most famous sandwich. Stay in the center of the city at Le Méridien Philadelphia.

Central Park is spectacular in the fall and best enjoyed while using the curated walking map created by JW Marriott Essex House New York. Located on Central Park South, the hotel includes recommendations such as renting a rowboat from Loeb Boathouse or taking in iconic New York City views from Oak Bridge.

Explore apple orchards and parks this fall in Kansas. For one of the best views, try Kaw River State Park in Topeka which is known for its fall colors. Families can relax after a day of exploring and stay at the all-suite Residence Inn Topeka with free breakfast and wi-fi. Don’t leave Fido at home. Bring him along to jump in the leaves since the hotel is pet-friendly.


Admire the beauty of the season as you visit Washington, DC‘s most historic landmarks like the White House, the Washington Monument and the U.S Capitol Building.

Plan a hike in Rock Creek Park or visit to one of the many wineries in the area. The Marriott Marquis Washington, DC puts you in the perfect location to explore.

Do you love the fall colors, but aren’t quite ready to kiss warm weather goodbye? Venture south and enjoy the best of both seasons in Atlanta. Temperatures here stay warmer longer, but not hot enough to prevent the leaves from changing. Aloft Atlanta Downtown offers a prime location to explore local attractions like the Georgia Aquarium and World of Coca-Cola.

READ ALSO: The Only Map You Need to See the Leaves Change Color This Fall