North America’s Best Trips for Fall Foliage
One of the best travel plans for autumn is to experience fall foliage during its brief but glorious season. North America offers some of the most brilliant foliage displays in the world, with endless miles of trees transforming from green to gold, crimson and a myriad of other shades.
Here are seven of North America's top destinations to check out autumn's harvest of color:
The Berkshires, Massachusetts
New England is a prime territory for leaf peeping, and the Berkshires is one of its top locations. This lovely region offers all the essentials for a great fall escape: winding roads, quaint farmsteads and inviting antiques shops. And as you drive around, you'll be awash in a resplendent backdrop of russet, maroon and coral that never seems to end. Add a stay at one of the area's many inns and bed-and-breakfasts to make the most of your leaf-gawking getaway.
When to Go: The best period for foliage in the Berkshires is late September to mid-October.
Banff, Alberta, Canada
Contrary to popular belief, you don't need maple trees for a spectacular fall show. Banff's Rocky Mountains become even more majestic in the fall when its larch trees (deciduous conifers that drop their needles every winter) turn from emerald green to a vibrant yellow. The transformation gives the impression that the Rockies are wearing a crown of gold. The most popular hike to experience the splendor is the Larch Valley and Sentinel Pass.
When to Go: The first two weeks of October are generally the best time for larch viewing.
The Catskills, New York
Thanks to an abundance of birch, maple, cherry, oak and ash trees, the Catskills really excel at offering a festival of foliage. A wonderful way to take in the transformation is to hike Mount Utsayantha. From the over 3,000-foot high peak, you'll have an awe-inspiring view of the autumnal display. Keep up to date with the top leaf peeping spots with New York's Fall Foliage Report.
When to Go: Mid-September to late October is the ideal opportunity to catch this one-of-a-kind experience.
Columbia River Gorge, Oregon
You know you're going to get a good show at Columbia River Gorge, one of America's largest, federally-designated National Scenic Areas. Nestled along the border of Washington state and Oregon, this incredible 80-mile long canyon features craggy cliffs, dozens of waterfalls and fields of wildflowers. Come autumn, its dense forest erupts into a showy panoply of color. The area is near many of Oregon's stellar wineries so, you can top off your foliage tour with a glass of pinot.
When to Go: You'll likely have a wonderful experience anytime from late September through late October.
Algonquin Park, Ontario, Canada
Poplar, sugar and red maples ensure you get an eyeful of color at Canada's iconic Algonquin Park when its rolling hills fill with a spectrum of red, gold and orange. This provincial park is one of the largest in the country and offers excellent camping opportunities, so why not “rough it" while you revel in the splendor of the changing leaf color? Fall is also the time to see moose in the park, so don't be surprised if you have to share the road with some four-legged friends.
When to Go: Mid-September to late October is a spectacular time to catch the best leaf colors.
Aspen bursts into gold as the area's namesake trees put on an unforgettable fall spectacle that sees their bright green leaves turn cream and then into a stunning bouquet of gold. The transformation is even more amazing thanks to the tree's stark white bark, a perfect canvas on which the flashy leaves can really shine. Check out Maroon Bells Scenic Area, which has plenty of hiking trails and campgrounds, for some of the most Instagram-worthy shots of the amber aspens.
When to Go: Mid-September to mid-October is the best time to visit.
Great Smoky Mountains National Park, North Carolina and Tennessee
Straddling two states, Great Smoky Mountains National Park is one of America's most visited national parks — no surprise, given its vast forested landscape rich in wildlife, lakes and scenery. Hundreds of different types of trees, including hickory, scarlet oaks, maples and chestnuts rev up their photogenic appeal every autumn. Head to the observation tower at the peak of Clingmans Dome for breathtaking panoramic views.
When to Go: The park lives up to its billing from about mid-September through the end of October when it lights up in piercing reds, hot oranges and lemon yellows.
Community Question: Where are you heading to see fall foliage this year?
All content provided in this blog is supplied by Sandra MacGregor and is for informational purposes only. Barclays takes no position as to the views, and makes no representations as to the accuracy or completeness of any information contained in the blog or found by following any link within this blog.
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