Culture

An Autumn Roadtrip Across America: The 10 Best Places To See Fall Foliage This Season

By Sylvie Patterson
·  4 min read
shutterstock 718962793

Fall is a remarkable time of year, it’s the transition between summer and winter which is marked by the turn of the weather and the leaves.

There’s something that changes in the atmosphere, a note of anticipation, a sense of excitement in the crisp air every time autumn comes around. Our minds turn inevitably to apple orchards, pumpkin patches, and beautiful leaves. 

If you think about it, fall leaves are a fascinating phenomenon. Imagine watching for the first time as the green leaves of summertime suddenly change their color to flame-like hues as they lose their chlorophyll and eventually fall from the trees entirely. The shades we associate with the autumn months come from the tones of the leaves: rich golds, deep oranges, and fiery reds. 

The brilliant colors that paint the foliage every season are the trees’ last triumph before they lose their leaves for the wintertime. People from all over the world come to see the best foliage autumn has to offer, ultimately to witness the splendor of nature at its peak. Here is a list of some of the best places in every region across the U.S. to see fall foliage this season. 

1. Kancamagus Highway, New Hampshire

The Kancamagus highway of New Hampshire is one of the most scenic highways in the world. The mountains, mist, colors, and winding country highway make this the perfect way to experience classic New England fall leaves. 

2. Camden, Maine

Camden, Maine has some of the best fall scenery, whether the trees lining the streets of the town itself, in the woods of Camden Hills State Park, or seen in the mountains from the vantage of the Camden Harbor on a sightseeing cruise. 

3. Blue Ridge Mountains, Asheville, North Carolina

Asheville, North Carolina is situated in the gorgeous Blue Ridge Mountains. The region’s beauty is taken to a whole new level when fall comes around and the leaves burst into color. There are a number of scenic drives through the mountains just outside Asheville to view the colors in their full glory. 

4. Driftless Region, Wisconsin 

Idyllic lakes, farmland, and rolling forested hills make up the Driftless region of central Wisconsin. The region offers some of the best fall leaves in the country, let alone the Midwest, complete with a full spectrum of vibrant yellows, oranges, and reds. 

5. Black Hills, South Dakota

The Black Hills of South Dakota offer some incredible scenery. From the vista of Mount Coolidge in Custer State Park, you can see forever into the distance, including miles and miles of fall-colored forest. 

6. Tellico Plains, Tennessee

The small town of Tellico Plains is set in the foothills of the Smokies and is not far from the Cherokee National Forest. The mountainous landscape gives a breathtaking view of the fall foliage every autumn. 

7. Bentonville, Arkansas

Bentonville, located in the Ozarks of Northwest Arkansas, is known for some of the most spectacularly colorful fall leaves in the region. There are many parks and trails nearby through the mountains to experience the glory of nature firsthand. It’s also the mountain biking capital of the world, if you want an adrenal rush while viewing the leaves.

8. Trail Ridge Road, Colorado

The 48-mile scenic road gives travelers a dramatic view of the Rocky Mountains and forests of Colorado. When the trees turn eye-catching shades of gold, orange, and vermillion, you will witness Colorado at its finest.

9. Taos, New Mexico

Nestled in the Southern Rockies in New Mexico, Taos boasts a rare occurrence of striking fall leaves in the Southwest. The Enchanted Circle Scenic Byway is a great way to view the gold and crimson of the leaves. 

10. Leavenworth, Washington

Leavenworth, Washington is a Bavarian village complete with traditional German architecture, food, and culture, as well as miles of trails for hiking and biking. The town is set against the backdrop of the northern Cascades, and comes alive with fall colors every autumn. 

Closing Thoughts

Experiencing some of the most beautiful fall foliage the country has to offer will be a truly unforgettable experience. From the Northeast, to the Midwest, to the South and West, fall leaves attract attention for their unmistakable beauty. Nothing epitomizes the fall season quite as well as its foliage. 

Readers make our world go round. Make your voice heard in the official Evie reader survey.