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Old 06-25-2014, 12:05 PM
 
Location: Howard County, Maryland
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Fly into Manchester, New Hampshire and drive about two hours north to the White Mountain region (Conway area). The change of elevation gives you better odds of seeing the colors. Lots of things to see and do in the area, so you won't be bored even if you miss the peak colors. Plus, it's a fairly short distance to the edges of Maine and Vermont, so you can chalk off three states (assuming you care about such things).

Probably the first or second weekend of October is best, though it does vary. Make reservations for flights, hotels, and car rentals far in advance, as this is their peak season and things do sell out.
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Old 06-25-2014, 01:50 PM
 
Location: Near a river
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New England is a big place, and diverse. How much do you want to travel (drive) and how much be based in one place with little excursions?

Western Massachusetts, which includes the Berkshires, is largely rural and lovely in the fall (foliage peak mid-Oct). The farther east you go you get toward Boston. Historic Concord area is beautiful and has some lovely and pricey inns (like the Hawthorne Inn). There's more historic sites around Boston, but then you're in the big city, not rural. You could head to Newburyport and Gloucester and take in a bit of the sea.

For finest fall foliage, consider land-locked Vermont, quite rural with many small towns miles between each other. (Think white church steeples.) Other than hills and foliage, there's not a lot of cultural stuff unless you hit far north in Burlington. There's fun places like the Vermont Country Store and outlets in Manchester, Vt.

New Hampshire, much of the same.

If you want to combine foliage and ocean, head for Portsmouth, NH and/or Portland, Maine and points north along the Maine shore. There's many fall festivals in New England (like crafts and garlic festivals, etc) and you can find these online. If I were planning a trip here, I'd plan around such an event, as you can get tired of meandering just looking at trees and covered bridges, even though beautiful.
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Old 06-25-2014, 01:52 PM
 
Location: Near a river
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bus man View Post
Fly into Manchester, New Hampshire and drive about two hours north to the White Mountain region (Conway area). The change of elevation gives you better odds of seeing the colors. Lots of things to see and do in the area, so you won't be bored even if you miss the peak colors. Plus, it's a fairly short distance to the edges of Maine and Vermont, so you can chalk off three states (assuming you care about such things).

Probably the first or second weekend of October is best, though it does vary. Make reservations for flights, hotels, and car rentals far in advance, as this is their peak season and things do sell out.
I agree. And don't overlook fine inns and Bed & Breakfast, of which there are many fine ones throughout New England.
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Old 06-27-2014, 05:37 AM
 
Location: Bella Vista, Ark
71,937 posts, read 83,597,281 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nnyl View Post
I live in FL, have all of my life. I've never been anywhere in the NE area. Would like to plan a Fall Foliage trip up that way.

Problem is, I don't know where to go.

I am willing to fly in and rent a car, because time is an issue. I would likely fly in on a Wednesday afternoon late, and settle in somewhere, and then start out from there, to see some sights. But where? What? I would need to leave, fly home by no later that dark-thirty in the morning on Monday a.m., if not Sunday evening. Doesn't allow a whole lot of time.

So what would you recommend? Anyone?
I know the season can vary by a week or so depending on the summer, etc. but the one year we did it, was over Columbus day. We did a 5 dayer, landing at Logan, renting a car and driving to Albany, then went to the baseball hall of fame, Lake Placid and into Vermont and back down to Boston. It was the most spectacular scenery we have ever experienced. To all to all this, the last day, leaving Vermont, it started snowing and just to see the snow, on the trees still filled with fall colors was worth the entire trip. At the time we lived in VA. so had seen nice fall colors, but nothing like that. I will add, we stayed at small hotels (yes, more like inns) nothing fancy but that made it even more fun.
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Old 06-27-2014, 06:43 AM
 
Location: The Northeast - hoping one day the Northwest!
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I currently live in Florida, but I grew up in MA. I do miss the foliage! I did go up the last two years in October. Last year was my cousins wedding, and the year before was a 9 day vacation. Both times I had slightly missed the peak since I went mid October.

I recommend a little bit about the middle of the month. Maybe around the 10-15th. Of course you never know, w/ weather it's always unpredictable. However, the year before last I went up I believe the 19th, and I had slightly missed it. The better view is in the mountains.

Another really place to see the foliage is the Mohawk trail. It's in nortern western MA, route 2.

I agree with flying into Bradley. Another airport though to consider is Mancchester, NH or even Burlington, VT.

Side note - If you find yourself in VT, I highly recommend stopping and getting some maple candy. That stuff is so good, and I miss it.

Another nice place to visit if you like candles is Yankee Candle. Their headquarters is in S. Deerfield, MA and they have a huge factory store. It's right off I-91. Another newer candle company not that far away is Kringle Candle. It's north of Yankee Candle. Really pretty views there too, and relaxing to sit outside on the picnic tables w/ a hot chocolate or coffee and take in the fall scenery.
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Old 06-27-2014, 07:39 AM
 
Location: Bella Vista, Ark
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Shorty458 View Post
I currently live in Florida, but I grew up in MA. I do miss the foliage! I did go up the last two years in October. Last year was my cousins wedding, and the year before was a 9 day vacation. Both times I had slightly missed the peak since I went mid October.

I recommend a little bit about the middle of the month. Maybe around the 10-15th. Of course you never know, w/ weather it's always unpredictable. However, the year before last I went up I believe the 19th, and I had slightly missed it. The better view is in the mountains.

Another really place to see the foliage is the Mohawk trail. It's in nortern western MA, route 2.

I agree with flying into Bradley. Another airport though to consider is Mancchester, NH or even Burlington, VT.

Side note - If you find yourself in VT, I highly recommend stopping and getting some maple candy. That stuff is so good, and I miss it.

Another nice place to visit if you like candles is Yankee Candle. Their headquarters is in S. Deerfield, MA and they have a huge factory store. It's right off I-91. Another newer candle company not that far away is Kringle Candle. It's north of Yankee Candle. Really pretty views there too, and relaxing to sit outside on the picnic tables w/ a hot chocolate or coffee and take in the fall scenery.
I am not a lover of maple candy, it is a little too sweet for me, but we did buy maple syrup. We got back to VA and it was the same price: difference, what we got we purchased in VT. what was in the store was from VT but sold in VA. So it was just the fun of buying it where it was processed.
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Old 06-27-2014, 10:14 AM
 
Location: From TX to VA
8,578 posts, read 5,971,636 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mels View Post
I agree that the timing of peak foliage can be variable. Rather than flying into Boston, I would vote for flying into Hartford/Bradley Airport (BDL). It is more central to where you want to be, much easier to navigate, and you don't have to deal with Boston traffic. As an example, from Brattleboro, VT to BDL via I-91 is about an hour, with very little traffic on the road. IMO, a much better bet than dealing with Boston unless your travels bring you to eastern MA anyway.

From BDL, you are a very close ride to the Berkshires, though I would start with Litchfield County, CT and then head north to the Berkshires. From there you can head north to Vermont, then head straight back down I-91 to BDL airport to depart.
^^^^ One more vote for this idea.

Quote:
Originally Posted by newenglandgirl View Post
New England is a big place, and diverse. How much do you want to travel (drive) and how much be based in one place with little excursions?

Western Massachusetts, which includes the Berkshires, is largely rural and lovely in the fall (foliage peak mid-Oct). The farther east you go you get toward Boston. Historic Concord area is beautiful and has some lovely and pricey inns (like the Hawthorne Inn). There's more historic sites around Boston, but then you're in the big city, not rural. You could head to Newburyport and Gloucester and take in a bit of the sea.

For finest fall foliage, consider land-locked Vermont, quite rural with many small towns miles between each other. (Think white church steeples.) Other than hills and foliage, there's not a lot of cultural stuff unless you hit far north in Burlington. There's fun places like the Vermont Country Store and outlets in Manchester, Vt.

New Hampshire, much of the same.

If you want to combine foliage and ocean, head for Portsmouth, NH and/or Portland, Maine and points north along the Maine shore. There's many fall festivals in New England (like crafts and garlic festivals, etc) and you can find these online. If I were planning a trip here, I'd plan around such an event, as you can get tired of meandering just looking at trees and covered bridges, even though beautiful.
This whole post is good but I heartily agree with the part I highlighted in bold. The festivals are wonderful and they're enjoyable just because the area is so different from where you live. I moved here to Virginia from TX and I was in awe over the fall colors... until I saw the fall foliage up in the NE! Stunning. Combine fall colors and fall festivals and you'll have a memorable trip!
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Old 06-27-2014, 02:06 PM
 
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You could also fly into Albany, NY which will give you easy access to VT, the Adirondacks, and if the colors peak early, you can drive south into the Catskills or SW into the Southern Tier.

Frankly all of those airports are right where you want to be (except Burlington) that I'd just look to see who has the best combo of airfare and car rental. In the big picture, the few hours of extra driving won't make a difference, particularly if you can save $300 or more in the process.

You could also look at SWF which sometimes has really, really good deals (I recently found $89 each way from MCO) and is only about two hours from BDL and a really pretty drive.
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Old 06-28-2014, 02:14 AM
 
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New England is a huge area with just 4-5 days i think i'd focus on Vermont and New Hampshire for the trip, as you will have to book in advance and i suggest you do that soon as fall foliage is a big deal and hotels fill up fast. you will have to guess when peak foliage will occur,my advice would be around the earlier part of October. I'd fly into Burlington Airport, rent a car and head out, some areas i'd include on my itinerary

Smugglers Notch
Stowe
Rt 100
Kancamagus highway
Crawford Notch
Mount Washington
Avoid interstate highways, and use rts like rt2,rt3,rt100,rt105 rt108 , i'm sure you get the idea

New England foliage: Live Foliage Map & Scenic Drives -- Free Foliage App - Yankee Foliage - Your Source for New England Fall Foliage
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Old 06-28-2014, 12:38 PM
 
Location: Mtns of Waynesville,NC & Nokomis, FL
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^^^ I agree, very good list to do/pick from.
Having done NE trips, both in car and on a m'cycle a dozen+ times, I would also rec'd doing as much as one can during weekdays; weekend roads and places to stay are often packed with 'weekenders'.
GL, mD
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