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Old 03-13-2018, 10:53 AM
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In New England, North/South routes can be Interstate. East/West routes, especially across northern Vermont, New Hampshire and Maine can be mostly state roads. Very passable, and you will se some amazing sights, but plan accordingly for places to overnight.

That said, I would suggest you drive Route 100 in Vermont. Goes North to South along the spine of the Green Mountains and will take you through the heart of fall foliage country. You might like Stowe, Vermont in the north end as the quintessential New England town.

Weather will start to cool, so take layers. If you go up Mount Washington (tallest peak in New England) it will be magnificent, but chilly, if not downright cold that time of year.

Maine Coast...around Camden...can't be beat. South is mostly touristy; north beyond Bar Harbor is quite rural. Plenty to do, and lobster rolls cant be beat for a great lunch.

Make sure the rental car includes miles. You will put on at least a thousand unless you dawdle for days in one area, which has its advantages. To see all of New England in ten days is going to keep you scrambling. Drive 100-200 miles per day will keep you hustling. Maybe think about using a place on mid coat Maine and do day trips, ditto for Vermont, and maybe ditto for Rhode Island (see the mansions on the south coast).

It's a great trip, magnificent scenery, good food and wonderful people.
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Old 03-13-2018, 11:18 AM
Location: Lancashire, England
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The last time I was in Vermont I flew into Burlington, then picked up a rental car at the airport. No problems.

Would this interest you? In Dartmouth College, Hanover NH, is a wonderful set of murals created by Jose Clemente Orozco, in the early 1930s.

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Old 03-13-2018, 11:30 AM
Location: Central IL
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You can see that the peak time is quite different for various areas even within New England - and this is a rather coarse map and based on averages.

Here is an example of a "real time" map that will help once you're in the area, but obviously not in time to book your trip:
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Old 03-13-2018, 12:19 PM
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Start here Two Week Self-Driving Fall Foliage Tour | Discover New England Even though this is a two week tour since it is a do it yourself you can plan accordingly. September is a fickle month, it might be warm but it might be chilly, it won't be really cold except Mt. Washington if you get up that way. Apple picking is great this time of year as well as sightseeing. For what you want I would plan to start in Vermont, on over to New Hampshire then Maine. You can pretty much do Mystic in a day and be back in Boston for a flight the next day so leave that for last to see if you fit it in. Pull out some old fashioned maps and plan a starting spot and travel route. Don't try and get everything in, New England is to savor and enjoy and basically one quaint town is similar to the next one. You want seacoast, Bar Harbor is where a lot of tourists go, but here is an article on the 10 best coastal towns in Maine https://newengland.com/today/travel/...owns-in-maine/
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Old 03-13-2018, 12:27 PM
Location: Denver CO
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I'd recommend Montpelier and south including Barre, Quechee and Woodstock, heading south into Western Mass, into Deerfield and then to Stockbridge and Lenox. It's all beautiful and lots of different fun places to see. There are many bed and breakfast inns in that area, so you should be able to find many charming places to stay although book early because leaf peeping season is busy!

The actual peak times will vary each year, but starting off at the end of September for your birthday is a pretty good bet to see lots of great foliage.
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Old 03-13-2018, 12:49 PM
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Dont forget to drive the Kankamagus highway, and if you stop in Conway take a train ride from the COnway railway museum =


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Old 03-13-2018, 01:21 PM
Location: Massachusetts
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I am going to second stopping in Stowe Vt. It is a great little town to visit.
Also if you do the drive through the White Mountains of New Hampshire I highly recommend taking the train to the top of Mount Washington. It is well worth the money.

Last edited by magicshark; 03-13-2018 at 02:39 PM..
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Old 03-13-2018, 02:43 PM
Location: ATL -> HOU -> DAL
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I took a 3 day trip from SE Pennsylvania Columbus Day weekend in 2016. First day I drove up to Old Orchard Beach in Maine; it's cheap in October! Unfortunately it was a complete washout and rained on me for over half the drive. But a front came through and the next 2 days were completely clear. I drove up to Augusta and then took state route 27 to hit US 2. Took that west into NH and then hooked south to US 302 just west of Mt Washington. Took I 93 to 91 and then reconnected with US 2 in Vermont (which was maybe my favorite part). Took 89 to Burlington and then took US 2 across the islands in the middle of Lake Champlain. Then I went south on 87 in NY before heading over to the Adirondacks. Stayed in Wilmington which was fairly cheap and close to Lake Placid. Last day I meandered my way south through the Adirondacks before hitting 88 and heading to Binghamton and then back to PA.

The foliage was incredible. If colors weren't peak then, they were pretty close. I could only spend 3 days driving and some of that was just to get to/from New England. I wish I could've spent more time driving around. I could easily spend a whole week just in Vermont and New Hampshire plus Maine and the Adirondacks.
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Old 03-13-2018, 05:57 PM
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Just a heads-up, the fall is the most expensive time of the year for hotels/bed and breakfast places in Vermont and NH. It's even more expensive than during ski season.

I absolutely love Stowe, VT too. Great blueberry pancakes with blueberry or real maple syrup. From there, you can visit the very touristy Ben and Jerry's Ice Cream Factory, as well as cider mills and maple syrup stuff. There are few beautiful gorges to visit on the NH/VT border. I'd take the boat tour on Lake Champlain near Burlington to learn more about Ethan Allen and the Green Mountain boys. Beautiful scenery. In the Rutland area, you can visit Calvin Coolidge's home-it's actually several buildings and it takes a couple of hours to go through it. In MA, perhaps check out Sturbridge village if you like history. I don't think you'll have time to visit Rhode Island or eastern MA if you stick to northern New England.
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Old 03-13-2018, 07:15 PM
Location: Somewhere in America
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Originally Posted by elhelmete View Post
Not taking ticket $$ into account, flying into Hartford would let you use the I-91 corridor to hit CT, western MA, and VT. The east-west is harder...US 2 is an option, then you could hook back up with I-93 to go south and then west back to Hartford. Boston would be avoided.
Totally agree. I'd fly into Hartford. I'd add some of NH. They share a border with NH and it's a short drive.Your best bet for leaf peeping will be northern VT and NH.

Define cold. It will be cool. There will be crisp autumn mornings. You'll need a sweater. Dress in layers so you can peel them off as the day goes on.
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