Top spots to experience New England’s fall foliage

Date Posted: 22/08/2013

Northeast Kingdom, Vermont. Credit Vermont Dept of Tourism and Marketing.

Pictured: Northeast Kingdom, Vermont. (Photo credit: Vermont Dept of Tourism and Marketing).

Where can you see the best colours in the fall foliage capital of the world? Discover New England reveals its top five hotspots.

Autumn - known in the USA as the ‘fall’ - is a time of spectacular colour changes as the foliage of six major states transforms itself in dramatic fashion.

Greens turn to vibrant reds, glittering gold, enticing orange and crisp purples, with the process starting in mid-September in New Hampshire, Vermont and Maine, then spreading slowly south into Massachusetts, Connecticut and Rhode Island, culminating in the ‘peak’ of Fall foliage beauty which is usually experienced in the first half of October.

Discover New England has listed five top spots for experiencing some of the best colours for group travel organisers arranging a trip to see the fall foliage.

Burke Mountain, Vermont

Nestled between the Green Mountains and the Connecticut river in the northern part of the state, Vermont’s Northeast Kingdom has an unspoiled, intense beauty, best appreciated by exploring its multi-use trails, among America’s most popular with hikers and mountain bikers. 

The view of Burke Mountain from the town of East Burke offers a full spectrum of autumn colour. For less energetic groups, the Northeast Kingdom Scenic Byway is a superb foliage drive. 

Presidential Range, New Hampshire

The tallest peaks in New Hampshire’s stunning White Mountains are a range named after US Presidents, with Mount Washington the highest elevation in the north-eastern United States at 6,288-feet. 

Anywhere in the White Mountain National Forest guarantees a wealth of autumn colour, but if you head for the small town of Carroll and take a hike up nearby Cherry Mountain to Owl’s Head Peak, you’ll be rewarded with a real feast for the eyes when you look back towards the Presidentials.

Lake Waramaug, credit Western CT Convention and Visitors Bureau.

Pictured: Lake Waramaug, Connecticut. (Photo credit: Western CT Convention and Visitors Bureau).

Kennebunkport, Maine

Maine’s small coastal villages allow visitors to experience the fall colours in wonderful ocean-side settings. Camden, where the mountains meet the sea, is a favourite spot. Or why not try Kennebunkport?

Perhaps best known as the summer retreat of former US President George Bush, its breathtaking beaches and historic architecture are set against a backdrop of lush Maine woods. Take a ride through them aboard an antique streetcar at the Seashore Trolley Museum.

Boylston, Massachusetts

A great destination for a group garden holiday, this small town is best known for New England’s first and only comprehensive Botanic Garden at Tower Hill.

Home to eight distinct gardens, Tower Hill enjoys some remarkable scenery right on its doorstep, and the view west over the Wachusett Reservoir towards Mount Wachusett is among Massachusetts’ finest sights during the fall. 

If you want to get a grander look, you can drive to the summit at 2,006-feet for panoramic views into southern Vermont and as far as Boston.

Lake Waramaug, Connecticut

Tucked into the north-west corner of Connecticut, the rolling Litchfield Hills form an area of genteel charm and immense natural beauty. 

Lake Waramaug, the area’s largest body of water, is named after a revered Native American chief, but ironically reminds many visitors of Austria or Switzerland. 

Take the eight-mile drive around the lake’s perimeter and you’ll spot beautiful homes, fine country inns and, in the fall, fiery foliage reflected in the shimmering water.

Take a stop at Hopkins Vineyard where you can have a tour and tasting.

Group travel organisers can find more information and ideas on experiencing the six states of New England during the autumn foliage season via the Discover New England tourist board website.

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