The 9 Best Fall Foliage Road Trips

If you are feeling the itch to get away one more time before winter sets in, now is the time to head out. There’s plenty of dazzling locations in the states where you will find breathtaking fall foliage displays. The change of colors this time of year is simply beyond compare. Of course, preparing your vehicle for the road and securing cheap car insurance will give you peace of mind and make your trip not only more enjoyable, but also more successful.

  1. Blue Ridge Mountains. As part of the Appalachian Mountain Range, the beauty of the Blue Ridge Mountains is well known and obvious when you drive through parts of Pennsylvania, Maryland, Virginia, the Carolinas, and Georgia. The Russell Brasstown Scenic Byway in northern Georgia is a particularly spectacular vantage point along the Chattahoochee River to take in the autumnal panorama.

  2. Finger Lakes Region. While New York State is known for apples and snow, it also offers gorgeous fall foliage scenery along the miles of peaceful countryside, especially within the Finger Lakes region. Wineries and breweries are in abundance as the soil and climate are ideal for growing grapes. Peak time is usually mid-October, and the gentle hills along every Finger Lake provide a tempting spot for a picnic and even Fall Sky Rides at area ski resorts.

  3. Covered Bridges Loop. Why not blend a little vintage history with your fall foliage viewing? The Covered Bridges Loop in Connecticut is a 100 mile loop that sweeps through the northwest quadrant of the state. On your trip through this region you’ll encounter houses, railroads, churches and streets that will propel you back into the 1800’s. The West Cornwall Covered Bridge is 172 feet long and 15 feet wide, and is honored as a true icon of New England craftsmanship.

  4. Pacific Coast Highway. If you want to integrate the Pacific Ocean into your trip (and why wouldn’t you?), Highway 1 along the Pacific Coast Highway equates to hours of driving and overlooking brilliant bluffs and dazzling ocean views. You also won’t be disappointed in the brilliant gem hued trees.

  5. The Olympic Peninsula. The Northwest region of the United States is known for its rugged coastline, lush forests, and gorgeous mountain views. Ride a ferry across Puget Sound and walk the beaches on Vashton. The Point Robinson Lighthouse is a great way to spend a couple of hours, and this charming area also boasts Victorian homes and waterfront neighborhoods.

  6. Kancamagus Scenic Byway. At nearly 35 miles long and rising to an altitude of almost 3,000 feet, this scenic byway also known as “The Kanc” is one of New Hampshire’s true gems. They call it scenic for a reason – no gas stations, no businesses that mar the vista. While there are places to eat and stay nearby at either end of the byway, you’ll appreciate the 35 mile drive through the White Mountain National Forest with views of gorges, waterfalls, and rivers. When you find yourself there on a typical fall day, prepare for the fresh scent of pine, and a truly different kind of autumn experience.

  7. Jacob’s Ladder Trail. If you’re looking for untouched and rural, you have got to venture out to western Massachusetts and the Jacob’s Ladder Trail Scenic Byway. Along this route you will experience a bevy of assorted landscapes – rivers, open fields, hills alive with autumnal colors and straight-from-an-old-movie rock ledges and cliffs. The trail runs through numerous small towns just waiting to be explored. Time-worn barns, a 1930’s motel, and places for the family to snowshoe (in case of an early snowfall), hike, camp, and fish.

  8. Mackinac Island. Designated as one of the best islands to visit in the Continental United States by Travel & Leisure Magazine, a trip to Mackinac Island in Michigan is by far a unique and indulgent experience you won’t soon forget. No motorized vehicles are allowed on the island, and no big chain hotels. Horse-drawn carriages are ready to take you to one of the many exciting stops. Surrey Hill, Skull Cave, Arch Rock, and Fort Mackinac are all among the charming focuses of the carriage tour.

  9. Eureka Springs. History abounds at Eureka Springs! The entire downtown district is on the National Register of Historic Places which means there is no lack of entertainment here. Come for the gorgeous changing colors of the leaves and stay for the fine art galleries, bed and breakfasts, blues and jazz events, and mountain scenery like no other.

Embrace the fall with a family road trip to one of the many fascinating and delightful destinations America has to offer. Winter gets here soon enough!