Colonial Connecticut house in the fall

To me, there’s nothing more bewitching than experiencing New England in the fall. I was lucky enough to grow up there as a child, and these activities are the ones I can’t stand to miss when I go back. Colonial architecture, vibrant fall foliage, apple cider everything and winding roads through hills covered in trees.

It’s my personal wonderland. Here are the fall New England activities I recommend:

Find a leaf-covered path to walk through

Find a park, a hiking trail, or even a hidden neighborhood. Make sure it’s quiet and is filled with trees. Then take a walk. With the trees rustling around you and the leaves crunching under your feet, I promise it’s a form of therapy like no other.

Orange leaf on a wooden bridge

Leaf-covered path with fall foliage

Pick your own apples from an orchard

This is one of the most down-to-earth things you can do in New England in the fall, but it’s also one of the most memorable. You, your family and/or your friends, walking down the paths of an orchard picking your own, juicy apples. They usually charge you based on the weight. If you don’t live nearby, be ready to ship them home or eat them while you’re still traveling. So don’t pick too many! Instead, enjoy your time away from the city under the shade of the orchard.

Buy a dozen apple cider donuts

Apple cider donuts — they’re delicious and a New England specialty, too. The best ones can be found right at an orchard, so if you’re already planning on doing some apple picking, make sure the same orchard sells donuts too. Typically, you’ll walk into a small wooden shop filled with barrels of apples and an assortment of donuts to choose from. I recommend the plain, unsugared cake donuts without the apple bits inside. Save them for a glass of milk. It defines the experience. I bought my mom a dozen and shipped them to Utah just so she could relive those precious New England memories, and savor the delicious flavor of these donuts.

Visit antique stores

Save this activity for a cold or rainy day. There are so many antique stores and being New England, there are bound to be quite a few hidden treasures.

Admire a lighthouse

I love visiting locations at the perfect time — when no one else is there. We drove to Lighthouse Point Park in New Haven, CT and blissfully were the only ones there. It helped that it was windy and rainy, but we had a heck of a time time running around the sand with the sea mist whipping into the air and into our faces. We took photos and got back into the car sopping wet.

Lighthouse Point Park, New Haven, CT

Lighthouse Point Park

Drive around and point out your favorite houses

The New England charm is real. So many of the homes are built in a colonial style with a large yard. The grass is green and the trees are showing off with orange, yellow, and red hues. Simply driving around the winding roads, pointing out the homes that appeal to you is a delightful way to pass some time, or even have some fun while driving to your next destination.

Colonial house New England

What are your favorite fall New England activities? I’m already dreaming about my next trip back to the east coast and I’m thinking about re-watching Gilmore Girls just to relive it. My number one tip for you, though, is to stay away from busy cities like Boston. Find an enchanting small town. The leaves, donuts, and picturesque houses can be found near almost any small New England town.

6 Can’t-Miss Fall New England Activities

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