Leaf Peeping in The Capital Region
The best places to catch autumn colours and celebrate the change in season within easy reach of D.C.
This October, visitors to Maryland can experience the 50th Annual Autumn Glory Festival held 11 – 15 October and celebrate the beauty of the season with parades, concerts, exhibitions and craft shows in McHenry, Maryland. Also in Garrett County, Maryland’s only ski resort, Wisp Resort is home to a five-day celebration of autumn offering a multitude of activities to make the best of the changing season. Visitors can drive or cycle two of the counties designated 2017 Autumn Glory Fall Foliage Tours.
Also from Wisp Resort, visitors can drive the Mountain Maryland Scenic Byway through Deep Creek Lake State Park with its 65 miles of shoreline, Swallow Falls State Park to witness the 53-foot Muddy Creek Falls, and on to the Allegheny Highlands, and C&O Canal Towpath with brilliant access for hiking and biking.
Maryland’s Historic Byways can easily whisk you away from the cities to take in the best of autumn colours. The state’s Historic National Road takes visitors from the bright lights of Baltimore’s Inner Harbor, West, along the famous ‘Road That Built the Nation’ to the historic transportation hub of Hagerstown and on towards the Appalachian Mountains.
With the weather turning cool, fall festivals are in full swing across Virginia. Visitors can celebrate the autumn season through a variety of activities including the Temple Hall Corn Maze in Leesburg (29 September – 7 November) and the historic Waterford Fair (6 – 8 October) giving visitors the chance to tour the historic homes of Waterford and enjoy live entertainment and browse wares from local artisans. Waterford, a National Historic Landmark District is one of only three in United States.
Virginia’s Skyline Drive – a National Scenic Byway – is the backbone of Shenandoah National Park. This iconic drive allows visitors to experience the fall colours in all their glory with a multitude of hiking and biking trails to compliment this 105-mile stretch of road, with 75 stunning vistas offering unique ways to see the leaves change. Accessible from the Skyline Drive visitors can experience fall in Virginia’s Blue Ridge on a guided horseback-ride from Skyland Stables, join a popular Shenandoah Mountain Guided Backpack Trip or even relax and take in the views at one of Virginia’s 208 wineries including Barboursville or Jefferson wineries.
The iconic Blue Ride Parkway, noted as one of America’s favourite drives also provides sublime opportunities to see the leaves change. Offering 469 miles of stunning views the Blue Ridge Parkway connects Shenandoah National Park to the Great Smokey Mountains in North Carolina.
Within Easy Reach of Washington D.C.
Within easy reach of D.C., the George Washington Memorial Parkway follows the shores of the Potomac River through Virginia all the way to Mount Vernon taking in more than 30 historic sites dedicated to former President George Washington.