Where to See Fall Foliage in Vermont

Vermont dazzles people from around the world with its fall colors
Vermont dazzles people from around the world with its fall colors | © Gaertner / Alamy Stock Photo
Photo of Mike Title
5 October 2020

With an abundance of maple trees, Vermont is well known in the United States and beyond for its stunning fall foliage. The leaf colors in the Green Mountain State are something else in autumn, with striking reds, oranges and yellows; its peak season is anywhere from mid-September to October, depending on the weather. Here are some of Culture Trip’s favorite spots in Vermont for leaf peeping.

Burlington

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Burlington is a charming little college town – home to the University of Vermont – to visit in the fall. The nearly 8mi (13km) waterfront bike path provides a great way to get around town and try the array of cider and doughnuts on offer. In Ethan Allen Park, you can stand atop the city’s highest point and take in views of the mountains as the sugar maples become resplendent.

Shelburne Orchards

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This 60-acre (24ha) apple orchard on the shore of Lake Champlain in Shelburne offers the opportunity to throw yourself into the spirit of fall, embracing it with gusto. It’s home to more than 6,000 trees, with many apple varieties. Knowing that summer is finally over, you can celebrate with cider donuts and apple brandy.

Warren

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Mad River, Warren, Vermont
© Pat & Chuck Blackley / Alamy Stock Photo

In the picturesque Mad River Valley, Warren is about an hour’s drive northwest of Hanover, New Hampshire. Its fall foliage of deep reds, brilliant oranges and muted pockets of browns and greens is known worldwide, but the area never feels like it gets too crowded. The days are also mostly sunny and bright, making it an ideal place to explore on foot. The walk from the rural village to the nearby Warren Falls is only a bit over 1mi (1.6km), and it’s a well-recommended trek to take before sunset.

Arlington

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Near the Vermont-New York border, Arlington lies on the banks of the Battenkill River, offering more of New England’s small-town charm on the edges of the Green Mountain National Forest. It hosts the Norman Rockwell Exhibition at the Sugar Shack, showcasing the artist’s work from 1939-53 when he lived in the town. You can take a beautiful drive up to Mount Equinox for spectacular views from 3,840ft (1,170m), followed by a short hike to Lookout Rock for more phenomenal fall scenes.

Woodstock

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Woodstock is another welcoming New England town where you can immerse yourself in the fall mood, as the trees come to life with arresting colors at every turn. Central Street and Elm Street are home to a range of family-owned stores; here, you can buy the famous Vermont flannels to keep yourself warm in the crisp weather. Hiking 1,250ft (381m) to the top of Mount Tom will reward you with views of the village and beyond, with fiery colors all around.

Dorset

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Dorset, Vermont, USA
© Danita Delimont / Alamy Stock Photo

In Bennington County in southern Vermont, Dorset is a serene village surrounded by maples, whose foliage shines in gorgeous deep reds and dazzling oranges and yellows in autumn. With a marble church and the historic Dorset Playhouse, the town has a timeless feel as you walk around it – the perfect oasis of calm to spend some time in during the fall season.

These recommendations were updated on October 5, 2020 to keep your travel plans fresh.

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