New England In The Fall

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Highlands John's picture
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04/16/2010

We're planning to visit New England in the Fall this year, but no idea of an overall plan.

Should we stay in one place, if so where? Or would we be better off touring, if so what would you recommend as a start and end point?

Do we need to book in advance or could we just stop at places that take our fancy?

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gillumhouse's picture
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05/22/2008

Take the Beantown Trolley in Boston - you can get on and off all day. Do the USS Constitution FIRST - the lines get huge. Fanuiel Hall and Quincy Markets are wonderful.

Lexington & Concrod and in New York Fort Ticonderoga (there is (or was) a little ferry across the river into Vermont) if you are interested in History. IF you have time there are 3-day windjammer cruises or whale-watch day trips

Freeport, Rockland, and Camden, Maine

the lighthouses

There is SOOOO much to see, it really depends on what you like to see and do. We were in to history. We were in Boston 2-nights and then to Lexington & Concord and Springfield, Mass for DH & boys to the Springfield Armory and when my jock daughter found out about the Basketball Hall of Fame, the girls & I went there (she had to listen to us ragging her about drooling over Michael Jordan's jock strap - family joke). Then we went to Saratoga and Fort Ticonderoga (had planned a half day but discovered we were there the day of the BATTLE so kids insisted on the whole day there), took the ferry across to Vermont and went through the White Mountains, the Cog Railroad to the top of Mount Washington is really something! Then we took a 1-week cruise on a windjammer. (That trip we also went to Hyde Park, NY to the Roosevelt home (FDR) and one of the Vanderbilt mansions then to Rhinebeck, NY to the air show and the air museum - if into planes it was worth it.)

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08/04/2008

When researching for our last trip in 2008, which got cut short by illness and Hurricane Ike blowing through my LANDLOCKED state and wreaking havoc on my property, we had found a company called LuLu's Lobster Boat .

Seal watching and lobstering Smiling Sounded like fun to us!!

Arks's picture
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05/22/2010

I must add the wonderful autumn vacation we had "up there" many years ago.

  • Flew into New York LaGuardia. Night on the road in Mystic, Connecticut.
  • Went to Newport, Rode Island and toured The Breakers (Vanderbilt Mansion...almost as good as Biltmore).
  • On to Cape Cod, caught a boat to Nantucket Island for a WONDERFUL day.
  • On to Plymouth, Massachusetts and stayed in our first B&B ever. Saw mounds of cranberries at the Ocean Spray plant there, saw Plymouth Rock.
  • On to Boston and walked the Freedom Trail (probably not a highlight for UK citizens, but we loved it), and seeing the Old Ironsides ship that's second only to HMS Victory in Portsmouth, England, for wonderfulness. (I've toured Victory too.)
  • Visited Concord and Lexington where my ancestor (I assume) fired the shot heard round the world.
  • A swing through Montpelier, Vermont, a bit of New Hampshire, then on to Bangor, Maine, and a visit to the WONDERFUL Acadia National Park.
  • Then a day-long drive through the Maine wilderness ending in Quebec City. Absolutely wonderful place. Great onion soup!
  • Next day to Montreal's Notre Dame cathedral where Pavarotti had performed a few years before. Also toured their nice botanical garden.
  • South to Lake Champlain, on down to Hyde Park to see Franklin Roosevelt's home, library, and burial place, and yet another Vanderbilt mansion a few miles away.
  • Then back to NYC and the flight home. Amazing vacation!

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seashanty's picture
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gosh, i forgot to say ... BOOK your stay!

i'd plan a route and make room reservations at the different places.  i don't want you to be shocked when you arrive at some seemingly sleepy little village and try to get a room ... only to find out that peepers (foliage fans) have booked up the place or that some local jazz festival or wedding has scooped all the rooms.

white cedar inn in maine offers an inn to inn ... they used to do it with my place. book with the one place for both locations, stay one or two nights in one place, then drive on to the next.  that is a GREAT way to plan. 

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If you can get inland in Maine, I would suggest it. Mt Katahdin in Baxter State Park is gorgeous. It's about an hour north of Bangor up I-95. Inland Maine is totally different than coastal Maine (obviously). There are some great little burgs and towns that have the white steepled church, little country store, men in flannel shirts, and dirty trucks in the parking spaces in town.

You could spend DAYS up and down the coast and see beautiful things. You can also take a few inland trips and see a slice of America Smiling

 We were in northern Maine a few years ago and the moose were thick as thieves, the bears had just come out of hibernation (which won't matter for you becuase you'll be there in the fall), and the foxes and coyotes were all over the place. My DH's family lives in extreme northern Maine- we're headed there this Sept.

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05/30/2008

I agree, Highlands John, that you should fly into Boston and head out from there.   We saw quite a bit and some highlights, not in order, were:

  1. Sturbridge Village, MA, link here
  2. Boston, MA - really enjoyed Fanueil Hall Marketplace
  3. Lobster, lobster, lobster
  4. Bar Harbor, ME/Acadia National Park
  5. Martha's Vineyard and Nantucket
  6. Did I mention lobster?!

There's so much to do and see in New England!  We did not make it to Vermont or New Hampshire...that's a whole other trip some day!

Have a good time!

 

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seashanty's picture
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if it's foliage you/re after, i would say you've got to visit vermont ... and ... franconia notch in the white mountains of new hampshire.  if you come to massachusetts, WESTERN mass. and the berkshires are best in my opinion.  someone else may jump in and advise locations in maine ... i did not see a lot of foliage in the harbor i was in.

peak foliage in new england comes in september in the northern parts, then works its way down.   

yankeefoliage.com put out by yankee magazine gives great suggestions 

 

Silverspoon's picture
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10/16/2011

 If you want to see all of New England you should visit southern NE as well as northern NE.  Newport RI is worth a day or two, and Cape Cod is absolutely lovely in the fall.  As Country Girl points out, the southern NE coast does not get the foliage color that is so outstanding in the north, but the weather along the coast is warmer and the marshes are breathtaking.  The Berkshires (in MA) offer the same kind of WOW factor as northern NE so you could easily make a loop from Boston to Cape Cod, out to the Berkshires, up through Williamstown into VT  and then snake your way back to Boston.  The east-west roads in northern NE are not great, however, so it will take you much longer to go from point A to point B if you are going E to W or W to E

If you have enough time try to fit in both Cape Cod and NH and VT.  

And yes, you need reservations if you are picky about your accommodations.  High season runs to mid-October around here.  I am almost full for the weekend after Columbus Day....that is the last hurray around here.

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Madeleine's picture
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09/29/2011

Where are you planning to go and when? In Sept you'll be mostly ok just landing wherever. Late Sept into Oct, you MUST have reservations. How long are you here for?

Give me an idea where you want to do and what you want to see and I will definitely come up with a plan. At least a partial plan! Don't stay in one place. Depending on how long you're here, maybe 3 days in each place.

Fly into Boston. Skip NY.  We just had guests here from Edinburgh who come every year. I mentioned your place to them for a weekend getaway.

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Country Girl's picture
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02/20/2009

If you are coming around peak foliage, which is mid-October in Massachusetts it's best to book way in advance. We're already booked for Columbus Day Weekend. September and October are so beautiful that I think you should try to see a few different places. Maine, New Hampshire and Vermont peak earlier than we do and Connecticut and Rhode Island peak a bit later. I would focus on smaller towns rather than big cities and I would avoid Cape Cod. There's just not much foliage there. Maine, Vermont, Mass, and NH are the prettiest states for foliage, IMHO. The White Mountains are spectacular but very crowded in the fall, as are the Berkshires.  Check out www.visitnewengland.com. I hope this helps. Send me an email if you want more info.

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Madeleine's picture
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09/29/2011

I just got asked for a reservation for Columbus Day weekend next year!

BTW, for Highlands John- Columbus Day weekend is Oct 5-6-7-8 this year. Peak foliage is after that so you're in luck.

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