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Time to Plan a Fall Foliage Vacation

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Posted on September 02, 2021

Now that we are in September, football, Fall and foliage are all right around the corner. Before you know it, the temperatures will be crisp and vacation plans turn toward activities that won’t involve a beach.

Fall foliage trips involve some of the most spectacular scenery in the country, with vibrant shades of orange, red and yellow blanketing the landscape of numerous rural destinations. Most people think of the mountains when planning a fall foliage vacation, with scenic lookouts opening views of nature’s tapestry for miles.

Such trips can involve outdoor activities such as hiking and walking trails at a time of year where you won’t be lathered in sweat. Even fishing spots are more attractive with such a colorful backdrop. And don’t forget the wonderful harvest festivals that take place during this season.

For timeshare owners, Fall can host some of the best trips, and best use of timeshares and timeshare points since it is usually considered an off-peak shoulder season. Less points needed means extended use of your points for more getaways, and owners with floating ownership can get into some terrific resorts that otherwise may be booked up during more popular weeks.

fall foliage vermont

Top Fall Foliage Regions

First, let’s take a look at what are considered peak fall foliage seasons around the U.S.:

New England – Peak leaf-peeping times run from north to south as the temps become cooler, so New England viewing tends to range from around September 25 in the most northern part through to October 23 in southern Rhode Island and Connecticut. Long renowned for spectacular views, use Columbus Day as a marker for some of the best times to view the foliage. While this isn’t set in stone every year, it’s a good estimate.

For 2021, Columbus Day falls on October 11. A great tool to map out the region can be seen here. Just enter your desired dates and estimate the foliage viewing status of each part of the region. According to the map, peak viewing for most of Maine, New Hampshire, Vermont and western Massachusetts should be during that week of the 11th.

Looking at upstate New York and the Poconos of Pennsylvania, most of New York estimates peak at about October 18, while the Poconos range from mid-October through the end of the month, depending on where you’re located. 

Mid-Atlantic – for this area we’re focusing on Virginia, North Carolina and eastern Tennessee because of the Blue Ridge and Allegheny Mountain ranges as well as the Great Smoky Mountains National Park.

There is a great fall foliage map at SmokyMountains.com that predicts peak viewing throughout the country. Because this is further south, the peak weeks are a little later. That said, peak in the mountains of western Virginia looks to be around the weeks of October 11 and 18, as is western North Carolina. Eastern Tennessee stretches a bit later, from mid to the end of October.

Central U.S. – this may seem like a vaguely defined area so due to the primary timeshare locations in this region we’ll look at Michigan and Wisconsin across to the Dakotas. Plus, a regular of timeshare fans – Branson.

This region is expected to begin earlier than usual, with northern areas of Michigan, Wisconsin and Minnesota hitting peak during the week of September 27. The Wisconsin Dells area, long known for its timeshare resorts, looks to be near peak around October 4 through the following week.

The Dakotas are moving slower, with the states hitting peak well into October. Look for the Mt. Rushmore area in South Dakota to peak around October 4.  

For Branson – look for peak viewing around October 18.

Fall foliage Steamboat Springs

The Rockies – areas such as Breckenridge and Park City are renowned timeshare destinations, primarily known as top ski spots. But these and other towns in Colorado and Utah can be fantastic leaf-peeping places as well.

The locals in Colorado are saying peak viewing in places such as Steamboat Springs, Aspen and Breckenridge start around September 15 through the rest of the month. Park City and eastern Utah looks to be closer to September 27.

Pacific Northwest – eastern Washington from the Cascades east, with peak estimates around October 11, while most of Oregon is either at or past peak by October 18.

California – okay, lets give the Golden State its due. The terrain and elevations are diverse but for the sake of timeshares the coastal areas from Napa south to the state line, along with Big Bear, are at or near peak about November 1. For Lake Tahoe fans, you’ll get an earlier taste with peak around October 11.

Timeshare Resorts for Leaf Peeping

Based on the popularity of resorts within our platform, as determined by buyer offers placed on timeshares, take a peek at the most popular fall foliage timeshare resorts in these areas:

  • New Hampshire - Village of Loon Mountain, in Lincoln in the midst of the renowned White Mountains, this is one of the top resorts in the entire state. A can’t miss foliage experience.
  • Vermont - Smugglers Notch Resort, near Jeffersonville in the Green Mountains, you’ll be in condo-style accommodation surrounded by color.
  • Massachusetts - Holiday Inn Club Vacations Oak N' Spruce Resort, in the Berkshires of western Massachusetts, enjoy the views from the Berkshire Scenic Railway.
  • Pennsylvania - Wyndham Vacation Resorts Shawnee Village, close to the Delaware River near Stroudsburg yet near the Shawnee Mountain Ski Area, you’ll be surrounded by fun.
  • Virginia - Massanutten's Woodstone Meadows, part of the Massanutten resort complex in the Shenandoah Valley near Harrisonburg, this is perfect for beautiful scenery and much more. 
  • North Carolina - Foxhunt at Sapphire Valley, nestled in the Sapphire Valley of the Blue Ridge Mountains near Cashiers, from hiking, boating, fishing, golfing and even ziplining you’ll have plenty to see and do.