By Sarah Hager
The fresh scent of the approaching cold hangs in the air. A flock of geese cuts across the bright grey sky, honks fading into the distance. Trees shift as a crisp breeze passes through their branches. A hurricane of technicolored leaves are sent rushing to the ground.
L.M. Montgomery once wrote, “I’m so glad I live in a world where there are Octobers.” Each year, people are captivated by the beauty and charm of this beloved month. Featured below are four of the best places in the United States to be when the leaves start to change and the temperature begins to drop.
Traverse City, Mich.
Traverse City is located in northern Michigan. Sunlight filters through the trees along the winding country roads leading into town. Climb to the top of the sandy slopes of Sleeping Bear Dunes for a look out at the fiery fall foliage and glistening blue waters of Lake Michigan. Explore one of the many scenic hiking trails such as Glacial Hills Pathway, consisting of over 30 miles of tree-studded forest passages. Take a walk through downtown and browse the seasonal knickknacks being sold in local boutiques.
This coastal Massachusetts city sits along the Merrimack River. Kayak trips provide an original look at the shore’s breathtaking autumn landscape. Feel the chill of the coastal breeze during a stroll along the boardwalks. Downtown Newburyport’s picturesque cobblestone walkways are ideal for pedestrians. 19th century brick buildings line the streets, bringing to life the history of colonial New England.
Fish Creek, Wis.
This quaint Wisconsin small town is located in Door County. With a population of less than one thousand people, it’s easy to feel at home. Browse the fresh fall goods at one of the local farmers markets. Cozy up with a warm beverage and watch the passersby through the windows of one of the numerous coffee shops. Get a taste of Fish Creek at one of the town’s many restaurants. One such eatery, Gibraltar Grill, emanates a homey, backyard feel. Diners can sit around a campfire, surrounded by family and friends, while enjoying nightly live entertainment.
Black Mountain, N.C.
The Blue Ridge Mountains loom over this Western North Carolina town. The horizon is filled with an abundance of trees, sporting leaves of brilliant golds, oranges, and reds. Visitors to Black Mountain experience the peacefulness and relaxed tone of this remote mountain village. Best known for its art and music, a strong sense of culture can be felt throughout the town. With the mountains and surrounding wilderness in such close proximity, there is no shortage of ways to enjoy the raw autumn beauty.