The kids are in school and the multicolored leaves are starting to show, which means only one thing: fall has arrived. For many, fall is a special time to share with family, and if you’re looking for a relaxing outing, try touring Massachusetts’ beautiful fall foliage destinations! Our friends at Horizons, AAA Southern New England’s official monthly publication, offer their recommendations for fall activities so you and your family can enjoy Massachusetts in all its beauty this season.
Bryant Homestead, in Cummington, overlooks the Westfield River Valley. This country estate was home to William Cullen Bryant, a poet and the editor-in-chief of the New York Evening Post from 1829 to 1878. The historic house is furnished with many generations of family antiques and mementoes from Bryant’s travels, and popular features include an exhibit area and a self-guided nature trail.
Bryant Homestead via Creative Commons
Located in Charlemont, Berkshire East has been recognized by USA Today as one of the 10 great zip lines nationwide. Three different zip line tours range in length and height, offering an option for everyone. This unconventional tour is great for all ages and provides a different take on traditional sightseeing. There is sure to be a whirlwind of color as you soar through the forest!
Heritage Museums & Gardens in Sandwich covers 100 acres of landscaped grounds and several buildings with exhibits pertaining to American art and history. More than 140 varieties of rhododendrons, hybridized by the estate’s onetime owner, Charles O. Dexter, grace the site. The grounds feature gardens, nature trails and a labyrinth of native vines, as well as a 19th-century mill formerly used to grind barley and corn.
Heritage Museums and Gardens via MOTT
Mass Audubon’s Wellfleet Bay Wildlife Sanctuary, off U.S. Route 6, a half-mile north of the Eastham/Wellfleet town line, is a 1,100-acre nature preserve. Five miles of hiking trails take visitors through pine woods, while fields lead to salt marsh, creeks, pond, heathland and beach. A nature center with exhibits and a butterfly garden also are on-site, and visitors can take advantage of natural history field walks, cruises, and guided wildlife tours.
At Wyndhurst, a restaurant at Cranwell Resort in Lenox, you’ll be treated to striking views of the Berkshire Hills from its setting in a historic Gilded Age mansion. Upscale carved-wood chairs surround tables dressed with linen and fresh flowers in an elegant dining room that features a fireplace and floral wallpaper above wood wainscoting. Seasonal menu selections may include refreshing gazpacho in the summer and goat cheese-filled ravioli with exotic mushrooms, cognac cream sauce, spinach and garlic in cooler months.
Cranwell Resort via MOTT
There are so many great possibilities to view Massachusetts’ beautiful fall foliage, and you are sure to find a destination to please everyone. To learn more about AAA Southern New England’s recommendations for fall foliage viewing, visit www.AAA.com/Horizons, your local branch, or call 877-874-7845.