New York State is beautiful and well-known for all it offers, from busy cities to small mountain towns. Hudson Valley in New York is the valley that encompasses the Hudson River and the surrounding communities.
Hudson Valley contains multiple counties and is divided into three parts – the upper, middle, and lower Hudson Valley.
The Hudson Valley has rich forests, majestic mountains with scenic overlooks, beautiful farms, exciting events, and magnificent historical sites. Visiting Hudson Valley in the fall is an enriching experience.
From spectacular views during the fall foliage season to enjoying the many different available activities, there are plenty of memories to be made in the Hudson Valley in the Fall.
Getting to the Hudson Valley
Located just two hours from New York City, the Hudson Valley is a great weekend getaway.
If you are located in the Northeast, it is easiest to get to the Hudson Valley by car. However, for those that are flying in, you have a few options.
You can fly to any of the three airports in New York City. Or you can fly into Stewart International Airport, located in New Windsor, and a short drive to many of the hot spots in the Hudson Valley.
Once in New York, you can travel through the state by train or car to reach the Hudson Valley. Hudson Valley is approximately two or three hours north of New York City when traveling by car or train.
It is ideal to rent a car as Hudson Valley covers a wide range of cities, and being able to drive while there will surely enhance your experience.
Things to do in the Hudson Valley in the Fall
Visit Sleepy Hollow
The town of Sleepy Hollow and Tarrytown can be found in Westchester County, right along the Hudson River. This town is overflowing with fall events and exciting attractions, making it the perfect place to take a day trip.
This town is home to the Sleepy Hollow Lighthouse, Headless Horseman Bridge, and the Rockefeller State Park Preserve.
While here, you can experience guided house tours of the Lyndhurst, a Gothic Revival house with a 67-acre park, and of the Kykuit, the 40-room historic museum home to four generations of Rockefellers.
Sleepy Hollow in October is a sight, with haunted hayrides, jack o'lantern-lined streets, and a Halloween Parade.
Headless Horseman Hayrides & Haunted Houses
Located in Ulster County, the Headless Horseman Haunted Attraction has walks through corn mazes and themed haunted houses, as well as a walk-through visual haunted experience.
This attraction also offers Headless Horseman Escape Rooms, although tickets for these haunted escape rooms are purchased separately.
The Headless Horseman Haunted Attraction begins in late September and runs through October.
The Great Jack O'Lantern Blaze
Located in Croton-on-Hudson, this unique attraction begins in September and continues through to November.
Take a self-paced half-mile walk through 18th-century landscapes and see over 7,000 hand-carved jack o'lanterns illuminated in a spectacular display.
Vanderbilt Mansion National Historic Site
The Vanderbilt Mansion is an architectural beauty found in the town of Hyde Park in Dutchess County.
This 54-room mansion, located on the east side of the Hudson River, is designed in the style of the American Renaissance.
The 211-acre property has hiking trails as well as a stunning garden.
The garden, influenced by Italian design, has statues, pools, and multiple levels featuring three types of gardens: annual, perennial, and rose gardens.
The guided house tour is $10 per person and begins in the Visitor's Center.
Storm King Mountain
This mountain is located south of Cornwall-on-Hudson in Orange County and is open for hiking from dawn until dusk.
This 5-mile loop hiking trail is popular for its breathtaking views of the Hudson Valley and the Catskill Mountains.
It is considered one of the best places to see the beautiful fall foliage while spending autumn in New York.
Mohonk Preserve is an 8,000-acre nature preserve along the Shawangunk Ridge in Ulster County.
This preserve features 40 miles of trails open daily for hiking, mountain biking, cross country skiing, and snowshoeing.
The preserve also allows horseback riders and has over 70 miles of carriage roads, allowing you to fully explore and enjoy the fantastic views of the Shawangunk Mountains.
Hurds Family Farm
The Hurds Family Farm, open from August until November, has been a popular fall attraction for 25 years.
The farm offers dozens of family-friendly activities, including hayrides, pony rides, corn mazes, a petting zoo, and more.
They also offer pumpkin and apple picking, which begins in August, while pumpkin picking begins in late September. Choose the most delicious apples and a perfect pumpkin at this Pick Your Own fall farm.
Bear Mountain State Park
Bear Mountain State Park sits along the west bank of the Hudson River in Rockland County. This park has a lot to do, such as hiking, biking, fishing, sledding, and cross-country skiing.
An outdoor ice rink can be used for ice skating from late October to the middle of March.
At the top of Bear Mountain is Perkins Memorial Tower which provides stunning views of the park and neighboring areas, making it a perfect spot for leaf-peeping the Hudson Valley fall foliage.
This park also has a Trailside Museum and Zoo to enjoy.
Lake Minnewaska, Kerhonkson
Lake Minnewaska is one of the most unique and beautiful parks in New York State.
It is located on Shawangunk Mountain ridge and features waterfalls, lakes, and great cliff-edge views. There are places to sit, have a picnic, and trails around the lake for even more views.
The park is also home to various plant and animal life.
In addition to its natural beauty, Lake Minnewaska is also a great place to enjoy some peace and quiet. So if you're looking for a place to get away from it all, this is the place for you!
Walkway over Hudson, Poughkeepsie
The Walkway over the Hudson is a pedestrian bridge that spans the Hudson River in Poughkeepsie, New York. It was built in 2009 to provide pedestrians and cyclists with a safe way to cross the river.
The Walkway is 1.28 miles long and is the longest pedestrian bridge in the world. It has been called “one of the great engineering achievements of its time.”
The Walkway over the Hudson is a popular destination for tourists and locals, and it offers stunning views of the river and the surrounding countryside.
In addition, it is a great place to get some exercise. Walking or cycling across the bridge is a great way to burn calories and get fresh air.
Whether you are looking for a place to take a leisurely stroll or hoping to get some exercise, the Walkway over the Hudson is a great option. It is also an impressive engineering feat that will impress visitors.
Hunter Mountain Scenic Skyride
The Scenic Skyride at Hunter Mountain is the perfect way to take in the breathtaking views of the Catskills.
The Skyride takes you up to the summit of Hunter Mountain, where you can enjoy panoramic views of the surrounding mountains and valleys.
The Scenic Skyride is also a great way to get to the top of the mountain for hiking, biking, and other activities.
And if you're feeling really adventurous, you can even take a zip line ride back down to the base!
So whether you're looking for a leisurely way to take in the scenery or an adrenaline-pumping thrill ride, the Scenic Skyride at Hunter Mountain is sure to deliver.
Shawangunk Wine Trail
Shawangunk Wine Trail is a wine lover's paradise. With over 20 wineries to choose from, there's something for everyone. Whether you're a fan of reds, whites, or both, you'll find plenty of options to explore.
And if you're looking for something a little different, the Shawangunk Wine Trail also offers a variety of hard ciders and craft beers.
But the Shawangunk Wine Trail isn't just about the wine. It's also about the breathtaking views. The trail winds through the stunning Hudson Valley, offering views of the Catskills, the Hudson River, and beyond.
It's the perfect place to spend a day (or two) enjoying the outdoors and sampling some of New York's best wines.
Train Ride on the Catskill Mountain Road
The Catskill Mountain Railroad is a heritage railroad based in Kingston, New York that began operations in 1982.
The Ulster & Delaware Railroad is one of the country's oldest and most scenic railroads, and it runs through the heart of the Catskill Mountains.
On this train ride, you'll travel alongside Esopus Creek and see some of the most beautiful scenery in the region.
It's a great way to experience the beauty of the fall foliage in the Hudson Valley. You may even spot some wildlife along the way!
The Ulster & Delaware Railroad is a great way to experience the beauty of the Catskill Mountains, so be sure to check it out next time you're in the area.
Where to Stay in the Hudson Valley
Choosing a place to stay in Hudson Valley in the Fall will depend on many factors, including your personal budget and what you plan to do.
A highly recommended guesthouse in the area is the Mecosta Leisure Inn, located 43 miles from Albany International Airport.
This guesthouse is in Hudson, NY, and is part of the Upper Hudson Valley. The location of this inn will allow you to easily travel to different places within the Hudson Valley.
This guesthouse is reasonably priced and has excellent reviews, making it an ideal place to stay during your visit.
Each adorable room comes with a kitchen, dining room, and private bathroom, and there is even a sun terrace available.
Enjoying the Hudson Valley Fall Foliage
No matter what you choose to do while visiting the Hudson Valley in the Fall, you will have a fun and memorable time.
From the state parks and hiking trails to soak in the charming small towns and all they offer, Hudson Valley is a perfect place to visit in the fall.