November in the US: 15 Top Cities for Autumn Colors

November in the US: 15 Best Cities for Autumn Colors

As November unfolds across the United States, the landscape transforms into a tapestry of vibrant autumn colors.

From the golden aspens of the West to the fiery maples of the East, cities throughout the nation become canvases of natural beauty.

This article explores 15 cities renowned for their stunning fall foliage, offering a guide for those seeking the quintessential autumn experience.

Asheville, North Carolina

Blue Ridge Parkway in Asheville, North Carolina
Jeffery Edwards /

Nestled in the Appalachian Mountains, Asheville is a gateway to the Blue Ridge Parkway, known as "America's Favorite Drive."

The parkway offers breathtaking vistas of autumnal hues.

In the city, the historic Biltmore Estate and surrounding gardens provide a picturesque setting for leaf peeping.

Portland, Oregon

The Japanese Garden in Portland, Oregon
Thye-Wee Gn /

Portland's lush landscapes turn into shades of gold, orange, and red during fall.

The Japanese Garden and the expansive Forest Park are top spots for autumn viewing.

The city's numerous coffee shops and cozy bookstores offer a perfect respite from the crisp outdoor air.

New York City, New York

Central Park at New York City, New York
Sean Pavone /

New York City's Central Park becomes a focal point for fall foliage, with The Mall and Bethesda Terrace offering particularly picturesque scenes.

Beyond the park, the city's cultural life thrives with autumnal festivals and events, from film festivals to Thanksgiving parades.

Burlington, Vermont

Waterfront Park at Burlington, Vermont
Albert Pego /

Burlington captures the essence of New England's fall charm.

The city's backdrop of the Green Mountains and Lake Champlain provides a stunning display of colors.

The Burlington Bike Path and Waterfront Park are great locations to enjoy the scenic beauty.

Charlottesville, Virginia

Monticello at Charlottesville, Virginia
Jill Lang /

Charlottesville is synonymous with the historic Monticello and the beauty of the Shenandoah Valley.

The surrounding vineyards and orchards, set against the backdrop of the Blue Ridge Mountains, offer a perfect autumnal escape with wine tastings and apple picking.

Taos, New Mexico

Enchanted Circle Scenic Byway in Taos, New Mexico
Gestalt Imagery /

Taos presents a different fall palette, with golden aspens and cottonwoods contrasting against the desert backdrop.

The Enchanted Circle Scenic Byway circles Wheeler Peak and is one of the best routes for experiencing the Southwest's unique fall colors.

Madison, Wisconsin

Fall scene at Madison, Wisconsin
Outtherestudio /

Encircled by lakes and rolling hills, Madison's fall foliage is best enjoyed through its extensive network of biking and hiking trails.

The city's farmers' markets, brimming with fall harvests, and the University of Wisconsin campus, provide a lively atmosphere for autumn explorers.

Sedona, Arizona

Oak Creek Canyon at Sedona, Arizona
machikophoto /

Sedona's red rock landscapes are accentuated by the vibrant colors of fall.

Hiking trails, such as those in Oak Creek Canyon, offer spectacular views.

The city's art scene, with numerous galleries and festivals, adds a cultural dimension to the autumn experience.

Minneapolis, Minnesota

Autumn at Minneapolis, Minnesota
Ken Wolter /

Minneapolis's park system, especially around the Chain of Lakes and the Mississippi Riverfront, transforms into a fall foliage wonderland.

The city's bike-friendly paths and scenic byways offer delightful ways to take in the autumn colors.

Telluride, Colorado

Gondola rides at Telluride, Colorado
raig Zerbe /

Telluride, surrounded by the San Juan Mountains, is breathtaking in November.

The gondola rides provide aerial views of the golden aspens, and the town's historic charm complements the natural beauty of the season.

Boston, Massachusetts

Boston Common at Boston, Massachusetts
GCC Photography /

Boston's historic charm is amplified by the autumn colors.

The Freedom Trail and Boston Common are enveloped in fall hues.

Neighborhoods like Beacon Hill offer picturesque strolls, and the city's cafés provide cozy spots to enjoy the scenery.

Gatlinburg, Tennessee

Great Smoky Mountains National Park at Gatlinburg, Tennessee
Margaret.Wiktor /

Gatlinburg serves as a gateway to the Great Smoky Mountains National Park, a premier destination for fall colors.

The Ober Gatlinburg Aerial Tramway and the Roaring Fork Motor Nature Trail offer stunning views of the Smokies' autumn display.

San Francisco, California

Golden Gate Bridge at San Francisco, California
Uladzik Kryhin /

San Francisco's mild autumn weather is perfect for enjoying the fall colors in Golden Gate Park and along the city's streets.

The nearby Napa Valley offers an additional fall experience with its harvest season and wine tastings amidst the changing vineyards.

Chicago, Illinois

Lincoln Park at Chicago, Illinois
James Andrews1 /

Chicago's urban parks, like Lincoln Park and the Chicago Riverwalk, are great spots to experience the city's fall foliage.

Architectural boat tours provide a unique perspective on the city's autumn beauty, combining nature with Chicago's famed cityscape.

Final Thoughts

These 15 cities offer diverse and rich experiences for enjoying autumn's palette.

Whether strolling through historic trails, enjoying scenic drives, or participating in harvest festivals, each city presents a unique way to embrace the splendor of fall in the United States.

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