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46 Things to Do in Fall

With breathtaking fall foliage and an abundance of activities and events, New York's Adirondacks are one best places to experience fall. Check out our list of 46 "peak" things to do in the Adirondacks region this fall.

Girl on dock in with fall colors in the background

Epic Leaf Peeping

1. Take to the skies.

Get a bird's eye view of the Adirondacks & fall foliage. Adirondack Aviation Academy and Payne's Air Service both offer scenic flights for leaf peeping.

2. Get a lift. 

Take in the scenic glory of fall in the Adirondacks with a gondola or chairlift ride, offered in fall at many Adirondack ski mountains, both large and small.

3. All aboard! 

Enjoy Adirondack scenery from the comfort of an impeccably restored vintage train cars. The Adirondack Railroad Experience is volunteer-based and has been committed to preserving the railroads of Upstate New York since 1992.

4. Take a sweet ride

Follow the winding roads, kick up the falling leaves as you zip along, and breathe in the fresh autumn air as you motor along scenic byways by car or on two wheels. Pure fall bliss.

Family Fun

5. Take a “rail” family bike trip.

For a whole new P.O.V., hop on a rail bike and pedal through the natural beauty of Tupper Lake

6. Was that shiver just from the wind or was that a... GHOST! 

Fort Henry William has been home to battles, cold hungry winters and widespread disease. Hear haunting stories passed down through the years and maybe encounter something paranormal yourself on a haunted tour. 

7. Thrilling coasters and chilling “scarezones”

With monsters and ghouls roaming about, thrilling and haunting halloween rides, and skin crawling shows you'll be shaking like a leaf at Great Escape Fright Fest.

8. Get toasty by a firepit

Wind down by a firepit with a glass of hot cider and a s’mores kit before just outside your beautiful pine lodge. Enjoy the privacy, comfortability, and Adirondack authenticity of renting an Adirondack cabin or cottage.

9. Experience where “vacation” began

Did you know the word "vacation" originated with Adirondack getaways? It was common to "take a holiday" until city residents began to "vacate" the city for a calming weekend in the Adirondacks. Learn some more fun Adirondack facts at any of the historic or wildlife museums in the region.

10. Explore an island-bound castle

Located on Dark Island off the coast of Hammond, the boat-access only Singer Castle features secret passageways, a two-story ice house, indoor squash court and dungeon.

11. Enjoy a boat tour

Relax, feel the wind in your hair and learn some history and local lore on one of the many scenic, guided boat tours in the Adirondacks.


12. Walk on the wild side.

At the Adirondack Wildlife Refuge in Wilmington, visitors can explore the the 50-acre "Wild Kingdom,"  including a 1-mile guided, interpretive trail complete with a river, forest, and meadow. 

Rail Bike

Outdoor Adventures

13. ​​Test your grip on the crags and cliffs

Options for rock climbing in the Adirondacks are endless with climbing spots hidden in the woods or just a short walk from the road.

14. Saddle up

Horseback riding through the wilderness of the Adirondacks? Yessir. East Coast dude ranches? You bet.

15. Paddle

Check out any one of the 3,000 lakes and ponds in the Adirondacks by kayak and marvel at the water’s reflection of the surrounding fall colors. 

16. Take a hike with your four-legged friend

The only thing better than a day on the trails is a day on the trails with your dog. Here are a few things to know about bringing your dog on a hike in the Adirondacks.

17.  Immerse yourself in the wilderness on a fall camping trip

Stick to tradition by staking a tent and eating by the fire or spend the night in your RV at any of the RV parks available throughout the Adirondacks. 

18. Pedal deep into the park. 

The Adirondacks are home to some of the best kept mountain biking trails on the East Coast, created by professionals for riders of all skill levels.

Rock climber

Food and Drink

19. Bite into the bliss of a warm cider donut

Once you’ve had a cider donut so fresh that it’s still warm in your hand, there is no turning back. At Rulfs Orchard in Peru, the doughnut maker starts preparing fresh donuts each morning at 6 a.m.

20. Quench your thirst on the ADK Craft Beverage Trail

Map out where you want to stop along the Adirondack Craft Beverage Trail consisting of 27 beer, wine, cider, soda and distilled spirits makers. 

21. Delight in outdoor dining

Throw on your warmest sweater for a fall-time outdoor dining experience. Whether it’s  for breakfast, lunch or dinner under the stars, savor your fleeting chance to dine outside before the temps get too brisk. 

22. Pack yourself a picnic of local yum.

Stock up on cheeses, charcuterie, butter, fruit spreads and freshly made baked goods–and spread out a blanket alongside freshly fallen leaves. Many small, local ADK general stores, such as Charlie John's in Speculator, carry an array of local ingredients and other fun, very Adirondack keepsakes.

23. Bike the ADK Coast Wine Trail

Cycle from vineyard to vineyard while taking in the spectacular views of Lake Champlain and the mountains on the Adirondack Coast Wine Trail. Find other award-winning regional wineries here.


Events & Entertainment

24. Go to a drive-in

Pop your trunk and tune your radio to see the newest movies or capture some classics at iconic area drive-in movie theaters, like the Valley Brook or Glen Drive-In.

25. Or take in a flick at the Lake Placid Film Festival

Celebrate the talent of amatuer and professional filmakers at the Lake Placid Film Festival. The four day event features short-length films, documentaries, panel discussions, and more. 

26. Expand your musical taste at the Lake George Music Festival

This two-week event brings up-and-coming artists and world renowned musicians all at a venue that captures the true beauty of the Adirondacks.

27. Tis the season to wiesen! 

A weekend of authentic Bavarian music, dancing, food and beer, the White Face Mountain's Oktoberfest has been rated as one of the Top 5 Must-Visit Oktoberfest in North America.

28. Don’t miss the Adirondack Balloon Festival

Up to 100 vibrantly-colored and uniquely-shaped hot air balloons launch into the sky during the four-day event that has been recognized as one of the top 100 events in North America.

29. Catch dinner and a show, in one

Enjoy a three-course meal and live entertainment at one of the only nine professional dinner theatres in the country. The venue is personal, performances are bound to get you laughing and the food is divine.

30. Experience top notch a-moose-ment 

The Great Adirondack Moose Festival offers activities for the whole family including a moose calling contest, an old-fashioned turkey shoot, guided hikes, and so much more.

31. Check out the spread at the Cream Cheese Festival 

Take a slice off of the largest cheese cake you will ever see. At the annual Cream Cheese Festival, featuring live music, recipe contests, games and vendors. 

32. Gore Mountain Harvest Festival 

This free two-day festival features gorgeous fall foliage, premier Adirondack artisans, autumn-themed food and drinks, gondola sky rides, live music and activities for the entire family.

Sports & Wellness

33. Plan a yoga retreat

Practice your tree pose in the greatness of the Adirondack Park when you go on an outdoor yoga retreat at Kelpytown Kove, a farmette that offers yoga classes, workshops, and glamping retreats.

34. Tee off at masterfully made golf courses

Have an un-fore-gettable day at some of the Adirondack golf courses designed by golfing legends such as Craig Wood and Alistair Mackenzie. Enjoy the masterfully made courses and the astounding beauty of the Adirondacks.

35. Up your daily steps with a fire tower

For all you adventurous early birds, take a hike up Mount Arab to see a stunning sunrise from the lookout tower. See the sun illuminate Arab Lake, Tupper Lake and the northwest foothills of the Adirondacks. 

36. Run a Halloween 5k

Practice your flee from the monsters that emerge on Halloween Night by running the Goblin Gallop 5k in Glens Falls. Maybe try a warm up at the ADK5K at the Adirondack Pub & Brewery the month prior.

Lake Pleasant Golf Course


37. Meet a new generation of NY farmers

The Boquet Valley Cuisine Trail takes you to farms run by innovative new farmers. The trail passes by two wineries, a brewery, livestock, vegetable and CSA farms, places to enjoy delicious food and New York’s steepest river, the Bouquet River. 

38. Go pumpkin picking

Pick a pumpkin, fill up on homemade pies and baked goods, and keep the kiddos entertained with wall ball and gem mining at Applewood Orchards in the Seaway Region, where the mountains meet the St. Lawrence River.

39. Wind your way through a corn maze

Get lost, found and a-mazed in the Great Adirondack Corn Maze at Tucker Farms or the six-acre Heroic Corn Maze at Fort Ticonderoga.

40. Roll with the fun on a hay ride

Grab your "passport" to spend a day hopping from farm to farm during the annual Thurman Fall Farm Tour. Enjoy a day built around children’s activities, tractor hay rides, shopping and learning about local agriculture.

41. Thread your way through a barn quilt tour

Explore the beautiful, rural landscape of the St. Lawrence County while following one or both of the region's two barn quilt trails, totaling more than 100 barns adorned with unique, oversized, wooden quilt blocks painted and hung on countryside barns.

42. Shop for locally made candles

The Adirondack Fragrance Farm captures the essence of the Adirondacks in a jar using botanicals unique to the Adirondacks.

43. Go apple picking 

Clinton County in the Adirondack Coast is one of the largest apple-producing counties in the country. Pick your own or enjoy crafts, baked goods, games, and a live apple pressing at the Apple Fest in Speculator.

Fall Back In Time

44. Hike the historic Upper Works Trailhead.

Explore major pieces of the Adirondacks history on the Upper Works Trailhea, an interpretive trail steeped in history including the MacNaughton cottage where Teddy Roosevelt began his midnight ride, a massive iron furnace, and views of the Hudson River.

45. Go antiquing

Take a peak into the history of the Adirondacks and bring home a treasure from any of the antique stores in the Adirondacks. A perfect place to find a souvenier to remember your trip by.

46. See a battle re-enactment

Step into the past during a day-long salute to the historic Battle of Plattsburgh with re-enactments, ceremonies, 19th century kids games, blacksmithing demonstrations, hands-on crafts, farm animals, live music, history talks, a parade, fireworks, and more.

More Seasonal Bucket Lists

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46 Things to Do in Winter

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46 Things to Do in Spring

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46 Things to Do in Summer

We've compiled a list of 46 "peak" experiences for enjoying the Adirondacks in summer, from drive-in movies to zipline adventures. What's on your bucket list this summer?

Fall Fun in the Adirondacks