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Fall Colors for 9 days starting October 6th

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Apr 20th, 2011, 07:42 PM
  #1
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Fall Colors for 9 days starting October 6th

My husband and are looking forward to spending 9 days back east for fall colors. We are thinking Maine Vermont and New Hampshire. We love antique shops and small towns. Would love to see the beautiful colors we have only seen in pictures and maybe even stay at a bed and breakfast or two.

We are not even set on an airport to fly into as we have read it is better to fly into some of the smaller ones to avoid heavy traffic.

Should we start North and go South or maybe stay in one area and do day trips.

We would appreciate any suggestions and all recommendations. Online information for websites would be great too.

Thank you for sharing your knowledge.
cheken is offline  
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Apr 21st, 2011, 02:18 AM
  #2
 
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Fall foliage trips are popular threads. Check the search function for what's been said before. MHT in Manchester NH is a great airport with great fares from many places. After leaving the airport you can head north via I93. I89 to VT branches off. There are several towns that hold foliage festivals over Columbus Day weekend. The last agricultural fair in NH is also that weekend in Sandwich NH, a very pretty town not far from Lake Winnipesaukee.

Splitting your time between 3 places is a good idea and definitely start in the north. You can find some suggested driving routes on Yankee Magazine's website. You should probably book now for Columbus Day weekend and expect a 2 or 3 night minimum stay requirement in some places.

To avoid the worst of the traffic, I would avoid NH's White Mountains on the weekend. If you should decide to stay in the Conway area, Portland ME is only about an hour's drive from there so you could make a day trip for a lobster dinner. MHT is less than an hour from Portsmouth NH, also on the coast. (and from there you just drive across the bridge to Maine)

I'll let others recommend favorite b&bs and small inns since we usually camp when we vacation in New England and live in NH. Carry a good road map and avoid the interstates on Friday late afternoon/evening (I commute on I93) and southbound on Sat and Sun and Columbus day Monday afternoons.
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Apr 21st, 2011, 04:35 AM
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Yes, start in the north. This is early for color in the south.

Flying into Burlington is good, and Burlington itself is a very pleasant small city for a first day or two in NE. Good restaurants, good attractions (Shelbourne Museum), and lodging at a variety of prices. It is also within easy reach of NY State on a ferry across Lake Champlain and of Montreal, should you be so inclined, though you need to make sure you can take your rental car into Canada.

Everyone will know locally about color. If it is a late year, you can head east toward the St Johnsbury and explore the areas around Stowe and particularly Craftsbury Common.

You can then drift down the Connecticut River valley, either on the Interstate or the older US highway on the east side of the river. Or you could go back to Stowe and take Vermont 100 south. Or you could go into the White Mountains in NH.

The idea of an overnight in Portland, Maine, is really good. There are excellent restaurants and a ferry system that gives you a relaxed voyage through the Casco Bay islands at the equivalent of a commuter train ticket because it is in fact a commuter boat! A few miles north is Freeport, home of LL Bean and a ton of outlets if you are shoppers. A few miles beyond that is Brunswick, Bailey's Island, and South Harpswell, which are real Maine.

There is a good art museum and a Frank Lloyd Wright house in Concord, NH, the charming state capital, and good museums etc at Bowdoin College and at Dartmouth. If you decide to go to Hanover, NH, the Dartmouth Inn has a coffee shop that shares the kitchen and executive chef with the formal dining room, providing, last time I was there, outstanding values.

Now all this wandering around is great, but sadly you will have to make reservations in advance, well in advance if you want charm. dfrostnh is especially correct about Columbus
Day weekend, when leaf peepers and New Englanders all descend on the North not only to look at leaves but to close their summer cottages. Luckily, it is almost always a gorgeous weekend. Have fun!
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Apr 21st, 2011, 03:17 PM
  #4
 
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Check the www.yankeefoliage.com website for a lot of great info. All above applies. I used to blog on this subject for Yankee and my blogs are all up on their site and you can pick through them to get a feel for the timing of fall.
It flows from north to south so you will want to land in MHT (Manchester NH) and if you arrive late stay near the airport (lots of good motels that won't break the bank. Then I would make the northern max range Sugar Hill NH and if you pick a place 40-50 south of that you will have found a great base of operations. Then spend 3 days there.
I would then plan to find your next base in southern NH or nothern MA. This way if the color is moving slow you can stay northerly or if it is going fast you can head south.
Also you can head over to the coast for Lobster and some lighthouses or even into Salem for some haunting good times (before Halloween is best to visit as Halloween itself it horrible traffic-wise.
then the final three days could be spent west of Boston or south and then fly out there or drive back to MHT 1.5 hours max 2.0.. If you want more info jump over to our Yankeefoliage page on Facebook www.facebook.com/yankeefoliage and if you would like to see some of the fall photography visit www.nephotographyguild.com to enjoy some great New England photography..
Enjoy
Vistaphotography is offline  
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Apr 24th, 2011, 03:20 PM
  #5
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Thank you all for your help and information. Research is on!!
Thanks again,
Cheri
cheken is offline  
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Apr 27th, 2011, 02:52 PM
  #6
 
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The state of Vermont Dept of Tourism has an excellent travel website with a helpful Foliage section that I recommend: http://www.vermontvacation.com/vermo...gecentral.aspx For an understanding of how the foliage progresses, take a look at the Forecaster animated map at http://www.vermontvacation.com/fallf...oliage2010.asp If you have not started contacting lodging places yet, you may be surprised to find many require a two or three night stay. New England is a small place and you don't need to move around every night anyway. I suggest find about three places during your nine days and making day trips from each one. To me that's a more relaxing way to travel anyway - you don't have to spend time packing and unpacking and trying to find the new place every day. Your innkeeper will be able to tell you the best drives, antique stores and villages to see.

As an innkeeper, I can tell you that the foliage reservations have been trickling in for a couple of months. There is no immediate rush but I would suggest making reservations as soon as you can to get your preferred choices in type of room and price range. Did somebody above mention cool temps? It can get down in the 30's at night especially in the upper elevations so leave room in your luggage for jackets and sweaters!

Flying into Burlington VT is a great idea - the airport is small and easy to get through quickly. But you may find cheaper rates into Manchester NH or Albany NY. Southwestern flies into those two airports and therefore all airline rates are lower to compete with SW.
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Apr 27th, 2011, 04:18 PM
  #7
 
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topping - for all the good info
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