Fall Colours West of Boston

Jan 17th, 2013, 10:41 AM
Original Poster
Join Date: Oct 2011
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Fall Colours West of Boston

Collecting Car from Boston Airport 11th October about 7.00 PM. (Flight arrives from UK 5.00 PM).
Where's a decent town/area/hotel to stay a night, maybe 2 nights, within an an hour, maybe 2 hours, of the airport where we could get up next morning and (hopefully) do some leaf peeping? I understand peak colour is normally West MA, South NW/VT around that date.
(Our next stop would be Woodstock).
Cheers !!
norfolkanway is offline  
Jan 17th, 2013, 11:01 AM
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If you can really do 2 hours, you can drive all the way out to the Berkshires, and stay in Lenox or West Stockbridge. There is lots to see and do in the area, and the color should be very nice.

Another option would be to head up towards eastern New Hampshire and stay someplace like Portsmouth. From there you could see a little coastline, maybe a bit of southern Maine, before you head to Vermont.
china_cat is offline  
Jan 17th, 2013, 11:41 AM
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This is a Friday night on one of the biggest weekend holidays in the northeast. Traffic going out of Boston in all directions is going to be heavy although maybe tapering off by that time. It's also going to be dark or near dark. I guess heading north on I93 or I95 would have the heaviest traffic so the idea of heading west might be good. To get to Portsmouth would require going thru a toll booth and that's where traffic typically backs up.
dfrostnh is offline  
Jan 17th, 2013, 12:30 PM
Join Date: Nov 2005
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I agree with above. Getting out of Boston is a pain anytime but would not recommend it after such a long trip across thge pond.
Why not spend the night in town and enjoy a nice dinner.
Another thought, if you have not reserved your car, you may want to consider renting it off airport to avoid the hefty "taxes" and "fees" charged for the airport pickup.
I have sometimes taken the Logan Express bus direct from airport to Framingham ( Which is about an hour west of the city) and rented locally there and returned the car there as well.
There are some nice hotels ou that way too that you may want to look into, if that plan suits you.
joethekay is offline  
Jan 17th, 2013, 12:51 PM
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Good advice here.

You are arriving on the first day of the equivalent of a UK Bank Holiday, and traffic will be difficult. It will also be something like 2300 body time by the time you are through the formalities.

I would stay overnight in Boston -- at the airport actually -- and travel next morning when all will be much calmer.

If you use Priceline, you can get one of the two **** hotels at the airport itself, the Hilton or the Hyatt, for less than $100 all in. Try bidding in the neighborhood of $65. If you haven't used Priceline, look at betterbidding.com and biddingfortravel.com for explanations. The Hyatt has waterside rooms with astonishing views of downtown Boston should you get it. Just ask. I have almost always gotten one. And the restaurant and adjacent bar have the same good views. Do not bid on anything below **** in the airport area.
Ackislander is offline  
Jan 17th, 2013, 12:58 PM
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I was thinking of suggesting the Concord/Lexington area or the Wayside Inn for historical and autumnal enjoyment, but

I really like Ack's idea of just staying put. You could also venture in to the north end for dinner and stroll the greenway and columbus parks. Get a good nights sleep and pick up the rental car early morning.

Don't dismiss the Berkshires as a destination route.
Lookin_Glass is offline  
Jan 17th, 2013, 02:34 PM
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I like the Logan Express to Framingham idea -- somebody else fights traffic while you doze on a very comfortable bus (I take it often). In Framingham you can take a cab to get a good night's sleep at local nondescript hotel and then get the car and travel to the scenic place next morning.

From Framingham you could have a pleasant drive west to the Berkshires or north to Vermont. Route 2 in Northwest corner of Mass is very scenic.

Are you heading for Woodstock NY or Woodstock VT next?
capxxx is offline  
Jan 19th, 2013, 12:26 AM
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Hi capxxx
Woodstock VT, though am slowly being convinced by fellow Fodorites I need to stay in Boston the 1st night and collect the car and start driving the next morning.
norfolkanway is offline  
Jan 19th, 2013, 02:07 AM
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Good thinking! You'll enjoy the drive in the morning and be able to see the colors. You would miss that if you drove at night plus the traffic would be horrible.
dfrostnh is offline  
Jan 19th, 2013, 04:25 AM
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Agree with previous posters. My specific suggestion would be to stay in the Harvard Square area in Cambridge -- you have a choice of several hotels there at different price points, and it's a relatively short cab ride there from the airport. And, the major rental car companies all have offices in Harvard Sq, making it easy for you to pick up a car and head out of town.

From Harvard Sq, the fastest route to Woodstock would be Rt 2W -> Rt 95N (a/k/a 128N) -> 3N -> 93N -> 89N. However, speed and highways are not what you should be looking for. I'd suggest instead that you take 2W then wind your way to Keene NH (Rts 140 & 12, probably), then north toward White River Junction VT.
DonTopaz is offline  
Jan 19th, 2013, 05:18 AM
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I agree with hunkering down near the airport.
jubilada is online now  
Jan 19th, 2013, 08:48 AM
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One the one hand, traffic will have long subsided by 11PM.

On the other, you really don't want to pick up a car and drive too far after a long journey.

I wouldn't count on getting a Pricline bargain at the airport for a holiday weekend...
djkbooks is offline  
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