Coast to Coast: Leaf Peeping Guide to the United States

When you’re looking for the best places to see fall foliage, the most obvious choice is New England. Whether you’re hiking in beautiful parks or driving on one of the many scenic drives, you can see the leaves changing for the fall and find all of your fall favorites like apple cider donuts and pumpkin patches. 

The East Coast is a great destination for a leaf-peeping trip but not always the easiest to travel to for those that live across the country. To help find somewhere closer to home, Vrbo rounded up five places to plan your fall getaway from coast to coast. 

1. Gatlinburg, Tennessee

Gatlinburg is in the heart of the Smoky Mountains with lots of cozy cabins surrounded by beautiful tall trees. The best time to see fall foliage is from mid-October to early November. Gatlinburg is a great family destination to explore the Great Smoky Mountains National Park or Dollywood. 

You can rent your very own cabin like this 4-bedroom vacation home with scenic mountain views and plenty of living space to relax with your group. 

Stay in this charming cabin 

2. Branson, Missouri

The leaves begin to change in Branson in early October, but peak foliage viewing is typically in late October and early November. This family-friendly destination is great for families with young children to visit nearby attractions like Silver Dollar City amusement park and Branson’s Promised Land Zoo. 

Consider staying near Table Rock Lake for the best of both worlds: outdoor adventure and proximity to local attractions. This home has beautiful views of the lake and sleeps up to 16 people — perfect for a multi-generational family trip.

Rent this Table Rock Lake house

3. Bar Harbor, Maine

Bar Harbor is nestled along Maine’s Frenchman Bay and is a well-known beach destination. It’s also a great destination for hiking and scenic drives to see the beautiful New England fall season. The typical peak week for leaf peeping is the second week of October and is one of the best times to visit the area.

The area has many vacation homes to choose from, like this hilltop home with 28 acres of privacy. Visitors boast about the home’s beautiful 360-degree views and proximity to Acadia National Park. 

Book this secluded getaway

4. Hood River, Oregon

The Pacific Northwest is a beautiful destination year-round, but you can catch fall colors from late-September to mid-October. Columbia River Gorge is a great place to see bursts of red and yellow, and the National Scenic Area is perfect for adventurous travelers who enjoy hiking and biking. 

One of the best places to stay near Columbia River Gorge is Hood River, with vacation houses, cabins, cottages and bungalows to fit groups of any size. This beautiful home has seven bedrooms — enough space for up to 16 guests — and it has stunning views of nearby Mount Adams. 

Stay in this mountain home

5. Santa Rosa, California

Santa Rosa is part of Sonoma County, otherwise known as California’s Wine Country. The destination is great for a girls getaway to visit local vineyards and taste some of California’s best wines. While the wineries are the big attraction, there’s also an abundance of outdoor activities for families. Local parks are a great place to see fall foliage that peaks in early September and continues through late November. 

Kick back and relax after a long day of outdoor activities with the family or wine tasting with friends at this farmhouse chic vacation home. 

Rent this spacious vacation home