Hot spots to see fall foliage in the Hudson Valley and Pennsylvania in Newsday

By Marshall S. Berdan

For many fall foliage enthusiasts, leaf peeping is primarily a movable feast. That is to say, you hop in your car, proceed to a particularly colorful destination, and then drive through it, stopping wherever you want — or can legally — to more thoroughly enjoy the view.

For others, the fall colors present a spectacular backdrop for another outdoor activity, one that significantly enhances their overall enjoyment, and especially that of their less aesthetically-motivated children. For them, leaf peeping is both seeing and doing.

Listed below are a handful of such symbiotic seasonal experiences, all less than 120 miles away — and hence doable in a day — in each of metro New York’s three best fall foliage destinations: the Catskills, the Lower Hudson River Valley, and the Poconos. You’ll still have to drive there, but once you arrive, park the car and immerse yourself multidimensionally in Mother Nature’s annual cavalcade of color.


The Catskills

With nearly 100 peaks over 3,000 feet, the Catskills are true mountains, so just driving through them is destined to reward you with a constantly changing collage of yellows, oranges, and reds springing out of deep woods, along untamed watercourses, and over dramatic forested peaks. An uphill hike is the most obvious way of seeing both the forest and the trees, but you can also:

Choo choo through the woods on the Delaware & Ulster Railroad (800-225-4132; in Arkville. The two-hour, narrated journey goes 12 miles up (shorter trips on October weekends) the East Fork of the Delaware River and costs $18 for adults, and $12 for ages 3-12 through Oct. 27. Also available many weekdays through Nov. 6 is a $48 per person onboard lunch excursion on the domed “Rip Van Winkle Flyer.”


Read more about these hot spots from Newsday here.