Trip Planning

Fall Activities in New York

There is so much to do and see in New York during the fall months. From festivals to wineries to fishing and hiking, there's something for everyone.

Autumn is gradually making its way across New York, with cooler temperatures and fall colors emerging. “The colors typically peak first in the higher elevations of the Adirondacks and then gradually sweep across the state,” said Don Bennett, Jr., President and CEO of Campground Owners of New York, which hosts CampNewYork.com.

Many New York residents use campgrounds as base camps not only for fall foliage excursions, but to enjoy the variety of festivals taking place across the state. Fall foliage enthusiasts will enjoy a front row display with Mother Nature’s explosion of fall colors from mid-September through mid-October at Bristol Woodlands Campground in Canandaigua in the Bristol Hills. The campground is also a convenient base for visits to Bristol Mountain Aerial Adventures, which offers everything from tight rope walks, rope ladders, bridges, and ziplines. Festival enthusiasts could also use Bristol Woodlands Campground as a base camp for experiencing the Naples Grape Festival, which offers opportunities to meet artisans, wine makers, enjoy live music, and regional food specialties.


Wine enthusiasts might also consider a trip to Camp Chautauqua in Stowe, which they could use as a base camp to visit Great Grape Walks at Johnson Estate Winery - Vineyards in Westfield. Great Grape Walks takes place Throughout September and October. Additionally, Lake Chautauqua is also a great place for fall fishing.
Then there’s Lake George RV Park, which experiences fall colors early on. “Based on summer weather, we expect changes to begin in mid to late September and reach peak around Columbus Day weekend, Oct. 8th, 9th and 10th, at our location,” said David J. King, the park’s president and CEO. Peak colors at Lake George typically last for about 10 days.


For those looking to take scenic fall drives, U.S. Route 20 runs east/west through the heart of New York State, crossing along the tips of several Finger Lakes and offering beautiful rolling hills and sweeping vistas. A couple of websites, nyroute20 and scenic-byways/route-20, cover sights to see in the Central New York section. Popular base camps along the way include Lebanon Reservoir Campground in Hamilton, about 15 minutes off Route 20, and Cider House Campground in Bouckville, which is located right on Route 20 in the heart of the Madison Bouckville Antiques Community.

Fall foliage seekers should also visit I Love NY’s weekly leaf peepers report and check out their list of things to do in fall at www.iloveny.com and www.iloveny.com/things-to-do/fall. Pre-Halloween events include Clayton’s Punkin Chunkin Festival on Oct. 16. A nearby campground to the event is Swan Bay Resort in Alexandria Bay.
Families looking for spooky destinations in New York should check out the Haunted History Trail
and crosscheck the haunts of interest with neighboring campgrounds on CampNewYork.com.


 About Campground Owners of New York

Campground Owners of New York (CONY) is the trade association that represents independent campgrounds and RV parks in New York. Based in Pittsford, CONY provides education, government affairs and marketing services for campgrounds, including hosting CampNewYork.com, a travel planning website, and publishing a printed directory of New York campgrounds.


Jeff Crider


Jeff Crider, President and CEO of Crider Public Relations, has been involved in covering the campground industry for over 25 years. Jeff has worked as a freelance writer for publications such as RV Business, Motor Home Magazine, Trailer Life, Highways and other Affinity Group Inc. publications since 1995. He has also successfully pitched many of the nation's top tier media outlets, including CNN, The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, The Washington Post, the Los Angeles Times, USA Today, The Financial Times, Reuters, The Associated Press and National Public Radio. In addition to writing, Jeff is also a talented photographer and humanitarian.