It’s no surprise that most fall foliage trips revolve around the countryside and wilderness. To see nature’s most beautiful transition, the logic goes, you need to get far away from the hustle and bustle of city life.
While we’re big supporters of enjoying the great outdoors and pristine national parks, especially when it comes to fall foliage, there’s something to be said for leaf peeping amid skyscrapers. If you haven’t been able to explore some of the country’s big cities, you might not know that large parks lie within city limits or that greenways offer the perfect escape into nature. These outlets have made cities both more livable and more beautiful—and they’ve also provided a space for trees to show off their vibrant colors.
Before you head out to the countryside or forest to get a look at fall foliage, consider a trip that’s a bit different. Visit one of these 10 cities for urban leaf peeping and experience fall color like never before.
New York City, N.Y.
The big apple is famous for a whole lot—world class dining, theatre and holiday celebrations, for starters—but when it comes to leaf peeping, the northern part of the state gets all the attention. Sure, the Catskills and Adirondacks feature breathtaking fall foliage, but city-dwellers can find fantastic displays without leaving the metro area—or even the island of Manhattan. Two top spots for catching changing leaves in Manhattan are Inwood Hill Park and Central Park, but there are several other spots in Queens, Brooklyn and the Bronx.
The capital of country music, Nashville’s charm may begin with music, but it doesn't end there. Fall is the perfect time to visit this southern city, as the weather cools from the highs of summer, early fall music festivals are a highlight and the foliage is not to be missed. Two of the best viewing spots, not far from downtown are Shelby Bottoms Greenway and Radnor Lake State Natural Area.