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3 Fall Excursions to Take from New York City

The first thought that might pop into someone’s head when they hear “September” is probably something related to going back to school. However, the month of September in New York has so much more to offer than just beginning new classes and starting school again.

This is the time that the weather begins to change in New York City. The heat that has gripped NYC the last few months begins to dissipate and with that, bringing cooler weather and changing leaves. As we begin to welcome a new season, there are many different fall-themed activities that are all a quick train ride away from Midtown Manhattan.  

New York has many different things to do in the fall, whether you are looking for something fun and quirky, or you are interested in something adventurous. Here are three quintessential experiences to get you in the fall spirit!


1.  Go apple picking at Outhouse Orchards

apples in orchard to emphasize that apple picking is one of the Fall Excursions to Take from New York City

Looking for something fun to do this month? Consider going apple picking in upstate New York. Apple picking season in New York typically runs from the last week of August to the end of November. Outhouse Orchards is located upstate in North Salem, New York.

If you don’t have access to a car you can take the Harlem line on MetroNorth to the Croton Falls stop. Outhouse Orchards is a great place to go apple picking. This family-owned orchard boasts more than just apple picking. In addition to climbing up apple trees and filling your bags with fruit that you pick, you can navigate your way through a corn maze, pick your own pumpkin from their pumpkin patch, and experience views of the Hudson Valley on a tractor ride.

Finish the day off with stocking up on cider doughnuts to indulge on the train ride back to Manhattan.


2. Go hiking at Breakneck Ridge

tree turned yellow in the fall near new york city

Do you have an adventurous side you are looking to please? Consider going on a hike at Breakneck Ridge during peak fall foliage season to do some leaf peeping.

The fall is a great time to go hiking in New York because the weather cools down, making hiking more enjoyable. Breakneck Ridge is located in Dutchess County right along the Hudson River. Peak foliage in this area will be October 5 – October 15.

Take the Hudson line of MetroNorth to the Breakneck Ridge stop to experience a hike with breathtaking views of the Hudson River and to see the fiery colors of the fall. Just be careful not to break your neck!


3. Experience the Great Jack O’Lantern Blaze

pumpkin carved for the Great Jack o'Lantern Blaze near New York City

If you are interested in something odd and quirky, unlike any other fall experience you can have, then look no further than going to the Great Jack O’Lantern Blaze! Located in Van Cortlandt Manor, New York, The Great Jack O’Lantern Blaze to put it simply, is an immersive pumpkin experience.

Take the Hudson line of MetroNorth to the Croton-Harmon station. Walk along scenic landscapes and see over 7000 hand-carved pumpkins and gourds, tour a pumpkin art museum, see a 25-foot tall Statue of Liberty carved out of pumpkins, and experience a synchronized Jack O’Lantern light show.

Make sure to carve out some time for fun to check out one of New York’s top fall attractions. You’ll be leaving this place saying “oh my gourd!”


If you are interested in doing these great activitiies while learning English in New York, learn how you can improve your English and study in New York City: visit the ELI websitecontact the ELI  or apply here.


Word list:

  • dissipate (v.) - to disappear
  • quintessential (adj.) - representing the most perfect example of a quality
  • indulge (v.) - to allow oneself to enjoy a particular pleasure
  • foliage (n.) - representation of leaves, flowers and other plants
  • immersive (adj.) - to feel completely surrounded by something that you feel you are a part of it

WRITTEN BY JAMIE LEOTTA