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Article published on October 20, 2022

Top Spots to View Fall Foliage in Greater Philadelphia

Our picks for the top spots to see vivid fall colors in the Philly area...

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Wissahickon Valley Park Photo by R. Kennedy for Visit Philadelphia
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Independence Mall Photo by M. Edlow for Visit Philadelphia
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Valley Forge National Historical Park Photo by B. Krist for Visit Philadelphia
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Tyler Arboretum Photo by R. Kennedy for Visit Philadelphia
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Longwood Gardens Photo courtesy Longwood Gardens
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Ready for some leaf-peeping? Every autumn across the Greater Philadelphia area, the leaves of deciduous trees turn spectacular shades of red, orange and yellow.

In fact, Pennsylvania has a longer and more varied fall foliage season than any other state in the nation, according to the Pennsylvania Department of Conservation and Natural Resources .

Peak Foliage: Mid-October through Early November 2022

Anthony Aiello, associate director of conservation, plant breeding and collections, at Longwood Gardens, says to expect the brightest reds, yellows and oranges on fall leaves in Greater Philadelphia around the third week of October. “Bright sunny days that are followed by cool nights are ideal for trees to develop good color. Soil moisture is also a factor, and our dry summer may mute some of the colors. But trees are resilient, and because we’ve had good rains over the past few weeks, we’re probably still on track for good color in the last third of the month. Japanese maples that are so widely planted in our area tend to color up later, usually during the first 10 days in November.”

Similarly, the Pennsylvania Department of Conservation & Natural Resources releases weekly fall foliage reports for the entire state of Pennsylvania. Its latest report , released on October 20, 2022, notes that the five-county region is currently “approaching best color.” Translation: Get out there and look at some leaves!

Read on for the best places to find fall foliage in Philadelphia and the surrounding region.

Top Spots in Philadelphia

01

Fairmount Park

More than 2,000 acres of natural beauty...

Soak in the season at Fairmount Park , a 2,050-acre gem scattered throughout the city that offers about 30 miles of designated trails, 43 sculptures, two performing arts centers, the Philadelphia Zoo , Shofuso Japanese Cultural Center , historic mansions, the Smith Memorial Playground and Playhouse , renowned museums — and amazing foliage.

Where: Various locations including Belmont Plateau, 1800 Belmont Mansion Drive

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02

Wissahickon Valley Park

Hundreds of acres of leafy parks and preserves...

Fall foliage in Wissahickon Valley Park in Philadelphia Fall foliage in Wissahickon Valley Park in Philadelphia
— Photo by P. Vinh

Enjoy the autumn foliage and breathe in the sweet smells of fall in Wissahickon Valley Park , one of Philadelphia’s natural treasures. Bordering Chestnut Hill and Germantown to the south, the 1,800 wooded acres of the Wissahickon Valley Park include the lovely Wissahickon Creek; more than 50 miles of hiking and walking trails; and Forbidden Drive, a wide, no-cars-allowed road beside the creek, which intersects with a number of gorgeous trails that criss-cross the park.

Where: Various locations in Wissahickon Valley Park, including Wises Mill Road & Forbidden Drive

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03

Schuylkill River Trail

A 30-mile, multi-use path from Philadelphia to Phoenixville...

Schuylkill River Schuylkill River
— Photo by C. Smyth for Visit Philadelphia

The twisting, turning pathway along the Schuylkill River is a fantastic spot for a brisk fall walk, run or bike ride. In addition to great foliage, the river trail features spectacular views of Boathouse Row , the Philadelphia Museum of Art and the city skyline.

Where: Various locations along the Schuylkill River Trail, including Schuylkill Banks Boardwalk, Along the east bank of the Schuylkill River from South Street to Locust Street

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04

Morris Arboretum & Gardens

A romantic Victorian landscape garden...

Fall foliage at Morris Arboretum Fall foliage at Morris Arboretum
— Photo by P. Meyer

With 92 acres of gardens to explore, Morris Arboretum & Gardens is a spectacular setting for the beautiful colors of autumn. The historic grounds are home to thousands of plants, including gorgeous maples, dogwoods and oaks.

Where: Morris Arboretum & Gardens, 100 E. Northwestern Avenue

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05

Franklin Square

Fall fun for families...

Franklin Square is one of five squares that William Penn laid out in his original plan of the city in 1682. Today it’s a refreshing spot to take in fall’s colors surrounded by a number of fun attractions, including a fountain show, a mini-golf course, carousel, burger joint, picnic area and more.

Where: Franklin Square, 200 N. 6th Street

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06

Independence Hall and Philadelphia's Historic District

A must-see site in every season...

Fall foliage in Independence Square in Philadelphia Fall foliage in Independence Square in Philadelphia
— Photo by Visit Philadelphia

See Independence Hall and the rest of Philadelphia’s Historic District in all of its fall glory. Get schooled on the nation’s history amid a spectacular backdrop of red, yellow and orange.

Where: Various locations including Independence Hall, 520 Chestnut Street

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07

Benjamin Franklin Parkway

Philadelphia’s most artistic — and colorful — mile...

The Benjamin Franklin Parkway , Philadelphia’s answer to the Champs-Elysées, is lined with trees that form a canopy of red, orange and yellow during the autumn months. Some of the world’s most renowned museums, including the Barnes Foundation, The Franklin Institute, the Rodin Museum and the Philadelphia Museum of Art, are located just steps away.

Where: Various locations including Eakins Oval, 2451 Benjamin Franklin Parkway

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08

Rittenhouse Square

Philadelphia's most popular town square...

Fall foliage and Philadelphia skyscrapers from Rittenhouse Square in Philadelphia Fall foliage and Philadelphia skyscrapers from Rittenhouse Square in Philadelphia
— Photo by T. Flemming

William Penn likely never imagined how popular this green space (or, come fall, this red, orange and yellow space) would become among strollers, readers, children, artists, picnickers and dogs. On crisp autumn days, residents and visitors stroll Rittenhouse Square ’s walkways, sculptures, fountains and reflecting pool, admiring the foliage in the heart of Center City.

Where: Rittenhouse Square, Walnut & South 18th streets

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09

University City

One of the prettiest college campuses around...

The University of Pennsylvania campus in University City is framed and subdivided by canopy trees, lawns and meadows. Locust Walk, the main thoroughfare across the campus, is particularly beautiful in the fall. The stately architecture throughout the property adds to the visual display.

Where: Various locations including outside Steinberg-Dietrich Hall, 3620 Locust Walk

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10

Bartram's Garden

Fall colors in the country's historic first garden...

Take a stroll in the country’s first garden or along the river trail and see the colorful autumn blooms and bright leaves as they change overhead at this historic botanical garden and outdoor attraction .

Where: Bartram's Garden, 54th Street & Lindbergh Boulevard

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11

John Heinz National Wildlife Refuge

Pennsylvania’s largest remaining freshwater tidal marsh...

A favorite locale among birders in the know, this wetland is a refuge for a variety of wildlife and the perfect pastoral place to see the changing of the seasons. Bring binoculars or take it all in with the naked eye.

Where: John Heinz National Wildlife Refuge at Tinicum, 8601 Lindbergh Boulevard

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12

Laurel Hill Cemetary & West Laurel Hill Cemetery

Peaceful arboretums that really shine in autumn..

These two accredited arboretums boast a collection of more than 6,000 specimen trees and shrubs representing more than 700 unique species. Bonus: Because they’re cemeteries, you get seasonal spooky vibes in addition to all the beauty. Check out the fall foliage tours.

Where: Laurel Hill Cemetery, 3822 Ridge Avenue

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Laurel Hill West, 225 Belmont Avenue, Bala Cynwyd

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Top Spots in Philadelphia's Countryside

13

Bowman's Hill Tower

Stunning views from the top of a tower...

View of Delaware River from Bowman's Tower in Fall View of Delaware River from Bowman's Tower in Fall
— Photo by Bill Johnson

The drive along Route 32 from Washington Crossing to New Hope is an excellent day trip, especially when navigating to Bowman’s Hill Tower . The magnificent vista of stunning fall foliage in every direction is a spectacular sight from a vantage point 125 feet high. Nearby, Bowman’s Hill Wildflower Preserve also offers picturesque views of the seasonal shift.

Where: Bowman's Hill, 1635 River Road, New Hope

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14

Delaware Canal State Park

A 60-mile tree-lined towpath...

Runners along the Delaware Canal during fall foliage Runners along the Delaware Canal during fall foliage
— Photo by Reflections by Ruth, courtesy of Visit Bucks County

Revel in the brilliant fall colors while strolling the historic towpath that runs from Easton to Bristol , Pennsylvania. Once trod by mule teams pulling cargo-laden boats along the canal, the 60-mile path is used today by people looking to engage in exercise and other recreational pursuits.

Where: Delaware Canal State Park, 11 Lodi Hill Road, Upper Black Eddy

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15

Tyler State Park

Capture fall beauty on the trail...

Experience fall at Tyler State Park , where more than 1,700 acres of parkland occupy the area that was originally a farm. Located 33 miles from Center City in Newtown, nature fans can hike, bike and horseback ride on miles of trails in the midst of changing trees.

Where: Tyler State Park, 101 Swamp Road, Newtown

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16

Washington Crossing Historic Park

A park rich with both history and fall foliage...

Fall foliage at Washington Crossing State Park Fall foliage at Washington Crossing State Park
— Photo by R. Konig

George Washington and his troops turned the tide of the American Revolution by crossing the Delaware River in the Washington Crossing Historic Park area back in 1776. In addition to the park’s extensive historic significance, Washington Crossing is also known for its wonderful outdoor trails and wildlife habitat.

Where: Washington Crossing Historic Park, 1112 River Road, Washington Crossing

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17

Fonthill Castle

Henry Mercer’s concrete castle — and its beautiful grounds...

Foliage at Fonthill CAstle in Doylestown Foliage at Fonthill CAstle in Doylestown
— Photo courtesy Fonthill Castle

The ceilings and walls of Henry Chapman Mercer’s storybook stone mansion are embedded with handcrafted Moravian tiles , and the grounds around the castle, decked in vibrant colors in the fall, are just as enticing.

Where: Fonthill Castle, 525 E. Court Street, Doylestown

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18

Nockamixon State Park

A boating lake surrounded by 1,450 beautiful acres...

Trees changing colors along Lake Nockamixon in fall in Bucks County Trees changing colors along Lake Nockamixon in fall in Bucks County
— Photo by Reflections by Ruth, courtesy of Visit Bucks County

As the leaves turn to hues of crimson and gold, Bucks County residents and visitors can’t get enough of the foliage at Nockamixon State Park . With more than 1,450 acres and four public launching areas, Lake Nockamixon — the largest lake in southeastern Pennsylvania — is a popular spot for boating and outdoor activities of all kinds.

Where: Nockamixon State Park, 1542 Mountain View Drive, Quakertown

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19

Tohickon Valley Park

Enjoy fall foliage on dry land or out on the water...

Meaning “Deer Bone Creek” in Lenape, Tohickon Creek in Tohickon Valley Park is expertly maintained and great for fishing, rafting and rock climbing. Enjoy fall foliage from out on the water or while wandering around on land. Be sure to check out High Rocks, where 200 feet of shale rise above the creek to offer a gorgeous scenic lookout.

Where: Tohickon Valley Park, 158-164 Cafferty Road, Pipersville

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20

Peddler's Village

A scenic place to shop and stroll...

People under fall foliage at Peddler's Village in Bucks COunty People under fall foliage at Peddler's Village in Bucks COunty
— Photo courtesy Peddler's Village

Visitors can soak up autumn as they stroll around brick pathways lined with colorful trees at Peddler’s Village , a charming countryside attraction in Bucks County that occupies 42 acres.

Where: Peddler's Village, 2400 Street Road, New Hope

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21

Longwood Gardens

One of the biggest and best destinations to take in autumn's colors...

Clocking in at more than 1,000 acres in the heart of the beautiful Brandywine Valley, Longwood Gardens is easily one of the biggest and best places in the region to view fall foliage. The lush gardens, woodlands and meadows are a welcome sight for horticulture enthusiasts, and Longwood hosts special programming each fall that highlights the season’s blooms.

Where: Longwood Gardens, 1001 Longwood Road, Kennett Square

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22

Marsh Creek State Park

Inviting fall excursions of all kinds...

The 535-acre Marsh Creek Lake is a popular destination for boaters, but the surrounding forests, fields and wetlands are packed with fantastic trails perfect for a fall excursion.

Where: Marsh Creek State Park, 675 Park Road, Downingtown

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23

French Creek State Park

Forty miles of trails for long, beautiful walks...

— Courtesy French Creek State Park

Hopewell Lake at French Creek State Park is famous for fall scenery, but the 35-plus miles of trails also make it an ideal getaway for hikers, mountain bikers and equestrians.

Where: French Creek State Park, 843 Park Road, Elverson

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24

Jenkins Arboretum

Native plants in a tranquil setting...

More than a mile of paved walkways run through the woods of this majestic botanical garden, making it the perfect spot for horticulturists of all ages to peep fall foliage. For those looking to get a little more exercise, Jenkins Arboretum also offers maps with free self-guided tours of the property and the nearby conservation woodlands.

Where: Jenkins Arboretum, 631 Berwyn Baptist Road, Devon

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25

Valley Forge National Historical Park

3,500 acres of rolling hills...

Once the headquarters of General George Washington’s Revolutionary Army, this wonderfully tranquil park offers trails for jogging and biking and 3,500 acres of rolling hills full of autumn beauty.

Where: Valley Forge National Historical Park, 1400 N. Outer Line Drive, King of Prussia

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26

John James Audubon Center at Mill Grove

A birdwatcher's paradise that's perfect for leaf viewing too...

Mill Grove, the former home of American naturalist John James Audubon, is a haven for wildlife, with 175 sprawling acres of trails, woods and history. The woodlands of John James Audubon Center at Mill Grove draw bird- and leaf-watchers alike.

Where: John James Audubon Center at Mill Grove, 1201 Pawlings Road, Audubon

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27

Evansburg State Park

Where golfing meets farmland...

Choose from meadows, forests, farmland or fields for a fall-foliage adventure at Evansburg State Park . Heads up to golf enthusiasts: The 18-hole Skippack Golf Course is located within the park.

Where: Evansburg State Park, 851 May Hall Road, Collegeville

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28

Ridley Creek State Park

For the fisherman and fall-foliage seeker alike...

Ridley Creek State Park Ridley Creek State Park
— Photo courtesy Ridley Creek State Park

Ridley Creek State Park has a creek stocked for trout fishing and trails perfect for exploring. Look forward to gorgeous views, waterfalls and a slew of vibrant fall colors.

Where: Ridley Creek State Park, 1023 Sycamore Mills Road, Media

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29

Tyler Arboretum

650 acres blazing with color...

A family walking through Tyler Arboretum A family walking through Tyler Arboretum
— Photo by R. Kennedy for Visit Philadelphia

Tyler Arboretum has been a refuge for tree lovers in the Philadelphia region since the days of William Penn. During autumn, its 650 acres are ablaze with seasonal color.

Where: Tyler Arboretum, 515 Painter Road, Media

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30

Brandywine River Museum of Art

Home to the scenery that inspired Andrew Wyeth's majestic paintings...

The artistic talents of the Wyeth family are on full display at this picturesque Brandywine River Museum of Art , seated along the Brandywine River. Venture outside and see the beautiful countryside that inspired Andrew Wyeth to paint his signature landscapes.

Where: Brandywine River Museum of Art, 1 Hoffmans Mill Road, Chadds Ford

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Top Spots in Philadelphia

Fairmount Park
Wissahickon Valley Park
Schuylkill River Trail
Morris Arboretum & Gardens
Franklin Square
Independence Hall and Philadelphia's Historic District
Benjamin Franklin Parkway
Rittenhouse Square
University City
Bartram's Garden
John Heinz National Wildlife Refuge
Laurel Hill Cemetary & West Laurel Hill Cemetery

Top Spots in Philadelphia's Countryside

Bowman's Hill Tower
Delaware Canal State Park
Tyler State Park
Washington Crossing Historic Park
Fonthill Castle
Nockamixon State Park
Tohickon Valley Park
Peddler's Village
Longwood Gardens
Marsh Creek State Park
French Creek State Park
Jenkins Arboretum
Valley Forge National Historical Park
John James Audubon Center at Mill Grove
Evansburg State Park
Ridley Creek State Park
Tyler Arboretum
Brandywine River Museum of Art
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