It’s not too late to enjoy the beautiful Northern Virginia fall foliage. The season still has a few weeks to go and some areas haven’t even reached the peak viewing season yet.
Taking in the fall foliage can be an adventure in many different ways. Let’s look at some of the best ways to view fall foliage in the NoVA area, along with the best time to see the leaves.
When is the Peak Season for Fall Foliage in NoVA?
According to the Fall Foliage Report, the peak season for Northern Virginia will happen between October 12th and October 28th. This leaves some time to get out and enjoy the leaves during the best time of the year.
The Virginia Department of Forestry states the average peak season is between October 10th and 20th each year. So, the best time to see fall foliage for 2020 in NoVA is right now through about the end of October.
You can check the visual prediction map to know which areas are in peak season and when it’s best to see the leaves changing.
Top 5 Ways to See Fall Foliage in Northern Virginia
Of course, the most common way to enjoy the best fall foliage in NoVA is hiking. You can hike to a spot along the Appalachian Trail to enjoy beautiful views or hike in one of the many nearby state parks. There are several great spots for hiking and viewing fall foliage throughout the area.
The Mount Vernon Trail is another great option as it runs along the Potomac River. It’s not quite the same as hiking the Appalachian Trail, as it’s more of just a walking trail. However, it will provide some of the best views of the leaves as they change at Arlington National Cemetery and other historic attractions.
The Alexandria Heritage Trail offers a great option for biking and seeing the fall leaves as they change colors. It’s a 23-mile paved trail you can enjoy throughout the season.
Of course, there are many other places you can see fall foliage as you bike on a trail or on the road.
You don’t have to leave your vehicle to enjoy the beautiful fall leaves in NoVA. You can take the Skyline Drive through Shenandoah National Park or you can drive through many other areas throughout NoVA.
Of course, if you want the best views and the best photo opportunities, you might need to park and get out at a few points along the way.
A very unique and adventurous way to see the leaves changing throughout NoVA is by taking a ride down a zipline. There are several ziplining options throughout the area including:
- Bear Mountain Ziplines – Seven zip lines with riding up to 35 mph, a rope course, and a climbing wall.
- Go Ape – Three treetop zip lines, suspension bridges, and a 320-foot center zip line to enjoy.
- Massanutten Family Adventure Park – The best spot for the family to enjoy leaves and ziplining, this spot offers a Mega Zip court with an 800-foot zipline and six other ziplines along the two-hour excursion.
- Empower Adventures – Found at the Salamander Resort & Spa, this zip line spot offers many packages and tours including a kid zip line, private tours, and the treetop zip tour.
A few other zipline options are found throughout Northern Virginia with great views of fall foliage, as well.
In these unique times with COVID-19 still keeping many people in higher-risk groups home, you can still view fall foliage in NoVA. If you’re stuck at home, you can enjoy the foliage from The Foliage Network without leaving your home.
This network offers webcams all across the Eastern Coast including in the Northern Virginia area. Enjoy plenty of changing leaves right from your home or use this network to check out where you might want to go on your next adventure.
When you want to see the leaves change during the fall season, there are plenty of ways to check them out. You can go for a hike in many unique spots throughout Northern Virginia or just go for a walk along a trail near the river.
Of course, taking a drive or viewing the leaves virtually offers two great options for staying safe during the coronavirus times we live in. If you’re feeling a bit more adventurous, a zipline tour makes for an excellent way to see fall foliage in NoVA.