Autumn Leaf Peeping Trips in North Carolina
It won’t be long until the smothering summer heat gives way to the crisp cool breezes of autumn. The kids return to school, and everyone anticipates fall’s sports, activities, and holidays. For many people across the country, it’s time to travel to prime destinations for leaf peeping. Our Shuttle Service to RDU encounters many people going to see these sights and take photographs of nature’s splendor.
Each section of the United States is recognized for its weather patterns and unique landscapes. Some areas have marked seasonal changes, while others have cool and rainy seasons instead of freezing winter snow. Only the more temperate regions are home to the colorful autumn forest.
Every year in autumn, thousands of people from all over America and Europe travel to see the changing leaves. Splashes of scarlet, orange and golden yellow greet the tourists in a breathtaking collage the trees create. It’s an ideal opportunity for pictures, videos, and hikes through the forest.
The Best Leaf Peeping Regions
Appalachia, northern New England, and the upper Midwestern States are the most popular leaf-peeping destinations. The autumn leaf display extends clear into Quebec and Ontario, Canadian provinces. Leaf enthusiasts often travel alone or with a leaf peeper touring group.
Several of these seasonal visitors will make their way to North Carolina, and we’re proud to offer a Durham RDU Shuttle to weary travelers. The Tar Heel State is renowned for its showy fall leaves display, especially around the Blue Ridge Parkway. Forests in the Raleigh-Durham area provide a kaleidoscope of stunning leaf colors that attract locals and out-of-state visitors.
Whether this is your first time or a seasoned leaf peeper, planning a trip to enjoy the autumn foliage is exciting. Traveling across the country, you may fly to your destination and rent a car to tour the forests. Either way, precise planning is essential if you want to see the fall foliage in peak colors. Thankfully, our airport shuttle can get you to and from your hotel and help with rental car services.
Plan the Dates and Remember These Few Things
The first weeks of October are the optimal time to see fall leaves in North Carolina. You can travel anywhere from the Blue Ridge Parkway through the Smoky Mountains to see the vibrant brush strokes of Mother Nature. North Carolina is home to over 200 species of trees, and each contributes a stunning hue.
The North Carolina National Parks Division publishes the Fall Foliage Prediction Map online each year. It’s a handy tool that estimates the best dates to view foliage in North Carolina and other regions. Although the dates are only an approximation, most leaf peepers find it a reliable source.
1. Book Your Flight Ahead of Time
When it comes to booking plane tickets, the earlier, the better. Things get busy around the RDU airport this time of year. Many die-hard leaf peepers reserve their flights a year in advance. There’s only a small window of days when the leaves are their brightest, so time is of the essence. Take advantage of any frequent flier miles or discounts for early booking.
If you plan to fly, you’ll also need to rent a car in advance, unless you’re staying with family or friends. Perhaps you’re among the many folks who book a leaf peeping tour on a chartered bus. Regardless of how you decide to travel, be sure to do it early enough to enjoy the colorful show.
2. Pack the Right Clothing
Your packing will depend on how far you’re traveling and how long you stay. While fall days in North Carolina are often sunny and warm, the evening and night can be cold. Pack some comfortable clothes for the day and a warm jacket for the chilly evenings.
Some of the best experiences in leaf peeping is taking a hiking tour. Bring appropriate clothing and gear for comfort and safety if you’re hiking. Don’t forget an umbrella in case of a passing shower.
3. Bring Your Photo Equipment
Of course, you want to capture these stunning colors for your memories. Unless you plan to take professional pictures with a camera, your smartphone will do a great job. Use every opportunity to snap photos and videos from your leaf-peeping excursions.
You may be inspired to draw or paint what you see if you’re artistically inclined. Set up an easel in the middle of the woods or a quiet place in a park. Let Mother Nature be your muse to create a lovely work of art to remember your experiences. You might also consider packing a small reference guide for tree identification.
Each species has a specific autumn hue, and it helps you to be able to identify them. Be sure to know and follow the state and local rules before you gather fallen leaves for a collection.
How to Get from Here to There
The Raleigh-Durham Airport will be a bustling hub for you and other leaf peepers. Whether you need a taxi to your hotel or a shuttle service back to the airport, RDU Airport Shuttle has you covered. Call today to make reservations, so you can relax and enjoy a memorable leaf-peeping excursion and leave the driving to us.