There’s no more denying it: Fall is here. Summer is gone and October has arrived. BUT – that’s okay! There is still plenty to do indoors and out even though the seasons have changed. So grab a scarf and instead of singing the post-summer blues, try out some of these made-for-fall experiences in NYC during the upcoming months.
Everyone goes to Central Park during the summer to sunbathe and explore, but really fall is the time where the park’s beauty truly shines. The park’s 843 acres of greenery provide the perfect setting to watch the leaves change as the temperature falls. The Central Park Conservatory offers 19 different tours throughout the fall season offering a variety of different views of the iconic national landmark. Visit sites like Bethesda Fountain, Bethesda Terrace, The Lake, Cherry Hill, The Mall and Literary Walk, Bow Bridge, Sheep Meadow and more on the Iconic Views of Central Park Tour. Or, become a member and bring man’s best friend along on the Hound Hike tour on November 20. Art lovers should check out the West Side Stories Tour or the Art of the Park Tour, while history buff’s shouldn’t miss the Northern Forts Tour. Remember: check the tours link on the Central Park website before you go for dates and prices of tours. Some tours are exclusively offered seasonally, require advanced registration or are open to members-only, so make sure you know which tour is right for you.
Also available in Central Park, try going on a Venetian Gondola Tour or renting a small boat to explore The Lake by. Sail the Park offers model sailboats for rent along the Conservatory Water. For food, eat lakeside at the Central Park Boathouse for the ultimate views of NY in the fall.
To get out of the city, take your kids to the Queens County Farm Museum. Kids and adults alike will enjoy the Amazing Maize Maze, a three-acre corn maze filled with clues and puzzles open weekends during October. Tip: There’s also a pumpkin patch on site so make room in the car to bring some home. Also, the Fall Festival at Forest Park in Queens on October 17 and the Great American Harvest Fest on October 23 in Staten Island are worth a visit this season. Formerly called “Old Home Day,” the festival takes place between Richmondtown and Decker Farm, offering families the opportunity to spend the day exploring a variety of places, via a trolley from one site to the other. During the festival Center Street is filled with a variety of activities, including cider pressing, candle making, embroidery, needlework, furniture making, knitting, lace making, quilting, stone carving, tin-smithing and more. Good to know: the festival offers group prices per family of four, so be sure to check that out if you’re traveling with a group.
If you’re looking more for adventure, the Bronx River Alliance offers several paddling, biking and hiking excursions that run along the 4.5-mile Bronx River throughout the fall, including a Full River Paddle on October 15 and the Annual Tour de Bronx bike ride on October 23. In Brooklyn, try joining Get Up and Ride on a Classic Bike Tour of Brooklyn or a Brooklyn Sunset Tour. If you’re a foodie, don’t miss Brooklyn Flea’s Smorgasburg on October 23 for unique bites from over 100 vendors in Prospect Park.
For the brave one in your group, try New York State’s largest haunted house, The Uninvited: Awakening, located in upper Manhattan. Leave the kids at home for this one, as you need to be 18 or older to attend. Unlike other haunted attractions, The Uninvited is a choose-your-own adventure where guests are given free rein to explore the 25,000 square foot labyrinth. Insider Tip: if you’re too scared, there’s a safe word you can shout to leave the attraction early. If you don’t like being touched, we suggest purchasing the No Touch Chicken Ticket add on to make sure the actors don’t touch you. Otherwise, yes, you will be touched. Don’t say we didn’t warn you.