9 events to attend to enjoy NoVA’s fall foliage

From kayaking to farm tours, here are a few ways to enjoy the fall views beyond taking a drive.

Photo courtesy of NOVA Parks

Get outside and enjoy the region’s tree transformation with these fall outings.

Evening Paddling Adventures
Oct. 2, 5-7 p.m.
Paddle along Belmont Bay and Kane’s Creek for the last Evening Paddling Adventures offered this year at Mason Neck Park. Spend two hours on the water and try to spot beavers, turtles, foxes, herons and bald eagles. This is a great activity for families with children 5 and older. Reservations required. // Mason Neck State Park: 7301 High Point Road, Lorton; $9-$15

Fall Farm & Foliage Tour
Oct. 12, times vary
Enjoy a day exploring 8,000 trees and shrubs at Blandy Farm, touring the streets and historic buildings of Winchester, seeing the offerings at Market-Miller Orchards, Farm Market & Bakery and viewing the mountainous fall foliage during this tour through the Fairfax Park Authority. This tour is meant for ages 5 and older and registration is required, as seats are limited. // locations vary; $64

Fall Foliage Walk – Huntley Meadows
Oct. 13, 11:15 a.m.-12:45 p.m.
Start Sunday morning off on the right foot by taking a stroll through Huntley Meadows with a group of women in Northern Virginia. From the boardwalk above a marsh to the two-story observation tower, there are plenty of stops along the route to exhibit bright red hues and crisp yellows on the trees. // Huntley Meadows: 3701 Lockheed Blvd., Alexandria; free

Autumn Leaf Excursions
Oct. 19, 9 a.m.-noon
Mix in a little history with your exploration this October, as members of the Rappahannock Chapter of the Railway Historical Society lead a lesson along the restored train in Fredericksburg. As you learn about the experience of rail workers from the early 20th century, be sure to take in the everchanging foliage along Depp Run. // Rappahannock Railroad Museum: 11700 Main St., Fredericksburg; free

Loudoun Fall Farm Tour 2019
Oct. 19-20, 10 a.m.-4 p.m.
For two days, local residents are encouraged to come by local Loudoun farms to participate in a variety of seasonal activities in the outdoors. From AltaTerra Farm Bed & Breakfast to Great Country Farms, there’s plenty to offer, including fresh-pressed apple cider, craft vendors and petting zoos. // locations vary throughout Loudoun County; free

Fall Color Kayak Tour
Oct. 19, noon-3 p.m.
Take a kayak and paddle down the Occoquan River to immerse yourself in fall with the changing leaves. This tour is for anyone over the age of 16. Spaces are limited and registration is required. // Occoquan Regional Park: 9751 Ox Road, Lorton; $30

Night Hike and Campfire – Nocturnal Wildlife
Oct. 19, 7-8:30 p.m.
Spend a night out in nature and learn about the wildlife that comes out with a naturalist-led tour, and meet a few nighttime creatures, followed by a campfire and s’mores. For families and kids 6 and older. Reservations required. // Potomac Overlook Regional Park: 2845 N. Marcey Road, Arlington; $10

Fountainhead Regional Park Fall Colors Kayak Tour
Oct. 20 & 28, noon-2:30 p.m.
Led by NOVA Parks roving naturalist David Garcia, this kayak tour will take those ages 14 and older on an afternoon adventure along the Occoquan Reservoir. As you paddle along the water with friends and family by your side, Garcia will go into detail about the history of the area, as well as the natural elements of the changing leaves around you. // Fountainhead Regional Park: 10875 Hampton Road, Fairfax Station; $30

2019 Fall Foliage Trip
Oct. 24, 9:15 a.m.-6 p.m.
This fall, join the Jewish Community Center of Northern Virginia for its annual foliage trip to a nearby, bountiful location. This year’s itinerary will take place in Maryland, with a stop at the Washington County Museum of Fine Arts in Hagerstown, lunch at the Carriage House Inn in Emmitsburg and a walk to Catoctin Mountain in Thurmont for a presentation by a park ranger. // Jewish Community Center of Northern Virginia: 8900 Little River Turnpike, Fairfax; $65

This post originally appeared in our October 2019 issue. For more fall events, subscribe to our Things to Do newsletter.

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