When it comes to watching green hillsides turn into blazing quilts of autumnal color in New England
, most of the attention goes to Vermont and New Hampshire. But beyond the red and yellow lights of New York City, the Empire State has plenty of blazing red and yellow trees to enjoy in October and November -- along with oodles of cozy, comfortable bed and breakfasts that make a great base for your foliage follies. Here are five of my favorites.
Courtesy Renwick Clifton House
There’s an abundance of interesting art inside this B&B, yet it’s nothing compared to the natural artistry you can witness while sitting on the heated back deck taking in the vivid palate of colors in the hills across the Hudson River. If you’d prefer a more private “art” showing, choose the Mary Powell, Chancellor Livingston or Cleremont rooms, which all feature impressive river and mountain views. Because leaf-peeping can cause you to work up quite an appetite, you’ll especially appreciate the wine and cheese plate you get upon arrival and the chocolate truffles that await in every room.
27 Barclay Street, Saugerties, NY, 12477; 845-246-0552; Rates: $170 to $275.
Courtesy The Inn at Green River
Although technically located in New York, this inn is situated in the foothills of Massachusetts's Berkshire Mountains
, which offer great hiking opportunities. Guests can drink in the beauty of the changing sugar maples on the property -- and in the more distant hills -- while drinking a cup of hot tea in one of the Adirondack chairs in the Inn’s spacious meadow. The inn is part of the Hudson Berkshire beverage trail, so if you'd like some red and gold in your glass as well as in the mountains, the innkeepers can get you started.
9 Nobletown Road, Hillsdale, NY, 12529; 518-325-7248; Rates: $139 to $289.
Courtesy Ruah Bed & Breakfast
The 80-foot-long balcony that stretches across the front of this grand house is the place to be as the hills ringing Lake George get decked out in their autumn finery. But even if one of those late-season storms blows in, you can still enjoy grand vistas from the huge living room or from each of the B&B’s four guest rooms. An abundance of walking trails within easy reach of the Ruah’s front door lets you kick up some leaves in the woods and enjoy that unmistakable fall fragrance.
9221 Lake Shore Drive, Hague, NY, 12836; 518-543-8816; Rates: $128 to $180.
Courtesy Saratoga Farmstead B&B
Farm fields take on a gorgeous yellow hue in autumn, giving the surrounding trees serious competition. The Saratoga Farmstead Bed and Breakfast lets you enjoy this golden grandeur thanks to a walking trail that takes you through the 10 acres of fields surrounding the inn, which is the only certified green B&B in Saratoga County. And while a stay here truly feels like a rural escape, the temptations of downtown Saratoga Springs are just two-and-a-half miles away.
41 Locust Grove Road, Saratoga Springs, NY, 12866, 518-587-2074; Rates: $150 to $275.
Courtesy of Ecce B&B
In addition to the reds, yellows and oranges of the Catskill Mountains
, this bed and breakfast lets you take in another color from the leaf-peeping perch of their outdoor deck -- silver. That’s the color the Delaware River takes on 300 feet below as it meanders along the valley floor in the early-morning light. A wood-burning fireplace in the common room adds to the autumnal ambience.
19 Silverfish Rd, P.O. Box 174, Barryville, NY, 12719, 845-557-8562; Rates: $175 to $285.