The leaves are calling: it's time to take that autumn trip to savor the splendor of the fall foliage! The Pocono Mountains region covers four counties and 2,400 square miles of northeast Pennsylvania's beautiful hills, forests, lakes and rivers...meaning there are plenty of stunning scenic vistas for visitors to discover!
Take in the leaves from the side of a sprawling lake, hike to the heights for a panoramic view of the reds, oranges and yellows, or hop in the car to wind along scenic fall drives that take you to local small towns where fall fun abounds. We've broken down five fantastic areas to visit in the Poconos this autumn to see the changing colors.
The summit of Camelback Mountain in Big Pocono State Park offers spectacular fall foliage views across Pennsylvania, New Jersey and New York. Let the car do the uphill work, and park near a picnic area with a panoramic view along Rim Road. Rather work up your appetite first? Big Pocono has 8.5 miles of challenging hiking trails to explore.
There's another trail near the mountain waiting to be explored: the Pocono Beverage Trail! Enjoy an autumn meal and hand-crafted beverages at Barley Creek Brewing Company. Get a treetop view of the autumn leaves from the aerial obstacle courses and zip lines at Camelback Mountain Adventures, or stay overnight at Camelback Lodge & Aquatopia Indoor Waterpark to experience even more seasonal fun including UTV fall foliage tours, fall tubing and cozy campfires complete with s'mores.
Delaware Water Gap National Recreation Area
Running through the heart of Delaware Water Gap National Recreation Area (DWGNRA), the Delaware River winds between mountains blazing with russet and golden hues at this time of year, offering incredible foliage vistas from the water, from hiking trails high on the cliffs above, or deep in the forests, framing mighty waterfalls. Discover the two tallest cascades in Pennsylvania, Raymondskill Falls and Dingmans Falls, on the northern end of the Recreation Area.
There's so much to see along the Delaware! The Cliff Trail, not far from Milford, offers a breathtaking overlook of the river. Travel south to the historic borough of Delaware Water Gap to view the season's finery from Mount Minsi along the famed Appalachian Trail. Celebrate 50 years with Pocono Environmental Education Center, located within DWGNRA, during their annual Harvest Festival on Saturday, October 8, 2022.
There's magic to be found on the shores of Lake Wallenpaupack in all four seasons, but the flaming colors reflected in the water every autumn are something no lake lover should miss. With 52 miles of shoreline and a surface stretching 5,700 shimmering acres, there are plenty of different viewpoints to discover. Get out on the water with a rental from local outfitters like Rubber Duckie Boat Rentals, or book a September or October day of fishing with Ray's Charter Guide Service. See the sunset from the Wallenpaupack Lake Trail, or tee off with views of the lake in the distance at Paupack Hills Golf Course. Looking for even more fall lakes to enjoy? Drive 20 minutes south of Lake Wallenpaupack to explore the two lakes and miles of hiking trails at Promised Land State Park.
Lehigh Gorge and Jim Thorpe
Fall is all about the foliage in Carbon County, where the mountains and rocky outcroppings rising above the Lehigh River in Lehigh Gorge State Park harbor plenty of autumn outdoor adventures. The small town of Lehighton is a perfect base for a fall day trip, offering plenty of parking, easy access to the D&L Trail for hiking, biking or fall whitewater rafting trips with outfitters like Jim Thorpe River Adventures, plus fun events like the Annual Rocktoberfest in early October.
Located minutes up the road from Lehighton, the Victorian splendor of Jim Thorpe is set off perfectly by the seasonal colors and drifting leaves. The popular Jim Thorpe Fall Foliage Festival is held the first four weekends of October, bringing vendors and fun family activities to the historic streets. Hop aboard the Lehigh Gorge Scenic Railway for an Autumn Leaf Train Excursion running daily throughout October.
Scenic Route 6 through the Northern Poconos
On the northern end of the Poconos region in Wayne and Pike counties, scenic Route 6 has been called one of the top fall drives in the country. Starting from the Delaware River, the road winds west past Shohola Marsh Reservoir before turning north at Lake Wallenpaupack and following the Lackawaxen River. If your ideal way to view the fall foliage is from a sidewalk cafe with a freshly-brewed coffee, you'll want to make sure you plan a few pit stops! Route 6 connects the charming small towns of Milford, Hawley and Honesdale, and all three communities boast picturesque and historic downtown districts lined with colorful trees plus fun harvest celebrations.
Make sure you consult our fall foliage forecast, updated every Thursday through the end of October, to plan your getaway for when the trees will be at their peak in the three distinct color zones across the Poconos region. For even more inspiration, check out more than two dozen ways to see the leaves, browse local autumn activities and events and find ideas for fall fun.
The perfect way to end a crisp autumn day soaking in the sights of the season is with a relaxing stay at welcoming Poconos accommodations. Be sure to browse special offers or visit midweek to save on your fall foliage getaway!