If you're planning a trip to Long Island, New York, in the fall, you'll enjoy comfortable temperatures while exploring the area. You'll also have the benefit of seeing Long Island's trees change from lush green to blazing red, yellow, and orange.
It's time to get outdoors to enjoy this special time of the year. In the fall, you can enjoy hiking, explore historic sites, pick apples, and even get a scare at one of Long Island's most haunted places.
Hike Through Long Island's Autumn Landscapes
Long Island, New York, is home to several hiking trails such as the ones in Garvies Point Preserve that lead down to a quiet beach. There are also some wonderful wildlife refuges such as the Oyster Bay National Wildlife Refuge.
At the Nature Conservancy’s Uplands Farm Sanctuary, which retains the look and feel of the old farm, you can hike a double-loop trail surrounded by red cedar, oak, hickory, and other tall trees that put on a colorful display in the fall.
Long Island in the fall is a great place and time to go apple picking. You'll have a glorious day in the orchard and then can bring home a bounty of apples right at their peak, great for eating raw or using in homemade apple pie, apple crisp, applesauce, apple muffins, or apple fritters.
There are a variety of farms on Long Island for pumpkin and apple picking. Fort Salonga Farm features dwarf, 6-foot trees with fruits just 18 inches from the ground. This makes it easy for the children. And, at The Milk Pail Farmstand, you can enjoy apple cider, fresh apples, and apple pie.
Many Long Island pumpkin farms also offer seasonal fun such as corn mazes and Halloween events. Some sell already-picked pumpkins. There are so many Long Island farms where you can pick your own pumpkins that you'll have a hard time choosing just one.
In addition, Farms like Brightwater's in Bay Shore offer a full-blown harvest festival. Farview Farm in Bridgehampton has a large corn maze to entertain adventurous children.
Each year's harvest is different so call ahead or visit the farm websites to double-check the times and days these farms are open to the public.
To celebrate Halloween, read about Long Island's most haunted places—or visit one if you dare! If you are feeling brave, you will surely get a good fright at one of these top haunted spots on Long Island. Stories about paranormal sightings at places like an abandoned psychiatric hospital or the Fire Island Light House will give you goosebumps.
Fall is a great time to stroll the sands of Long Island's beaches plus you won't have to pay a daily fee or buy a season pass. The high temperatures of summer are gone, summer crowds have dwindled, and you can breathe in the salt air and listen to the soothing sounds of the surf. Long Island has a variety of beautiful beaches on both its north and south shores.
Long Island in the fall is a great place and time to take a leisurely walk through some of the area's beautiful public gardens. Explore arboretums, formal gardens, woodlands, greenhouses, and gardens on the grounds of historic homes. If you enjoy Japanese gardens, visit LongHouse Reserve or John P. Humes Japanese Stroll Garden.
The Nassau County Museum of Art in Roslyn Harbor, NY, features exhibits of major artists in its Gold Coast Georgian mansion. Beyond the mansion, you can wander through 145 acres of fields, woods, ponds, and formal gardens where sculptures by Niki de Saint Phalle, Fernando Botero, Tom Otterness, Alexander Calder, and other luminaries adorn the outdoor setting.
Sit back aboard a pontoon boat leaving from Stony Brook Harbor for a 1.5-hour cruise through the wetlands. An onboard naturalist will entertain you with facts about the history, geology, and ecology of this 88-acre wetlands preserve.
It's great to jog or take long walks with your dog on Long Island in the fall, but some places in Nassau and Suffolk won't allow your canine friend.
Fortunately, there are designated dog runs on Long Island where your dog is welcome. Some are fenced off-leash parks and others are dog-friendly trails where you need to keep your dog with you on a leash.
Surprisingly, beautiful parks like Bailey Arboretum welcome on-leash dogs in their 42-acres of gardens. Sagamore Hill National Historic Site allows leashed dogs on the 83-acre property that surrounds the home of former U.S. President Teddy Roosevelt who was a dog lover.
Both you and your dog will easily make friends as you walk.
Have a Long Island getaway at places such as the award-winning Glen Cove Mansion built in 1910 or the historic Oheka Castle reminiscent of a French chateau.
Other ideal fall getaways are in the Hamptons (now that the summer crowds have left) and Long Island wine country.
From seafood restaurants to vegetarian restaurants to outdoor dining and everything in between, Long Island offers a wealth of great places to eat. You'll find casual and upscale restaurants offering South Indian favorites, fresh catches of the day, and beautiful water views.
The Clam Bar in Napeague is a place where you order at the window and sit outside. They are known for their fresh locally-sourced fish that make menu items like lobster macaroni and cheese, grilled swordfish, and “Montauk Pearl” oysters especially tasty. And, if you want something more upscale, try the fresh fish at the Crows Nest in Montauk.
Taking a drive and stopping for a meal can make for a fun outing. Visit a brewery or go wine tasting on Long Island's North Fork.
Explore Long Island's Neighborhoods
Now that the weather is pleasant, take a walk or drive through some of Long Island's many wonderful neighborhoods. From Oyster Bay, once home to Teddy Roosevelt's "Summer White House," to the Lloyd Neck neighborhood where Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie once rented a luxurious estate, Long Island's neighborhoods offer great scenery and attractions. Also, consider taking an Oyster Bay walking and driving tour or a walking tour of the Port Washington waterfront.