Where to See the Fall Leaves on New York's Upper West Side and Beyond
September 17 2021
When it comes to seeing the turning of the fall leaves, the first and most obvious mention for anyone visiting the Upper West Side is Central Park. Central Park is perhaps the most famous place to see the changing of the leaves in the city, as we covered in a previous article - but there are plenty of hidden gems in the Upper West Side neighborhood and further afield, if you’re looking for something unique.
A leisurely five-minute stroll from the Hotel Beacon is Riverside Park – a public park that offers views over the Hudson River and towards West New York. Like all parks in New York, the lush green of summer bows out for the burst of color that fall provides – transforming the scenery completely. The Park is a family favorite all year round* with playgrounds for children, bars and cafes and stretches four miles alongside the Hudson waterfront.
*If you find yourself in NYC for spring don’t miss Cherry Walk inside the park when the cherry blossom – or Sakura - blooms!
Upper West Side’s Brownstone Streets
New York’s Upper West Side is a residential neighborhood boasting tree lined streets – that all turn vibrant shades of red and orange during fall. A stroll along any neighborhood within the Upper East Side will create the perfect fall experience, but the brownstone neighborhoods are particularly special. Upper West Side’s brownstone streets were introduced in the 1880’s* and have since grown to become some of the city’s most photographed buildings – especially in the fall months when the colors complement each other. The beautiful streets offer a great opportunity for snapping the perfect family photo in time for the holiday season!
*Some of the oldest brownstones on New York’s Upper West Side can be found at 108 West 75th Street.
The Empire State Building
The observation deck at the Empire State Building is one of the best places in New York to see the whole city at once, and there is nothing quite like the view in fall. You can easily reach the Empire State via the subway in under 20 minutes or under an hour on foot from the Hotel Beacon and the Upper West Side. The observation deck offers 360-degree views across the whole city, and you will be able to fall in all it’s glory from a unique viewpoint in one of NYC’s most famous landmarks.
Brooklyn is a day trip from the Upper West Side – however, for many visitors to the city, the famous Brooklyn Bridge is unmissable – especially if it’s a “once in a lifetime” visit. It takes just under 30 minutes to travel to the bridge from the Beacon Hotel using public transport, and you could combine the trip with visiting other landmarks (such as the Empire State Building) on the way. Brooklyn Bridge is iconic at any time of year, but when fall kicks in it is arguably at its most beautiful. The best places to find the fall foliage around the bridge are in the Bridge Park or the Brooklyn Heights Promenade – both of which also offer unmissable views across New York’s world-famous skyline on top of the beautiful fall colors.
The Fall Map
The changing of the leaves happens in the same months of every year – but the best days to experience unmissable locations within the city changes daily. This interactive fall map is a great tool to have if you plan on making the most of your fall trip and ensuring you don’t miss the turning of the leaves in your favorite “must see spots”.
If you’re visiting NYC this Fall, The Upper West Side is a unique family friendly location offering a homey feel in the heart of the city. Learn more about the Upper West Side, or the Hotel Beacon and their apartment-style family rooms.