6 Places to See the Best Fall Foliage in Ohio: Find Stunning Fall Colors in The Buckeye State|
When someone says, “leaf-peeping,” Ohio may not be the first place you think of. But our list of places to see the best fall foliage in Ohio will change that. The Buckeye State is home to a variety of tree species, including red maples, northern red oak, bigtooth aspen, dogwood and more. These leaves transform into brilliant shades of red, yellow and orange in autumn, and cover Ohio in a blanket of beautiful fall colors.
So, it’s time to go on a fall hike, take a scenic road trip, or ride a roller coaster—and check out some awesome places to enjoy autumn views at the same time!
Keep reading to check out some of the best places to see fall foliage in Ohio.
When Do Leaves Change in Ohio?
Leaves start changing in Ohio in early October, but the best time to see fall foliage is near the middle or end of the month. It’s also important to note that weather may affect the timing of the leaves changing color, and leaves in northern Ohio will change before leaves in southern Ohio.
When is Peak Fall Foliage in Ohio in 2022?
Peak fall foliage in Ohio is expected to occur in mid to late October. Take a road trip or visit one of the places listed below to see some breathtaking fall colors! You can also check out this report to track fall leaves in Ohio.
1. Hocking Hills State Park
Hocking Hills is located in southern Ohio, about an hour southeast of Columbus. If you’re looking for some amazing fall colors, this is the place to be. There are a variety of tree species, so you’ll see reds, oranges and yellows galore.
You’ll want to check out Hocking Hills State Park, offering 25 miles of hiking trails, camping and lodging opportunities. Included in that are the Hocking Hills Scenic Byway, Old Man’s Cave, Cedar Falls and Conkle’s Hollow. Try an elevated hike like Cantwell Cliffs or Conkle’s Hollow upper trail to get the best views of fall!
Address: 19852 OH-664 S, Logan, OH 43138
2. Cuyahoga Valley National Park
You can find Cuyahoga Valley National Park between Cleveland and Akron. The park is home to the Crooked River, which winds its way around 33,000 acres of forests and farmland. That’s a lot of space to explore and see some incredible fall leaves.
According to the National Park Service, some of the best places for autumn views in Cuyahoga Valley National Park are Oak Hill Trail (in early October), Brandywine Falls (in mid-October) and the Ledges Trail (in late October). You’ll also want to check out the Everett Covered Bridge (it’s a great place to snap a fall photo!). Or, hop on the Cuyahoga Valley Scenic Railroad for another way to experience the changing leaves.
Address: 15610 Vaughn Rd. Brecksville , OH
3. Mill Creek Park
Located in northeastern Ohio in the Youngstown area, Mill Creek Park offers a unique leaf-peeping experience. The park spans 2,658 acres and offers historic landmarks, lakes, trails and more.
The park covers a lot of space, so we’ve picked some of the top places to see fall colors in the area. We suggest visiting Lily Pond or Lake Glacier, as well as Lanterman’s Mill and the Suspension Bridge (also known as the Cinderella Bridge). Both are surrounded by trees, so you’re sure to see an array of fall foliage.
Address: Youngstown, OH 44509
4. Lake Erie
Even though hiking or wandering through the forest is a great way to admire scenic fall foliage, it’s not the only way. Take a drive on the Lake Erie Coastal Highway instead. Drive along the shore and see Lake Erie on one side and some beautiful fall leaves on the other.
Or, if you’re a thrill-seeker, head up to Cedar Point and enjoy the fall leaves from one of the roller coasters. For a more relaxing experience, hop on The Sky Ride. It’s a gondola journey that lifts you almost 100 feet in the air, so you can enjoy a panoramic view of Lake Erie and the warm autumn colors from the sky. It’s important to note that Cedar Point normally closes in late October, so if you want to stop here on your leaf tour make sure to check their website first.
Address (Cedar Point): 1 Cedar Point Dr, Sandusky, OH 44870
5. Kelley’s Island State Park
Kelley’s Island is located just north of Lakeside Marblehead on Lake Erie. The state park is on the northern shores of the island, offering hiking trails, historic sites, nature preserves, fishing and boating opportunities.
But most importantly, the island is full of vibrant fall leaves that you can see reflected on the lake. To get to Kelley’s Island, take the ferry from Lakeside Marblehead.
6. Appalachian Byway
You can go leaf-peeping without even leaving your car. Hop on the Appalachian Byway to view changing leaves in the foothills of the Appalachian Mountains. This road covers more than 100 miles, traveling from SR-78 from Clarington to Nelsonville to Caldwell.
As you drive, you’ll see your fair share of fall colors, along with rolling hills, open pastures and maybe even a giraffe or two. (Provided you take a short detour to see The Wilds in Cumberland.)
Address: SR 78 from Clarington to Nelsonville to Caldwell, OH 43724
Bonus: Canopy Tours
If you’re a thrill-seeker eager to enjoy fall in Ohio, a canopy tour is the way to do it. Experience the beauty of fall foliage in a whole new way. Canopy tours are offered all over Ohio, but here are some of the top options:
- Valley Zipline Tours in Lancaster
- Hocking Hills Canopy Tours in Rockbridge
- Tree Frog Canopy Tours in Glenmont
- Common Ground Zipline Canopy Tours in Oberlin
Final Thoughts: Best Fall Foliage in Ohio
Ohio is breathtaking in the fall, but The Buckeye State is full of adventure all year long! If you’re in the Columbus area, you have to check out our blog with unique day trips from Columbus. (Some of them are even great leaf-peeping spots!)
What do you think of our list of places to see fall foliage in Ohio? Let us know in the comments below.
Store Space cares about providing Ohioans with premium storage solutions at our lowest rates. We also care about your Ohio leaf tour!
Sarah Dirks is a Content Writer for Store Space who enjoys watching movies, being active and cheering for the Boston Red Sox.