My Favorite Places to Enjoy Fall in New Jersey and Beyond

It’s September so it’s officially fall, right? You would think that’s how it works but it was almost 90 degrees this weekend. I love summer but I’m just ready to not sweat and to take out some cozy clothes and burn all the candles.

I think I’m anticipating the change of seasons more this year because every one is Violet’s first. Is there anything cuter than a baby doing seasonal things?!? Well, also puppies doing seasonal things, tbh. I just can’t wait to get her in a pair of overalls and a pile of leaves. Yes, I’m 100% that Mom and I’m not sorry.

Even before having Violet, I was a big believer in getting out of the house and doing things. Then I also like the cool nights in all the cozy clothes on the couch. I want to make the most of the fall season (when it finally arrives) so I made a list of all my favorite things to do in New Jersey and beyond when the leaves start changing.

My Favorite Places to Enjoy Fall in New Jersey and Beyond - wear she blossoms
My Favorite Places to Enjoy Fall in New Jersey and Beyond - wear she blossoms
My Favorite Places to Enjoy Fall in New Jersey and Beyond - wear she blossoms

Go pumpkin “picking” at Stults Farm in Cranbury, NJ

I can’t believe I’m even writing this here because I consider this my “secret” farm. This is the pick-your-own farm my family has visited every year since I was a baby. It’s not fancy: no wagon rides, no corn maze, no frills. But it has a great farm stand with heirloom pumpkins and plenty of vegetables. They set up a sort of pumpkin patch and they have cute red wagons to tote your pumpkins up to the register. The best part though is it is never crowded AND you’re supporting a real family business that’s lasted for generations.

Looking for a little more than a pumpkin patch?

Pick pumpkins, ride on a hay wagon, and all the other farm things at Shady Brook Farm in Yardley, PA

When Violet is a bit older and we’re ready to brave the crowds of parents and kids hyped on candy apples, we’ll head over to Bucks County and Shady Brook Farm. Though there is an admission fee and then some things you have to pay for (if you take a pumpkin home or buy food), it has pretty much everything. It also gets pretty wild at night with a haunted hayride and monster truck rides.

Go apple picking and then get stuffed full of apple cider donuts at Terhune Orchards in Princeton, NJ

Again, another New Jersey farm I grew up with, Terhune Orchards has it all. You can go apple picking or visit the farm animals. They also do fall festival weekends with pumpkin painting and carving and other fall activities. I’m not an expert since I tend to avoid the overcrowded times. But it is everything you want in a fall farm, in my opinion. Bonus points, too, for having a winery and tasting room for the adults willing to brave the crowds of families.

Looking only for cider donuts and apple picking?

Go apple picking at Solebury Orchards in New Hope, PA

Last weekend Nick, Violet, and I visited Solebury Orchards. This tiny farm tucked away a few minutes from downtown New Hope has the cutest farmhouse, a no-frills wagon ride to its rows of apple trees, and some pretty tasty apple cider donuts.

Go on a fall campus walk at Princeton University

Princeton University has one of those dream movie set style campuses with its Gothic architecture and ivy-covered buildings. It’s beautiful all times of the year (you have to visit the gardens in the spring/summer) but it really shows off in the fall. Grab a cup of coffee at a classic Princeton institution, Small World Coffee, and stroll through campus. While you’re there, you can also pop into their world class art museum.

Looking for a bit more of a hike?

See all the fall foliage you can handle on the Delaware and Raritan Canal trail

Whether you walk it, bike it, or run it, the canal path that runs from New Brunswick to Frenchtown is the best way to get some fresh air and some fall foliage. It runs through several cute towns along the way like Lambertville and Stockton so you can plan on grabbing a snack, coffee, or full on lunch. If you want to take a different route back, you can pop over to the Pennsylvania side.

What are your favorite things to do near you?