Fall is such a fun time of year and seemingly never short on family-friendly festivals. The only trouble in enjoying them all is to pick and choose for each weekend.
Check out this list of northern seasonal festivals across the country and plan your seasonal fall-foliage vacation, with a little something extra.
Leavenworth Oktoberfest in Leavenworth, Washington: Oct. 4–5 and 18–19
No need to find your passport for this one, this Bavarian-style town brings Oktoberfest to Leavenworth, Washington, Oct. 4–5 and 18–19, during Leavenworth Oktoberfest. Expect small-town fun and entertainment like live music, seasonal activities for all ages and open-air brew-fest festivities. Walk around town and take in the charming architecture and rustic décor, almost like you’re in Germany.
Ellicottville Fall Festival in Ellicottville, New York: Oct. 12–13
The vibrant fall colors of Upstate New York are always a draw for traveling families. Coinciding with a few fun festivals, the changing leaves will be in peak season this October and there’s no better way to celebrate than with carnival rides, live music and copious amounts of food. A visit to Ellicottville Fall Festival has all three and then some. Enjoy a throwback family weekend with county fair vibes and endless ways to get outdoorsy while in the area, with scenic hiking trails galore.
Harvest on the Harbor in Portland, Maine: Oct. 17–20
What started back in 2007 as a celebration of Portland’s growing food scene is now a full-blown foodie festival. Boasting the region’s most-loved ciders, local spirits and cuisine, the three-day event attracts thousands of visitors, families included. Enjoy the incredible fall foliage while trying locally sourced, freshly made cuisine from Maine’s top eateries.
New Hampshire Pumpkin Festival in Laconia, New Hampshire: Oct. 18–19
A little something to make the kid’s (or your) Instagram pop, New Hampshire’s premier pumpkin festival in Laconia is picture bait. When the sunsets and darkness falls over the town, the towering jack-o-lanterns illuminating the festival really standout with an ominous, fun glow. Guests take pictures by the tower, hit the beer garden and listen to live music with some 40,000 visitors. Bring the kids and play games, walk around different stands and events, and get in the full swing of holiday spirit before Halloween.
With family-centric events, fun for adults and kids of all ages with the added backdrop of the changing seasons, you can’t go wrong with a weekend away during peak leaf season.
However you view Niagara Falls, it’s an unforgettable sight. That being said, on the Canadian side, you’ll get a panoramic view of both the American Falls and the magnificent Horseshoe Falls, as well as more chances to get up close and experience the falls. Families traveling to Niagara Falls find more activities to engage children on the Canadian side.
Embark on a family journey through The Last Frontier with Celebrity Cruises® and experience an unforgettable luxury vacation in the untouched natural beauty of Alaska. The breathtaking landscape of this pristine wilderness sets the stage for every memorable moment from up-close, awe-inspiring views of glaciers to observing native wildlife, including whales, bears, bald eagles, and moose. This corner of the world offers not only spectacular scenery, but also opportunities to learn about the history and culture of Alaska — from the native people who’ve lived here for centuries to the adventurers seeking their fortunes during the gold rush. No matter which sailing you choose, you’ll journey through the ever-popular Inside Passage — one of the most popular experiences on any Alaska vacation — and visit Hubbard Glacier or Endicott Arm and Dawes Glacier.
It’s time to start dreaming of your next family trip. Here’s some destination inspiration for you. Take a visual journey through Minneapolis, Minnesota, with us.
It’s not too early to plan holiday family travel, and those bound for the Grand Canyon region might want to consider booking tickets now for Grand Canyon Railway & Hotel’s popular Polar Express. Tickets are going fast!
United Airlines officially became the only major U.S. airline to own a flight training school with the opening of United Aviate Academy on Jan. 27. The moment was made even more historic with its inaugural class, which is 80 percent women and people of color.
Family travelers spending time in Riviera Maya, Mexico, cannot miss Xel-Há, a park offering an extensive list of activities, all surrounded by the pure natural beauty of the region. The beginning of fall marks the perfect time to visit the park, with more than 20 unique experiences.