Autumn in New York

If you ask a New Yorker, most of them will tell you that they love autumn in the city. The hot summer months are over, the crowds are smaller, and the cool weather means great sweaters and beautiful landscapes take over the city. Toss into that list some great cider or beer and a Halloween parade finale, and you have the makings of a truly great season. 

The New York Botanical Gardens are among locals’ favorite fall “hotspots.” With breathtaking trails painted in autumn leaves and vibrant colors, visitors at the garden are instantly transported to an autumn oasis the minute they pass through the Botanical doors. Special seasonal events consistently rotate through the garden’s event list, including this year’s Scarecrow & Pumpkins extravaganza.


For a more city-like autumn experience, New Yorkers set foot towards the 230 Fifth Rooftop Igloo Bar. The igloo bar opens in November and remains available through late April. Here, New Yorkers enjoy exclusive views of the city while sitting in heated, see-through igloos. The igloos serve as a great means to meet new people, enjoy fine brews, and take in the autumn sights, smells, and sounds.

New York City’s Annual Village Halloween Parade draws spectators and participants from across the country. It’s clear that this parade is “the nation’s most wildly creative public participatory event,” as hundreds of puppets, over 50 bands, a countless number of artists and dancers, and thousands of New Yorkers take to the streets in costume to celebrate the spooky season. Perhaps the greatest aspect of this parade is that anyone wearing a Halloween costume is invited to march in the parade.

For the artistically-inclined New Yorker, heading to Hudson Valley to witness the changing leaves is a must-do. Unique photo opportunities and a brisk, yet pleasant, scenic walk are among some of the relaxing activities that New Yorkers enjoy during the autumn season.

Some of the most exciting fall traditions are haunted houses, ghost walks, and other paranormal activities. The Ghosts of New York, The Haunted New York Experience, provides over a dozen spooky tours for only those ready to interact with ghosts, ghouls, and other Halloween creatures. These unique tours take the brave-hearted to some of the most haunted sites in New York, so be prepared for a hair-raising experience, and maybe even an interaction with the dead!


If you’re in search of a crisp hard cider, be sure to check out New York City’s Cider Week. Dozens of New York City’s restaurants, bars, pubs, shops, and markets join together in this annual cider-tasting event. Check out the Cider Week website for a complete list of participating locations and special events. And if ciders don’t suit your fancy, Hudson Valley’s wineries may just have what it takes to quench your craving for an autumn beverage.

The autumn season is meant to be celebrated and enjoyed. Don’t miss out on this year’s autumn in New York! Join your friends, families, and colleagues during this beautiful (and haunted) time of year at any of the above public events and traditions. Perhaps a day at any of these events can turn into your next New York fall tradition.  

Owen M. McCafferty II