We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.
We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

Best area to see fall colors , whilst on a cruise

Level Contributor
768 posts
34 reviews
Save Topic
Best area to see fall colors , whilst on a cruise


We will be travelling on the Legend of the seas departing New York on the 23/9 and visiting Bar Harbour, Portland Maine, Halifax, Sydney, Sequenay and finishing in Quebec City on the 2/10.

My question is, where is the best area on this cruise to see the display of fall colors? Any tours that could be recommended?

We will then be travelling to Toronto area for a week and then onto , Niagara Falls and back home to Australia.

A further question is, should I try to see the fall colors on the cruise or wait and have a look around the Toronto area in October?

Looking forward to all replies

Kindest Regards


Central Maine
Destination Expert
for Maine
Level Contributor
6,672 posts
149 reviews
Save Reply
1. Re: Best area to see fall colors , whilst on a cruise

In general, the earilest parts of your cruise will be a bit ahead of what is traditionally the best foliage color along the Maine coast.... but every year is different and the color could come earlier or later than its "typical" time. During the last week of September, the "best" color is generally still in the higher elevations of northern New Hampshire, northern Maine and the western Maine mountains.... not reaching the coastline until the second week in October most years. I'm not familiar with fall foliage in Nova Scotia or the Toronto area -- don't know whether they get the same levels of color as Maine-New Hampshire-Vermont or not... have never seen foliage there mentioned in anything I've read about travel in those areas. From what you've laid out as your itinerary, your best bet might be a car rental during your port stop in Portland, ME, using whatever time you have in port to ride up into the western Maine mountains or even the White Mountains of New Hampshire. North Conway, NH, in the White Mountains Region, is about a three-and-a-half hour round-trip ride.

Level Contributor
2,522 posts
4 reviews
Save Reply
2. Re: Best area to see fall colors , whilst on a cruise


Mainer is correct, it can vary. I think you would see some color on those dates along the coast. The latter dates and more northern latitudes the better. However, the coast isn't as noted for color as further inland. Probably due to different tree species.

I'm guessing that on 10/2 in Quebec, you should see some very good color. As you travel to Toronto, in that area, the foliage should be passing from peak to past peak. However, I've never been to Canada at this time of year.

For my money, the best color is in the White Mountains for New Hampshire and generally speaking, it's best during the 1st week of October. If there is any way to change your plans to go to New Hampshire by car instead of Toronto OR at least swing thru the White Mountains or the Green Mountains for VT on your way to Toronto or Niagara Falls, you should see absolute peak color.

That's my best input.

BTW, I like this foliage forecast map.


Edited: 10:26 am, December 20, 2013
Bar Harbor, Maine
Destination Expert
for Bar Harbor, Acadia National Park
Level Contributor
3,852 posts
13 reviews
Save Reply
3. Re: Best area to see fall colors , whilst on a cruise

As Mainer and Kevin have noted, you will be a bit early for peak color along the Maine coast (around the Bar Harbor area, the peak typically occurs about mid-October. At your stop here, you might consider a tour with Oli's Trolley, which will take you through Acadia National Park. You'll be able to see whatever color we have then. Absent a major change in your itinerary, I'd say that your best bet is the Toronto/Niagara Falls area. Inland and upland areas in the eastern US reach peak color earlier that do we here on the coast.

Halifax, Canada
Level Contributor
231 posts
115 reviews
Save Reply
4. Re: Best area to see fall colors , whilst on a cruise

Sydney, Cape Breton has awesome fall foliage, usually peaking around the second week of October, so you'd be a bit early to see it at its best, but some trees will start to turn around the end of September.

You might be able to see more fall colours when in Saguenay, Quebec during that time.

5. Re: Best area to see fall colors , whilst on a cruise

-:- Message from TripAdvisor staff -:-

This topic has been closed to new posts due to inactivity. We hope you'll join the conversation by posting to an open topic or starting a new one.

To review the TripAdvisor Forums Posting Guidelines, please follow this link: http://www.tripadvisor.com/pages/forums_posting_guidelines.html

We remove posts that do not follow our posting guidelines, and we reserve the right to remove any post for any reason.

Removed on: 12:17 am, December 23, 2014