It’s that season again. Just like that, the heat of summer has dwindled down to a moderate chill and swimsuits and sandals have been packed away for next year. Just because the leaves are beginning to change to burnt shades of yellow and red doesn’t mean that it’s time to shut yourself indoors just yet. There is still a place that you can go, equipped with a few extra layers, to enjoy the fresh air and have fun with friends and family.
Everyone knows that apple picking is a staple of the fall season, but not many realize that a few local apple orchards offer much more than that. In the New Paltz area, there are orchards where you can find tractor-pulled hayrides, farmers markets and stunning views of the changing foliage that covers the Shawangunks.
Twin Star Orchards, located in New Paltz, is a place where you spend your entire afternoon picking, eating and drinking. During the month of October, they offer Red Delicious, Fuji and Granny Smith apples for all your pie making needs. They also have a pavilion where you can grab pizza, burgers and a cheese plate if you’re feeling hungry.
For those over the age of 21, Twin Star also features a tasting room where they offer samples of their hard cider. At their farmstand inside of the tasting room, you can find unique, locally sourced products like maple syrup, assorted hypoallergenic soaps and wine jellies.
Just 15 minutes down the road, Tantillo’s Farm in Gardiner has a variety of fruit and vegetables ripe for picking throughout the month of October including apples, plums, pears, leafy greens and squash. You can even catch a tractor-pulled wagon ride to the orchard. Want something a little sweeter than fresh fruit?
Tantillo’s has their own ice cream stand that serves homemade fruit sundae toppings with a sitting area that has a perfect view of the Shawangunk mountains. If you’re lucky, you might even get to watch the occasional adrenaline-junkie jumping from planes and parachuting into far away fields.
For those legally old enough to consume alcohol, a different type of orchard awaits you in Walden. There, the famous cider brand Angry Orchard offers tours, cider tastings and lawn games for visitors.
The best part? Each patron gets a free flight of three ciders of their choice to sample, making this the perfect orchard to visit if you want to get away without spending any money. If you do decide to open your wallet, there is plenty of Angry Orchard merchandise to buy, as well as cider themed soaps, jelly and candles.