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The fall foliage of New England and discovering St. Andrews

A golden autumn in New England: the region covers six states, most of the north east of the US, and is bordered by New York, New Brunswick and Quebec

A golden autumn in New England: the region covers six states, most of the north east of the US, and is bordered by New York, New Brunswick and Quebec

Sat, Apr 12, 2014, 01:00

We would like to visit New England in late October early November. We have 10-14 days so any suggestions on where to start and finish the trip, as well as places to visit would be appreciated. We could rent a car, but a train journey wouldn’t be out of the question . – NMc, Sligo
New England in Autumn is very beautiful and the leaves turn into the most amazing colours, some trees almost seem alight. New England covers six states, most of the north east of the US and is bordered by New York, New Brunswick and Quebec.

Autumn is known as leaf peeping season and runs from around mid-September to late October and you might be cutting it a bit fine taking your trip into November. It begins in Vermont and creeps across the north east ending in Connecticut, see yankeefoliage.com for suggested driving routes.

The option of a guided tour is one to consider as the price for the trip will include flights, accommodation, tours and you would get to cover a lot of ground in eight or nine days. The Travel Department tour costs from €1,799pps, while Insight Vacations, is more luxurious and costs from €2,200pps plus flights, traveldepartment.ie and insightvacations.com.

There is a rail journey over six days with Amtrak to see the “fall foliage”. It begins in New York heads to Albany, Rutland and finishes in Boston. It costs from $1,599 (€1,167) and includes hotel accommodation and guided tours, amtrakvacations.com.

Boston is the main gateway to New England and a good place to start, as it is a lovely city, a few days there would be enjoyable. It might be better to pick two or three places to stay for a few nights each and enjoy exploring them, see massvacation.com.

Cape Cod is lovely and towns such as Falmouth, Chatham and Provincetown are classic New England. You would also have the opportunity to explore the coast.

Moving inland you could drive a loop through Interstate 93 into New Hampshire towards Bretton Woods and Mount Washington, North Conway, then south into the Berkshires, in western Massachusetts and Connecticut. See also discovernewengland.org.


My wife and I have a big anniversary coming up and would like to spend it at St Andrews golf club in Scotland. I wonder could give us any details on places to stay and on travel, and would we need to rent a car. – JR, Tipperary
Travel to Scotland is easy with plenty of flights to Edinburgh with both Aer Lingus and Ryanair and prices are very reasonable. A car would be a good idea as it would allow you time to explore some of the beautiful Scottish countryside. St Andrews is about an hour from the airport, 80kms or so.

The most famous hotel at St Andrews is the Old Course Hotel, a five star with a great name for luxury with views overlooking the famous golf course, oldcoursehotel.co.uk. It will cost from £330 (£400) per night not including breakfast, but you may find it a bit less on some of the hotel booking sites such as hotels.com, and hotelconnexions.com.

Another hotel to consider is the small Dunvegan, with a lively bar and restaurant. It too overlooks the first and 18th tee of the Old Course and costs from £150 (€182) per night, dunvegan-hotel.com.

It is possible to play some of the seven courses at St Andrews. The most famous, the Old Course, is booked out for this year, but there is availability for the others, see thestandrewsgolfclub.co.uk.


Send your travel questions to jscales@irishtimes.com

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