Top 10 Spots in Kansas City to Enjoy the Fall Foliage
updated October 2023
Fall is arguably the best time of year in Kansas City. The weather is beautiful and crisp mornings turn into perfectly warm days and then pleasant evenings. All the trees that surround our beautiful city begin to show off how brilliantly colorful they can get. It’s time to get out and explore some forests and rolling hills and see just how beautiful the nature surrounding our city really is! Here’s your top 10 list of the best places to enjoy the autumn leaves near Kansas City.
The town of Weston is a beautiful place all year round, but in the fall it’s particularly spectacular. If you enjoy hiking, you’ll want to explore the trails in Weston Bend State Park, which wind their way through the woods, along the river, and the edges of the bluff and boast breathtaking views. Weston Bend State Park has hiking trails, a paved bike trail, and an overlook so you can enjoy a perfect day whether you are looking for a leisurely stroll, an exerting hike, or just want to sit, relax and enjoy the view.
See the fall colors and beautiful views on a hay ride at Red Barn Farm. This charming spot in Weston will make you forget time for a little bit and soak in the beauty of the countryside.
Consider making a stop at Pirtle Winery to sit and enjoy some wine in the garden or back patio. Picnic baskets are also available for purchase if you want some bread and cheese to snack on with your wine. A hike with beautiful views and then a glass of wine on a lovely patio…pretty sure you can’t come up with a better fall day than that!
Platte City, Missouri
Jowler Creek Vineyard and Winery is a beautiful winery in the countryside of Platte City Missouri. The drive alone will give you a chance to see some fantastic fall foliage and don’t forget to reserve a spot on the wine tasting hayride on the weekends.
Parkville is a unique and eclectic town just north of Kansas City. Stroll through the quaint downtown and be sure not to miss Parkville Coffee. You can grab coffee and a delicious pastry and enjoy it at English Landing Park. This beautiful park, near downtown Parkville, sits right off the Missouri River. English Landing Park has beautiful walking trails that pretty much parallel the river and it’s a perfect place to enjoy the fall foliage.
Parkville Nature Sanctuary is a gem that is worthy of exploring. It’s a wildlife preserve with almost 3 miles of trails. Spend an afternoon meandering through a field of wildflowers, then a forest and find yourself at a waterfall. You will be able to see some of the most beautiful fall colors here. A note before you go: this is one place Buddy and Sparky don’t tag along, no pets allowed in the sanctuary.
Louisburg, Kansas is a great town to experience a bit of fall in. The Louisburg Cider Mill is a fall destination where you can enjoy the views and try the famous Louisburg apple cider and apple cider donuts. Have a fantastic fall day at the cider mill and then head over to the nearby town of Paola for more beautiful scenery.
Paola is not far from Louisburg and has some stunning wineries. Enjoy the wine and views at Sumerset Ridge Vineyard and Winery, located amidst the rolling hills of Kansas. Beautiful views, live music, food trucks, and wine describes a perfect fall weekend afternoon at Sumerset Winery.
Night Hawk Vineyard and Winery is another lovely winery in Paola. Enjoy fabulous wine and views of the fall leaves from their terrific patio and butterfly garden. Reservations are required for everyone except for children under 12 so be sure to call ahead!
Hermann, Missouri is not to be missed if you are looking for the perfect fall foliage weekend getaway. The Hermann Wine Trail is an ideal way to spend a weekend seeing beautiful midwest fall foliage while exploring seven fantastic wineries. Enjoy a stay at one of the lovely Bed and Breakfasts in such as The Inn at Hermannhof. You can take in all of the brilliant fall colors from one of their hillside cottages while enjoying a complimentary bottle of wine and cheese and meat tray or spend the evening in one of the luxury suites at the Inn itself.
The Overland Park Arboretum and Botanical Gardens
The Overland Park Arboretum is a great local spot to spend an afternoon outdoors taking in the beauty of fall. With over 300 acres to explore, you can hike the trails, meander through the open prairies, or walk through the gardens. This is a perfect way to experience the beauty of fall and stay close to home.
Powell Gardens, located just a short drive away in Kingsville, Missouri and is another great place to do some leaf peeping. With seven beautiful themed gardens and a hiking trail system there is so much fascinating landscape and nature to explore here and a sure way to see some brilliant colors. My sister had her wedding there in the fall so this is a deeply personal place for me to enjoy the seasons.
If you are looking for a scenic fall drive, check out Loess Bluffs National Wildlife Refuge’s Scenic Loop. Loess Bluffs is located in northwest Missouri about 100 miles northwest of Kansas City and has a 10 mile loop you can drive through and see some great fall colors as well as birdwatch and view some wildlife.
A day trip to Lawrence is an excellent way to see some fall colors. Lawrence is a beautiful college town and its historic downtown is lined with trees that will be turning all shades of red and orange this time of year. Spend a day exploring the great coffee shops, restaurants and bars in downtown Lawrence while taking in some great fall colors. Head over to Kansas University to see the beautiful views the campus has to offer. Leave a comment below if you want my top five restaurant recommendations!
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