Top 3 Things to Do in Buffalo This Fall

Clay Pitsenbarger

Though Fall is about to give way to a much frostier winter season, there is still time to get out and enjoy all that western New York has to offer by way of seasonal fall activity. If to you, the passing of Halloween signals an immediate departure from the world of colored leaves, apple bobbing, and scarecrows, we’re here to help you slow that sleigh ride. Take a few moments to enjoy the later fall season in Buffalo, NY, where there is plenty to do, people to see, and views to enjoy before the trees shed their last leaves. Here are a handful of ideas to make your fall season in Buffalo your most cherished and memorable yet.

Explore Local Fall Features and Activities

There is no shortage of activity in and around the Buffalo area in November and December. Prime time for pumpkin carving has passed, but there is still plenty of cider-drinking, craft-showing, wine-slurping, and light-appraising to be done before the flurry of Christmas season truly hits. One such event, the Fall Wine Festival at Broadway Market on November 17th and 18th, promises lively music and plenty of local wine vendors to try between 10-4 and is free to attend. For those hoping to catch some crafts and see some historical architecture lit up seasonal style, visit the Knox Estate Mansion on November 18th or 19th and pick up thoughtful gifts for family and friends from one of over eighty vendors attending. Or, if interactive imaginings are more your speed, digiPlaySpace at the Buffalo Museum of Science opens to the public for the first time on November 18th. Produced by TIFF (Toronto International Film Festival), the large-scale interactive installations and fast-paced multi-player videogames, immersive green-screen adventures and robotics experiments will offer guests all ages of exciting ways to explore. Admission to the exhibit is offered as part of the cost of admission. So why not grab glass of wine at the Fall Wine Festival, enjoy the sites at the Knox Estate Mansion, and then hop in to digiPlaySpace for a packed day of fall enjoyments?

Go Hiking Near Buffalo with Family and Friends

Spend a crisp morning or afternoon exploring the local scenery. There are far too many gorgeous trails near Buffalo to name, but here are a few to get you started.

Eternal Flame at Chestnut Ridge – Chestnut Ridge Road, Orchard Park

Mosey to Chestnut Ridge County Park, where you’ll find delightful hiking trails and a hidden wonder  – the Eternal Flame. The natural gas leak, nestled within a trickling creek waterfall is a sight you won’t soon forget. The flame is reachable via a trek up a ravine.

Tifft Nature Preserve – 1200 Fuhrmann Blvd., Buffalo

Hikers, children, and birdwatchers alike will delight in this quick getaway to the 264-acre Tifft Nature Preserve. Formerly a landfill, the now-rehabilitated land serves as a lush habitat to native wildlife just minutes from the center of Buffalo. The preserve – composed of wetlands and expansive forests – features hiking trails, boardwalks, and even a glimpse of Buffalo’s industrial heritage by way of factory buildings and urban surroundings.

Zoar Valley – Forty Road entrance

This breathtaking spectacle isn’t for the faint of heart. It’s one of the natural wonders of New York State, with old growth forests, dramatic vistas and heart-pounding recreation opportunities unlike the gigantic, wild gorges of the northwest United States. Found outside the village of Gowanda, Zoar Valley makes for a mighty exploration, and you won’t find any manmade or artificial structures here.

Take a Drive Along the Scenic Byway  

Begin your journey near downtown Buffalo. Take South Park Avenue South for about 7.5 miles. A left onto Big Tree Road will bring you to Route 20A. After 3.5 miles, 20A will carry you to the center of the stunning Village of Orchard Park. Make a right onto Route 277 for 6.5 miles. Pass by Chestnut Ridge Park and make your way towards north Boston. Make a left onto Boston State Road and enjoy a relaxing ride for 15 miles to the Village of Springville, close to the geological wonder of Zoar Valley, mentioned above. A left on Springville’s idyllic Main Street will bring you to another left on US-219. Head South for 19 miles to Ellicottville where you can enjoy a seasonal pint at Monroe Street Brick and Brew. There’s plenty to do in Ellicottville, and it’s easy to make a weekend trip of it. Just check out this weekend guide by AdventureBound.

To close the Scenic Byway loop you’ll head back north along Route 242 for 3.5 miles and make a left on Route 240 in the Hamlet of Ashford. Saunter along the dips and hills of 240 for 30 miles and make a right at Route 47/Mill Road. Enter the charming village of East Aurora. Head back West on Route 20A, once more through the Village of Orchard Park and along to South Park which will lead you back home to Buffalo.

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