While “experience autumn in the south” may sound like an oxymoron, I am a witness to the fact that our seasons do indeed change. They may not follow the traditional seasonal calendar, but if you are headed our way this fall, you'll be in for a real treat. Our trees change color ever so slowly, the humidity lowers to a manageable range, and we have an extended playtime in the fallen leaves before winter winds sweep them away (I use the word “winter” lightly there). Just because the south isn’t “known” for our fall atmosphere doesn’t mean we don’t have any.
6 Places to Experience Autumn in the South
While words like “fall” and “southern” may not seem to fit together, I can assure you that we southerners do experience seasonal changes (however small they may be). I may be biased because I live in Alabama (hey y’all!), but I believe we have some of the most gorgeous fall colors you will ever be privileged to witness.
Even better than our sights is our weather. Fall ushers in cooler temperatures, which makes heading down to the farm for pumpkin picking or hay riding that much more pleasant. I asked other southern based TravelingMoms for their favorite spots to experience autumn in their home states. Read on some of our favorite places to experience autumn in the south.
Georgia State Museum of Agriculture
Christine, Cultural Heritage TravelingMom, shares that autumn celebrations take on a historical note in Georgia’s State Museum of Agriculture in Tifton. That's because the Historical Village is a living history museum — a big one with 35 structures on 95 acres.
Specific events happen Oct. 26, when Trick or Treat takes on a historic personality.
On Nov. 5 is the Harvest Celebration when potters, weavers, sawmillers, turpentiners, and many more artisans fill the houses and porches and grounds, working their specialties.
Native American residents and lifestyle will be the focus Nov. 19. The State Museum of Agriculture represents far more than museum preservation because it is part of Abraham Baldwin Agricultural College, a four-year degree institution which incorporates the Museum in its nationally recognized Rural Studies degree. That means students, professors, and Museum professionals design the programming. The Museum is located directly off Interstate 75 in Tifton, 200 miles south of Atlanta and 60 miles north of the Florida line.
Burt’s Farm is family owned, raising 20 varieties of pumpkins and creating personal care products from butternut squash. The highest waterfall east of the Mississippi is easily in reach of Burt’s Farm in Dawsonville, Georgia adding value to a day of hay rides. Amicalola Falls is in view during the two-mile tractor-pulled wagon ride. So is a sea of orange with pumpkins ranging from small to 150 pounds. Autumn activities start Aug. 27 and continue daily. Free admission to the farm, $5.00 for the hayride, and all children under age two are free. Full Disclosure: Cultural Heritage TravelingMom recently sold 14 acres of mountain land just up the gravel road from Burt’s.
Also located in Dawsonville is Uncle Shuck's. Known for their incredibly intricate corn maze, you may or may not chose to spend most of your day finding your way through it. If mazes aren't your thing, you can always hitch a ride on theirhay-filledd trailer to pick out the perfect pumpkin for your family. After dusk, if you're brave enough, there are haunted hayrides and a haunted trail ride. And even the corn maze gets a creepy makeover! Prices vary for each activity and children 4 and under are free.
Located in the small town of Fitzpatrick, Alabama, just south of Montgomery, is Dreamfield Farms. Sarah, Twins TravelingMom, believes this farm to be one of the best fall experiences in Alabama.
Pumpkin picking, corn mazes, and farm animals abound to delight and entertain families of all ages. One price for everyone over the age of 2 (children 2 and under are free) grants you access to pig races, inflatables, a preschool play area, hay ride, train ride, corn mazes, and more. Pumpkins are priced by size, but they are reasonable.
Sarah’s family loved this particular farm so much, they drove 2 hours from Birmingham to get to it after they moved away.
Old Baker Farm
Our Twins TravelingMom also recommends a visit to Old Baker Farm located slightly southeast of Birmingham, Alabama in a town called Harpersville. Old Baker Farm offers the usual hayrides, hay mazes, and pumpkin picking, which is all included in the admission price for those 3 and up, but they also host special event days during the fall season.
On Oct. 21, Living History Day will include firearms demonstrations, basic infantry marching drills, and old fashioned soap making.
On Oct. 22-23, a Cotton Pickin’ Celebration will feature artisans from all over the area showing off their skills including blacksmiths, basket makers, soap makers and more.
Special event days have special operating hours, so be sure to check out their website before planning your visit.
Berry Patch Farms
Our Long Weekend TravelingMom, Kendra, recommends Berry Patch Farms, which is located in Woodstock, just northwest of the Atlanta area. In addition to pumpkin picking, they offer a playground and a hayride.
There are plenty of opportunities great Fall pictures with the pumpkins, on the playground area, or with the baby animals in the mini-farm area.
Kendra visited for the first time with a mother’s play group as part of a field-trip. Each child was given their own pumpkin. It’s best suited to families with younger children looking for a family-friendly pumpkin experience.
The patch will open to the public on weekends beginning in early October. Admission is free and pumpkins are priced per pound. Watch their Facebook page for updates on opening and closing of the season.
Even though you may not think of the southeastern U.S. as a “traditional” fall destination, you may consider it now knowing all the ways to experience Autumn the the Southeastern United States.
Take some photos next time you’re in our neck of the woods so you'll have proof of our seasonal changes! We hope you give these 6 locations a try. Be sure to let us know what you thought about them when you do!