Where to See Fall Foliage in Chicago

fall foliage in Chicago

Fall’s vibrant colors will be on full display soon, and we’ve rounded up some of our favorite spots for leaf peeping around the Windy City. Here’s where to see fall foliage in Chicago and the surrounding areas.

fall foliage in Chicago

Maple Grove Forest Preserve

Maple Grove, an 81-acre preserve, features walkable trails, picnic tables, and a picturesque stream, making it an ideal place to escape the city. Come fall, the area boasts stunning views of maple and oak trees. Pack a picnic and plan to spend the day walking the trails and enjoying the scenery.

leaf peeping in Chicago

Chicago Botanic Garden

You don’t have to leave the city to experience the best of fall. Chicago Botanic Garden offers beautiful autumnal scenes from late summer to the end of October. Peak season occurs during the first two weeks of October, when the trees are at their brightest and boldest. When visiting the Chicago Botanic Garden this fall, begin at the Visitor Center and make your way to East Road, where you can view the native trees and wildflowers in McDonalds Woods to your left. On the right, you’ll have a stunning view of the Garden’s lakes.

where to see fall foliage in Chicago

Morton Arboretum

Morton Arboretum is a 1700-acre space filled with more than 4,200 varieties of trees. Visit the site to experience beautiful dogwoods, sugar maples, and dozens of other glorious, colorful trees. Morton Arboretum also boasts an award-winning Children’s Garden.

best spots to see fall foliage in Chicago

Lincoln Park

Lincoln Park is Chicago’s largest park, and in autumn, it offers gorgeous views. Visit the Lincoln Park Observatory first. Then, take a casual stroll through the park and observe the colorful trees, such as red maple, elm, and ash trees. Bring lunch for a picnic and make a day of it.

fall foliage in Chicago

LaBagh Woods

LaBagh Woods features over 35 miles of wooded trails, which are perfect for leaf peeping. You’ll spot trees such as maples, cottonwoods, and oaks along the paths. When you need a break, take a rest at one of the convenient picnic tables found in the preserve. Don’t forget to bring your pup along for the hike, too!

fall foliage in chicago

Millennium Park

Don’t skip this touristy spot. During the fall season, the trees of Millennium Park will put on a show you won’t want to miss. Take a walk and observe the beautiful maples, elms, and other trees before the winter season arrives.

fall foliage in Chicago

Lurie Garden

When it comes to fall foliage in Chicago, you can find some colorful landscapes that don’t necessarily feature trees and leaves — they may include shrubs, flowers, or other plants. This spot is a less obvious option, but still worth exploring. Found within Millennium Park, Lurie Woods consists of two and a half acres of land that show off a stunning scene. Autumnal flowers will be in bloom, and the colors will look extra striking against the Chicago skyline.

fall foliage in chicago

The 606

We’ve mentioned that the 606 is a great spot for biking in Chicago. This time of year, it’s also an ideal place to catch some beautiful fall foliage views. On the elevated trails, you can take a peak at the colorful trees below.

fall foliage in Chicago

Graceland Cemetery

Take a stroll of Graceland Cemetery this fall and enjoy bold displays of bright leaves on the grounds’ many trees. You’ll also be able to see where some famous Chicago architects and other notable figures have been laid to rest. This spot offers some of the most beautiful fall foliage in Chicago.

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