Autumn is truly a season for all of the senses. The sight of the brightly colored leaves, the smell of apple cider and the crunch of leaves under your feet all add to the magic of this time of year. Now, before winter beckons us indoors, is the time to get outdoors and enjoy the crisp temperatures and beautiful views of fall.
There’s no need to travel far to see the best of what nature has to offer this season. Local forest preserves, pumpkin farms and the Morton Arboretum in Lisle are great spots to explore.
Fullersburg Woods, 3609 Spring Road, Oak Brook, sits right at Hinsdale’s door, boasting 226 acres of wooded land, prairie and grassland to explore. The shore of Salt Creek, which runs through the preserve, is the perfect vantage point from which to enjoy fall’s color show, as well as the many types of wildlife that call the forest preserve home.
If it gets too chilly outside, venture indoors to visit the education center, where visitors can marvel over the reconstructed remains of a 13,000-year-old woolly mammoth, as well as many other displays.
Waterfall Glen Forest Preserve in Darien, Bemis Woods in Western Springs and Wolf Road Prairie in Westchester also are great places to get out and enjoy the sights, sounds, smells and sensations of the season.
All 69,000 acres of Cook County Forest Preserve are open to visitors from sunset to sundown every day. DuPage preserves open one hour after sunrise and close one hour after sunset.
And there’s hardly a better place on the planet to see fall’s color show than among the 222,000 live trees and plants of the Morton Arboretum in Lisle. Guests to the arboretum can wander the miles of trails or admire the beauty from the comfort of their cars.
As if Mother Nature hasn’t provided enough to see, the Arboretum is holding its annual Glass Pumpkin Patch, featuring 3,000 hand-blown glass gourds.
The pumpkins, which come in a variety of shapes, colors and sizes, will be displayed from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. October 11 through 15 from 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Sales begin Oct. 13.
Admission to the Arboretum $14, $12 for seniors and $9 for children 2 to 17. On Wednesdays adults pay $9, seniors pay $8 and kids pay $6.
Before you go, check out the weekly fall color report to find the optimal time to enjoy autumn’s colorful display.
Open 7 a.m. to sunset every day, Morton Arboretum is located at 4100 Route 53 in Lisle.