Fall in Love with Local Fall Hotspots in Southern California
Due to temperate weather all year long, southern California rarely gets to enjoy the beautiful colors and wonderful activities of fall that others throughout the country readily embrace. But that doesn’t mean you should give up and wait for winter’s extremely heavy…sunshine?
Regardless of our year-round, spring-like (and sometimes sweltering summer-like) weather, there are still some amazing ways you can celebrate fall in southern California – and we’re not just talking about ordering a pumpkin spice latte at your local coffee shop!
Here are some local hotspots that will make you fall in love with fall in southern California:
Started in 1991 (a pretty good year – that’s when we started too!), the Pumpkin Festival is a two-day event held at the Farm Store at Cal Poly Pomona every year in October. This year, it is held October 17th & 18th from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Not only are you and your family able to explore the pumpkin patch, and choose the perfect pumpkin from over 80,000 homegrown ones planted by the College of Agriculture, but the festival also includes a corn maze specially grown for the occasion, horse rides and a petting zoo.
For a fun, family event that is fall-tastic, the Cal Poly Pomona Pumpkin Festival is just for you!
One of the most scenic spots in southern California, Oak Glen provides gorgeous backdrops for everything to fulfill your fall cravings, including changing leaf colors, cooler temps, and – most exciting – fruit-picking!
From apples to berries, pick fruits to heart’s content, then enjoy a variety of other harvest-oriented activities, including cider pressing, wine tasting, and more at one of the plethora of Oak Glen Apple Growers Orchards and Farms.
Apple season runs through November, so don’t miss out on the fun before it’s too late!
If you’re looking to experience a sea of gold, crimson, amber and yellow – the best place you can go is Big Bear. Located just a couple hours away, Big Bear’s fall season is ideal for those who want to escape for the weekend.
Although there are thousands of evergreens that never change color, they only add to the vibrancy of other trees, such as aspens, cottonwoods, oaks, ferns and maples.
The Discover Center on the north end of the lake can provide a list of local hiking trails, as well as rangers who can offer the best viewing spots. The Woodland Trail may be best for kids; it is a 1.5 mile family-friendly loop that begins at the Discovery Center and has great views of the fall foliage and the lake below. Be sure to take a camera – you don’t want to miss those gorgeous colors!
Fall is harvest time for Temecula wineries, and what better way to celebrate than to go wine tasting? Known for their diversity, wineries in the Temecula Valley grow and produce over 50 different varietals of wine, from Cabernet Sauvignon to Sauvignon Blanc, Merlot to Mourvedre, and Viognier to Chardonnay.
The vineyards are also changing colors during this time, so you get a chance to experience the brilliant gold, red and auburn foliage, and be sure to check the wineries before you visit – many offer food pairings, dinners and/or music!