Gazing at the yellows of quaking aspen or the deep reds of vine maples until your neck cringes is an autumn rite of passage in the Northeast. But before you hop in the car and head for the hills, remember one thing: It’s tough to enjoy the scenery when you’re the one stuck behind the wheel.
Fortunately, the close proximity of New York and New England’s population centers to its scenic areas, and to the nearby metropolises that feed into them, means that driving isn’t a necessary prerequisite to proper leaf-peeping. The below routes save you the hassle of driving and get you to the region’s leafiest, most colorful spots. All you have to do is sit back and take in the hues.