There’s nothing like biting into the flesh of a juicy apple, which you just picked yourself, while looking out over picturesque rows of fruit-filled trees. Apple picking in New York State is that quintessential fall activity that let’s you get outside and truly experience the splendor of the season. And luckily for us, plenty of orchards are accessible by public transportation or car from NYC. Put on your warmest flannel and head to these rural retreats in New York State where you can enjoy the bounty of the harvest and fun-filled extravaganzas that last all weekend.
Harvest Moon Farm & Orchard, 139 Hardscrabble Rd, North Salem
Located in bucolic New Salem, Harvest Moon Farm & Orchard is a family owned and operated apple orchard. Come here any day of the week and fill a bag full of the various types of apples that grow on site ($30 per bag for group of 5). Festivals are held every weekend throughout October, offering the ultimate fall experience with hay rides, live music, pony rides and delicious treats like donuts, kettle corn, BBQ, and the local Hardscrabble Cider.
Apple Dave’s Orchards and Applewood Winery, 82 4 Corners Rd, Warwick
After returning from an army tour in Korea in 1955, a young man named Dave committed himself to running the family apple orchard. His namesake orchard is now one of the best places to visit in New York during autumn. The system here is straightforward – buy a picking bag and pay for only the apples that you have picked by day’s end. Free weekend entertainment includes hayrides, puppet shows, music and a visit to the distillery.
Masker Orchards, 45 Ball Rd, Warwick
This Hudson Valley orchard has been a favorite for apple picking in New York State for the last 100 years. Everyone should experience eating an apple picked right off the tree once in their lifetime. At Masker Orchards, you can enter and eat apples to your heart’s content for FREE while frolicking the picturesque grounds. Every weekend is a fall bonanza with live music, a Haunted House, pony rides, and apple-themed prizes. Bags of apples cost $29.95.
Barton Orchards, 63 Apple Tree Lane, Poughquang
Located in Poughquang, Barton Orchards has over 120 acres of apples for you to discover! Visiting the orchard is free during the week and there is a small entrance fee on weekends. After playing around in the petting zoo, haunted house, fun park, and corn maze, enjoy some adult beverages and live music at Barton Orchard’s Tap Room. Pick your own apple bags cost $16 (approximately 10 lbs) and $26 (approximately 20 to 25 lbs).
Wilkins Fruit & Fir Farm, 1333 White Hill Rd, Yorktown Heights
Founded in 1916, Wilkins Fruit & Fir Farm started its pick-your-own apple operation in 1968 after a hurricane blew through the orchard. It’s open daily and the price to pick fruit varies depending on weather and apple availability. Plan a weekend visit when you can meander through the awesome corn maze, first created in 2016 to celebrate the Farm’s 100-year anniversary. All that play makes one thirsty. Head to White Hill Vineyard at Wilkins Farm where you can relax with a glass of wine.
Fishkill Farms, 9 Fishkill Farm R, Hopewell Junction
Owned and operated by the Morgenthau family for over 100 years, Fishkill Farms is an apple orchard and vegetable farm that spans an incredible 270 acres. “Pick your Own Apples” runs daily during the week ($5 entrance fee and you pay for what you pick). Held every weekend during the season, the Fall Harvest Festival is a celebration of community, nature, and a commitment to ecological farming. Enjoy a wagon ride and live music while indulging in locally made treats that include donuts, pies, cheeses, and hard cider.
Apple picking tip: Beat the crowds! Lines can be very long at this time of year, so arrive early. We recommend starting your apple picking adventure as soon as each farm opens.
Fishkill Farms photo by Michael M. via Yelp.