The Best Place to Go Apple Picking in Every State
Consider this your (apple) bucket list. From family-fun farms to orchards growing the juiciest heirloom apples, these are the best places to go apple picking in every state across the country.
Alabama: Crow Mountain Orchard, Fackler
The apples from Alabama’s largest fruit-growing operation are some of the prettiest in the state. Their bold red hue comes courtesy of the orchard’s high elevation on top of Crow Mountain, and the warm days and cool nights. If you’re really hungry, snag the massive 20-ounce green Pippin variety in late August.
Alaska: Clair’s Cultivations, Fairbanks
Everyone told Clair Lemmers that growing apples in Alaska was impossible. He proved them wrong. The farmer started Clair’s Cultivations in the 1980s and the orchard now produces over 6,000 pounds of apples each year. You can pick your own or look for the juicy fruits in local grocery stores and at farmer’s markets in the Fairbanks area.
Arizona: Apple Annie’s, Wilcox
You know it’s officially Fall when My-Oh-My Apple Pie Weekend rolls around at this Arizona orchard. The annual event, held at the beginning of apple season in September, kicks off with an all-you-can-eat pancake breakfast (with apple pie syrup of course) and features wagon rides, a corn maze, and apple picking galore. Read the story of how apple pie came to be—and why it’s America’s favorite dessert.
Arkansas: Cox Berry Farm, Clarksville
Sitting atop Red Lick Mountain, Cox Berry Farm has been family-owned and run for three generations over 40 years—so you can be sure they know how to grow a good apple. The fruit is available in a handful of varieties including the tart Arkansas Black and can be picked from early September to late October.
California: Riley’s Farm, Oak Glen
Riley’s Farm is more than just a place to pick apples—it’s also become a living history farm, where farm employees dress in Colonial garb, speak in period accents, and re-enact what it was like to live during the Gold Rush and the Revolutionary War. Fuel up with classic British dishes at the Tavern (don’t forget the hard cider) before hitting the orchards.
Colorado: Ya Ya Farm, Longmont
Reservations are required to pick apples at Ya Ya Farm. And be warned, they usually sell out all the spots by August! What’s so special about the Colorado orchard? They use natural, organic methods to grow a signature heirloom apple variety you can’t find anywhere else. You can even adopt an apple tree—your $50 fee pays for everything from fertilizing to harvesting.
Connecticut: Lyman Orchards, Middlefield
Deep in the Connecticut River Valley, you’ll stumble upon Lyman Orchards, 1,100 acres of sprawling farmland. Fill your basket with flavorful eco-certified apples (grown sustainably with minimal chemicals), then grab a slice of their award-winning Hi-Top Apple Pie made from scratch in the Apple Barrel, the farm’s market which sells tons of fresh-baked goodies.
Delaware: Fifer Orchards, Camden Wyoming
On Saturdays at Fifer Orchards, you can hop on the back of a tractor and be toted out to the orchard for all the apple picking your heart desires. Just make sure you leave Fido at home—the farm has a strict “no pets” policy for safety and health reasons. Don’t miss these 38 stunning photos of fall across America.
Florida: U-Pick Citrus, Fort Myers
Sadly, there aren’t any places in Florida where you can pick your own apples. So instead, go harvest the “apple of the South”—the orange! At U-Pick Citrus, fill a five-gallon bucket with juicy oranges for just $13, a third of which will be donated to charity. Prime citrus season is November to April so plan accordingly.
Georgia: Hillcrest Orchards, Ellijay
Forget the corn maze: This fall we’re all about the apple tree maze at Hillcrest Orchards. Once (or rather, if) you find your way out of the hundreds of trees, go pick your own apples. Parents will love the smaller dwarf apple trees so that the little ones can pick fruit themselves without having to be hoisted onto the shoulders. Your back will thank you.
Hawaii: Aloun Farms, Kapolei
There’s no apple picking to be found in Hawaii, but there is pumpkin picking. At Aloun Farms, home to 90 percent of the island’s fall squash harvest, you’ll want to attend the Annual Pumpkin festival. Kids can take educational hayride tours around the farm and pick their own perfect pumpkin. The best part? The leftover pumpkins are donated to the Honolulu Zoo to feed the animals as treats.
Idaho: Tyler’s Rocky Point Orchard, Emmett
Come for the apples, stay for the cider at Tyler’s Rocky Point Orchard. Just a short drive from Boise, the farm is known for its fresh-pressed cider made from nothing except juicy red apples (yep, no sugar or additives). Open seven days a week, there’s really no excuse not to make it out on a Saturday afternoon for a jug of cider and a bucket of apples to take home.
Illinois: Edwards Orchard, Poplar Grove
Horse-drawn carriage rides, pumpkin picking, live country music, a petting zoo—there’s so much to do at Edwards Orchard, which is open from September to November. Choose from 12 different varieties of apples to go pick in the orchards including Gala, Honeycrisp, Fuji, and Granny Smith. Here’s what to do with your bounty of apples (besides eat them!).
Indiana: County Line Orchard, Hobart
Stop and smell the pastries at the bake shop, where County Line Orchard sells an average of 1 million apple cider donuts each season along with apple pie and their famous fudge. Once you satisfy your sweet tooth, take the scenic route to the orchard via tractor and pick crowd favorite Pink Lady or Snow Sweet apples. When the sun starts setting, trek back to the main barn to warm up by a crackling campfire.
Iowa: Wilson’s Orchard, Iowa City
A gurgling creek winds its way through fields of wildflowers and farmland, making Wilson’s Orchard the perfect rural getaway. There are over 120 different varieties of apples to pick, but don’t feel intimidated—head to the barn first to taste test the apples that are currently ripe for harvesting. Adults will also enjoy the new Rapid Creek Cidery where you can order a glass of the orchard’s hard craft cider paired with a hot apple turnover.
Kansas: Cider Hill Family Orchard, Kansas City
The apple picking season at Cider Hill starts with the Pristine apples, ends with the Golden Delicious, and is full of tons of family fun and apple cider slushies in between. Pack a picnic lunch to enjoy under the shade of the 900 apple trees, go fishing in the pond, or let the younger ones ride the kids’ train. On a budget? Try one of these frugal fall activities for the family, too.
Kentucky: Evans Orchard, Georgetown
With 15 acres dedicated solely to juicy apples, Evans Orchard has got you covered when it comes to fall fruits. But pick-your-own apples isn’t all you’ll find there: They also have a play area for kids which includes everything from a hay castle to pony rides, plus a farm market where you can buy homemade jams and jellies, baked goods, and fresh cider.
Louisiana: Eddie Romero’s Orchard, New Iberia
It takes a brave man to try to grow apples in the muggy heat of the deep South. But Eddie Romero has done just that in his bountiful fruit orchards. The only place to pick apples in Louisiana, the property also raises peaches, muscadine grapes, blackberries, pears, and figs. It’s best to call ahead before you go to check what is currently available for picking.
Maine: Treworgy Family Orchards, Levant
Add this family farm to your fall bucket list: You can fill a basket full of crisp apples from the orchard, make your own bouquet with fresh-cut flowers, or spend a half hour feeding and cuddling with baby goats. Bring a flashlight and stay after sunset for the night corn maze adventure—good luck finding your way out! Here’s exactly why apples are so good for you.
Maryland: Baugher’s Orchards, Westminster
We aren’t sure what the best part about an afternoon spent at Baugher’s Orchards in western Maryland is: The scenic hayride to the orchard to pick your own apples, the Fall Harvest Festival (held every weekend in October), or the restaurant serving up classic country cooking and over 20 types of pie. Tip: Bring cash as there are no credit card machines or ATMs.
Massachusetts: Honey Pot Hill Orchards, Stow
With more than 80 pick-your-own apple spots across Massachusetts, it’s tough to single out just one. While you can’t go wrong with any fruit farm, Honey Pot Hill is one of our favorites. Five people can share a 1/2 bushel bag; fill it with New England apple varieties like Cortland, Macoun, Empire, and Red Delicious. Afterward, let the kids burn off extra energy in one of three quirky hedge mazes.
Michigan: Blake’s Orchard, Armada
To the delight of everyone in the state of Michigan, Blake’s Orchard is now open year-round. This haven of fall festivities includes pick-your-own apples as early as mid-July, the famous Funland for kids (a straw bale maze, tricycle track, haunted village, and more), and hard cider on tap at the Tasting Room. You definitely won’t be bored at what was one of Michigan’s first U-pick farms.
Minnesota: Pine Tree Apple Orchard, White Bear Lake
You weren’t expecting to run for your apples, were you? OK, you don’t have to, but every year for the past 32 years, Pine Tree Apple Orchard has hosted the 5-mile Run for the Apples race through the trees, strawberry fields, and pumpkin patch. At the finish line, dive into some apple-themed sweet treats before picking your own fruit—they have over 20 types including the unique Dolgo Crab.
Mississippi: Cherry Creek Orchards, Pontotoc
Even Southerners know you can’t have a fall season without delicious apples. Which is why, despite the tricky warmer climate, Cherry Creek Orchards grows numerous varieties on their 123 acres. You can pick the apples along with other fruits and veggies. While you’re there, pick out a pumpkin for this year’s jack-o’-lantern and sample some of the fresh honey straight from the hive.
Missouri: Schweizer Orchards, St Joseph
Bite into a River Bend apple grown on the bluffs above the Missouri River and you’ll likely forget any other types of apples even exist. With four generations of farming under their belt (and orchards dating back to the early 1900s), Schweizer Orchards has perfected the apple-growing process. Don’t leave without a jar of handmade jam or relish from the country store.
Montana: Bluewater Orchard, Fromberg
The secret to the sweetest apple? Growing it in the right conditions—which is exactly what the Clark Fork Valley provides for the apples raised and harvested at Bluewater Orchard. Grab a few of the heirloom apples off the branches (the farm specializes in McIntosh and Jonathan) which are 100 percent organic. And no matter where you live, here’s how to make the most of the apple-picking season.
Nebraska: Arbor Day Farm, Nebraska City
Warning: You might never want to leave the fall paradise of Arbor Day Farm. There’s a 50-foot-tall treehouse that kids can explore as part of the Tree Adventure program. You’ll want to pick your own apples of course, but don’t forget to stop at the Preservation Orchards, where you can taste some of the rare heirloom apple varieties that are no longer available in stores.
Nevada: Gilcrease Orchard, Las Vegas
What happens in Vegas… is apple picking? Trust us on this one—the delicious crunch of a hand-picked apple from Gilcrease Orchard is a better payout than you’ll get from any of the casinos. Even better is the farm’s famous apple cider naturally sweetened with Gala, yellow Gala, and an early red variety of apple. Tastes like fall in a cup, just like these 5 other delicious drinks.
New Hampshire: Gould Hill Farm, Contoocook
Standing in the orchard at Gould Hill Farm, you can see for 80 miles on a clear fall day—as far as the White Mountains. There are an overwhelming 80-plus types of apples to pick from, but you’ll definitely want to toss a few of the Hampshire variety into your basket. Exclusive to the orchard, this apple is rich and sweet and perfect for baking an apple pie.
New Jersey: Battleview Orchards, Freehold
No joke: This New Jersey orchard is owned and run by the Applegate family, and they definitely know apples. The 120-acre farm produces 14 different varieties of crunchy apples alongside juicy peaches and giant pumpkins. Visit on the weekend and you can enjoy a warm apple cider donut before taking a hayride across the property.
New Mexico: Cadwallader Mountain Farms, Mountain Park
It may be best known for its sweet and sour cherries during the summer months, but this family-run farm in the mountains of New Mexico also grows refreshingly crisp apples. Scramble up one of the ladders dotting the orchard to pick your own. Want to make an apple pie but not sure what type to use? Owner Angie Cadwallader recommends the firmer Jonathan or Rome apples.
New York: Masker Orchards, Warwick
Combine your apple picking with cups of steaming spicy cider, brightly colored leaves, and wagon rides under a blanket at Masker Orchards, which is nestled in the breathtaking Hudson Valley. And it doesn’t get more convenient than being able to drive your car right up to the trees. Not sure when the leaves will change color? Check out this fall foliage map to find your area.
North Carolina: Sky Top Orchard, Flat Rock
If you don’t leave Sky Top Orchard with a belly full of apple cider donuts, you’re doing something wrong. The warm donuts, dusted in cinnamon sugar, are made using fruit from the 70-plus acres of apple trees out back. There’s plenty to do from going on hayrides to exploring the bamboo forest, and pro pickers recommend getting there early if you want to snag the coveted Honeycrisp apples.
North Dakota: Papa’s Pumpkin Patch, Bismarck
BYOW—bring your own wagon—on Thursdays and not only will you pay just a $1 per person to pick (it’s usually $5) plus one free admission. That grants you access to Papa’s nature trails, horse-drawn hayrides, and of course, apple picking. Grab one of Papa’s pumpkin cookies for dessert when you’re done.
Ohio: CherryHawk Farm Apple Orchard, Marysville
Consider your fall weekend planned. Pick a peck of produce (say that five times fast) from the almost 1,000 apple trees spanning CherryHawk’s orchard, or frolic in the blossoming sunflower fields and enjoy a picnic. Either way, we love that this farm focuses on one thing and one thing only (apples). Feeling festive after your trip? Here’s how to decorate your house for fall.
Oklahoma: Livesay Orchards, Porter
In the fall, Porter’s Peach Barn should really be renamed the “Apple Barn” because it’s one of the only places in the state where you can pick your own juicy red apples. Or grab a bushel to go, and then browse the open-air farmer’s market for other fresh fruits and veggies. Let the kids pick out a jack-o’-lantern for Halloween from the pumpkin patch, too.
Oregon: Kiyokawa Family Orchards, Parkdale
The stunning view of snow-capped Mount Hood is almost enough to make the trip out to Kiyokawa Family Orchards, never mind the 25 unique varieties of apples ripe for the picking. Plan your trip during the Honeycrisp Harvest in October when you can listen to live folk music as you munch on apple slices dripping with gooey caramel and fill a bucket of everyone’s favorite apple.
Pennsylvania: Brown’s Orchards, Loganville
What started as a roadside stand has grown into a massive family-run farm, one that people flock to every fall. Before taking a hayride out to the orchards to pick your apples, fill up at the Brown Bean Cafe where you can sit outside on a crisp sunny afternoon—just make sure you leave room for dessert from their award-winning bakery. As if we needed another reason to believe fall is the best season ever.
Rhode Island: Jaswell’s Farm, Smithfield
Follow Rhode Island’s Apple Blossom Trail, along which you’ll find Jaswell’s Farm, currently in its 117th season of apple-growing. The pick-your-own fruits are a must of course, but the real attraction? Their famous candied apples. Choose from three kinds (red candy, caramel, or chocolate) or go for the gourmet apple, coated in caramel, toppings, and milk chocolate. Finished with a white chocolate drizzle, it weighs almost two pounds!
South Carolina: Bryson’s Apple Orchard, Mountain West
You’ve heard of apple picking, you’ve heard of the Blue Ridge Mountains… but have you heard of the stunning orchard nestled among said mountain range? Bryson’s is where you can either pick your own or buy a pre-packed bag before exploring the nearby natural attractions by way of hiking trails (waterfalls, the Chattooga River, and panoramic views await!).
South Dakota: Country Apple Orchard, Harrisburg
If you have a pair of boots and a warm jacket, you can get a bushel of apples with a trip to Country Apple Orchard during harvest season (mid-August to late October). With over 6,000 trees and seven acres of pumpkin patches, they host a different festival every weekend in September, boasting pony rides, homemade pies, an inflatable playground, and more.
Tennessee: Apple Barn Winery, Sevierville
Apple picking and wine tasting in one spot? Not only does this Tennessee vineyard grow their apples similar to the way grapes are grown (using a trellis system), they also use fresh apple cider as the base for most of their wine. Tour the winemaking area where you’ll watch the production process and get to sample their signature dry Apple wine.
Texas: Love Creek Orchards, Medina
Craving a fresh apple in the middle of the summer? You’ll have to make the trip to Love Creek Orchards, the only place in the United States with tree-ripened apples ready to be picked in early July. No ladder climbing or heavy lifting necessary, either: The orchard is comprised of 500 dwarf apple trees (don’t worry, the apples themselves are full-sized) which only grow as tall as six feet.
Utah: Allred Orchards, Provo
In the foothills of Utah County lies Allred Orchards, a pick-your-own destination for apple lovers everywhere. While the orchard’s most popular apple (and the founder’s favorite) is the snappy Honeycrisp, they also offer a wide range of varieties from the tart Valstar to the super sweet Blondee. If you get thirsty from all that picking, grab a glass of their fresh-pressed apple juice.
Vermont: Scott Farm Orchard, Dummerston
Celebrate the season at the Annual Heirloom Apple Day at historic Scott Farm Orchard. Learn about the apple growing and harvesting process from the orchardist and sample slices of the 120-plus different heirloom varieties grown in the orchards. Don’t miss the Esopus Spitzenburg, one of Thomas Jefferson’s favorites. You’ll also be treated to live fiddle music, wood-fired pizza, and local hard apple cider.
Virginia: Carter Mountain Orchard, Charlottesville
A day at Carter Mountain Orchard is well worth the wait and the crowds (it’s a popular place!). Enjoy the apples you just picked from the orchards while you lounge on the observation deck, soaking in the views of the Charlottesville vineyards below. And the warm apple cider donuts from the bakery pair perfectly with a pour of Bold Rock Hard Cider from the on-site tasting cellar.
Washington: Bellewood Acres, Lynden
With over 25,000 fruit trees, Bellewood Acres has become one of the largest pick-your-own operations in Washington state. Catch a ride out to the orchard on the Apple Bin Express (the farm’s train) which even makes a stop at the pumpkin patch when you’re finished. The first apple to pick this season? The Gravenstein, a tart variety perfect for making fresh applesauce.
West Virginia: Morgan Orchard, Sinks Grove
Rotate upwards and twist—never pull. That’s the proper way to pluck an apple from its branches and it’s a technique you can use at Morgan Orchard. There are 23 tasty varieties to choose from, but you should make sure to leave with at least a few sweet Golden Delicious apples—it is the state fruit, after all. Apple picking is just one of the many things on our ultimate fall bucket list.
Wisconsin: The Elegant Farmer, Mukwonago
A big pile of leaves isn’t the only thing you want to dive into this fall. Meet the famous “Apple Pie Baked in a Paper Bag” which has been voted the best pie in America by Gourmet Magazine, The Wall Street Journal, and Food Network. The sweet-yet-tart and flaky-yet-crunchy pie is the perfect treat after an afternoon of apple picking in the orchard.
Wyoming: Laramie Farmer’s Market, Laramie
Unfortunately, the cold weather climate of Wyoming doesn’t make for ideal apple-growing conditions. But you can still enjoy your favorite fall fruit with a trip to Laramie’s Farmer Market. Held downtown from June to September, the open-air market boasts all sorts of fresh produce (including crisp apples grown in neighboring states) along with crafts and live music. Bonus points if you find the apple butter… Next, find out the best-kept secret in every state.