Take This Gorgeous Fall Foliage Road Trip To See Iowa Like Never Before

Fall is here, and that means basking in the glorious beauty of the fall foliage around the state. Although every year is different, it’s most common for the famed Farmer’s Almanac to estimate a peak season for the best fall foliage in Iowa to happen in the later weeks of October.

It’s no shock, that with all of Iowa’s beautiful state parks and wooded areas that there are so many places to enjoy this beautiful and natural annual experience. The natural areas of Iowa really love to show off come the end of the year, so here’s a fun road trip through Iowa that will charm you with a rich palette of gorgeous reds, yellows, oranges, and browns. Although the trip itself comes in close to six hours, we’d recommend breaking up the experience and stopping where you feel led. There’s nothing like the introduction of inspired improvisation on a midwestern road trip.

Looking for directions? Follow our fall foliage road trip through Iowa with our map!

You can find a map of our road trip route right here, but make sure that you’re adding on your own fun experiences throughout. Have some personal tips on finding the best fall foliage in Iowa? Leave them in the comments below!

Looking for some other amazing Iowa fall activities? These 10 Charming Apple Orchards In Iowa Are Picture Perfect For A Fall Day.

The OIYS Visitor Center

Best Fall Foliage In Iowa

August 17, 2019

What is the best time to see peak fall foliage in Iowa?

Peak fall foliage differs depending on the year, but most folks report a fiery peak in Iowa in the last weeks of October, with the color petering off into early November.

Where are the best places in Iowa to see fall foliage?

It’s hard to choose just a handful of places to see beautiful fall foliage in Iowa. If you’re looking for cities, you can’t go wrong with Des Moines or Iowa City, two darling towns that are known for their character and beauty. Jester Park in Granger is fabulous for a quick horseback ride through the fiery hues of autumn, and a hike through the Driftless Area Scenic Byway in Northeastern Iowa is perhaps one of the most underrated beauties in the state. The Loess Hills in Western Iowa is a beautiful spot to visit in the fall, and if you’d like to see the colors by boat? Take a cruise down the Iowa River from Iowa Falls on the Scenic City Empress.

What are the best Iowa hikes to take in the fall?

The hiking experience in Iowa is top-notch no matter what time of year, but we’d recommend visiting the four miles of trails at Wildcat Den State Park, 12.5 miles at Lacey-Keosauqua State Park, or the above and below ground beauty of Maquoketa Caves State Park. Ledges State Park is full of natural history as well as some of the best fall foliage in Iowa, and is highly recommended for scenic overlooks of the Des Moines River.