You can’t miss out on the quintessential New England Fall activity!
It’s fall Bostonians, so you know what that means–It’s time to get out there and start picking some sweet, crisp apples! While we’ll certainly miss the blooming gardens and sunflower fields, we cannot pretend that we aren’t excited about the changing leaves, pumpkin patches, and apples galore.
There isn’t much time left, as the apples tend to drop in late October. That’s why we’ve compiled this neat little list to help you find out where to get your pick of the season’s best apples. Check them out!
1. Brooksby Farm, Peabody (30 mins)
From peaches to pumpkins and of course apples, Brooksby Farms has all sorts of delicious PYO (pick-your-own) fruit and veg. Not to mention its famous bakery sells some incredible baked goodies, including muffins and monkey bread. Yum! Apple picking at Brooksby is open Tues-Sunday from 9 am to 4 pm beginning September 11.
2. Boston Hill Farm, North Andover ( 35 mins)
This gorgeous family-owned farm is once again offering PYO this year. Travel up to North Andover for a totally New England experience while picking a wide variety of juicy apples including Cortland, Macoun, Ginger Gold, and Paula Red. Apple-picking hours run from 9 am – 5 pm daily. Plus, if you want to dig into some fresh apple cider donuts, pies, fudge, jams, and other mouthwatering goodies, the on-site farm stand offers lots of fall goodies in addition to fresh produce. Make sure to stop by on weekends after September 19th – they’ll be hosting their weekly fall festivals, including apple and pumpkin picking, homemade apple cider donuts, live music, BBQ, petting zoo, ice cream, and much more!
3. Lookout Farm, South Natick (35 mins)
One of the oldest farms in the country, Lookout offers a wide variety of apples to pick from. Right now, apples ripe for picking include Macintosh, Golden Delicious, and Asian Pears. The farm also has some awesome dining options available on-site including a taproom with outdoor seating featuring all kinds of craft beer and ciders and a curbside market currently selling matcha and white chocolate-covered donuts! This year, the farm’s open every day from 10 am to 4:30 pm. We recommend making a reservation for the U-pick in advance on their website.
4. Dowse Orchards, Sherborn ( 40 mins)
This roadside farm is perfect for stocking up on all kinds of sweet and crispy apples. Dowse Orchards offers up to 16 different varieties of apple including Honey crisp, McIntosh, Zestars, galas, and ginger golds, and it has some sweet freshly-pressed apple cider for you to take home as well. This year, the apple-picking season at Dowse starts on September 11 and 12 from 10 am to 5 pm. Make sure to check out their Facebook page for more detailed updates on what’s ready for picking.
5. Smolak Farms, North Andover (40 mins)
PYO season is officially open at Smolak farms with plumpy peaches, plums, blueberries, and apples just around the corner! According to Smolak’s website, the apple picking season at the farm starts on September 6 this year, running from 8 am to 5 pm. If you’re feeling especially peckish after all that apple picking–and who wouldn’t be after all that hard work–Smolak’s Farm Stand also offers a meal-to-go menu including some amazing-sounding baked goodies including pumpkin scones and pumpkin whoopie pies. Yum!
6. Parlee Farm, Tyngsboro (45 mins)
Apple picking season is well underway at this Tyngsboro farm with Ginger reds and Galas ripe for picking! Parlee Farms also offers up to 20 other kinds of apples ready for you to pick and some mouthwatering desserts at Mary’s Country Kitchen. We suggest starting off with some apple picking and then heading over to Mary’s for some hearty warm apple crisp and some of their award-winning apple cider donuts for a totally yummy apple-themed adventure!
7. Honey Pot Hill Orchards, Stow (48 mins)
The famous Honey Pot Hill Orchards is now open from 9-5 daily. Reservations are not currently required to go apple picking, but they can be done on their website. Hayrides are also still available, and so are their gallons of crisp apple and their mouthwatering cider donut ice cream sandwiches. Trust us when we say you don’t want to miss out on those!
8. Russell Orchards, Ipswich (50 mins)
Want a well-rounded, fall apple-picking experience? You should check Russell Orchards. This 120-acre farm located in Ipswich, MA offers all you need for the perfect fall outing including 10 varieties of apples to pick from, a barnyard, a produce store, and a bakery filled with luscious fall-themed goodies. Unfortunately, hayrides at Russell Orchards are canceled this year but you can still pick apples to your heart’s content starting now! Apple picking is available Tuesday through Sunday, from 9 am to 6 pm.
9. Shelburne Farm, Stow (50 mins)
If you’re looking for endless options, Shelburne Farm’s more than 80 kinds of apples should do it. Plus, this lovely farm also sells delicious fresh cider donuts and fudge from a 19th-century barn that is totally gorgeous! Walk-ins are welcomed at Shelburne seven days a week from 9 am to 5 pm.
10. Carlson Orchards, Harvard (50 mins)
Looking to pick some deliciously juicy apples with a side of top-notch cider? Then look no further. Carlson Orchards takes pride in its premium orchards and cider. Pick away from its more than 15 varieties of apples and reward yourself for a job well done with one of their awesome Oak Hill Blend and Shandy Stand ciders, available by the six-pack in their store. Also, if you’re wondering what kind of apple best suits your culinary needs, make sure to check Carlson’s detailed guide to apples on their website. Apple picking is currently open from 9 AM to 4 PM daily.