One of the best things about the fall season is getting to watch the leaves change colors. Chico isn’t called the City of Trees for nothing, there are so many places you can go to enjoy the fall colors.
Right now is the perfect time of year to see all the oranges, yellows, and reds...allowing you to cross off "see the fall colors" on your fall themed bucket list!
Fall Colors PSA: In Chico, the leaves tend to change colors around the middle of October and will continue to change colors until the middle of November, at which point they will turn into piles on the ground (good for jumping in!).
When you are headed downtown, make sure you take The Esplanade. The street is lined with what feels like a gazillion trees and when they all change color it is breathtaking. Even if you don’t need to visit downtown, you can still take the drive and admire the colors that signify the turning of the season.
Tip: Just want to take in the trees without a destination? Drive South on Esplanade, towards downtown, and when you get to the last stop light before entering downtown turn right. You’ll see the Bidwell Mansion, and enter a “roundabout” that will make turning around easy as pie. This will allow you to turn left back onto Esplanade, heading North, to take in the trees one more time!
Chico State Campus
Not only is the Chico State Campus beautiful, it also has over 200 species of plants (that includes trees!). Leaving the entire 119 acres of the campus encompassed in fall colors come the end of October. Here’s a list of all the special places you can specifically go to see the colors.
The Chico Tree Farm, also called Chico Seed Orchard, is another great place to see the fall colors. It’s a farm made of trees! If this isn’t on your list for fall color viewing then you need to think again. Strolling through the 209 acres and seeing all the colors is one for the books. Click here to see the hours!
Midway to Durham
Take a drive, walk the trails, or cruise your way down the Midway on a bike. Whichever mode of transportation you decide to take make sure you drive the Midway which runs between Chico and Durham. Take the time for a relaxing drive/walk/bike and enjoy the beautiful pops of color.
Mission Ranch Blvd
Right off The Esplanade you’ll find a wide curvy road that is lined with giant trees on either side of the road that, when they change colors, will make you feel like you’re in another land. When the colorful leaves begin to really fall off the tree, the landscape company will blow the leaves into the middle of the road making a divider that is made solely of colorful leaves. It happens during the week and will usually last until early afternoon. You don’t want to miss it, it’s a sight to behold.
This road will take you along the Sacramento River. Not only is it a fun road to drive down (especially if you can put the top down) but there are a million trees too. Decide to take a drive a little before sunset and enjoy the changing of the leaves in the light of a dropping sun.
Of course, we had to add our beloved park to the list! Whether you take a stroll through lower Bidwell Park or hike a trail, like Yahi, in upper Bidwell, the fall colors will be out for you to enjoy. Pack a picnic and spend the afternoon under the trees by One Mile in lower Bidwell Park.
As you drive around town you can already see the trees starting to pop with colors, so grab a sweater and go enjoy the fall colors!
For more fun ideas of things to do around Chico and the rest of the North State check out our North Sate Living page. You can also subscribe to our blog where you'll get tips and tricks on all things rentals as well as fun events happening throughout the North State.