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We want to take you behind the scenes, to give you insider information you won't find anywhere else. This is where we pull Bloomington's hip happenings together with recommendations from our team, first-hand accounts from project producers, and guest blogs by local gurus.  The Backstage Blog helps you stay in front of it all.

Wednesday, September 27, 2017

Top 10 Photo-Worthy Fall Foliage Places in Bloomington

Categories: Indiana University, General, Outdoors, Family Fun

With so many colors decorating the landscape in Bloomington, fall is the perfect time to explore with your camera. We've picked 10 of our favorite places to experience fall in Bloomington whether you want to shoot the golden hues of fall foliage, IU campus icons, or pumpkins of all shapes and sizes. Want to show off your best fall photos? Tag your Instagram shots with #btownfall for your chance to win a Bloomington prize pack.

Hickory Ridge Fire Tower

hickory ridge

The Hickory Ridge Fire Tower gives an incredible view of the Hoosier National Forest any time of year but it is especially stunning in the fall. The view from up here gives the Golden Hour a whole new meaning. Don't you think?

Related content: Hard to find hikes in the Hoosier Nation

Rose Well House

rose well house

The Rose Well House is one of the most iconic buildings at Indiana University. It has long been a popular meeting place and one of the most romantic campus locations. Historically "couples were known to get engaged and “pinned” at the Well House.  Eventually, kissing at the Well House at midnight became a rite of passage for Indiana University students. The kiss had to last the duration of the full twelve strokes of midnight, (noon doesn’t count, notes the 1967 Arbutus).  A woman was said to be a “true coed” only after this requirement was met.  When the women’s curfew was 11 pm, this could be a risky endeavor." There are no longer curfews on campus but many couples still observe this storied tradition on campus. Could this be more picture perfect for a proposal? Source: IU Archives

Related content: Romantic Getaway Ideas in Bloomington


Bean Blossom Bottoms

beanblossom bottoms trail

Beanblossom Bottoms Nature Preserve is managed by the Sycamore Land Trust and is dedicated as an Indiana State Nature Preserve by the Indiana Department of Natural Resources, and it has also been designated a state Important Bird Area by the National Audubon Society. Eighty bird species have been documented during the breeding season, including bald eagles that have actively nested there for the past several years. The two-mile trail is an easy walk on a raised boardwalk that gives visitors a unique perspective while exploring this wetland.

Clear Creek Trail 



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The wooded canopy is all aglow in the fall making it a beautiful bike ride or stroll. Clear Creek Trail is flat making it an easy trail for kiddos too. This trail connects with the B-Line Trail as well if you want to cruise downtown for a longer ride. Don't forget your camera. 

Related content: Urban Trails in Bloomington

Fowler Pumpkin Patch

fowler pumpkin patch

We're head over heels for the Fowler Pumpkin Patch. Thousands of pumpkins are up for grabs this fall from Friday-Sunday. You can even take a hayride, explore a corn maze, and hang out with some really cute goats and donkeys.  

Related Content: Fall Bucket List

Griffy Nature Preserve

Copy of Lake Griffy Boardwalk

The trails and lake are picture perfect at Griffy in the fall. Rent a boat or bring your own for a peaceful paddle around the lake or hike a variety of trails that will make you feel like you're out in the wild even though you're still within the city limits. 

Bloomington Community Farmers Market

farmer fall

Grab a cup of hot chocolate from Le Petite Cafe's window or coffee and stroll the B-Line before or after you hit the market to take in all of the fall colors around you. The Bloomington Community Farmers Market looks good no matter the season but with pumpkins, gourds, and apples galore, it's hard not to love the photo ops. Not to mention that autumnal glow in the early morning. 

Related content: Farmers' Markets in Monroe County

Oliver Winery

oliver fall

Wine tasting on the porch at Oliver Winery is absolutely blissful in the fall. The colors are in full bloom and the air is crisp enough to let you sit for hours enjoying the afternoon. Want to stay a while? Book a picnic with them to enjoy. The Oliver Winery gardens turn into a pumpkin patch in the fall as well so don't forget to pick out a pumpkin before you go. 

Related Content: Brewed in Bloomington

Sample Gates

sample gates iu

With over 4,000 photos of the Sample Gates posted on Instagram, they are bound to be one of the most photographed places in all of Bloomington. It should come as no surprise that the colors of fall look especially beautiful here. Deep crimson and gold frame the gates as you walk onto Indiana University's campus, even the flower beds reflect the changing of the season with deep autumnal colors.  If you're an early riser, head to the gates to watch one of the most stunning sunrises you'll ever see and witness an eerily quiet Kirkwood Avenue.

Related content: Icons of Indiana University

4th Street

4th street bloomington

4th Street in downtown Bloomington is known for its unique and global cuisine but it also has some noteworthy fall foliage. The trees lining the street shine a vibrant gold starting in September and last through the month of October. After you enjoy the view, pop into one of the international restaurants for some worldly cuisine.

Related content: No passport necessary - International Restaurants in Bloomington


Emily Hines

Emily Hines

Emily Hines was previously the digital content Coordinator for Visit Bloomington. When she wasn't blogging or grammin' you could find her hiking in the Hoosier National Forest with her husband and two black labs or enjoying a craft beer and slice of pizza in town.