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Apple picking in upstate NY in the Hudson Valley

The Best Orchards for Apple Picking in the New York Hudson Valley

The season has arrived for local farms to open their orchards for apple picking in New York. The charm of fall in the Hudson Valley is undeniable, with the landscape changing hues, and the scent of ripe apples filling the air. It’s a picture-perfect opportunity, and for many, a chance to capture the moment on Instagram.

For families, the arrival of apple picking season signifies more than just harvesting fruit. It marks the onset of autumn in the Hudson Valley, where the evenings grow crisp, and the trees transform into a vibrant tapestry of reds and yellows.

Apple picking has certainly evolved into a family tradition that goes beyond fruit collection. Many farms offer additional attractions such as corn mazes, hayrides, and encounters with animals like pygmy goats and pony rides. For those who might find apple picking physically taxing, some farms now feature breweries, cideries, and wineries to complement the day’s activities.

Get ready to engage in one of Hudson Valley’s pastimes at these farms and orchards.

When is Apple Picking Season in New York?

Apple picking season in NY State runs from September into October. Most seem to open the farms for pick-your-own apples on Labor Day weekend, but there are a few that open earlier in August for apples that ripen early.

Although apple season runs into October, I recommend going in early September while there are still plenty of ripe apples. By October, many of the trees are often stripped of the good apples.

Where Can I Find Apple Picking Near NYC?

The Hudson Valley is the region immediately north of New York City along the Hudson River. Typical definitions tend to include Westchester County, although most farms and apple orchards are located in the counties just north of it.

The Hudson Valley is easily accessible by taking the Hudson Line on the Metro North trains from Grand Central Terminal. However, most of the orchards for apple picking are at least 20-30 minutes form the train stations. So if you take the train to towns like Beacon or Poughkeepsie, you will still have to take an Uber to and from the orchards. So, the easiest way to go apple picking in upstate NY is to drive.

List of Best Apple Orchards in the Hudson Valley

Fishkill Farms

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Fishkill Farms is one of the best apple picking Orchards in the Hudson Valley. It is located in East Fishkill and they also make their own hard cider.
Fishkill Farms

Fishkill Farms in Hopewell Junction stands as a prime destination for eco-certified and organic apple picking, boasting a diverse selection of over 100 apple varieties, including heirlooms like Cox’s Orange Pippin and Cortland. This family-owned farm, with over a century of heritage, offers a Pick-Your-Own season from late August through October.

Please note, reservations are required and available online for apple picking here.

In addition to apple picking, visitors can enjoy hayrides with sweeping views of the Catskills and partake in a range of weekend events, from festivals to yoga sessions.

The farm’s 270 acres of orchards are a scenic 1.5-hour drive from New York City, providing an ideal day trip. Reservations are necessary, with weekends and holidays priced at $48 per package for up to 5 people and including a half-bushel bag for apple picking. Aside from apples, the farm offers Asian pears, peaches, raspberries, blackberries, and various vegetables seasonally.

While dogs are permitted on the farm, they must remain on a leash and are not allowed in the farm stores or under the apple trees. Its no secret that Fishkill Farms is one of my favorite apple orchards, as they also make their own hard cider which they serve at their on-site Treasury Cider Bar. You can find my post about the best hard cider in the Hudson Valley at the link below:

Not Just Apple Picking: The Best Cideries in the New York Hudson Valley

Apple picking season begins September 2nd, 2023.

Dubois Farms

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DuBois Farms is one of the best orchards for apple picking in the Hudson Valley.
DuBois Farms

Fishkill Farms may be my favorite apple orchard on the east side of the Hudson River, but Dubois Farms is my favorite orchard to the west.

The farm provides a complete experience, boasting a farm market, tavern, and a pizza stand, all serving locally sourced delights. They have live music most weekends during the busy seasons and serve local hard cider in the Tavern. The farm is open from late May through late November, and no reservations are required for your visit. Entrance is free, as is parking, making it an accessible family destination. Kids can interact with farm animals and explore Tiny Town, open daily from 10am to 5pm.

Apple picking season begins late August 2023.

Wilklow Orchards

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Bad Seed has a farm bar that serves cider made form apples at Wilklow Orchards
Bad Seed Farm Bar at Wilklow Orchards

Wilklow Orchards presents an abundant apple-picking experience with over 13 apple varieties available. Open daily from Labor Day weekend through October 31, from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m., the orchard offers both large (for 4 people, holding 20-25 lbs) and small (for 2 people, holding 10-12 lbs) apple bags for picking.

Beyond apples, the orchard’s road stand features a variety of local products, including honey, cheese, and baked goods. Visitors can enjoy live music, hayrides, and a farmyard playground, along with the chance to see livestock on the farm. Food trucks offer apple-related treats, cider, hard cider, and more.

Apple picking season begins Labor Day weekend 2023.

Weed Orchards & Winery

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Weed Orchards offers apple picking in the Hudson Valley of New York
Weed Orchards

Weed Orchard & Winery, a family-owned farm and winery in the Hudson Valley since 1913, provides a quintessential apple-picking experience from September to November. It offers a delightful Apples & Wine Festival during this time, featuring live music, apple-themed menu specials, and face painting.

While there is a small admissions fee at the door (children 5 and under enter for free), hayrides are complimentary starting around 12:30 p.m. Additionally, visitors can enjoy a corn maze with a lookout tower, a 7-foot tunnel slide, a playground, and lakeside picnic areas, making it an excellent family destination. For apple picking, payment is based on the pound or $42 for a full bag. On non-festival weekdays, general admission is not required, but the fun activities are exclusive to festival weekends.

Weed Orchard & Winery also has a pet-friendly sister farm, Sonny Weed, open on Saturdays and Sundays.

Apple picking season begins Labor Day weekend 2023.

Apple Ridge Orchards

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Apple Ridge Orchards, a scenic pick-your-own orchard, is just 55 miles from midtown Manhattan. It offers a bounty of apple varieties for picking against a backdrop of stunning hillside views. Families can make the most of their visit with apple, peach, and pumpkin picking, and the farm also features a selection of gourds, mums, and cider for sale. Beyond fruit-picking, this orchard provides a delightful family experience, complete with a petting zoo, play area, and farm stand. 

For a fun outing, visitors can enjoy hayrides, available throughout the season, and even indulge in Spookley Movie Nights in mid-October. Keep in mind that there’s a small general admission fee of $3 per person (for those aged 2 and over) to access the farm grounds, including the petting zoo and hayride. Apple picking, which runs from early September to the end of October, comes at a separate cost, priced at $34 for each half-bushel of apples picked, including a free pick-your-own bag. 

Apple Ridge Orchards is open on Thursdays, Fridays, Saturdays, Sundays, and all holidays, welcoming visitors from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.

Apple picking season begins September 2nd, 2023.

Pumpkin picking season begins September 16th, 2023.

Masker Orchards

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Masker Orchards offers apple picking in Warwick, New York. Here, it’s popular to drive right to an apple tree, and set up a picnic for the family and so it can be made a full day destination. Masker is also a dog friendly apple orchard. On weekends they even have pony rides, wagon rides, and an apple maze. This is certainly one of the best apple orchards for families in the area. Apple picking runs from the beginning of September into early October.

Apple picking season begins September 2nd, 2023.

Barton Orchards

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Barton Orchards is a 175-acre apple orchard and vegetable farm, making it a prime apple-picking destination. They offer a wide array of apple varieties, from HoneyCrisp to McIntosh, set amidst a backdrop of entertainment options for all ages.

Visitors can enjoy hayrides, a kids’ petting zoo, a fun park, a Bark Park for dogs, live music, and a variety of delectable foods, including freshly made cider donuts and pickles. Special weekend events, like Oktoberfest, add to the excitement. The farm also features a Treetops Adventure Course, available by reservation, for those seeking a unique vertical experience.

Entrance is free on non-festival weekends, with festival weekends offering access to additional activities for a fee, including hayrides, live music, magic shows, a corn maze, a dog park, giant slide, petting zoo, and playground. Children aged 3 and under enter free. For apple picking, a peck costs $20, a half-bushel bag costs $35, and these fees are in addition to the admission cost on festival weekends. The orchard also offers the opportunity to pick hot and sweet peppers and tomatoes.

Barton Orchards is dog-friendly, but dogs must be leashed and are restricted from certain areas like the vegetable garden, indoor spaces, and the corn maze.

Apple picking season begins August 12th, 2023.

Lawrence Farms Orchards

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Lawrence Farms Orchards in the Hudson Valley is a serene and less crowded farm, perfect for apple picking and fruit picking during various seasons.

Offering fruit picking seven days a week, admission is $7 on weekdays and $10 on weekends, while children aged two and under enter for free. Cash is preferred on the property to avoid fees.

Visitors have approximately 2 hours to explore the farm and its grounds upon entry, with tractors available for transportation to picking areas.

The farm is also home to friendly farm animals, and in addition to apples, offers various fruits and vegetables for picking. Strawberry picking is popular in the summer.

Lawrence Farms Orchards extends its pick-your-own offerings to include strawberries, cherries, peaches, and more throughout the year, making it a versatile destination for fresh produce.

Apple picking season begins Labor Day weekend, 2023.

Wilkens Fruit & Fir Farm

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Wilkens Fruit & Fir Farm, a century-old Westchester farm located less than 50 miles from New York City, is a sought-after destination for apple picking enthusiasts in the fall.

With a diverse selection of 13 apple varieties, including Gala, McIntosh, Baldwin, Cortland, Macoun, and more, the farm encourages September visits for the best apple variety.

For those needing assistance, poles are available to reach the upper branches. Beyond apple picking, visitors can explore the charming farm market, offering a delectable array of treats including their renowned apple-cider donuts, strudel sticks, brownies, and pies.

Open late August through mid-December, the farm offers peach, apple, pumpkin, and Christmas tree picking, as well as features like a corn maze, bakery, farm market, and the White Hill Winery. While there is no general admission fee, a minimum of 1/4 bushel (11 pounds) for 1 or 2 people or 1/2 bushel (22 pounds) for 3 to 4 people is required to enter the orchard.

Wilkens Fruit Farm’s winery, White Hill Winery, operates in a designated area outside the orchard, open noon-4:30 p.m. on Saturdays and Sundays without the need for reservations.

The farm offers u-pick opportunities from Wednesdays through Mondays, 10 a.m.-4:30 p.m., and features a corn maze for added enjoyment.

Apple picking season begins September 2nd, 2023.

Apple Hill Farm

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Apple Hill Farm has probably the shortest season for apple picking in the Hudson Valley. In September the apple season begins with McIntosh, Cortland, Opalescent and Spartan. And the season ends with Red and Golden Delicious in mid-October.

Apple picking season begins September 15th, 2023.

The Bear Mountain Bridge in the NY Hudson Valley

Hudson Valley

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