How far is it: 3-hour drive
The Gala apples are ready, and the gorgeous views continue at the Carter Mountain Orchard in Charlottesville. (Allegedly, it’s a “40-mile view.”) Go for the cider donuts. Go to gather on the hill with others to watch the sun set. Go to let your dog run around. Go for the on-site tasting cellar, which is sure to top off your day quite nicely.
Price: You pay by the pound, but there's no fee for picking.
How far is it: 1-hour drive from DC
Super exciting news! This year, Great Country Farms is opening a cidery, that’s slated to launch in mid-September. (Keep an eye out for “Henway Hard Cider.”) More broadly, however, it’s best to get to the farm mid-day before the crowds and good apples run out, and be sure to grab a freshly baked apple cider donut for the drive home.
Price: Admission is $8 for children 3+, $10 for adults 18+
How far is it: Hour-and-a-half drive
Complete with a guide for “how to harvest” its apples, Mackintosh Fruit Farm also offers lovely farm dinners, like the one they’re hosting on October 12. It's free to pick samples at the farm, but the owners urge you to limit yourself to just that -- a sample -- and tip for the taste. Visitors should expect to find slightly smaller, sweeter strawberries this year.
Price: Prices are posted in Mackintosh’s weekly newsletter.