Best Places & Times to View Fall Foliage in Forest Park

The mornings are crisp, and pumpkin spice-flavored everything is everywhere.

You know what that means — fall is here. Fall means a colorful show in Forest Park, thanks to the stars of the show, our incredible trees. There are 45,000 trees in Forest Park in the mowed and manicured areas. This number does not include all of the trees in the 170 acres of the Forest Park Nature Reserve. Forest Park has twice as many trees as Central Park.

Shawnell Faber Forest Park Forever’s Director of Land Management explains why leaves change colors: “In the fall as the days get shorter trees start to shut down photosynthesis. As the green chlorophyll disappears from the leaves, the yellow and orange colors appear. The bright reds and purples we see in tree leaves are in response to the cool nights.”

When will the leaves in the Park start to change colors?

The Smoky Mountain National Park recently published a map on the best times to view fall foliage in the United States. According to the interactive tool, trees will start turning in the St. Louis region beginning the first week of October.

The peak day to view fall colors is on November 5. Follow Forest Park Forever’s Twitter and Instagram Stories for updates on fall foliage in the Park.

Where are the best places to view fall foliage in the Park?

Popular spots to view the trees working their magic:

Secret viewing spots (not so secret anymore):

Kingshighway and West Pine Blvd.

  • During the peak of the season in November, watch a shower of golden leaves thanks to our Gingko tree friends

Picnic Island

  • The glow of the trees highlight the Post-Dispatch Suspension Bridge

North of the Boathouse

  • Catch an epic view of trees and ornamental grasses framing the World’s Fair Pavilion perfectly

Guided Tour

  • Join Forest Park Forever Horticulturist and tree expert Jim Wagner on October 19 for a tour of fall colors in the Park. Nature’s fall palette will meet at the Apotheosis of Saint Louis statue on Art Hill at 9:30 a.m.

We hope to see you this fall in the Park!