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Cape Cod, Martha's Vineyard, and Nantucket

Cape Cod, Martha's Vineyard, and Nantucket: An Explorer's Guide, Eighth Edition (Explorer's Guides)
by Kim Grant
  Cape Cod, Martha's Vineyard, and Nantucket can present a bewildering array of vacation options to visitors and locals alike. In this completely revised and updated eighth edition of the most comprehensive guide to the region, Kim Grant helps travelers cut through the clutter to find lodging, dining, and attractions to suit every taste and budget. She guides readers to nature preserves and bird sanctuaries; bicycle trails and beach paths; historic homes and lighthouses; whale-watching, sailing, and shell-fishing; antiques shops and local artisans; and summer theater, live music, and nightlife. More information and prices from:
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4 Scenic Motorcycle Tours to Take This Fall

Bright, blue skies. Lots of golden sunlight. A panorama of fiery maple and yellow birch leaves. Ah, fall: It's the perfect time for a road trip. While exploring mountain highways, back roads and coastal routes by car is fun, there’s nothing like a two-wheeled tour through the change of season. It’s time to rev up your bike, check your tires and breathe in the crisp air—put the "easy" back in "Easy Rider" with one of these motorcycle tours:

New England

Photo of a Vermont road by Flickr user Anthony Quintano

Autumn in New England offers some of the prettiest colors in the country. Throughout October, the country roads are clogged with "leaf peppers" looking to enjoy the dramatic change in scenery. Interstate 89 in Vermont, typically a sparsely traveled road, becomes like an Los Angeles freeway at rush hour, and the same holds true for Interstate 93 in New Hampshire. The best roads for leaf peeping in New England are the roads less traveled.

Gary McKechnie, author of Great American Motorcycle Tours, recommends meandering from Lenox, Mass., to Stowe, Vt. This tour brings you through the heart of the Berkshire and Green Mountains. It's a peaceful and tranquil route filled with classic New England scenery: sleepy villages with gazebos, white church steeples and red barns in pastoral fields. Don't miss State Highway 100 and Mountain Road in Stowe.

Lake Michigan

The Lake Michigan Circle Tour has a little bit of everything for the road tripping motorcyclist. Following the Sheboygan Lakefront, this scenic drive offers spectacular seascapes and includes 35 distinctive lighthouses. If you feel like taking a break from cruising, explore the shops and restaurants in Sheboygan or visit the Pioneer Village. The Green Room Pub and the Highland House Restaurant are good places to stop for a bite to eat.

The Great Smoky Mountains

The Great Smoky Mountains, a sub-range of the Appalachians, straddle the border of Tennessee and North Carolina. The foliage in this neck of the woods is breathtaking, especially when the plumes of natural fog hang in the distance (they aren’t called the “smoky” mountains for nothing). Great Smoky Mountains National Park has an 11-mile one-way loop that takes you around picturesque Cades Cove, and it's perfect for a leisurely motorcycle ride. However, if you’re more of a thrill seeker, be sure to check out the Tail of the Dragon. This stretch of U.S. Highway 129 between Tennessee and North Carolina is legendary among bikers. The curvy mountain road is said to have more than 300 turns.

Aspen, Colo.

Photo of aspen trees by Flickr user Will Scullin

There's no better place to take a motorcycle tour than in a place named after its beautiful trees. The brilliant foliage in Aspen, Colo., has been compared to a pointillist painting. Colorado’s scenic and color-soaked byways are magical in the fall, and the only problem you’re going to have is deciding where to go.

The West Elk Loop, located near the Black Canyon entrance of Gunnison National Park, is a good place to start, as is the scenic byway dubbed the Top of the Rockies. Similar to the roads in New England, Colorado’s scenic highways can get busy with leaf-hungry peepers. For something off the beaten-path, set the course for Maroon Creek Road.


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