Lowering the Cost of Leaf-Peeping in New England

Aldrich said to look to camping as a way to save money on lodging. For those who aren't outdoorsy, he recommended private homes. Vermont's Chamber of Commerce keeps a list of people with rooms in their homes they're willing to rent out. "Depending on the home, it can be cheaper than a traditional bed and breakfast."

In addition to foliage maps and approximate timetables for the best color by state, the New England Inns and Resorts Association site also offers a twice-monthly email newsletter -- called the Inn Crowd -- highlighting last-minute deals. On offer now: 69 percent off on a two-night stay at the Mountain Club at Loon in Lincoln, N.H. It includes accommodations for two nights, a $50 dinner certificate, a $25 spa certificate, two-for-one breakfasts and a third night free. There's also a deal at the West Dover Inn in West Dover, Vt.: 31 percent off the Fall Suite Package, which includes two nights in a fireplace suite, breakfast each morning, a picnic lunch for two and 50 percent off bike, canoe and kayak rentals.

It's not just hotels and inns making it easier for leaf-peepers to get away: Amtrak is offering a 20 percent "Visit Vermont" for travel to any Vermont station. The offer must be accessed via www.Amtrak.com/VisitVermont, it can't be accessed from the Amtrak homepage. The includes the "Vermonter" and "Ethan Allen Express" for travel through Oct. 28.

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