Leaves are changing color, and there’s a fresh autumnal smell in the air—what a good excuse to explore the great outdoors! Pull on your hiking boots, grab plenty of water, and perhaps a sweater too—because fall is the perfect season for hitting the trail with your little adventurers. To give you an idea of the adventures that lie ahead, we’ve rounded up the best autumn hikes in the country. From mountain rambles and forested strolls to historic walks and more, you can discover them all in the album below.

Great Smoky Mountains – Nc, Tn, Ga

Each fall, the Smokies are awash with bright colors—this mountain range is home to over 100 native species of tree, many deciduous—making the Smokies one of the best places in the country to view fall foliage. Kid-sized hikes include Baskins Creek Falls and Schoolhouse Gap. You can see the sweep of color making its way down the mountains, as fall changes come first to the higher elevations, then gradually reach the foothills. For more Georgia fall color, check out: 3 Places to See Fantastic Fall Foliage

Insider Tip: Head over to the Smokies' fall color website to find the best time to hit the trail.

Online: nps.gov/grsm/index.htm

photo: Lindsay Hickman via Flickr

Can you recommend a favorite fall hiking spot in your neck of the woods? Tell us about it in the comments below!

— Helen Walker Green