2021 Fall Boating Destinations

By October 23, 2021November 5th, 2021Dock, Explore
Snag-A-Slip Blog - 2021 Fall Boating Destinations
There’s a lot to be said for extending your boating season into autumn. Boaters see fall from an unparalleled perspective that landlubbers never will. From the turning of the leaves, to the spray of fall wildflowers, to the golden glow of autumn grasses, fall simply unravels for boaters as they cruise past. But fall is not just eye candy! There are advantages to fall boating, and wonderful fall boating destinations up and down our nation’s coastlines and waterways, that will take your breath away. The crew at Snag-A-Slip has the lowdown, and we’re ready to share it with you.

Fall Boating Advantages

Fall boating has advantages that the rest of the seasons can’t offer. If you haven’t ventured out into the enchantment that is fall boating, here are a few reasons why you should.


Many boaters think that boating in the warm weather is ideal. Well, they clearly don’t’ know that boating in the fall means launch ramps and marinas, popular sandbars, and anchorages, are all less crowded. Fall is the exhale to the hectic summer season.

The best leaf-peeping

The deck of your boat is the best seat in the house when it comes to taking in the fall foliage. Not only do you have a vista of bright colors, constantly changing as you move through the water, but the colors also reflect on the water’s surface. It’s the beauty of fall times two! Be sure to pack your camera.  

A birdwatcher’s paradise

Along with the explosion of colorful leaves, comes the movement of migratory birds. If you keep an eye out, you’ll be treated to a glimpse of varieties moving through, that you might not typically see. 

Cool and crisp replaces hazy, hot, and humid

Autumn is invigorating. Fall boaters appreciate the break from the intense summer heat. However, the shorter days mean less sunlight. And the crisp weather means you need to pack sweatshirts, hats, gloves, and even a few cozy blankets.


The clear fall sky is ablaze with bright stars. Have some fun stargazing and enjoy the spectacular night show.

Fall fishing

The fall is a fruitful fishing season. Many boaters are especially excited to catch striped bass, as the fish start heading south for the season. And coastal areas, like lakes and rivers, offer an abundance of walleyes, catfish, and more.

Fall Boating Destinations 

Every port that is lovely in the summer, is spectacular in the fall. That being said, we have a few favorites that we know you won’t want to miss.

Annapolis, Maryland 

Annapolis is one of the most famous boating destinations, not only in the United States but in the world. It has actually earned the title “Sailing Capital of the U.S.” Its expansive shoreline, spanning over 533 miles, and the Chesapeake Bay in its backyard, mean there is no shortage of jaw-dropping scenery, water activities, and fun to be had.

Come fall, Annapolis is alive with festivals celebrating everything from seafood and craft beer to the colors of fall and our heritage. There is also lots of fishing to be enjoyed as well as water sports like paddleboarding and kayaking.

Newport, Rhode Island

Newport is the mecca for boaters. Long considered the “Yachting Capital of the Northeast”, Newport remains a top destination for boaters – and for good reason. From boating and sailing to delectable New England cuisine, Newport has so much to offer boaters. 

Fall in Newport is filled with endless “can’t miss” events. One of the favorites among boaters is the Newport International Boat Show in September. Plus, there are endless festivals celebrating everything fall! And if you want to get in some fishing while you’re there, you can look forward to reeling in flounder, striped bass, black sea bass, bluefish tuna, and mako shark.

Norwalk Islands, Connecticut

Connecticut knows how to do fall! One of our favorite fall stops is the Norwalk Islands. They are a collection of 25 islands that we guarantee will turn into a great fall adventure. And if you want to work your land legs, you can take a scenic fall hike on Sheffield Island – 57 acres of hiking trails and perfect picture opportunities. While you’re there, stop and see the Sheffield Island Lighthouse for a trip back in time.

If you’re bringing your rod and reel, you’ll be rewarded with black seabass, largemouth and smallmouth bass, and bluefish.

New Smryna Beach, Florida

You may not think of Florida as a fall fun location, but it is! Beautiful New Smryna Beach is a Florida oasis of sunny beaches and open blue waters, as well as a cornucopia of fall activities. From pumpkin picking to acclaimed local vineyards and wineries, to a plethora of arts and crafts and local farmers’ markets, Florida celebrates fall.

Anglers know it as the “redfish capital of the world.” But you’ll also find barracuda, grouper, and sailfish – among many others.

Wherever you choose to chart a course this fall, just bring your taste for adventure, your camera, and a warm sweatshirt. And be sure to book your slip early. Fall is fast becoming every boater’s favorite season!
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Jo Montgomery

Author Jo Montgomery

Jo is a lifelong boat lover and writer. She learned the ropes of boating on her family’s 36’ Carver at the Jersey (joy-see) shore. With over 30 years of writing under her belt, she delights in seeking out, and sharing, the things most important to fellow boating enthusiasts. Jo now lives in Connecticut, near the water she adores, with her husband, two children and large, hairy dog. She is over the moon to be part of the Snag-A-Slip crew!

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