Quechee Gorge is in central Vermont. I'd say it is probably past-peak right now for fall foliage, but the views are always great. There is a small strip mall within walking distance, in an otherwise very rural part of the state, with food, gifts, and a Quality Inn.
Quechee Gorge gift shop near the bridge and Welcome Center
For the most part, the trail to the bottom is well-groomed and very easy to walk. The only downside is the up-side: There is no way out except back up the fairly steep hill.
Quechee Gorge Hiking Trail
Quechee Gorge Trail End at the River
There are some rocks you can play around on at the bottom if the river is calm. The total distance is 2.7miles with a vertical drop of 200ft (4.3km down 61m).
Bridge over Quechee Gorge
The central part of Vermont is mostly rural. I have visited some other small towns within 20mins of this location, in various directions.
Woodstock, VT (13mins) has a small main street with some shops. Norwich, VT (16mins) is probably the smallest town I photographed, but it is right across the Connecticut river from Hanover, NH, home of Dartmouth College. Windsor, VT (20mins) has a main street with restaurants and a grocery store.
Quechee Gorge, VT, from the bridge on route 4
Quechee Gorge picnic area at trail head, near the bridge
You can see the rest of the Quechee Gorge photos on my website.