Just because summer is over doesn’t mean your traveling days are over for the year. Autumn is a wonderful time to travel, as temperatures cool off and crowds tend to thin out at popular tourist spots. Whether you’re looking to enjoy the spoils of fall or escape the cool breeze with a trip to somewhere warmer, you can find a destination on the list below.
1. Stowe, Vermont
Stowe is nicknamed New England’s color capital, so there’s no wonder why it made this list. Leaf-peepers will have plenty to take in, but they’ll also be able to enjoy hikes, beautiful fall drives, stroll Main Street for the village’s small-town charm and take home some real Vermont maple syrup. For the best fall foliage, visit before November, and remember to pack for cool weather.
2. Munich, Germany
Fall travelers shouldn’t miss the most famous beer-fest on earth, Oktoberfest in Munich. But there’s a lot for even those who aren’t beer-lovers. Attendees can catch parades, enjoy the amusement rides, people-watch as throngs of revelers dress in traditional garb and taste delicious German foods and much more. Oktoberfest runs through all of September and into early October.
3. The Azores
This autonomous region of Portugal is known as the “Hawaii of Europe” and is famous for its volcanic landscape. Visitors can enjoy black sand beaches, thermal springs, delicious local food and wine and gorgeous hiking trails. While fall is hurricane season in the Atlantic, the Azores see less frequent and less severe storms than the Caribbean. But visitors should still pay close attention to the weather forecast when traveling to this location.
4. Cairo, Egypt
As the weather cools a bit and peak travel time is yet to begin, Egypt is a great place to visit in fall. Popular tourist sites, like the Great Pyramids and the Sphinx, may be less crowded in autumn. The cooler (albeit, still warm) air will make it more comfortable for strolling through the busy Cairo streets and hitting all the desert locations you’ll want to visit.
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If you’re not opposed to cold weather, Alaska is gorgeous in the fall. By the end of October, the state begins its long winter, but there’s still plenty to see and do, like catching the Northern Lights, skiing and dog sledding. Before winter hits, visitors can catch spectacular fall foliage (best viewed before the end of September) and have the chance to have the epic hiking trails to themselves. Tip for animal lovers: don’t miss the elk migration, in which elk travel a 1,600-mile migratory loop through October.
6. North Queensland, Australia
September through November is springtime in Australia, and the later in the year you visit, the warmer temperatures will be. Travelers can enjoy 80-degree temperatures in October and November, making it a great time for swimming and exploring. You’ll get the chance to snorkel or dive in the Great Barrier Reef, hike the lush landscape and take in the gorgeous spring blossoms.
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7. Hanoi, Vietnam
Autumn is the end of the monsoon season in Vietnam, so visitors will experience drier and cooler weather. It’s a great time for tourism, and foodies will love walking through Hanoi sampling the delicious street foods the city has to offer. For great shopping, be sure to visit the city’s Old Quarter, and history buffs won’t want to miss touring the city’s historic temples.