Autumn’s crisp air and bright colours inspire those hungry for an adventure and encourages explorers to embrace the outdoors. The cooler weather is perfect for city breaks where a lot of walking is involved, but autumn also draws people to more picturesque areas.
In these towns and remote countryside locations, fields as far as the eye can see are blanketed with vibrant reds and yellows.
Have a leaf through this list for a bit of inspiration while planning your next autumn holiday destination.
There’s no bad time of the year to visit Paris, but with the sun still shining and bursts of red and orange erupting from the trees, the city of light is more beautiful than ever.
Once September hits, the kids are back at school and people resume their usual work schedules. With this, the city’s streets are a lot less crowded during the day, which results in shorter queue times for major attractions like the Eiffel Tower, the Arc de Triomphe and the Louvre museum.
For the perfect autumn treat, grab a seat in one of Paris’ fabulous boutique cafés and enjoy a coffee and croissant while snuggling up with your favourite book.
Vermont is the perfect road trip destination, especially in the autumn. Everywhere you look you’re treated to fabulous colours, and the best autumn breaks in Vermont are spent touring the state by car, with some hiking, biking and walking included.
There are also some autumn-inspired festivals, events and activities on offer in this stunning state, from exploring corn mazes and pumpkin patches to visiting farms and experiencing fall foliage festivals. If you love autumn, you need to visit Vermont.
Like Paris, there’s never a bad time to visit New York City, a place that beautifully transforms with the seasons, from bursts of colour in the spring and summer to layers of snow covering your boots in winter.
No matter the season, you’ll still be in the Big Apple, with an abundance of skyscrapers, art, culture and Broadway musicals to keep you entertained.
NYC’s Central Park is where autumn really shines. You won’t regret happily spending hours wandering through the park, taking in the colours and feeling leaves crunch under your boots.
Autumn is a great time to visit the Hungarian capital of Budapest, with two food and drink festivals to enjoy during the season.
The Budapest Wine Festival in September and the Chimney Cake Festival in October provide ample opportunity to sample the local food and drink.
For sightseeing, there are few things better than sipping a fruity mulled wine while watching the city come to life from the top of Fisherman’s Bastion.
The outdoor thermal baths are a delightful luxury in autumn and winter as your body stays blissfully warm while your face enjoys a cool breeze. With its blanket of colour, Vajdahunyad Castle, close to the Széchenyi Thermal Bath is great for catching some autumn leaves.
Given the fact it’s an inland city, Spain’s capital is far too hot to visit in the summer and even the locals flock to the coast in August.
But autumn is where Madrid truly shines. From the foliage to the relaxing, cooling temperatures, Madrid is a fabulous autumn destination. I’d highly recommend spending a day relaxing in Retiro park, watching the leafs transform before you.
Venture up to the Temple of Debod and take in the stunning cityscape, which is especially beautiful at sunset. If the weather takes a turn for the worst, you can always visit the world-renowned Prado museum.
Known for its stunning foliage, Japan is a fantastic place to visit in the autumn. Known as Momijigari in Japanese, going to see the autumn leaves in a traditional leisure activity in Japan.
The breath-taking hues of red, orange and yellow cover the mountains, temples and gardens, making this an ideal time for hiking, biking and exploring the natural scenery.
If the picturesque views aren’t enough to tempt you, Japan has a number of autumn festivals, including Sapporo Autumn Fest, Morioka Autumn Festival and Shuki Taisai Grand Autumn Festival, all of which draw crowds from across the country.
Prague is undoubtedly one of Europe’s most beautiful and magical cities, from the views at Prague Castle to Charles Bridge and Old Town Square, there’s no confusion as to why the city attracts millions of visitors every year.
Unfortunately, you’ll never find a truly quiet time of the year to visit Prague, but autumn is one of the better opportunities to explore this historical city.
As well as the major attractions, Prague’s autumn festivals draw seekers of culture and wine, Strings of Autumn, Prague Light Festival and Prague Castle Grape Harvest standing out from the crowd.
Autumn and winter are also the best times of the year to sample the local cuisine. After all, you mightn’t want to devour a hearty warming goulash in the height of summer.
With peak season well and truly over, exploring Yellowstone National Park in autumn increases your chance of seeing some wildlife as they start their preparations for winter.
Adventurous travellers will be giddy at the thought of catching a glimpse of bears, elk, deer, moose and eagles, which makes Yellowstone National Park the perfect place to feel at one with nature.
Do be mindful of road closures during this period as the tourist season is winding down. As long as you plan ahead, you’ll be in for a truly wonderful hiking holiday.
Autumn in Germany is synonymous with Oktoberfest, which draws more than 6 million tourists to Munich every year, and while you’ll get major celebrations in some of the country’s big cities, don’t forget to take a trip to the more secluded parts of Bavaria for a magical holiday.
Boasting spectacular landscapes and castles, including Neuschwanstein castle, which has been taken right out of Grimm’s fairy tales, the best way to experience the region’s vibrancy is to take to Bavaria’s castle road.
This historic route contains about 70 fortresses, all looking extra majestic donned in royal autumn colours.
A visit to Chilean Patagonia is one destination to plan for, especially considering their autumn season takes place in March.
The untouched Patagonian landscape has been plucked right out of a photographer’s dream and calls out to hikers, thrill seekers, and landscape photographers.
From lakes and rivers to glaciers and mountains, there’s no shortage of incomparable scenery to behold. Those up for a bit of hiking will not be disappointed by the vast national parks and majestic mountain views.
Sarah has always had a great love of travel, food and photography. Following her journalism degree at DCU, she developed a passion for travel writing while living in Spain.
Sarah loves exploring new places and sampling the local cuisine. Working with TheTaste.ie combines her love of food and travel.