I love October. Its a month of colorful leaves in some areas, Halloween, pumpkin everything, and shoulder season for a lot of destinations – which means lower crowds and cost of travel. October is one of my favorite months to travel!
I gathered up some of my favorite travel bloggers and asked them their travel recommendations for October to see where they love to go. From the United States, Europe & Asia, below is a selection of best places to travel in October.
Arkansas is beautiful year round, but this state thrives in the fall. The luscious green mountains turn into a sea of red, orange and yellow as soon as the cooler air reaches the state. There are so many hikes to catch the views, but Yellow Rock trail at Devil’s Den State Park is our favorite! If you come to Fayetteville, AR for a weekend, you can make the hike, cozy up in an abundance of cute coffee shops, or stop at the Saturday Fayetteville Farmers Market before it closes down for winter. There is plenty to do, tons to eat, and an abundance of trees to awe you every step of the way!
If you are in the Netherlands in late October then bypass the red lights and stag nights of Amsterdam, and head for The Hague. The Japanese Gardens in Clingendael Park are only open to the public for two weeks each year in the second half of October, and are free to enter. These magnificent gardens were created more than a hundred years ago by the then-owner of the Clingendael estate. Lady Daisy, as she was known, had a fascination with Japan. She visited multiple times and shipped back a number of artefacts, which she placed in the gardens with trees designed to replicate the traditional gardens of Japan. The gardens are now listed as a national monument in the Netherlands. The beautiful fall colours, tranquil waters and traditional Japanese ornaments transport you to a world far away from the bawdy nightlife of the Dutch capital. They are a must-see-don’t-miss for any October visitor to the Netherlands.
Colombia is perfect for October travel! The weather in Colombia is different from city to city, but in October and most of the fall, you will get temperate weather in all cities. The cities that are usually cold will not be too cold yet and the cities that are really hot will have slightly milder weather. We loved the culture and everything there was to do and see in Colombia! The people are so full of color and liveliness. It’s an amazing country to explore! While there is so much to do and see, here are the top cities we recommend:
Bogota: The capital of Colombia! This city is very cosmopolitan. We loved the food the best here, so plan on spending a lot of time eating! There are also several museums worth checking out in Bogota.
Medellin: We loved the nightlife here and stayed up many nights partying until sunrise! Medellin is also a very inspiring city as it has recently undergone a drastic transformation. It used to be one of the most dangerous cities in the world and now it feels very safe and very regulated. Since the change is still very new, you can feel it in the atmosphere and it’s very energizing. If you are interested in learning more about Medellin’s history, we highly recommend taking 2 Pablo Escobar tours: one from the perspective of the government and one from the perspective of his supporters. It’s really interesting to see the two different narratives. In addition, you MUST go to Guatape while in Medellin. It’s the most colorful town in Colombia and just the happiest little town we’ve ever seen!
Cartagena: Most people just go to Cartagena, but we highly recommend going to Cartagena and at least one other city. Cartagena is so different from the rest of Colombia that it almost felt like we were in another country. Plan to just spend a lot of time wandering and exploring here. You will discover so much that way in this energetic, colorful, and beautiful city!
Foliage Artists Bluff
Mt. Morgan Viewpoint
My top pick of places to visit in October is the White Mountains of New Hampshire. This beautiful mountain range offers something for everyone. Outdoor enthusiasts will love the hiking, kayaking, and mountain biking to name just a few. More impressively than what there is to do, October in the White Mountains offers something you just have to see…FOLIAGE. The colors of fall in New England are just amazing, and the White Mountains are the perfect place to see the best Mother Nature has to offer. Travel through Franconia Notch one time, and you see why a visit the White Mountains is not to be missed. If you are ready to unwind and get away from the foliage seekers take one of the many hikes in the White Mountains. From a short walk to challenging mountains over 6,000 feet New Hampshire has a hike for anyone!
I may be biased since I was born and raised in Tokyo but hear me out. October is one of my favorite months to be in Japan and I recommend October to visitors just as much as cherry blossom season in April. The entire country experiences fall foliage and it’s absolutely stunning, especially in Kyoto and Tokyo. If you’re in Kyoto, head to the Kiyomizu Temple for their evening ‘Fall Illumination’ where they shine light onto the foliage and temples making it look absolutely magical. In Tokyo, visit the Shinjuku-Gyoen or Yoyogi Park for an unbelievable foliage display amidst the concrete jungle
Bora Bora is at the top of everyone’s bucket list and is also the perfect place to go in the month of October. The weather is at its best this time of year and you’ll be coming up on the shoulder season. Go ahead and splurge on an over-water bungalow which will serve as your own private paradise. Bora Bora is magical and the turquoise water is practically fluorescent. When you exit the plane onto the island you’ll feel as if you’ve been transported straight to Heaven on Earth!
Scotland is a land of magical castles, historical cities and rugged and wild landscapes. There is no bad season to visit Scotland but autumn has got to be the best of all. While weather can be a bit unpredictable, the landscapes come ablaze with the change in season and the skies light up with a special glow. It is a season to behold natures palette and enjoy the sweet smell of fall in the air. Tourists have fled with the end of summer providing the perfect opportunity to meet locals for a true cultural experience. October also brings to life the award winning Enchanted Forest. Voted best cultural event in the UK, it’s an out of this world lighting display set against the natural backdrop of the autumn woodland. If that is not incentive enough, the bloodsucking midges which plague the highlands during the summer months are gone, allowing the opportunity to roam the glens, lochs and mountains in the cool, crisp days of fall. October is the perfect time to take advantage of the lower cost of travel and accommodation and visit one of the most magical and enchanting countries in the world.
Ottawa is often skipped over for the bigger cities of Toronto and Montreal, but while Ottawa has a lot to offer year round, it’s especially beautiful in the fall. One of the best things about Ottawa is all the green space; the nearby Gatineau Hills, city parks, and even Canada’s Great Trail (the largest recreational trail in the world) along the Ottawa River. During the month of October, these places are ablaze with colourful leaves; reds, oranges, and yellows across the city and surrounding area. It’s perfect for hiking and walking then coming back and enjoying a warm cup of tea, coffee, or hot chocolate in one of the city’s many coffee shops. You can also take advantage of the nearby apple orchards, Pumpkin Inferno celebrations at Upper Canada Village, or join a haunted tour in preparation for Halloween. Travellers should also know that Canadian Thanksgiving falls during October, so there may be some special events on as well.
Visitors flock to Virginia Beach in the summer for it’s miles of wide, sandy beaches and gentle waves but those in the know head to the Resort City in the fall. The temperature in October is still in the 70’s and 80’s and you practically have the beaches to yourself. The famous Virginia Beach Boardwalk is hot to several festivals throughout October(including the Neptune Wine Festival and the Virginia Beach Craft Beer Festival), while those looking for outdoor adventure rent a fat tire bike to ride through the dunes of False Cape State Park. October is also a great month for oyster lovers to head out on an oyster farm tour where they can savor their favorite bivalves straight from the water.
Nestled right on the Llyn peninsula the small village of Morfa Nefyn in North Wales is a perfect October getaway. With only a few stores, a couple of pubs & the locals speaking Welsh as their first language this is a great place to come for an authentic & quaint British experience. The Llyn peninsula is part of a long-distance footpath which runs 870 miles along almost the whole coastline of Wales. Needless to say this makes for some beautiful walks & if the coastal path is not enough for you there are plenty of hills to climb nearby. Garn Boduan at only 280m high is one of our favourites & offers a great view-point of the sea & surrounding countryside, sunrise being a particularly special time of the day. The iron age hillfort of Carn Fadryn is another great hike, sitting at 371m it also has spectacular views. The beaches of Nefyn & Porthdinllaen (Morfa Nefyn) offer beautiful & rugged coastal views & are both great for a stroll. Porthdinllaen is the more scenic stroll of the two & has the added bonus of the Ty Coch Inn at the very end. This beach side pub is one of our absolute favourites & was actually voted 3rd best beach bar in the world by a British newspaper, biased maybe but we can vouch that it is a pretty cool place to hang out & enjoy some beers & lunch. In terms of places to hang out, Morfa Nefyn only has a handful. There’s Caffi Porthdinllaen, an awesome little shack style place that offers great breakfasts, pizza & afternoon tea, with traditional Welsh cakes that are not to be missed! The Cliffs Inn is a newly refurbished, real British style pub with a great menu offering local produce & a must try when at the British seaside, good old Fish n’ Chips! October is a great time to visit Morfa Neyfn & it’s surroundings if you like to beat the crowds & are for a more relaxed vibe. With the unpredictable British weather you never know if you’ll be getting fall shine or fall rain but with this area having so much natural beauty even the heaviest of British downpours would struggle to dampen your spirits. Our top tip is to come well prepared so that you can enjoy this stunning piece of the world come rain or shine. It really is a very special place & one of Wales’ best kept secrets!
Believe it or not, Oregon is one of the best places to visit in October! While many travelers choose to visit Oregon during the summer, the fall is often overlooked. October in Oregon is beautiful as the leaves change and the air becomes cooler. Oregon is home to the highest concentration of covered bridges in the west so if you are looking for an alternative Fall destination to New England, head to the Pacific Northwest! There is even an official ‘Oregon Covered Bridge Scenic Bikeway’ you can cycle along and enjoy the view. After all, nothing screams ‘fall’ more than covered Bridges couple with vibrantly changing leaves and locally made apple ale!
To me, October means sports, especially football. Fort Worth, Texas is one of my favorite cities in America and it’s still one of its best kept secrets often overshadowed by nearby Dallas, Austin and Houston. But Fort Worth is home to top notch college football at TCU and just down the road from AT&T to watch the Dallas Cowboys. Add in, great food, museums, music and the worlds largest Honky Tonk and Fort Worth smells like October travel!
Lastly, Myself, Nicki!
Flying over Oahu
I went back and forth about what location I thought was the best and ended up with Hawaii specifically Oahu. The crowds have died down because people are back in school, hotels and airfare have gotten cheaper, and the beaches have gotten a little emptier yet the weather is still about 80-85 degrees. Basically it is the perfect time to go! The food is fantastic, the sunrises and sunsets are amazing and it is basically one of my favorite destinations.
Let us know your favorite October destinations if we missed one.