While most people’s minds will be firmly set on scorching hot summer holidays, some of us are already thinking ahead to crisp autumn mornings, cooler days and beautiful coloured leaves. If you’re planning on escaping this autumn, here are our top ten Autumn holiday escapes for September.
1) Greece is the Word
Relax on a beach and enjoy balmy (but not too hot) temperatures on a stretch of sandy white beach. Enjoy lazy lunches of fresh fish in a seaside taverna, or wander among olive groves and fig trees from the comfort of your own villa. While we love Greece in all weathers, it’s probably at its best at the end of the peak holiday season. For the most reliable early autumn weather, stay south – Crete is always a good bet.
2) Cosy up in Cornwall
Ah Cornwall! We’re thinking brisk walks, idyllically pretty coves, beaches to rival those anywhere in the world and lots of celebrity eateries. Rick Stein and Jamie Oliver are just two of the top chefs with restaurants in this part of the world, crowning it a Best of British food and fresh air destination.
3) Soak up the Autumn Beauty in Japan
While New England is famous for its stunning maple leaves in the Autumn, Japan is also pretty spectacular come the cooler months. Pay a visit to the northern district of Hokkaido where, in Noboribetsu, you can admire the leaves while bathing in a hot spring. Or perhaps head to the south, where you can enjoy Tsurunoyu, another hot-springs resort, which has a selection of oil lamp-lit, thatched-roof lodges that were once used by resting samurai.
4) Hit the Moors on Horseback
Don’t fancy getting on a plane? Then head to Cornwall’s near neighbour, Dartmoor, and trek across the beautiful, rugged moors on horseback. During the Autumn months, the moors are carpeted by swathes of purple heather, while the annual Pony Drift, in which ponies come down from the moor to be vetted, begins towards the end of September.
5) Munich Beerfest
If a long cool beer hits the spot then join the millions who head to Munich’s Oktoberfest – a celebration of all things Bavarian. Drop in on the grand “tents” erected by Munich’s breweries to down foaming litres of beer, or sample sausages, roast chicken and super-sized pretzels.
6) Celebrate Oyster Season in Ireland
During the Autumn, the Irish port of Galway holds its annual oyster festival, giving you the perfect excuse to sample these delights which grow wild on the sea beds of Galway Bay. Highlights include the World Oyster Opening Championships and an Oyster Pearl Contest.
7) Escape to Europe’s prettiest Lakes
Europe has some of the most beautiful lakes in the world, and the more relaxed months of September and October and the perfect time to take a refreshing dip. We love the lakes including Geneva, Zurich, Lucerne and Lago Maggiore, Switzerland, as well as Lake Garda (Italy), Lake Annecy (France) Lake Bled (Slovenia) and Lake Constance (Austria, Germany and Switzerland).
8) Soak up the colours of Provence
The grape harvest and rich colours of France in Autumn inspired famed painters such as Van Gogh and Cézanne. Meanwhile, cities such as Avignon and Arles, are particularly beautiful at this time of the year. We love wandering around the villages and into the idyllic countryside on lazy mornings before a long, even lazier lunch.
9) Marvel at the Orangutans in Borneo
This idea is definitely off the beaten track but Autumn is the perfect time to visit this lush island and catch a glimpse of the beautiful, native orangutans. Nature lovers will also be pleased to know that they may also get the chance to spot a Sumatran rhinoceros, a clouded leopard and the huge (though rather smelly) rafflesia plant.
10) Let There Be Light
Enjoy the spectacular and colourful celebrations in India which are held each year in November for the Hindu festival of Diwali.The highlight is the Festival of Lights, during which people light lamps and candles around their homes and set off firecrackers in the night.