Cheap holidays in October: Where to travel this fall
The summer has just come to an end, and fall weather is on it's way as September is over. The leaves are starting to turn, the air is getting crisp and cool, and the days are growing chillier as we inch our way towards winter. Overall, October is a great month to travel, especially if you're trying to avoid crowds. The peak summer season has ended, school is back in session, and many people are saving up their remaining annual leave days to visit friends and family over the upcoming holidays. Whether you want to embrace the fall weather with a glamping trip near colorful trails, or escape the incoming cold with a beach vacation, we've got plenty of choices for an ideal October trip.
The best places to visit in October
Fall is officially here, and with it great travel opportunities. As summer tourist swarms retreat and the temperatures grow cooler, October is the perfect time to treat yourself to a getaway before your favourite spots grow cold. So pack your bags and check out one of our top destinations for October:
County Clare, Ireland
For a last shot of green before the winter sets in, head to Ireland’s stunning western coast. County Clare is known for being one of the most beautiful parts of the country, and it really hits its stride in fall. Take a hiking holiday with ocean views when you walk a portion the Wild Atlantic Way, the winding trail that incorporates the West Coast’s best landscapes. The Cliffs of Moher is a particular highlight and is also a great choice for families with kids, as it has an excellent visitors centre. Other family-friendly activities include a trip to one of the region’s many castles, such as Bunratty Castle, which hosts an old-fashioned banquet in traditional garb. You can even stay in a castle hotel (an especially good option for a romantic getaway.) Other memorable spots include Doolin Cave, with its famously mammoth stalactite, and a handful of beaches perfect for a picnic if you catch some sun.
The Northeast, USA
Want a splash of color this October? The Northeast region of the US is particularly breathtaking in early fall, when temperatures have yet to plummet and trees are just starting to turn their different shades of red, orange, and yellow. Take a drive between small New England towns and coastal communities (where you’re sure to get cheaper, off-season prices), or stick to big cities like Boston and Providence for a more urban leaf-peeping experience. If you’re looking for a family-friendly trip that kids will love, this region has a number of Halloween-themed festivities in the month of October. Round out a week in New York City with The Village Halloween Parade, drive to the sleepy town of Salem (home to the famous witch trials) to take part in their month-long celebration, or marvel at the many-hued pumpkins at the various pumpkin festivals that take place in New Hampshire during this month.
Tourists may flock to the France in summer, but fall is one of the best times of year to visit Paris. The weather is temperate, with a mix of cooler days and warm, sunny ones. Walk along the Seine, taking in the changing colors of the leaves and browsing the books for sale from street vendors. Once you’ve had your fill of the river, Paris’ well-cultivated parks and gardens are perfect for a stroll, especially on a sunny day—we recommend the Jardin des Tuileries, where the iconic columns of trees become a kaleidoscope of color come October. If you catch some bad weather, duck into a museum. There are new exhibitions opening all the time at smaller museums and galleries, and more popular haunts like the Louvre have fewer visitors than in peak summer. Round out your day of exploring on foot by treating yourself to a flaky pastry and a noisette in a corner cafe as you watch the comings and goings of local Parisians.
While the Greek islands are the preferred holiday destination of the summer, Athens awaits in October as crowds disperse and the city settles into fall. Enjoy the multicoloured landscape up close on a hike through the National Park of Mount Parnitha, a park with more than 70 walking trails for hikers of all ages and skill levels and a couple mountain lodges where you can spend the night or just stop in for a hearty meal after a day’s hike. On a trip into the city, take advantage of the dip in tourists to visit famous sights like the Acropolis, the Agora, and the Temple of Poseidon and browse the flea markets for locally-crafted gifts. Once you’ve worked up an appetite, sample your way through the city’s specialties by cafe-hopping—be sure to try local favourites like moussaka, spanakopita, and souvlaki.
Isle of Wight, UK
The Isle of Wight fills with festival-goers in June and July, but by the time fall rolls around on this dreamy island off England’s southern coast, the crowds have long since dispersed. Those looking for an idyllic staycation in the UK will find plenty to love in the Isle of Wight’s dramatic coastlines and grassy trails. Head out on a walk to take in the sea air, explore castle ruins, and stroll through palace gardens, or opt for a different kind of hike and do a self-led pub crawl in the island’s small towns. Families with kids will find a host of Halloween activities to take part in, like a visit to a pumpkin patch or a trip to a kitted-out haunted castle. Couples may want to rent bikes and see the island on a cycling trip, stopping in at the many small towns dotted along the coastline.