Although it happens every year, the rainy, foggy, windy, cool autumn weather seems to sneak up on us. Often our first reaction is to escape, to try to find warmer climates, and enjoy a fall vacation on a sunny beach (or seek out that perfect fall foliage.) But there’s something to be said for embracing the weather instead, and enjoying the changing of the seasons. Instead of running away from this supposed “bad weather”, run right into it. Your trip can’t be “ruined” by fall weather if you’re planning for it all along! These destinations would be perfect at this time of year:
For Mystical Scenery, Hearty food and lots of Museums/Castles
When you choose to embrace the autumn weather, misty mountains and enchanted forests will immediately make you grateful for your decision. Combine that with foods designed to warm you up, and interesting (warm, dry) indoor spaces for when you need a break, and you’ll have the perfect autumn vacation.
UK & Ireland
While there are several differences between these countries that you’ll have to factor into your choice, their proximity to each other means similar weather patterns. And both offer roaring pub fires, rich food, and harvest festivals. You can enjoy misty mornings, grey clouds, and crisp afternoons. Their forests and stunning lochs are undeniably enhanced by the weather. And there’s something mystical and magical about these ancient places when they’re shrouded in fog. Cities like London and Cardiff boast interesting museums, great restaurants, and covered open-air shopping. These Isles are romantic places outside and in, regardless of the weather.
[Photo Credit: Ann via Shared Adventures Travel]
From the Black Forest and Bavarian Alps in the South to the incredible culture of Berlin, Germany really shines in rainy autumn weather. The country boasts deeply hued and vibrant fall foliage and red ivy that covers the towns and cities. You’ll have that fairytale fall vibe everywhere you go! And there are tons of museums, perfect for the moments when you’re ready to warm up. The stunning castles of the south look even more magical with fall colors and misty mornings. And it’s is all paired with heavy meats, sauces, and potatoes which add extra comfort on the colder rainy days. Every aspect of a German adventure — from the food to the beer to the scenery — is only enhanced by autumn weather.
[Photo Credit: Julia Solonina via Unsplash]
For a positive mindset and the great outdoors
Some destinations are known for embracing the ups and downs; they don’t let a little rain stop them! Going to places that have a perennially positive view of the weather will help you be just as happy to enjoy the elements. Bundle up, pack some waterproof shoes, a good warm jacket, and get out there with the locals!
Whether you’re in the highest rings of the arctic circle or the southern capitals of Oslo, Stockholm, and Helsinki, Scandinavia is built for this weather. The culture embraces it and you can’t help but join in the positive mindset. Autumn is the best time to see the Northern Lights, some fall colors, and calm misty mornings. You’ll find candles in the windows, delicious coffee culture, lots of cakes, and harvest festivals. Scandinavia knows how to deal with cold rains and you’ll find plenty to enjoy in all weather!
[Photo Credit: Michael Fousert via Unsplash]
Looking to stay a bit closer to home? The PNW is known for its rain, so the cities are built to embrace it. In places like Seattle, you’ll find rain-activated artwork and locals taking pride in the wet climate. Oregon boasts incredible beaches that are perfect for intimate walks through the mist and heading to a craft brewery afterward to warm up. Throughout the PNW, enjoy hiking through the leaf-coated forest trails while the soft patter of rain dripping from the trees surrounds you. The fall colors are abundant and the ability to revel in the rain is persuasive.
[Photo Credit: Dave Herring via Unsplash]
For something a little bit different
Avoiding the crowds and seeing a place from a new perspective is a brilliant reason to visit a destination in the off-season. You’ll get to experience festivals and activities that are only available in the autumn as well as appreciate the enhanced beauty from a more local view.
While most people think of heading to Japan in cherry blossom season, there’s a lot to enjoy about Japan in Autumn. Depending on where you go, you can find amazing ski destinations or beautiful fall colors. Outside the cities, the forests burst with vibrant colors. It’s little wonder that leaf-peeping has been practiced here for centuries. Inside the cities, you can enjoy the bright colors in the tranquil gardens as the beauty of the Japanese landscape and architecture becomes more apparent. Plus, the hot springs are more enjoyable in the cooler temperature. Consider visiting the Kochia (summer cypress) fields which turn a bright crimson red in October. You might even catch some of the winter cherry blossoms in bloom! In any case, Japan is a perfect place to embrace those cooler temperatures.
[Photo Credit: Alejandro Barba via Unsplash]