Enhance your autumnal excursion by appreciating the romance of nature at these destinations that provide wonderful settings for leaf-peeping
View the spectacular Canyon Sainte-Anne from the highest suspension bridge in Québec, at 60 meters above the gorge. A memorable sight in fall!
Head to Montréal and Québec cities – bustling metropolises with a perfect blend of poise, playfulness and history. The towns and villages here have English names, but everything else is French: language, lodging and food. In autumn, millions of maples turn red and gold. Treat your eyes to scenic landscapes by hiking the Parc national de la Jacques Cartier, go bird watching at Cap Tourmente National Wildlife Area or Marais du Nord, kayak or canoe at Vallée Bras-du-Nord valley or get your fill of fresh air at one of the urban parks. Another highlight the “Magic of Lanterns” event at The Montreal Botanical Garden. Hundreds of hand-painted Chinese lanterns, floating on ponds and hanging from trees beneath starry skies offer a stunning eye candy on a bracing autumn evening.
The garden at Eikando Temple is ablaze with colour and lit up at night each November. Indulge in delicacies as Matcha green tea and yudofu (regional tofu delicacy) served here.
Colourful autumn leaves, known as “koyo” in Japanese, draw just as many visitors in autumn as the short-lived Hanami cherry blossom festival does during spring. It’s tough to express in words how beautiful Japan looks during fall. From mid-September until the beginning of November, Japan’s deciduous trees begin to change colour, painting mountains, parks and forests in the sunset palette of reds, browns, oranges, golds and yellows. It all lasts until early December. Steeped in culture and history, Kyoto is a city that has its temples, shrines, and gardens showcasing finest fall foliage. Tōfuku-ji, Kiyomizu-dera, Yoshimine-dera, and Eikan-dō are a must visit. With its vast park awash with colour, the ancient capital of Nara, a short train ride from Kyoto, is another viewing spot.
Dotted with diverse flora and fauna, the Jiuzhaigou Valley is a UNESCO World Heritage Site in Sichuan that draws a captivating picture with dramatic red-orange leaves and prayer flags of Tibetan villages that reflect in emerald-tinged lakes.
Apart from the flaming foliage, there’s one more reason fall is the best time to visit the Chinese land – the weather is a relaxing combination of dryness and warmth. Trees line the Great Wall of China for much of its 6,400-km length. Some of vegetation comes up above the wall, and you can see a long, continuous line of red and yellow as you walk along the ramparts. Huangshan, or Yellow Mountain is yet another spot that has crowds flocking from Beijing and Shànghai to take pictures of its tree-covered peaks. The renowned fragile-looking clouds give this place a particularly ethereal atmosphere. Head here at sunrise.
If you’re an adventure junkie, there’s so much to keep you busy. Try mountain biking, horseback riding, hiking, fishing in gorgeous deep-blue lakes or simply camp for day at this outdoor wonderland.
The Bishop Creek Canyon offers a remarkable contrast of fall colours. From majestic cottonwood trees in the Owens Valley, to quaking aspens draping the high country, you’ll be delighted by the range of colour at various elevations. Hues of gold mixed with some red begin to show in South Lake and Lake Sabrina in early September and typically reach their peak during the first week of October. Along the Owens Valley floor, the colors appear later, generally from late September through late October (weather permitting). Enjoy warm, sunny days and mild evenings.
Neuschwanstein Castle, a fairy-tale-like structure located in the village of Hohenschwangau in the Bavarian Alps is the perfect backdrop for the sea of orange and red leaves.
Fall in Bavaria is synonymous with one thing: Oktoberfest. But beyond the fest, it’s the moderate temperatures and a gorgeous landscape that stir the ‘wanderlust’. Everything is a bit quieter and relaxed, with traditional Bavarian culture being exposed at its best. Amble along the 360-km Romantic Road that still retains much of its medieval character. It begins in the Franconia wine region — where local wine festivals pepper the autumn calendar — going South through forgotten sections of countryside, connecting walled towns and picturesque villages like Rothenburg ob der Tauber and Dinkelsbühl.