Halfway between the busy summer season and the hectic holiday season, October is one of the best months to travel. Quieter, less crowded and with picture-perfect weather conditions for every type of trip, Europe and North America are in full autumnal swing with beautiful, crisp days and clear, brisk nights, while Asia is in pre-monsoon season and certain Caribbean islands outside the hurricane belt are great for that beach-bound vacation. Here are our top picks for where to go in October 2016:
Puerto Plata, Dominican Republic
A province in Dominican Republic’s North Atlantic coast, Puerto Plata is best known for its stunning white sand beaches and brilliant, turquoise waters. With some of the country’s most sought after spots for swimming, sunning and even surfing, the area’s capital city, also named Puerto Plata, means “Silver Port” in Spanish and serves as one of the country’s most important trading ports. There’s plenty to see and do in this bustling tropical hub. Furthest away from the hurricane belt, this part of the island is an ideal destination for the fall season as the summer crowds have subsided and the snowbirds have yet to descend. From the capital city head east to the vibrant town of Sosua, packed with colorful beachfront markets, restaurants and shops, or make your way a little further to the town of Cabarete, where you’ll find surfing, windsurfing and kitesurfing enthusiasts making the most of the windswept beaches.
Where to stay in the Dominican Republic
October in Europe is always a great time of year, with warm autumn days where a T-shirt and light jacket are your clothing staples, to nights where a sweater and scarf complement that new trench. Although beach weather might be behind you in the seaside town of Split on Croatia’s riviera (unless you don’t mind braving the cold water!), it’s still a beautiful place to visit for that perfect balance of city life and seaside scenery. The area around Split has the most kilometers of beaches among all Croatia’s rivieras, and the seaside bars, cafes and restaurants, as well as their famous promenade overlooking the marina are still in full swing. To sample city life, make your way into the walled, fortress-like center and Diocletian’s Palace (erected by the Romans in the 4th century, and featured in Game of Thrones) and explore Split’s historic past through it’s dramatic – and varied – architecture.
Where to stay in Croatia
Yes, Ubud, in Bali may have popularity from the bestselling novel Eat, Pray, Love but it was one of Indonesia’s most magical places long before Elizabeth Gilbert stepped off the plane. Located in the uplands of Bali, this landlocked town is surrounded by rainforests and terraced rice paddies, making the surrounding verdant landscape stunning and lush, dotted with tropical flowers and frangipani trees. In the lively town center, the craft capital of the country, there’s plenty of shops, temples and restaurants to explore. Visit the Sacred Monkey Forest Sanctuary or the former home of Ubud’s royal family – Ubud Palace, head to the nearby Art Market for hand crafts and stunning silk fabrics, or sample the Balinese specialty – roasted suckling pig – at the best place in town, Ibu Oka. You’ll soon discover why travelers can’t get enough of Ubud.
Where to stay in Bali
Mont Tremblant, Quebec
There’s a reason why people love to head to this picturesque mountain village in southern Quebec during the months of September to November: fall foliage. Across the dense forests that blanket the alpine landscape, the greens of summer in Mont Tremblant turn to a multitude of reds, yellows, oranges, browns and golds in the fall, making for one of the most stunning sights in North America. And although Tremblant is a playground for those who are fans of winter sports, the month of October is filled with activities for the whole family, from taking walks, hikes and bike rides under this naturally colorful canopy, to indulging in some of Quebec’s best local cuisine, relaxing at world-renowned Nordic spas and shopping in the charming Tremblant village center.
Where to stay in Mont Tremblant
Photographs: Alina R; G-Valeriy / Shutterstock.com