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Nomad's Travel Picks: Best Destinations in October 2023

6 destinations to consider for your October travels!

· 10 min read

October is a fantastic month for travel. With the summer crowds dwindling down and the autumn colors starting to emerge, there's a certain charm and tranquility that makes it an ideal time to explore new places. Plus, you can take advantage of off-peak prices and enjoy your vacation without breaking the bank. In this blog, we'll explore some of the best travel destinations for October, both in Europe, Asia, and the Americas, to help you plan an unforgettable trip.

Tuscany, Italy

Tuscany in October offers a delightful experience as the region showcases its stunning autumnal colors and pleasant weather. The countryside transforms into a picturesque landscape with golden vineyards, olive groves, and rolling hills adorned with vibrant hues of red, orange, and yellow. The cooler temperatures create an ideal setting for exploring charming towns and villages, such as Florence, Siena, and Pisa.

October in Tuscany is the harvest season, making it a great time for wine lovers to visit. This is a magical time when vineyards come alive with activity as grapes are carefully picked and transformed into exquisite wines. The air is filled with the intoxicating aroma of ripe grapes, and the vineyards are a sight to behold with their vibrant colors. The vineyards are abuzz with activity, and many wineries offer unique experiences like grape stomping and guided tours to witness the winemaking process. Additionally, local festivals and events celebrate the harvest season, where you can immerse yourself in the authentic Tuscan culture and traditions. From traditional food fairs to truffle festivals, October offers a wide array of culinary delights to savor, including the region's renowned wines and hearty Tuscan cuisine.

Source: https://www.limelight-arts-travel.com.au/
Source: https://www.limelight-arts-travel.com.au/

The pleasant weather and tapered crowds in October make it an excellent time for outdoor activities in Tuscany, allowing you to explore the region comfortably. Embark on scenic hikes through the rolling hills, cycle along the picturesque countryside, or take leisurely walks through the medieval streets of towns like San Gimignano or Cortona. The lesser crowds during this period provide a more tranquil experience, allowing you to fully enjoy the beauty of the fall foliage.

💡 Heading to the Tuscany region this October? Check out our guide to some of the best vineyards in Florence.

Salem, Massachusetts

If you're a fan of all things spooky, Salem is the place to be in October. Known for the infamous witch trials of 1692, this historic town embraces its dark past during the Halloween season. Enjoy haunted tours, visit witch museums, and experience the chilling atmosphere that permeates this intriguing place. Restaurants will also roll out Halloween-themed seasonal menus, so be sure to check those out to complete the experience!

As you walk through the cobblestone streets of Salem, you can almost feel the presence of the accused witches from centuries ago. Explore the Salem Witch Trials Memorial, a solemn reminder of the tragic events that unfolded in this town. Indulge in delicious seasonal treats like pumpkin spice lattes and apple cider donuts, while immersing yourself in the rich history and folklore that surrounds Salem.

The highlight of visiting Salem in October is undoubtedly the Salem Haunted Happenings Festival, a month-long celebration that embraces the spirit of Halloween. The festival features an array of activities and events, including street fairs, costume balls, parades, and psychic readings. The atmosphere is electric, with locals and visitors alike donning elaborate costumes and participating in the festive spirit.

Source: https://www.boston.com/?p1=header_logo
Source: https://www.boston.com/?p1=header_logo

Beyond its witchcraft legacy, Salem offers a wealth of other attractions to explore. The city boasts a charming waterfront area with scenic views and picturesque architecture. Visitors can take leisurely strolls along the waterfront, visit the maritime museums, or even embark on a harbor cruise to enjoy the autumnal scenery from a different perspective.

Bali, Indonesia

October is an excellent time to visit Bali, as the weather is warm, the skies are clear, and the crowds are relatively smaller compared to the peak tourist season. It is also the last chance to catch the dry weather before the rainy season hits in November. From the famous white sands of Kuta Beach and Seminyak to the serene shores of Nusa Dua Beach and Sanur, Bali offers a diverse range of beaches to suit every preference.

Besides its beautiful beaches, nature lovers will also find October an ideal time to explore Bali's lush landscapes and iconic rice terraces. Trekking through the scenic highlands of Ubud or venturing to the northern regions of Bali offers breathtaking vistas of cascading rice fields and verdant valleys. It's a perfect opportunity to embark on outdoor adventures like hiking, cycling, or even river rafting, as the weather is pleasant and the natural beauty of Bali is at its finest. Exploring the waterfalls, volcanoes, and jungle landscapes during this time allows you to truly appreciate the island's remarkable biodiversity and tranquil beauty.

Source: https://www.cntraveller.in/
Source: https://www.cntraveller.in/

Bali also boasts a rich cultural heritage that can be experienced through its vibrant temples, traditional ceremonies, and artistic performances. Visiting temples like Uluwatu Temple, Besakih Great Temple, and Tanah Lot during this time allows you to immerse yourself in the spiritual ambiance and witness the Balinese devotion firsthand.

Rajasthan, India

Rajasthan is a state in northwestern India that is known for its forts, palaces, and desert landscapes. In October, the scorching summer heat begins to subside, making way for pleasant weather and comfortable temperatures, offering a perfect opportunity to explore its rich heritage. The cities of Jaipur, Udaipur, Jodhpur, and Jaisalmer showcase magnificent architecture, bustling bazaars, and a glimpse into the royal past. The palaces and forts of Rajasthan, such as the Amber Palace, City Palace, and Mehrangarh Fort, are best explored during this time, as the weather allows for comfortable sightseeing and exploration.

The religious festivals of **Shardiya Navratri (15 October - 24 October 2023) **and Dussehra (24 October 2023) also fall in October this year. The festivals are celebrated all over the country, but some of the most noteworthy celebrations take place in Rajasthan. The cities come alive with vibrant processions, folk dances, music performances, and cultural events. The effigies of Ravana, the mythological demon king, are ceremoniously burnt, marking the triumph of good over evil. The festivities offer a unique opportunity to witness the colorful traditions and religious fervor of Rajasthan. The markets are adorned with traditional attire, jewelry, and handicrafts, making it an excellent time for shopping and immersing oneself in the local culture. And for some of the best celebrations, head to the town of Kota.

Source: https://www.whereandwhen.net/
Source: https://www.whereandwhen.net/

Moreover, October is an ideal time to experience the Thar Desert in Rajasthan. The desert cities of Jaisalmer and Bikaner offer mesmerizing camel safaris, where you can traverse the golden sands, witness stunning sunsets, and camp under the starry desert sky. The desert comes alive with cultural performances, including folk dances and music, providing a glimpse into the vibrant Rajasthani culture. It's a unique opportunity to experience the rustic charm and tranquility of the desert, away from the hustle and bustle of city life.

Edinburgh, Scotland

October is a fantastic time to visit Edinburgh, as the capital of Scotland boasts a captivating blend of history, culture, and autumnal charm. The city's iconic landmarks, such as Edinburgh Castle and the Royal Mile, are adorned with the vibrant colors of fall, creating a picturesque setting for exploration. The weather in October is generally mild, making it perfect for leisurely strolls through the city's charming streets and gardens. Take in the panoramic views from Arthur's Seat, the extinct volcano in Holyrood Park, or meander through the elegant Princes Street Gardens, which showcases the seasonal beauty of Edinburgh.

One of the highlights of visiting Edinburgh in October is the Comic Con Scotland, which will take place from 7-8 October this year. Like many other comic cons all over the world, Comic-Con Scotland is a place where fans of pop culture, films, tv, and comic books can get together, meet their favorite celebrities, and celebrate the comic culture.

And if you enjoy cocktails, you also don't want to miss the Edinburgh Cocktail Week taking place from 6-15 October this year. As UK's largest cocktail festival, there are up to 100 bars across Edinburgh participating in the event, offering cocktails at just £5! Be sure to also drop by the flagship Cocktail Village, which features 20 pop-up bars, street food trucks, and live music!

Source: https://www.odysseytraveller.com/
Source: https://www.odysseytraveller.com/

Additionally, October in Edinburgh means embracing the spirit of Halloween. The city is known for its eerie atmosphere, making it an ideal destination for spooky celebrations. Ghost tours take you through the city's haunted streets and underground vaults, revealing tales of the city's dark past. The Edinburgh Dungeon offers an immersive experience, showcasing the city's gruesome history through interactive shows. For a more family-friendly option, the Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh typically hosts a Halloween-themed event with illuminations, storytelling, and enchanted walks. Whether you're a fan of the supernatural or simply enjoy the festive atmosphere, Edinburgh in October offers a bewitching experience for all.

Quebec, Canada

Visiting Quebec in October offers a picturesque experience as the province showcases its stunning fall foliage. The colorful autumn hues paint the landscapes with shades of red, orange, and gold, creating a breathtaking backdrop for exploration. Quebec is renowned for its charming towns, historic architecture, and rich cultural heritage.

October is also an excellent time to visit Quebec's national parks and outdoor destinations. Parc National de la Jacques-Cartier, Parc national du Mont-Tremblant, and Parc National de la Gaspésie offer stunning vistas and ample opportunities for hiking, canoeing, and wildlife spotting. The scenic Laurentian Mountains and the breathtaking Gaspé Peninsula are particularly popular during this time, offering breathtaking views of the fall foliage against the backdrop of mountains, rivers, and lakes. Exploring these natural wonders allows visitors to fully immerse themselves in the beauty of Quebec's autumn landscapes.

Nature aside, be sure to also visit the charming city of Old Quebec, a UNESCO World Heritage Site with a rich history. The province is also best known for maple syrup — take the opportunity to visit one of the many sugar shacks to learn more about how maple syrup is produced while enjoying a maple-filled meal. Some of the most popular sugar shacks to visit include Sucrerie de la Montagne** **or **Érablière du Cap**.

Source: Airbnb.com
Source: Airbnb.com

Moreover, October is a time of cultural celebrations in Quebec. The province embraces its French heritage with events like the Festival du Nouveau Cinéma in Montreal which will take place from 4 - 15 October this year, showcasing contemporary cinema from around the world. The vibrant city streets are filled with artistic performances, film screenings, and exhibitions, creating an atmosphere of creativity and cultural appreciation.