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Where to Go in October: The Best Places to Travel

by Brook Wilkinson | May 10, 2022

Pleasant temperatures, fewer tourists, and shoulder-season deals make October a great time to travel to a large swath of the globe. Since you can’t go everywhere (sad, I know), we’ve pinpointed a few of the optimal spots. From vineyard-hopping in France to whale-shark-spotting in the Seychelles, the following destinations and experiences belong on your October travel list.

This list represents U.S. travelers’ best bets for October 2022 specifically, when it comes to a combo of good weather, reduction of Covid-related risks, and favorable conditions for local activities: With the right local expert arranging your trip, you can spend most of your time in the open air, keep socially distanced, and limit your activities to places with higher vaccination rates and lower rates of local spread, all of which greatly reduce your risk of testing positive just before returning to the U.S.

To understand what makes a trip WOW, read these recent reviews from our travelers. For more pandemic travel solutions, see our Covid-19 travel advice. And don’t miss the rest of our “Where to Go” series on the best destinations for every month of the year.

Utah’s National Parks

Bryce Canyon National Park, Utah.

Bryce Canyon National Park, Utah. Photo: Mark Campbell

October is one of the best months to explore Utah’s stunning national parks: The temperatures are generally moderate and the crowds thin. An insider can show you the parks on foot, by vehicle, and even from a helicopter.
To get your own WOW trip and VIP treatment, use the black button below. 

Ask about a trip to Utah’s National Parks

Big Island, Hawaii

Wai'pio Valley Lookout, Hawaii

Wai’pio Valley Lookout, Big Island, Hawaii.

October is the choicest month for the Big Island, as the weather is driest—with daytime temperatures hovering around 85 degrees—and families aren’t traveling, so prices are lower. (The only thing it’s not an ideal time for is surfing.)
Read reviews of WOW trips to Hawaii during the pandemic. To get your own WOW trip and VIP treatment, use the black button below. 

Ask about a trip to Hawaii

Olympic National Park, Washington

A beautiful sunset on the ocean among the rocks, Cape flattery trail , Olympic Peninsula, Washington state

Sun on the ocean among the rocks, Cape flattery trail, Olympic Peninsula, Washington state. Photo: Shutterstock

In October, the weather is usually pleasant across all three of the park’s environments: the Olympic Mountains, the temperate Hoh Rain Forest, and the rugged Pacific coastline. There may be snow at the high elevations and some rain lower down, but the waterfalls will be flowing, and the area is very lush. Sunsets also tend to be spectacular at this time of year.
Read reviews of WOW trips to Washington during the pandemic. To get your own WOW trip and VIP treatment, use the black button below. 

Ask about a trip to Olympic National Park

Italy: From the Cinque Terre to Puglia

Castello di Grinzane and village in Piedmont - one of the most famous wine regions of Italy

Castello di Grinzane and village in Piedmont – one of the most famous wine regions of Italy. Photo: Shutterstock

From the northern coastline to the boot of the heel—and just about everywhere in between—Italy is gorgeous in October. The weather is pleasant, hotels aren’t charging their peak-season rates, and you’ll enjoy a more authentic experience when the people dining beside you at the trattorias are locals, not tourists. On the Amalfi Coast, October is when the throngs of cruise-ship passengers have thinned, prices have dropped (a little), there’s plenty of sun, and the sea is still warm enough for swimming. In Tuscany, festivals for the olive and grape harvests abound, and the fall foliage is stunning. In Rome, you don’t need to wait in line for an outside table in the city’s iconic piazze.
Read reviews of WOW trips to Italy during the pandemic. To get your own WOW trip and VIP treatment, use the black button below. 

Ask about a trip to Italy

Burgundy, France

Burgundy's rolling hillsides

Burgundy’s rolling hillsides. Photo: Trufflepig

The chaos of harvest is over and the grapes are in—which means there’s still lots of activity in the wineries, since the wines are fermenting and the vinification is in full throe, but the winemakers themselves have a little more time to spend with visitors. It’s also the prettiest time: The leaves on the vines turn yellow and gold, and you realize why they call it the Côte d’Or (the golden slopes). And beyond the wines, it’s the most interesting time for seasonal produce: Mushrooms and squashes complement wild game on the menus of the local restaurants.
Read reviews of WOW trips to France during the pandemic. To get your own WOW trip and VIP treatment, use the black button below. 

Ask about a trip to France

Madrid, Spain

Old cozy street in Madrid, Spain. Architecture and landmark of Madrid, postcard of Madrid

Cultural events pick up in fall in Madrid. Photo: Shutterstock

In September and October, the blistering summer heat abates and cultural events pick up, with festivals, theater shows, and concerts. It’s also much easier to get a room at one of the new luxury hotels that has opened in the city in recent years, from the Four Seasons to the Rosewood to the Edition.
Read reviews of WOW trips to Madrid during the pandemic. To get your own WOW trip and VIP treatment, use the black button below. 

Ask about a trip to Madrid

Austria’s Danube Valley

The Wachau Valley, Austria

The Wachau Valley, Austria. Photo: Austrian Tourist Board

October is at the end of peak season, there’s gorgeous fall scenery, and it’s harvest time in the vineyards, which means that the Heuriger (wine taverns) are especially fun and lively and you’ll probably get to try new wines. More important, especially for wine buffs, many of the smaller (and better) Heurigers aren’t open year-round, but they’re all open in October.
Read reviews of WOW trips to Austria during the pandemic. To get your own WOW trip and VIP treatment, use the black button below. 

Ask about a trip to Austria’s Danube Valley

Sicily and Malta

Mt. Etna, Sicily.

Mt. Etna, Sicily. Photo: Pixabay

October is one of the most colorful and flavorful months in Sicily and Malta. It is the season of the harvest in Sicily, which means fresh olives, almonds, and chestnuts—not to mention wild mushrooms, prickly pears, and carob—complement the island’s always-bountiful variety of culinary offerings. In nearby Malta, it is still warm enough for swimming, snorkeling, scuba diving, or a romantic overnight sail to the island of Gozo with nobody else around. Throughout the region, the air and sea temperatures are still warm and inviting, flights and accommodations are less expensive than during the summer, and the fewer tourists mean you get a more intimate experience with the local people.
Read reviews of WOW trips to Sicily and Malta during the pandemic. To get your own WOW trip and VIP treatment, use the black button below. 

Ask about a trip to Sicily and/or Malta

Croatia

aerial view of Hvar island and surrounding sea Croatia

On Hvar, it’s still swimsuit season but the party crowds have gone. Photo: Exeter International

Visit Croatia in the first half of October and you’ll find good weather, fewer tourists, and lower hotel prices than during peak season.
Read reviews of WOW trips to Croatia during the pandemic. To get your own WOW trip and VIP treatment, use the black button below. 

Ask about a trip to Croatia

Greece

sunset over sailboats Naxos Town Greece

Boats off the island of Naxos. Photo: Billie Cohen

Smart travelers will let the summer crowds die down, then go to Greece in the fall. As with Croatia, at that time of year you’ll find pleasant temperatures, quieter streets, and lower prices.
Read reviews of WOW trips to Greece during the pandemic. To get your own WOW trip and VIP treatment, use the black button below. 

Ask about a trip to Greece

Turkey

rainbow umbrellas hover over a street of shops and restaurants in Istanbul turkey

Photo: Tim Baker

The fall shoulder season is a sweet spot for Turkey: Istanbul and Cappadocia are sunny and mild, while on the Aegean Coast, it’s warm but not sweltering, and the sea is calm.
Read reviews of WOW trips to Turkey during the pandemic. To get your own WOW trip and VIP treatment, use the black button below. 

Ask about a trip to Turkey

Bali

Pura Ulun Danu Bratan, Hindu temple on Bratan lake landscape, one of famous tourist attraction in Bali, Indonesia - Image

Pura Ulun Danu Bratan, Hindu temple on Bratan Lake, Bali. Photo: Shutterstock

While October falls during the rainy season, showers are usually limited to a few hours in the afternoon or overnight. It’s also less busy than the high season, making hotel rates more attractive.
Read reviews of WOW trips to Bali. To get your own WOW trip and VIP treatment, use the black button below. 

Ask about a trip to Bali

Northern Thailand

The view from Anantara Golden Triangle Resort in Chiang Rai, Thailand

The view from Anantara Golden Triangle Resort in Chiang Rai, Thailand. Photo: Anantara

Northern Thailand is at its best at the end of the green season: From mid-October to mid-December, the rains have diminished but the waterfalls and rivers are full, and the crowds and higher prices of the late-December to mid-January peak season have yet to arrive. The mountains are lush and green, and morning mists hanging in the valleys send shivers up your spine. (Bangkok is a year-round destination, and short bursts of rain can easily be dodged in the city.)
Read reviews of WOW trips to Thailand during the pandemic. To get your own WOW trip and VIP treatment, use the black button below. 

Ask about a trip to Thailand

Northern Chile and Argentina

the red sand of Chile's Atacama desert with tall mountains in the distance

The Atacama Desert of Chile has an otherwordly and beautiful landscape. Photo: Awasi

While both the Atacama Desert in Chile and the region around Salta, Argentina, are year-round destinations, October and November see fewer visitors than other times of year—leaving your vistas of these wide-open landscapes largely free of other travelers. (These are also excellent months to hop a flight to Easter Island, when the place is nearly empty and the weather ideal.)
Read reviews of WOW trips to Chile and Argentina during the pandemic. To get your own WOW trip and VIP treatment, use the black button below. 

Ask about a trip to Northern Chile and Argentina

Jordan

The dunes in Wadi Rum, Jordan. Photo: Timothy Baker

Jordan is ideal in October, when the heat of summer has passed but the cold of winter—which can be particularly harsh in desert regions such as Wadi Rum—has not yet arrived.
Read reviews of WOW trips to Jordan. To get your own WOW trip and VIP treatment, use the black button below. 

Ask about a trip to Jordan

Oman

Dhow boat Cruise in Arabian Peninsula, boat on blue water with desert mountains in background

A dhow cruise on the Arabian Peninsula in Oman. Photo: Shutterstock

From mid-September through October, Oman’s weather is perfect: It’s not too hot in the desert and not too chilly in the mountains.
Read reviews of WOW trips to Oman. To get your own WOW trip and VIP treatment, use the black button below. 

Ask about a trip to Oman

Mongolia

An eagle hunter on horseback in Mongolia holding an eagle

An eagle hunter in Mongolia. Photo: Chris Rainier/Nomadic Expeditions

October is when you can attend the one-of-a-kind Golden Eagle Festival—a colorful celebration of a centuries-old Kazakh hunting tradition in the Altai Mountains. When the festival was founded in 1999, only 40 families still hunted with eagles; today more than 400 do so, and many locals rely on the income they earn during the event. Our Trusted Travel Expert can even arrange for you to have dinner with the competitors.
Read reviews of WOW trips to Mongolia. To get your own WOW trip and VIP treatment, use the black button below. 

Ask about a trip to Mongolia

Vietnam

Wonderful view of the East Gate (Hien Nhon Gate) to the Citadel and a moat surrounding the Imperial City with the Purple Forbidden City in Hue, Vietnam. Hue is a popular tourist destination of Asia.

View of the East Gate (Hien Nhon Gate) to the Citadel and a moat surrounding the Imperial City with the Purple Forbidden City in Hue, Vietnam. Photo: Shutterstock

Since the monsoons hit northern, central, and southern Vietnam at different times, weather across Vietnam varies widely. If your goal is to travel throughout the country, the driest months to visit are October and March. Fall is when you’ll find the best weather conditions in Ho Chi Minh City and the south.
Read reviews of WOW trips to Vietnam. To get your own WOW trip and VIP treatment, use the black button below. 

Ask about a trip to Vietnam

The Seychelles

Maia Luxury Resort, Anse Louis Beach, Seychelles

October brings a mix of good weather and value. Photo: Maia Luxury Resort/Lindsey Wallace

October represents a nice balance of great weather (not too hot and little to no rain) and great value (since many of the resorts still have low-season rates). It’s also the best month for snorkeling and diving with whale sharks.
Read reviews of WOW trips to the Seychelles. To get your own WOW trip and VIP treatment, use the black button below. 

Ask about a trip to the Seychelles

Other Good Options This Month

Click on any of the destinations below to find out why October is a good time to go.

North America

California Coast

Hawaii: Maui

Jackson Hole and the Grand Tetons National Park (first half of the month)

Mexico City (second half of the month)

Puerto Vallarta (second half of the month)

Riviera Maya (second half of the month)

Yellowstone National Park (first half of the month)

Central and South America

Bolivia

Brazilian Amazon

Buenos Aires

Colombia: Bogotá

Costa Rica: fishing, wildlife and turtle hatching

Patagonia (second half of the month)

Peru

 

Europe

Aegean Coast

Algarve

Andalusia

Athens

Canal Barge Cruises

Cappadocia

Cotswolds

Czech Republic

Hungary

Istanbul

Killarney and County Kerry

London

Paris

Portugal

Romania (first half of the month)

Scotland

 

Asia

Agra

Delhi

Laos

Mumbai

Nepal

Trekking in the Himalayas

 

Africa and Middle East

Botswana

Cape Town and the Winelands

Egypt

Israel

Jerusalem

Madagascar

Marrakech and the Atlas Mountains

 

Australia and Pacific

Fiji

French Polynesia (first half of the month)

Great Barrier Reef

Papua New Guinea: trekking

Queenstown hiking and cycling

We’re here to help

Right now is a remarkable opportunity for global travelers. When your friends say that travel is problematic as a result of the pandemic—rental cars aren’t available, service even at 5-star hotels is shoddy—the problem is they’re not planning their trips right! Travel can be spectacular now if you choose the right destination, know the savviest local fixers, and approach them the optimal way. Check out these recent trip reviews to see the difference that Wendy’s WOW approach to trip planning makes. And if you’re looking for a similarly carefree travel experience, contact us at Ask Wendy.

 

Be a safer, smarter traveler: Sign up for Wendy’s weekly newsletter to stay in the know. And read real travelers’ reviews of Wendy’s WOW List and use it to plan your next trip.

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2 Comments

  1. Ellen Korval

    We used Caroline Bach Wood for our family trip to the national parks . She was extremely helpful and knowledgable!! The hotels that she suggested we use were wonderful and she was very accessible and easy to work with. I would certainly recomnend her to friends and she stands as a good representative of your company.

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