10Best: Hottest October Travel Picks

  • Portland, Ore.

    In October summer tourists have left Portland and hotel rates drop accordingly. It's also one of the best months to enjoy the fall color of the Pacific Northwest, especially in the Portland Japanese Garden where you'll find the famous maple tree.

    Photo courtesy of tvphoto/iStock

  • Albuquerque, N.M.

    During the early days of the month (October 4-12), the skies above Albuquerque fill up with hundreds of hot air balloons during the spectacular Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta.

    Photo courtesy of New Mexico Tourism Department

  • Montreal, Quebec

    You don't have to fly around the world to celebrate the Chinese Mid-Autumn Festival. The annual Garden of Lights at the Montreal Botanical Garden lights up in October with traditional colored lanterns and twinkling lights, creating a magical atmosphere for an autumn evening stroll.

    Photo courtesy of Marie-France Cloutier/iStock

  • Asheville, N.C.

    With Asheville as a home base, you'll have some of the East Coast's best fall leaf peeping at your disposal this October. Fall at the iconic Biltmore Estate means warm autumn colors in the gardens, while the nearby Blue Ridge Parkway offers one of the season's most spectacular drives.

    Photo courtesy of The Biltmore Company

  • Lisbon, Portugal

    Europe's shoulder season means fewer tourists and cheaper prices in Lisbon, but with plenty of sunshine to make exploring the city's Gothic cathedrals, colorful backstreets and historical museums very pleasant.

    Photo courtesy of Mapics/iStock

  • Yellowstone National Park

    Summer in Yellowstone National Park can be claustrophobic, but if you hold off your visit until October, you won't be elbowing for a view of Old Faithful and you'll have your pick of the park's best campsites. Wildlife spotting is also excellent this month as the park's critters fatten up for winter.

    Photo courtesy of Rawin Cheasagul/iStock

  • Austin, Texas

    October in the Texas Capital means blissfully cooler temperatures and one of the nation's biggest music festival, Austin City Limits (October 3-5 and 10-12). If you stick around until the end of the month, partiers will be loving the booze-fueled Halloween on Sixth Street.

    Photo courtesy of rbstevens/iStock

  • Savannah, Ga.

    Most cities celebrate Oktoberfest in September, but if you missed out, head to Savannah for the annual celebration on River Street (Oct. 3-5). The weeks leading up to Halloween is also a great time to delve into Savannah's haunted past by visiting the atmospheric Bonaventure Cemetery or taking a historic ghost tour.

    Photo courtesy of Snikeltrut/iStock

  • Cooperstown, N.Y.

    What better time to visit the National Baseball Hall of Fame than during October, when Cooperstown is painted in fall color and new legends are emerging during the lead-up to the World Series. This year marks the 75th anniversary of the museum honoring the best in the game.

    Photo courtesy of Cooperstown/Otsego County, New York

  • Patagonia

    If there's ever a time to cross a visit to Patagonia off your bucket list, October is it. Springtime in the Southern Hemisphere means highs in the 50s and the chance to see the jaw-dropping scenery at its best, before the wave of summer tourists descends and prices jump.

    Photo courtesy of jakobradlgruber/iStock