As the lazy days of summer come to an end, September brings pristine weather and fewer crowds to some of my all-time favorite destinations. The waters in the Mediterranean seem to hold summer's heat and skies are crisp blue; schools are back in session and a quiet descends on resort towns just as cities pick up their pace. The first month of fall is one of the loveliest months of the year to travel in much of America, Europe and Africa. Discover some of the best places to go in September, whether you want to get away for a long weekend or a multi-stop journey.
Contact Indagare for assistance planning your fall getaway.
[caption id="" align="alignnone" width="620"] Courtesy I Amsterdam[/caption]
The Dutch capital is the kind of city where you’ll have the most fun blending into the local scene. To soak up the best of September weather, rent a bicycle and cruise around the city, visit the famed tulip fields and take a sunset boat ride along the canal–all while staying at the über stylish Hotel Pulitzer. As an added bonus, fall brings a number of exciting exhibits to the many museums in the city. Rijksmuseum is hosting a retrospective on 19th-century photography; while the ever-popular Rembrandt Museum has a limited-time exhibition of the artist's early etchings.
Indagare Escape: For those who want to make a last-minute trip, we have sourced some amazing deals for business class tickets combined with a three-night stay at some of Amsterdam’s top properties, including the Pulitzer and W Amsterdam, starting from $7,500 for two travelers. Contact Indagare to book this package and to plan a customized trip to Amsterdam.
[caption id="" align="alignnone" width="620"] Fushimi Inari, Kyoto[/caption]
From the cutting-edge design scene of Tokyo to the 17th century tea houses of Kyoto, Japan dazzles. September offers warm weather and the potential for early fall foliage, creating a beautiful backdrop for admiring the country's famed sites. Art and history lovers should not miss the limited-time exhibition at the National Museum of Modern Art, entitled the Japanese House, which addresses life in Tokyo following WWII (momat.go.jp).
Indagare Escape: For those who want to make a last-minute trip, we have sourced some amazing deals for business class tickets combined with an eight-night stay at some of Tokyo’s top properties, including the Park Hyatt and Ritz-Carlton, starting from $16,600 for two travelers. Contact Indagare to book this package and to plan a customized trip to Tokyo.
Related: Japan Black Book Magazine
[caption id="" align="alignnone" width="620"] Vineyard in Santa Barbara[/caption]
California's breezy seaside locale offers sophisticated living combined with a refreshingly laid-back attitude in a drop-dead gorgeous landscape. The month of September enjoys pleasant temperatures in the 70°s and 80°s, so travelers can take advantage of swimming and beach time along with wine tasting and outdoor activities. Adding to the destination's appeal, this year saw the opening of a cool new museum and several hotel updates. Hotel Californian, from designer Martyn Lawrence Bullard, is the hip newcomer to the city, with 121 Moroccan-inspired rooms and a stunning rooftop located a couple blocks from the beach (thehotelcalifornian.com). And the boutique Santa Ynez Inn recently unveiled a gorgeous new renovation, refreshing its 20 luxurious rooms with Victorian-inspired touches like antiques and grand chandeliers (santaynezinn.com).
MOXI, The Wolf Museum of Science + Exploration is also worth a visit. While it is primarily for kids, it boasts a recording studio where visitors of all ages can lay down their own tracks (www.moxi.org). And for a taste of California glamour, The Santa Barbara Polo Club hosts matches, Friday night happy hours and cocktail gatherings on Sunday afternoons through October (sbpolo.com).
Related: Spotlight on San Luis Obispo
[caption id="" align="alignnone" width="620"] The grounds at Glenmere Mansion[/caption]
The massive Hudson Valley region, mushrooming out from northern Westchester County and spanning both sides of the majestic Hudson river, is a wonderfully complex destination for outdoor enthusiasts, lovers of art history and food, as well as spiritualists and wellness seekers. For a September getaway (with plenty of time spent admiring the early fall foliage), couples should opt for a romantic weekend at the Italian-inspired villa resort Glenmere Mansion, while families shouldn't miss the rustic Mohonk Mountain House.
Foodies should splurge for a meal at Blue Hill at Stone Barns, where the farm-to-table cuisine is sure to be unforgettable (especially during the fall harvest). For art lovers, a curated selection of Walter De Maria’s works have been on view at Dia: Beacon since earlier this year, but starting on September 22, his Truck Trilogy will debut. The piece consists of three pickup trucks that have been pared down to their most basic aspects as a commentary on American factory products. Another favorite activity in the region is taking a carriage ride down the 19th-century roads on Olana, Frederic Church’s estate. Carriage rides are available each weekend in September.
Related: Exploring the Hudson Valley
[caption id="" align="alignnone" width="620"] A villa sits atop the rolling hills of Tuscany[/caption]
There is perhaps no better time of year than September to enjoy Italy's most gorgeous, romantic and culture-filled region. A fall getaway means balmy weather (and avoiding the summer heat and crowds) and art and cultural events in Florence; and postcard-perfect scenery, perfect for long days of wine tasting and road-tripping in Tuscany. As an added bonus for gourmands, harvest season in Italy guarantees the food and wine will be better than ever, and September marks the beginning of the season for truffle hunting.
Related: Classic Tuscany Itinerary
[caption id="" align="alignnone" width="620"] Courtesy Rosa Alpina[/caption]
The glorious Italian Dolomites, a two-hour-drive from Venice, is blessed with incredible mountain ranges that offer stunning hiking and climbing. September is still warm but enjoys early fall breezes that create ideal hiking weather (which is why Indagare organizes yearly Insider Journeys to the region every September). Travelers will delight in the dramatic landscapes (not to mention fine dining and spa treatments at Rosa Alpina, the area’s most charming retreat). As an added bonus, the resort is hosting a wellness retreat conducted by a world-renowned healing expert who will lead group sessions in yoga, mindful living and meditation (August 6 through September 17).
Related: Hiking in the Dolomites
[caption id="" align="alignnone" width="620"] Serenity at the Grand Hôtel du Cap Ferrat[/caption]
[caption id="" align="alignnone" width="620"] Courtesy Aldourie Castle, Margaret Soraya[/caption]
To experience quintessential Scotland, it's best that the weather is crisp but not cold, and September offers exactly that. Travelers can spend their time exploring the storied history of Edinburgh, savor the misty landscapes of the Scottish Highlands and the charming collegiate capital of St. Andrews, when the school year commences and the ancient town is alive with autumnal fever. Plus, a stylish and rustic new retreat has recently arrived in the Highlands, Killiehuntly Farmhouse & Cottage, which boasts an accessible location between Edinburgh and Inverness.
Related: The Top 10 Best Places to Hike
[caption id="" align="alignnone" width="620"] The souk, courtesy Richard Waite[/caption]
Marrakech has it all: history, romance and atmosphere. It exudes a happening, hip vibe, but it also has a sterling pedigree. The architecture is amazing, the gardens gorgeous and the shopping an ethnic extravaganza. September is still hot (but not sweltering), so nights are balmy and afternoons by the pool are heaven. Plus, the city will be buzzing with the opening of the Yves Saint Laurent Museum (opening officially in October), which will have permanent displays of the designer's work along with shops and a library dedicated to the visionary artist.
Related: Marrakech in Revival
[caption id="" align="alignnone" width="620"] Copenhagen's iconic canal houses[/caption]
Long a bastion of understated cool, the Danish capital is abuzz with ground-breaking restaurants and is a great destination for a last-minute long weekend getaway. Copenhagen is lovely in the fall due to its absence of summer crowds; and the weather is still warm enough to enjoy long days spent exploring the cobblestone streets and biking through the fabled canals.
The restaurant scene is better than ever, too (despite the fact that the world-famous Noma is temporarily closed and moving to a new location). Culinary newcomers to the city are Brace (Teglgårdstræde 8a), serving innovative Italian-Nordic cuisine, and the elegant seafood restaurant Barr, which occupies Noma's former warehouse space.
Related: Member Story, Finland and Estonia
We only feature hotels that we can vouch for first-hand. At many of them, Indagare members receive special amenities.Get In Touch