Summer might be considered prime time for vacation, but fall is also a great time to travel. Moderate temperatures and stunning seasonal foliage make this time of year pleasant for vacationing. Plus, many destinations have fall festivals and other seasonal events to enjoy, so there’s plenty to do no matter where you go. Here are some of our favorite fall getaway locales, along with some of our favorite outfits to wear and a few packing tips:
This scenic vacation spot is nestled in Luray, Virginia. Although Shenandoah National Park is a beautiful place to visit year-round, fall is an especially good time due to the spectacular foliage. The park has campgrounds if you’re into rugged accommodations and outdoor activities, just make sure to reserve in-person on a timely basis because spots fill up quickly. If you’re the luxury vacation type, Luray has multiple hotels where you can stay when you’re not enjoying a leisurely leaf-spotting drive through the Blue Ridge Mountains or getting back to nature on a National Park hiking trail. Pick a hotel with spa treatments to increase the luxe factor and bring along a pair of women’s slippers and a cozy robe for some pampering afterward.
What to Wear: Layering is essential when visiting Shenandoah National Park in fall, as temperatures can range from 40 to 60 degrees on average, with lower and higher temps possible. Women’s jeans with a T-shirt under a flannel shirt and fleece jacket is one layered look that works for fall excursions.
If New England is your preferred fall vacay destination, consider Acadia National Park in Maine. There are beautiful vibrant leaves to behold and fewer crowds than you’ll find during the summer months. Accommodation options range from campgrounds to quaint bed and breakfasts, rustic cottages and cabins, and high-end hotels. When you’re not sightseeing, visit some of the area attractions or hit the local shops and restaurants.
What to Wear: Fall in Maine can be crisp, so an insulated jacket is a must. Packable down jackets work well because you can layer them over lighter apparel and tuck them easily into your suitcase or overnight bag without taking up much space. Skinny jeans, turtlenecks, and cardigans are Maine vacation essentials that you can pair with calf-high boots and women’s fashion scarves for a warm, on-trend fall fashion aesthetic.
There’s plenty to see and do in the capital of Utah. Salt Lake City boasts historic architecture and plenty of city attractions, but there’s also ample scenery to enjoy. Take a nature walk or drive to view the fiery autumn leaves or attend one of the city’s many fall celebrations. Memory Grove Park is a popular outdoor destination with a trail that leads to City Creek Canyon—a hiking and biking trail lined with vibrant foliage.
What to Wear: Pack a range of fashion options in your travel bag when visiting Salt Lake City. A midi dress, cardigan sweater and boots is a semi-casual outfit for visiting museums and other city attractions or a date night at a popular restaurant or live music venue. For outdoor excursions, dress in warm layers such as women’s T-shirts and sweatshirts with jeans or joggers. Comfortable shoes are a must, so opt for a pair with a cushioned footbed and breathable construction.
Washington state is home to Leavenworth, where you’ll find exquisite Bavarian restaurants and architecture. There’s also stunning fall foliage and an array of outdoor activities, whether your tastes lie in a relaxed stroll through a fall festival or a ziplining adventure high above the ground. Lake Wenatchee is a popular Leavenworth landmark with plenty of activities to enjoy.
What to Wear: The proper attire for this city depends on your itinerary. First and foremost, walking shoes are a must for exploring fall festivals and local shops. Hiking boots can protect your feet and keep you comfortable on more rugged terrain, while women’s ankle boots are a stylish choice for a dinner date. Layer your apparel for a fall vacation to Leavenworth—one outfit idea is corduroy leggings, a tunic sweater, an open front cardigan and your favorite boots. Fleece jackets or a zippered hoodie are perfect top layers for fall days that aren’t too cold.
Denver is another location with beautiful fall leaves and a plethora of activities. Pick up local produce and handmade arts and crafts at a farmer’s market or visit a park for outdoor adventures. A road trip to Rocky Mountain National Park takes about 90 minutes from the city and is well worth the drive, as the park has beautiful scenery and plenty to do. Denver also has fine restaurants worthy of your little black dress, so don’t forget to pack it.
What to Wear: While we’ve already mentioned the LBD, there are other essentials you may want for your fall Denver getaway. Flannel shirts layer well over tees and turtlenecks and go with any women's jeans, whether you prefer a straight-leg or skinny style.
Now that you know more about some of the best U.S. fall vacation destinations, it’s time to choose your favorite. Use our outfit ideas for inspiration when packing and try to include pieces you can mix and match to create different looks. Don’t forget a pair of comfy women’s pajamas for relaxing at the end of each day.