Summer has ended and your tan has surely faded, but some may say that the best season of the year is now upon us.
It's the season of boots, scarves and sweatshirts. The season of colorful and crunchy leaves, and the season of pumpkin and apple flavored well... everything. It's the season of mulled wine, hayrides and Halloween. Even your favorite TV series have started up again.
Fall is here, and it's a season that must be embraced to the fullest before those pretty trees are nothing but bare branches and you've lost feeling in each and every appendage while shoveling your car out of 3 feet of snow.
Here are five of the best places to travel in the fall (warning: passport may be required):
1. White Mountains, New Hampshire
If you haven't seen the White Mountains in the fall, you haven't experienced this beautiful season at its prime. While this region is great for outdoor activities year-round, it is inarguably the most stunning in the fall.
To experience the area's famous foliage, take a hike through the mountains, sign up for a canopy walk and zip-lining adventure tour or take in the views on a scenic helicopter ride. After such strenuous activities, a brewery tour or evening of warm drinks in one of the many cozy mountain restaurants is a good idea.
Lastly, if you didn't already know, New Hampshire is a tax-free state. Might as well buy all of the cute fall boots you want, and maybe even get a jump on that Christmas shopping while you're at it.
2. Boston, Massachusetts
There's nothing better than fall in Boston. The season's colorful leaves put on quite the display next to the city's historical architecture and iconic brownstone buildings.
Boston Common and the Public Gardens are looking their annual best, and a stroll along the Charles River Esplanade is as perfect as a picture.
Hop over to Harvard University and enjoy some leaf-peeping on their popular walking tour, or climb aboard a duck boat. Duck boats are famous in Boston and another great way to take in the city sights, from the main streets of Boston right into the Charles River.
Stop into one of the city's many pubs or bars for a fall cocktail and a football game, and you'll feel right at home.
3. London, England
While London has a reputation centered around less than desirable weather, don't underestimate the beauty that can be found on the other side of the pond.
London is amazing in the fall, and a stroll through one of the city's world-class parks, like Hyde or Regent's, will quickly provide evidence of this. In addition to the leaves and their changing colors, England is still impeccably lush this time of year, adding a bright touch of green to the burnt oranges, yellows and reds that you'll find.
Big Ben never looked better than when framed by fall foliage along the Thames.
As if the scenery isn't enough, the country's pub culture is a reason in itself to visit. Whether you're after an afternoon tea, beer, cider, whiskey or a hearty roast dinner, London has plenty to offer in the confines of a cozy pub to take the edge off the chilly weather.
4. Rome, Italy
Ciao, Roma! The summer season is gone, the tourists have passed and there is no better time to visit romantic Rome than at the peak of fall.
Imagine slow afternoons filled with delicious wine, the best pizza in the world and savory gelato, all against the breathtaking backdrop of Roman architecture highlighted by autumnal colors.
The weather is warm enough to explore the city by foot (or bike), so take in the changing of the leaves with a stroll through Villa Borghese or a ride along the Appian Way.
Romans love to dine late into the night, so be sure to indulge in an evening where you'll take your pick of a cobblestoned street-side table, comfortably set beneath a heat lamp and eat and drink to your heart's content.
5. Prague, Czech Republic
You've seen Disney movies, complete with their castles and charming villages, right? (I'm looking at you, "Beauty and the Beast.") Well, Prague is exactly that.
Add numerous public parks and fall foliage to this fairytale setting, and you'll be hard-pressed to find a reason not to go. Did I mention the pop-up hot wine and sausage stands? Yeah, there are those, too. There's also weekend markets where people drink cider and beer, and eat delicious food all day.
It's not too cold, not too hot, not too busy, everything is cheap and you basically feel like a princess (or prince) every day. Even more so when you're surrounded by beautiful leaves and you're frolicking around castles.
Winter's coming, my friends, so you best book those plane tickets soon.