There’s not a better time of the year to travel than the fall. These best fall destinations in Europe are perfect for those who are looking to spend a week to two visiting. The fall in Europe is magical — fewer crowds, better hotel rates, and some incredible fall foliage that pops out.
Spending last year in Europe, we took advantage of the fall season to travel. It was one of the best times spent there and came home for a new appreciation of off-season travel. It’s also a time that many airlines discount their prices. Airlines like SAS, Air France, Norwegian, and even United often have roundtrip prices from mid-September through November for under $800. It’s a screaming deal.
Ready to explore? Here are the best fall destinations in Europe.
Best Fall Destinations in Europe
There’s nowhere else I’d love to spend a chilly fall day. Amsterdam comes alive as it gets cold. Cozy cafes, charming hotels, and a stroll along the canals are my favorite.
If summer crowds are not your thing, then the best time to visit Barcelona is in the fall. I love late October to early November in this city. The trees start to change in color and often feels like the city is all yours. It’s a great time to visit the famous sights like La Sagrada, the Picasso Museum, and much more.
For those looking for a quaint town to visit in the fall, Bruges is one to consider. You can access it from either Brussels, Amsterdam, or Paris by train. You could spend 2 nights here easily getting lost on the canals, cycling around, and exploring.
Bruges Travel Guide
This gem in eastern Europe doesn’t get enough credit. I love Budapest — it’s eccentric, classic, and architect lover’s paradise. The city is magical and in the fall as chestnuts roast on the street, it feels otherworldly.
Budapest Travel Guide
One of the easiest to access cities in Europe, Copenhagen is a hot spot for a fall destination. Land at the airport, take the train to the center of town in no time, and you’re ready to explore. The colorful ships of Nyhavn are inviting, incredible shopping and a great culinary scene make for a well-rounded experience.
For old-world charm meets modern city, Edinburgh took me by surprise. There is a lot to discover here and the countryside isn’t too far away. Come to the city for a few days and rent a car to explore the Highlands for a good 7-10 day trip.
Geneva is one gem that often gets overlooked. I love this city — right on the lake, surrounded by mountains, and the Swiss luxury you can’t get enough of. Its proximity to vineyards means that you there’s plenty to do in the city and nearby.
Geneva Travel Guide
One of my favorite Scandinavian countries, Finland is a go-to for fall trips. Helsinki is a wonderful city to visit for 3-5 days, pending on how much you want to do. It’s the city for those who love art (tons of museums!) and access to the outdoors.
The Italian Dolomites
The Italian Dolomites are all yours in the month of October. The season closes in late October but if you plan it just right, you’ll have the mountains to yourself. It’s magical. The fall foliage, panoramic views for miles, and the great outdoors. This is number one on my list for outdoors in Europe.
If you’re looking for a more mild climate, Lisbon often stays warmer through the fall months. This city is a blast — I could spend a week exploring the city and nearby sights. The food is great, the prices are fair, and there’s nothing like their warm welcome.
One city I really enjoyed visiting in England was Manchester. I was smitten with the vibrant culture, nightlife, food scene, and art. The city doesn’t get enough credit and it’s easy to access with direct flights from the States. If you’ve been to London, consider visiting Manchester next. You can also take a train to the countryside town of York, which is completely charming and perfect for Harry Potter fans!
I haven’t spent a ton of time in Germany but one city that struck me was Nuremberg. I spent two nights here a few years back and loved it. It was the fall, so the foliage was in full color and the hearty meals were that much more comforting. It’s a gem in Germany!
Paris in the fall. Is there a better time to visit? Not too hot, not too cold, and still romantic as ever. I’m a sucker for Paris in late October. The leaves on the ground, the Seine glistens in the autumn sun. It’s somewhere I’ll always recommend for fall travel.
Prague, Czech Republic
For full fall colors, I’ve never seen a city more stunning than Prague. This city is surprisingly big, so be sure to give yourself enough time to explore. Plus, you have to take a day trip to the countryside to visit Cesky Krumlov.
One destination I loved in Spain was the region of Andalucia, and its charming city, Seville. It’s iconic and it’s stunning. From cathedrals to palaces right in the heart of the center, I loved how much you can experience here in a few days.
Seville Travel Guide