A fall staycation is about rediscovering your home city or a new destination not too far away. Vacations involves more time and money, while staycations are spent rediscovering destinations closer to home.

From attending a concert or festival, relaxing inside a resort or getting reacquainted with the outdoors, there’s no wrong or right way to experience the optimal staycation. One good thing about planning a staycation in the fall is the season comes right after the busy summer, allowing you to enjoy all the nostalgia in your city without the crowds. As you plan a fall staycation, consider activities involving leaf peeping, wineries and visiting pumpkin patches.

Here are some of the best places to plan a fall staycation.

Big Sur, California

Fall is one of the best times to visit California’s Central Coast Area. Big Sur is a destination everyone should see at least once because the region’s beautiful landscape is unforgettable. It is a national treasure because people travel from all over to witness the world’s most stunning coastlines up close.

The crowds dwindle in the fall, and the migratory humpback whales may make a special appearance to feed in Monterey Bay. You don’t need much to enjoy your staycation in Big Sur. Pick a relaxing place, and don’t forget to pack a good camera to reminisce when you’re back home.

Acadia National Park

Another American gem to explore for a fall staycation is Acadia National Park. It is one of the best places for those who plan to reconnect with nature during their staycation. The highlight of visiting Acadia National Park after the summer season is indulging in fall foliage, which generally peaks between Oct. 13 and Oct. 22.

Daytime temperatures are still in the mid-60s through the end of October. You will find fewer distractions with fewer tourists compared to the summer season. The accommodations here are another benefit when looking for the perfect staycation destination. There are hotels along the oceanside for people interested in a staycation with beautiful views.

Bluenose Inn & Spa is a luxury resort with an indoor heated pool, steam room and spa. There is also an array of cottages and cabins for people who want intimate or glamping experiences or for those who want to mix up their staycation with different experiences.

Chicago, Illinois

Everyone dotes on how amazing summertime in Chicago is, but people rarely excite the fall. While it gets cooler, it is still fun. 

Similar to other popular cities, it’s a great time to visit because there are fewer people in the city. Rooftops are still open, and visitors can indulge in its iconic food scene, as the leaves change on trees.

Illinois is America’s top pumpkin producer, so visit a pumpkin patch. Johansen Farms has more than 25,000 pumpkins on its farms, hayrides and more.

Asheville, North Carolina

Leaf peepers will love Ashville’s beautiful landscape during the fall, as it is home to the longest fall color seasons in the nation. In addition to exploring nature, there’s a lot to do among the Blue Ridge Mountains. Stop at the Blue Ridge Parkway or the other scenic byways to take in the beautiful views.

If you’re looking for adventure, try ziplining with Navitat Canopy Adventures or head on a walk with an expert from Asheville’s African-American History Tours. Another activity on your to-do list in Asheville is visiting the various wineries, including Marked Tree Asheville, Biltmore Estate Winery and Plēb Urban Winery.

Washington, D.C.

There’s no cozier place than the nation’s capital in the fall. The weather is beautiful, and the waterfronts throughout the DMV are peaceful places to hang around.

Washington, D.C., offers many things to do and see in the fall. Museums are free to explore, and the National Mall, where many museums are located, becomes decorated with the vibrant hues of autumn.

Fall festivals occur throughout various communities across the DMV and the D.C. Wine Fest! Fall Edition is a popular event offering people specially curated wines.

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