Whether you’re looking forward to all the fall festivities or the slightest thought of a chill makes you want to go into full-on hibernation mode, one thing’s for certain: October is packed with plenty to do, and that extends to travel experiences both near and far. There's the end of harvest and the start of Dia de Los Muertos, or “Day of the Dead,” celebrations that make Halloween look like child’s play in Mexico, while Oktoberfest pretty much takes over the rest of the world. This month’s destinations are particularly great for budget travelers looking to take advantage of the post-lockdown, restart travel deals available, coupled with further deals that low season will bring—which mean an overall decline in airfare and lodging prices. Here are 15 of the best places to visit this October.

RELATED: The 25 Best Fall Festivals to Experience Across the U.S.

best places to travel in october new york
© Marco Bottigelli/Getty Images

1. NEW YORK, NY

If you haven’t heard, New York is back, baby! The city is wide open, and it seems like outdoor dining is here to stay, which means that the city is even more cosmopolitan and European in vibe than you’ve likely experienced on a past visit.

Some of our favorites for a classy night out on the town include Sola Pasta Bar, and yep, you totally read that right. The “pasta bar” is packed with delicious favorites, like a yummy squid ink pasta, crowd-pleasing cacio e pepe, and spaghetti alle vongole, as well as a take on the classic Aperol Spritz that uses Italicus bergamot flavored liqueur. Other outdoor stunners include Match 65 Brasserie, which boasts a melt-in-your-mouth steak tartare; the fancy pants, dreamy floral garden display at Scarpetta; and, the charming neighborhood feels of The Leroy House, with its tables and outdoor dining structure positioned on a popular stretch of the West Village’s Hudson Street. Pro tip: If it’s on the menu, get the burrata.

New restaurants, grub spots, and bars are also starting to open up as a result of loosened restrictions and return to normal life. Great Jones Distilling Co. is one Big Apple opening of note, as it’s Manhattan's first and only legal whiskey distillery since prohibition, which is pretty cool if you ask us. A menu of whiskey cocktails, tastings and gourmet bites are what guests can expect to find when they visit, all housed inside a beautiful and expansive building with enchanting retro design and located in one of “The City’s” hippest neighborhoods, NoHo.

Halloween is also sure to be a blast in late October, especially since 2020 was such a dud. New York City’s legendary Halloween parade is back on, and it’s likely to draw a pretty epic crowd this year and some of the wildest, most innovative costumes you’ve ever seen. The best part? Recent KAYAK data suggests that average airfare to NYC is just $235 in October*.

Where to stay: The Algonquin has everything, from a snazzy bar to a legend of ghosts to a hotel cat. The hotel was built in 1902 and recently underwent a renovation and now features a stunning, updated lobby. It’s long been a place business folks and creative types would hunker down in Midtown to take a meeting and get some work done—and for guests, it will make you feel like you’re hanging out in the world’s most luxurious living room.

Opening just in time for an October visit, Pendry Manhattan West will be the first New York City outpost for the rapidly expanding Pendry Hotels & Resorts, a newcomer favorite with trendy luxe properties already operating in Baltimore, Los Angeles and Chicago.

best places to travel in october st lucia
Courtesy of Hotel Chocolat

2. ST. LUCIA

Just a hop, skip and jump from many points on the Eastern seaboard, and with flights on JetBlue as low as $155 each way this month, you can be sipping a rum punch on white sand beaches in no time. St. Lucia’s tourism is quickly bouncing back with travelers post-lockdown, especially honeymooners who put their big trip on hold. The island’s charms center on gorgeous mountaintop vistas of the Pitons, gorgeous aqua blue/green waters, and warm hospitality all around.

One of our favorite activities on St. Lucia is the drive-in volcano, La Soufriere. It’s here where you have the rare ability to see the actual crater of the volcano since it imploded in on itself during a past eruption.

While this island can be all about relaxing, we'd suggest not sleeping on a stop at the Diamond Falls Botanical Gardens or the colorful Immaculate Conception Church, either. Travelers can also experience a detoxifying sulphuric mud bath (a stone’s throw from La Soufriere) which will leave the skin milky and hydrated. Let a guide paint your body with mud in splatters, handprints, patterns, shapes and even animal figures. It’s super cheap to experience, and the photos are Insta gold.

Where to stay: Rabot Hotel from Hotel Chocolat’s infinity pool also makes it popular for the ‘Gram, and frequented by influencers and non-influencers alike for one-of-a-kind photos with direct views over Petit Piton. But this place isn’t all about looks, either. The hotel boasts a large menu of chocolate-infused, creative cuisine and the eco-style rooms are surrounded by a property that’s a beautiful working cacao farm. As a treat for guests, you can experience a chocolate making class on site.

best places to travel in october miami
Alexander Spatari/Getty Images

3. MIAMI, FL

Miami—like Paris, New York, and London—is always a good idea, but especially so when you consider the savings in the 305 and all the goings on this month. KAYAK data reveals prices are down 12 percent compared to same dates in 2019, and there’s deals to be had on private transfers, boat rides and sunset cruises as an added bonus.

A Ricky Martin x Enrique Iglesias concert is scheduled to blow through MIA on October 22, Columbus Day Weekend will see the return of Miami’s lively cultural experience Carnival, and there is even a wild cruise dedicated to KISS (the band!), should that be your cup of tea.

Speaking of cruises, Virgin Voyages, the new cruise line that’s waited basically the entire pandemic to set sail, will finally get moving out of Miami this October. This means travelers can make a Miami/Bahamas combo trip on this exciting new vessel a reality, and there are even some pretty sweet deals and incentives for guests who sail within 2021.

Virgin Voyages ships will leave from Terminal V into Miami’s waterway, with the glittering skyline at the backdrop. On board the gorgeous, yacht-inspired Scarlet Lady, sailors will find high design elements blanketed in Virgin’s signature red, not to mention more than 20 eateries—some from Michelin starred chefs—plus an impressive spa and even guest quarters and “seabeds” that can be rearranged to maximize space.

Where to stay: Located a few blocks away from the beach in a more secluded, neighborhood-y part of South Beach, the KAYAK Miami Beach is a new kid on the scene, and possesses a plunge pool and rooftop terrace, plus a delicious canal-side, Middle Eastern restaurant right on site. Mixing retro details with contemporary decor, the rooms are comfy and just the right price, with opening rates hovering around $200 per night in October, as of press time.

best places to travel in october las vegas
Westend61/Getty Images

4. LAS VEGAS, NV

The casinos are now open, and they’ve got some mega deals for those willing to gamble. There are also plenty of spectacular shows to see. Ray Romano and David Spade will be bringing the laughs on October 2 at the Mirage Theater, and after a cooped up year, the return of Magic Mike Live will light your libido on fire. (Yes, we really just said that.)

In October, FlyOver—an immersive flight ride—will officially open on the Las Vegas Strip right across from Park MGM. During your flight, you’ll get to experience a multi-sensory journey in 8K video through popular destinations across the American West. In the most Vegas turn of events ever, that means you can see all the glittering natural beauties our country calls home from the comfort of a chair—including the volcanic peaks of Oregon’s Cascade Volcanic Arc and the valleys of the Grand Canyon, plus plenty of other attractions in California, Montana, Colorado, Wyoming and beyond.

Where to stay: Nomad Las Vegas is our go-to in Sin City because the vibe is just right. It’s got access to all the best of Vegas but feels like its own little hideaway for when you just need to chill. When it comes to decor and design, this sophisticated Vegas outpost also manages to blend the Old World with the new quite well. Our favorite thing to do here is spend the day hiding away at one of their pools and cabanas, or heading downstairs from the room to sample the delights at their many restaurants, which include both the crowd-pleasing Nomad Restaurant and Bar.

best places to travel in october instabul
Anton Petrus/Getty Images

5. ISTANBUL, TURKEY

“For international travelers, Turkey may be one of the best places to travel in October 2021. The country is open to all Americans, and no quarantine or testing is required for vaccinated visitors. Others can enter with a negative PCR or Antigen test,” says David Leiter of The World Travel Guy.

One of Istanbul’s major tourist attractions is The Hagia Sophia, a symbol of the Byzantine and Ottoman Empires, and today a museum housed in a domed mosque where beautiful Biblical scenes are depicted. Leiter notes that October is a great month to visit Turkey because of the cooler weather and fall foliage. Restaurants, parks and markets are open, making it the perfect time of year for a lovely stroll around Cianger (the city’s trendy nabe) or along ​​Istiklal Caddesi—the main artery bursting with shops and restaurants.

Other points of interest in the place where Eastern and Western cultures collide include the Grand Bazaar, the Blue Mosque, Galata Tower and the Basilica Cistern. If you’re big on Mediterranean food and BBQ (and who isn’t), this is the town for you, especially at crowd-pleasing favorites with plenty of kebab options, like Last Ottomon Cafe & Restaurant, Bitlisi, Siva Restaurant and the super affordable and tasty Hidden Garden.

Where to stay: Prices in October are low right now, with travelers able to take advantage of deals at the 5-star Hagia Sofia Mansions for just $132 per night. Steps from the iconic tourist site, the hotel is housed in a former wooden mansion and has plush rooms to pamper yourself in, with modern Turkish decor and patterns, plus beautiful bathrooms made up of mosaic tiled floors. Some rooms even boast claw-foot bathtubs. The hotel is also home to a beautiful hammam, and a well-decorated outdoor courtyard, filled with trees, a fountain and plenty of places to dine and relax.

The contemporary and comfortable Radisson Blu Hotel Istanbul Ottomare is another steal this month, with rooms as low as $69 per night, as of press time. The hotel is popular for its lovely resort style, outdoor pool and large indoor pool; you can also opt for rooms here with private balconies or outdoor private gardens, and many rooms have gorgeous views over the Sea of Marmara.

best places to travel in october orlando
Courtesy of Visit Orlando

6. ORLANDO, FL

Orlando is divine in the fall, not least because the prices are cheaper. It’s still hot enough to hit the pool (or the lake, or even the manufactured beach at some of the top water parks), and we all know by now that Disney World is high levels of fun even when you’re an adult.

Case in point: On October 29 to 30, the Walt Disney World Swan and Dolphin Food & Wine Classic will give guests the chance to sample hundreds of food and beverages in a street festival setting. Through the end of October, Universal Orlando Resort will also be hosting its beloved Halloween Horror Nights, featuring haunted houses, scare zones, creepy characters and all-new mazes that deliver family-friendly thrills.

Visit this October and you can also partake in a Black Business Weekend at the Marriott Orlando Downtown, a LGBTQIA weekend called “Girls in Wonderland” (with access to pool parties, comedy and mixers for singles) and a wedding expo for those in the marriage market.

Where to stay: The Fountains at Champions Gate are refined townhomes hidden away from the crowds in an exclusive gated resort, and offer families plenty of room to spread out, not to mention amenities like a pool, jet spa, full kitchens, walk-in showers with waterfall shower heads and private patios for lots of post-Parks grilling. Rooms in October could be found for $154 per night, too.

best places to travel in october lisbon
Carol Yepes/Getty Images

7. LISBON, PORTUGAL

The best time to visit Lisbon is in October, when the summer crowds start to thin and the temperatures hover around 85 degrees. It’s also going to be a particularly cheap time to visit, with the summer vacationers long gone at this point, and KAYAK’s data suggesting this is *the destination* to score a deal in, with prices down 27 percent compared to the same dates in 2019. Portugal is already a more bargain-friendly way to visit Europe, and rates on top hotels are too good to pass up—just see below.

Some top attractions in Lisbon include the mind-blowing aquarium Oceanário de Lisboa, the adorable, picture-perfect neighborhoods of Alfama and Barrio Alto, and the gothic architecture and cloisters of Mosteiro dos Jeronimos. You can see most of it by foot or by the city’s glorious trams, some of which offer spectacular hilltop vistas. Our favorite way to see Lisbon is by grabbing a pastéis de nata (a local custard tart) and taking the Route 28 tram through some super narrow city streets until you disembark at Portas do Sol. With a birds eye view over the city and sea, it’s about as dreamy as it gets. The resort town of Cascais is also an easy 40-minute day trip from Lisbon, and may provide you one last jaunt at the beach before it starts to feel too chilly.

Where to stay: Rates at the trendy H10 Duque Loulé, which has a great rooftop terrace, are $155 in October; Hotel White Lisboa’s pool might not be heated, but you can still stay for $100 or under as of press time; the budget-friendly Lisbon Garden Boutique Guest House is even cheaper, with rates at $65 per night. Even the 5-star stunner, The One Palácio da Anunciada, has rooms available under $200 per night for all of October. Really, do you need a better incentive?

best places to travel in october punta cana
© Marco Bottigelli/Getty Images

8. PUNTA CANA, DOMINICAN REPUBLIC

Favored for clear, turquoise Caribbean water, Punta Cana is the ideal spot for a beach vacation — ya know, after beach season ends. According to data from travel search engine KAYAK, searches for Punta Cana* are up by 137 percent compared to the same dates in 2019, so you also might want to consider booking now rather than finding yourself in a SOLD OUT situation at your favorite all-inclusive.

In October, high temps are around 87 degrees, rarely falling below 84 degrees. It’s also the end of the wet season, meaning your chances of rain are slimmer than traveling over summer months, so that extra PTO you have saved up over the past year can finally be put to good use. In October, there’s a long weekend dedicated to salsa and bachata dance, a major Halloween bash at the gorgeous and splurge-worthy Breathless Resort & Spa and a golf weekend including a celebrity Pro Am.

Where to stay: Dreams Macao Beach Punta Cana features hundreds of luxury suites, a water park for the kids and an outdoor pool and rooftop dining for the adults.

The rooms are modern, sleek and sophisticated, and many of them offer ocean views. If you book ahead of time, you might even be able to snag one of their swim-out suites—but either way you’ll be getting a deal here, with Expedia showing 50 percent off pricing and rates hovering below $300 per night at press time.

best places to travel in october scottsdale
Thomas Roche/Getty Images

9. SCOTTSDALE, AZ

Escape to the good life in this upscale enclave, a city part of the larger Phoenix metro area that very much has its own distinct identity. Beyond the stunning landscapes and desert beauty, there’s plenty of luxe spas, golf courses and other recreational activities, not to mention good grub that lures travelers here year-round.

But come October, when the weather is beyond pleasant at 86 degrees, there are even more reasons to visit, including Arizona’s Taco Festival. Now in its 11th year, you’re bound to fall in love with at least a few of the over 50 tacos from different restaurants, chefs and food trucks. Scottsdale is also home to a free concert series that runs each week into October and features local bands and musicians, plus an art walk featuring works from over 30 galleries, a spooky-themed hot air balloon festival and an Oktoberfest celebration housed on a nearby train through the Verde Canyon. An afternoon spent at Butterfly Wonderland, home to thousands of species of butterflies and where you might be lucky enough to have one land directly on you, is another favorite activity of visitors.

Where to stay: Pool lovers will appreciate primo suntanning weather at Sonoran Landing Pool, the adults-only pool located at The Fairmont Princess. For families, there's also the 6,000 sq. ft. Sonoran Splash Pool with not one but two 200-foot twisting water slides. Did we mention there’s also a Princess Pool—overlooking lagoons and a golf course—and a rooftop pool, to boot?

Another gem in Scottsdale: This comfortable home offered by Vacasa, with a private pool, hot tub, outdoor kitchen and grill, game tables and space for nine to make it incredibly budget-friendly for you and your crew.

best places to travel in october aspen1
Aspen Snow Mass

10. ASPEN, CO

In the know travelers seek out Aspen in October, generally known as “off-season” or “mud-season”. The fall is quickly becoming a more popular season to visit the mountain paradise as the weather is gorgeous, trees and leaves are changing colors and the prices are affordable compared to peak winter and summer months.

Rent an E-bike from Four Mountain Sports and cruise around town or take the bike on the 20-mile round trip pedal up to the Maroon Bells, one of the most popular destinations in the entire country. The Roaring Fork Valley (home to Aspen and Snowmass) was just awarded a Gold Level Ride Center from the International Mountain Bike Association, meaning there are plenty of other roads and trails to check out if you’re big into mountain biking. Visitors to Aspen this time of year are also fond of The Rim Trail and the Ute Trail. Neighboring Snowmass has 90+ miles of hiking trails, and 2.8 million acres of adjacent wilderness to be explored, providing accessible and scenic hiking for any and all abilities.

And after a long day out on the trails, there’s lots to do in town, too. A swirl around Aspen’s impressive art museum is never a bad idea, as is a swirl around the handsome lobby bar at Hotel Jerome. Dinner at BOSQ for contemporary American fare is a highlight for most visitors to Aspen, as is a trip to Silverpeak Apothecary—a great dispensary with knowledgeable staff if you happen to be into cannabis tourism (yep, it’s legal here).

Where to stay: Aspen has lots of luxury hotels and condo options to home share, but one of our favorites that’s not crazy expensive is the W Aspen—we even found rates as low as $299 for select dates in October.

One look at the rooftop lounge and pool area, plus the contemporary cool digs—there’s even a room with a circular bed—and you’ll see why. Outdoor fire pits galore, plus an outdoor hot tub and indoor shuffleboard table are further incentives to make it your home away from home in this lovely little town.

best places to travel in october yuntville
COURTESY OF CHANDON

11. YOUNTVILLE, CALIFORNIA

No matter what time of year you go, seeing Napa is quite the experience, but catching it in October—at the tail end of harvest, when grapes at many of the vineyards that make your favorite wines are being picked—is truly something else. Our perfect day in Napa in this season involves spending a sunny afternoon picnicking on the lawn of Domaine Chandon, the house that produces some of Napa’s best bubbly. (If you need a recco on which California Sparkling Wines to drink while there, our money would be on the Rosé Brut, Blanc de Blancs, and Etoile offerings). Chandon offers a plethora of tastings—both solo and guided—along with mixology classes, private cabanas on the lawn, and tree-covered, al fresco dining spots to soak in the sun as you enjoy the healthy, bright California cuisine coming from the kitchen. Menu items include charcuterie, hummus and crudités, cheese plates, seasonal sandwiches, and more.

The charming town of Yountville, steps from the Chandon property, is Napa’s crown jewel, and a Disneyland of food and wine. Within walkable distance, you’ll find everything from fine restaurants and tasting rooms to a spa and salon where you can get primped with a glass of vino in hand.

Where to stay: October means pool and hot tub time in Napa is a total possibility, and at Hotel Villagio, you’ll want to carve out a little chunk of time in between wine tasting to do so in the massive, 40-foot heated outdoor pool and hot tub. The comfortable guest rooms, which feature large soaking tubs accompanied by Champagne buckets so you can soak and sip, are built in a village style among lush greenery and gardens—meaning they feel private even though they’re just steps from everything in Yountville. The hotel also offers complimentary bicycles or rides in its adorable Moke vehicle as an alternative way of getting around.

best places to travel in october cancun
THEPALMER/GETTY IMAGES

12. CANCUN, MEXICO

Dirt-cheap fares put the ’Cun at the top of our list this month when “rainy season” means you may see a cloud or two during the day. What that also means: Plenty of time still to enjoy the pool (and its swim-up bar), jet skiing or parasailing along the coast or spending a rather wild night out at one of Cancun’s many popular nightclubs. Whether it’s your first time or one of your favorite fly-in-for-the-weekend spots, it’s never a bad idea to organize a tour or simply hire a taxi for the day to take advantage of the region's incredible cenotes—natural sinkholes formed by a collapse of limestone that reveal gorgeous aquamarine water ripe for jumping and swimming in. During October, especially toward the end of the month, many resorts offer Day of the Dead cultural experiences. One of note and authenticity is the annual Day of the Dead festival, Festival of Life and Death, that happens in Xcaret Park, roughly a 75-minute drive from Cancun. It features concerts, ofrendas (or paper flower) making activities, and even access to Mayan healers, plus a whole lot of food.

Speaking of eats, back in Cancun, we recommend La Destileria and Tacun for authentic grub, and the immersive video dining experience—where the table you sit at is a giant video screen that is paired to take you through a multi-sensory, multi-course meal celebrating Mexican food—at La Joya. And while there are plenty of yummy Mexican bites to be had, when you’ve officially had your fill of chips and guac, consider splurging on Le Basilic, one of Cancun’s most celebrated French fine dining spots.

Where to stay: The Grand at Moon Palace Cancun is a luxurious, sleek, contemporary wonder filled with actually delicious all-inclusive food options (and let’s face it, that’s not always the case at all-inclusive resorts). It’s also home to Awe Spa, which as its name suggests, will leave you in complete awe (and bliss, too). One of Cancun’s finest modern spas, it boasts a serious aqua therapy circuit, steam rooms, and our favorite—the heated stone beds—plus a robust spa menu offering pretty much any treatment you can dream of to induce peak relaxation.

best places to travel in october new jersey
THE GEORGE HOTEL

13. MONTCLAIR, NEW JERSEY

Jersey is often the butt of a lot of jokes in the U.S., but the Garden State has some truly beautiful landscapes, seaside communities, mountainous enclaves and charming towns. One said town, Montclair is located about 45 minutes west by car from New York City and is an idyllic autumn destination if you’re looking for leaf-peeping opportunities and that small-town-meets-big-city charm. Filled with ex-Brooklynite families and lots of historical charm, this trendy community is packed with lots of artsy and cultural activities, like an afternoon at Montclair Art Museum. Set to reopen in September, it houses an outstanding collection of Native American art and revolving exhibits. The nearby Van Vleck House & Gardens was built as a country estate for a prominent Brooklyn family in 1868, and seeing the Italian-style villa and its lush gardens—which feature a beehive and butterfly garden—can easily fill up an afternoon in town. The locals in Montclair are spoiled when it comes to food from distinguished chefs. It’s easily one of NJ’s biggest foodie destinations, with dining options Allegory, Turtle + the Wolf, Raymond’s, Laboratorio Kitchen and Faubourg Restaurant and Bar of note. It’s also home to Montclair Brewing Co., where craft beers are always being changed up so you can discover something new. At night, after the brisk fall air starts to turn chilly, you’ll want to consider checking out what’s on the marquee at the Wellmont Theater, Montclair’s entertainment venue where you can catch everything from comedy acts and live music to theater and drag shows.

Where to Stay: If you can snag a room at The George, the hotel project makeup mogul Bobbi Brown opened alongside her husband, you should. The design-focused hotel is housed in a totally transformed, stately early 1900s home and is as chic as it is comfortable for guests. Featured products at The George are all curated from Bobbi’s favorite brands, including EO Products for the spa-like bathrooms, and other little luxuries like Theramu CDB oils, Harney & Sons teas, and even Casper beds for each of the guest rooms and suites.

Another great option in town can be found at the new MC Hotel, where they take art seriously, featuring local artists on the walls of its guest rooms and common spaces, all crafted together to make you feel as though you’re staying in an art gallery for the night. Clean lines and a neutral palette paired with textured carpets and natural wood details make for contemporary guest rooms, many with views of the surrounding hills, mountains and parks.

best places to travel in october vancouver
PGIAM/GETTY IMAGES

14. VANCOUVER, CANADA

There’s so much to love about Vancouver that you’ll likely need to plan a return trip as soon as you board the plane home. And considering that Canada’s borders have just reopened to fully vaccinated American travelers, there are deals available and a whole lot of support we can give one of their brightest cities. A healthy mix of cosmopolitan life surrounded by lots of British Columbia’s natural splendors, it may sound a bit cliché, but this place truly has something for everyone. Start your day downtown, cruising through Vancouver’s historic streets of Gastown, now one of the city’s trendiest neighborhoods. Meanwhile, the lively Robson St. corridor is also packed with restaurants and shops worthy of exploring—and doubles as the home of “Terminal City” gay nightlife. Take a walk around Stanley Park and Jericho Beach to enjoy the incredible mountains that seem to surround the city at every angle, or get a little adventurous by walking across the Capilano, a 400-plus-foot suspension bridge among the trees that you have to see to believe. Vancouver also boasts lots of great clothing shops and one of the country’s finest is Holt Renfrew. Think of it like the Saks of Canada. Whether you’re there to blow the down payment you’ve been saving for a house or are just window-shopping in awe, it’s a beautiful department store that’s worthy of your time.

Where to stay: You can go totally glam at the chic Rosewood Hotel Georgia, built in a restored 1920s building—where the Deluxe Rooms feature sexy soaking tubs that will be hard to leave. Or stay on the cheap at Sonder at Revival. This next-generation brand is changing the game when it comes to redefining guest experiences and offering up comfy, contemporary digs in hotels and apartment stays in some of the most sought-after cities, and their sparkling clean Vancouver property is very highly rated. When we looked, rates were hovering around $137 a night for both midweek and select weekends.

best places to travel in october london
EXTRAVAGANTNI/GETTY IMAGES

15. LONDON, UNITED KINGDOM

Did The Crown’s fourth season have you jonesing for a trip to Jolly Old London Town, ya know, as soon as the U.K. reopened its borders to vaccinated Americans? In this cosmopolitan city, even if you went and never saw the Tate Modern, St. Paul’s Cathedral, Buckingham Palace, London Bridge, or bothered to take a ride on The London Eye, you’d still feel overwhelmed with things to do. We’d recommend doing all of the mentioned, then taking a stroll through the fashionable Covent Garden and Soho neighborhoods, mingling among some of the best hipster culture Europe has in Shoreditch, and going on an Ab Fab-esque shopping spree in Knightsbridge.

And we haven’t even mentioned the premiere part of traveling here in October, besides the light leather jacket-appropriate weather: London Cocktail Month. A pass here—roughly $20 or less—gets you access to the U.K.’s biggest cocktail festival. We’re talking pop-up bars, immersive cocktail-making experiences, street food and more—basically, lots of vehicles to get a cocktail or good grub in your hands. If you’d prefer a more sophisticated nightcap, splurge on a night at Scarfes Bar at the Rosewood; the sophisticated, art-filled ambiance complete with live singers and piano players and cocktails inspired by some of your favorite musical acts will not disappoint.

And if you needed one more reason to consider London this month, besides cozy fall walks, you can consider attending one of the many London Film Festival events happening October 2 to 13. Screenings are of course on the agenda, as are talkbacks, DJ parties and even a few crash-worthy red carpet galas.

Where to stay: Great value can be found at The Montcalm at The Brewery London City, with weekend rates well under $175 a night at press time. This former working brewery turned handsome-hotel is located within walking or tube distance to everything London offers, and features a mix of traditional and contemporary decor in its well-sized guest rooms. Those with disposable income will want to look into Bankside this month, a posh, modern hotel that opened on the River Thames last year and doubles as an incubator for up-and-coming artists. Resting your head at this design-focused property means being surrounded by mid-century works, antiques, ceramics and pottery, lots of innovative design, and even tiles depicting scenes from the surrounding South London neighborhood.

*Methodology: Searches on KAYAK US site 7/21/21 - 7/27/21, with travel dates 9/15/21 - 11/15/21.

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