With Labor Day come and gone (it always happens so fast, doesn't it?) we can't help but feel those end-of-summer blues. But just because school's back in session, that doesn't mean the rest of us can't jet off to enjoy those last fleeting warm days. Choose your location wisely, and you could avoid high-season crowds and overpriced hotels, all while soaking in those late summer days. Below are six of our favorite destinations, near and far-flung, that are ripe for September escapes.
In foggy, chilly San Francisco, you can rely on September to offer some of the warmest, sunniest days in the Bay area. Many tourists don't realize that the fall weather here is more beautiful than summer! Plus, you can enjoy the harvest season at neighboring wine regions like Sonoma, Napa, and the Russian River Valley.
It's no secret that the saturated hues of Northeastern foliage this time of year is breathtaking. But on your travels north this year, head to the beach towns. Maine's Kennebunkport and Bar Harbor and Cape Cod's Nantucket and Martha's Vineyard might have a slight chill in the air on some days, but you'll have the beaches all to yourself and a bevy of local farm stands brimming with harvest produce.
In summer, European travelers jettison south to the Amalfi Coast, Greek Isles, and French Riviera, but if you can wait until September to enjoy the turquoise waters, you can enjoy the perfect beach whether without the throngs of vacationing Europeans.
September rests smack dab in between the wet and dry season, so visitors to East Africa enjoy milder temps without the sudden downpours. It's the perfect time to visit countries like Tanzania and Kenya to take in views of Mount Kilimanjaro and go on safari.
The summer heat has dissipated, making journeys to Japan and China ideal in September. Get your fill of city life in Tokyo or Shanghai, then take in the eons of history in Kyoto or the Forbidden City, respectively.
The Deep South cools off a bit on fall evenings, making September just the month to explore them. The hip city of Austin boasts the Austin City Limits Music Festival as well as a burgeoning culinary scene. Southwestern states offer their fair share of September festivals and cooler nights, too—in New Mexico alone, you can hit the Santa Fe Wine and Chile Fiesta or the Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta.