Autumn leaves around the world
With trees all across the northern hemisphere putting on a stunning natural display at this time of year as their leaves change colour, now is an excellent time to head off into the great outdoors and soak up some health and happiness. There's a growing body of research that shows how spending time in nature benefits our wellbeing. With that in mind, we’ve selected these three top locations for you to witness some incredibly colourful autumn scenes.
Photo credit colourbox.de
Kyoto Botanical Gardens, Japan
Japan is famous for its cherry blossom season, but autumn in the Kyoto Botanical Gardens is every bit as spectacular. The Acers, with their distinctive five-fingered leaves, seem to set the gardens ablaze as they turn every shade from ochre to umber. For the more contemplative traveller, there is The Philosopher’s Path, which wends its way through the gardens and links together many temples situated throughout the site. The gardens are organised into different areas, many of which focus on particular types of plant such as peonies cherry trees. However, for a bamboo forest bathing experience, the Arashiyama forest is a must. Arashiyama is a few kilometres from the Botanical Gardens and is home to monkeys as well as an other-worldly expanse of bamboo, which turns a stunning shade of yellow at this time of year. When the autumn breezes cause the stalks to sway, they make a beautiful sound, creating a soothing, multi-sensory experience.
New England, USA
Possibly the most famous location to see autumn leaves – or ‘fall’ as it is otherwise known – is New England in the north east corner of the USA. New England is comprised of six states: Maine, Vermont, New Hampshire, Massachusetts, Connecticut, and Rhode Island. The fall begins in Maine, the most northerly state, and works its way southwards towards Rhode Island, the most southerly, as autumn progresses. As it does so, it turns the many forests in this part of the world a stunning variety of colours. There is a great deal of choice when it comes to selecting your ‘leaf peeping’ destination and one of the finest is in the centre of the region, The White Mountain National Forest. Situated in eastern New Hampshire and western Maine, it boasts an impressive range of terrain, from hardwood forests in the valleys and foothills, to rocky alpine peaks. There are activities for everyone here, from scenic driving, to hiking, nature watching, and fishing.
Photo credit: spotlight.it-notes.ru
Mullerthal Trail, Luxembourg
For somewhere a bit closer to home, there’s the lesser known gem in Luxembourg’s ‘Little Switzerland’ region. The Mullerthal Trail is comprised of three circular routes, which are each around 23 miles in length. This is quite some distance for even the most experienced and ardent walker, but bus stations and places to stay along all of the routes allow you to break up your journey. Route 1 and 3 are classed as medium difficulty, and whilst Route 2 is the most challenging, the reward is seeing the area’s most spectacular rock formations in addition to the autumn leaves. Route 1 circles around Luxembourg’s oldest town, Echternach, which is the best place to base yourself for this autumnal trip. Route 3 takes in the Schiessentümpelwaterfall and a number of historical sites, such as the ruins of the Heringen fort, so is perhaps the best for those seeking something more than a good walk amongst the autumn colours.
Photo credit: visiteurope.com
Closer to home
Of course, you don’t need to leave the British Isles to experience excellent autumn foliage and top up your wellbeing. For an amazing UK-based display of woodland colour, there are all these destinations to try: the New Forest in Hampshire, the Forest of Dean in the Midlands, the Wye Valley in Wales, the Lake District in the North East, the Galloway Forest Park in Scotland, and Killarney National Park in Ireland.
Since you’ll be getting in touch with nature, you’ll want some environmentally ethical luggage to carry your stuff, and we’ve got you covered with the Novation range from Eminent. These hard-sided suitcases are completely recyclable and, better still, all come with a 10% discount with the code GO10%. Ethical for the environment and your bank account. If you like your luggage easier to squish into a cabin, have a look at these Qubed suitcases, which all have 10% off or more too.