There’s something inherently romantic about fall. The colorful, changing leaves paint a warm backdrop, while the chilly weather inspires you to cuddle up with the one you love. And, for those reasons alone, it’s the perfect season for sneaking away on a weekend (or longer) getaway with your significant other.
Even more important than romance is the growth and learning you’ll experience by traveling together. Traveling can show you your love’s true colors and stand as a true test of compatibility; if you’ve been together for a while, traveling can help you reconnect and reignite that flame you had the first time you hit the road together.
Of course, you can’t reap any of those benefits until you decide where on earth you’re going. To make that process a little bit easier, we’ve put together the following list of eight places that are perfect for your next autumnal getaway.
1. Fall foliage road trip
It’s safe to say that everyone’s favorite fall activity is looking at nature’s canvas and shifting palette of fall colors. Leaves change from bright, healthy green to rich autumnal colors: maroon, fiery orange and goldenrod paint an entirely new picture – and one we never tire of seeing.
You can take full advantage of this gorgeous natural display by hopping in your car and finding the nearest destination known for their foliage. And, while couple’s trips are usually a great excuse to step out of your comfort zones, this one calls for a cozy bed and breakfast or rental property to make the warm autumnal experience complete. Book one once you’ve settled on your destination.
2. Mountain weekend
In a similar vein, you can make a point to head outdoors because, well, the outdoors are extra beautiful in fall. A trip up to your nearest mountain range for a weekend of camping, s’more-making and snuggling under the stars could be just what the doctor ordered: not only will you have a blast camping, but spending time outside has a wealth of health benefits including boosted energy and decreased stress levels.
This is especially important for couples who feel like stress is bringing their entire union down. Outside stress can play a part in the amount of strain on your relationship, so head outdoors to decompress.
Staycations are seriously underrated, especially when it comes to romance. There are two ways to do it: you can either check into a hotel in your hometown or hole up at home. Then, all you have to do is spend the entire weekend together.
You can schedule as many or as few activities as you like. You can play tourist in your town, head to the local spa or buy all the ingredients to cook fancy meals at home while you bask in each other’s presence; no matter how you do it, you’ll love the relaxing vibe and one-on-one time that a staycation provides.
No matter what you do, even switching up your regular date-night routine with a staycation will help you mix things up and break out of a routine, which is another great benefit of traveling as a pair.
On the opposite end of the spectrum from a staycation is a cruise. Cruise vacations typically require more than a weekend – or even a few days – but they also pamper you with all-inclusive entertainment, food, drinks and sightseeing from the comfort of a luxury ship. Saving up for a cruise is a great way for you and your significant other to work toward a common goal and reap the reward — love is a great reward, of course, but so is a luxury vacation.
Beyond the basics, there are plenty of ways a cruise vacation can be romantic. For one, you should carefully research the ship you’re on to find one that’s smaller and more intimate, rather than extra-large and party-centric. Look into the port cities and dining options, too, to make sure you can schedule private tours and candlelit dinners for you and your significant other to enjoy.
5. New York city
The city that never sleeps is particularly charming in fall. Gone are the soaring, stifling temperatures of summer; plus, an autumnal trip will likely help you avoid the cold, snowy winter weather, too.
A stroll through the changing leaves in Central Park will set the mood for your fall weekend in New York. Then, partake in the city’s best indoor activities: Broadway shows, incredible restaurants, shopping, museums and sports matches all await you on your fall getaway to NYC. With so much to do, a trip to New York will also teach you and your significant other to compromise in order to make an itinerary that suits you both, which is a great lesson to learn.
6. Beach trip
Summer is certainly a more popular time to hit the beach, which is why fall is the perfect time to head off on a romantic coastal getaway. For one thing, most beach towns are empty by the time fall rolls around, which means you’d have lots of privacy, peace and quiet on your trip. It’s a great place to go if you feel busy or disconnected from your love — with little distraction, you’ll rekindle the flame easily.
Brisk walks on the beach with your love will always start your day on the right foot, whether you’re at the coast in the heat of summer or in the middle of autumn. Spend your days shopping at local boutiques and antique shops, exploring nature reserves and parks, climbing lighthouses… whatever you wouldn’t do if you were too busy lounging in the summer sun.
7. Winery weekend
Cracking open a bottle of wine and sharing it with your significant other is romantic all on its own. But doing so with a scenic winery as your backdrop – and doing so all weekend long – will make for a memorable getaway in fall and beyond.
You can choose a romantic tour through Sonoma and Napa, perhaps the most well-known wine country in the United States. Or, find another winery-centric area, book a hotel, plan your inter-winery transit and get ready to clink your glass. This might be a great time for a surprise to show you’re always paying attention to what your love says and does: choose wineries that serve his or her favorite pour so they’ll drink blissfully all weekend long.
8. New England
Finally, if there’s one place known as a perfect fall destination, it’s New England. From quaint coastal cities, to lush national parks, to Halloween-centric towns where witches once went on trial, you can fill an entire week with unforgettable activities in the Northeast. A great way to see it all is to fly in and out of Boston, rent a car and drive up and down the coast to see everything that’s fall-centric, historical, outdoorsy and romantic along the way.
Driving together is always a great bonding — or learning — experience, so a road trip should be on every couple’s to-do list, especially if you live without a car normally. Does your love have any behind-the-wheel habits or road rules you should know about? Find out while on your next vacay.
Where will your fall getaway take you? These are only eight of the many, many places that you can go. The best news of all is that no matter where you end up going, you can rest assured it’ll be just what you want: one-on-one time to focus on the one you love and create memories together that’ll last a lifetime.