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Wednesday, September 12, 2012

There’s a Chill in the Air 9.12.12

I woke up this morning and my house was freezing. Even the dog was reluctant to come out from under the covers. Then I went to my car to drive to work and I could see my breath and had to use my heater to defrost my windows. I don’t like it at all, but I will have to admit pretty soon that Fall is on its way. I’m sad, because it took until the middle of July for Portland to get real Summer weather and now it’s over so quickly, or at least it isn’t warm when the sun goes down.
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There is one thing good that comes with Fall, besides piles of golden leaves and pumpkin picking, and that’s oodles of vacation deals. 75% of travelers already went in Summer, so now that the weather is cooling off, airfares, cruise costs and hotel rates are dropping to entice people out of their houses and to a variety of destinations. So, where can you get some of the best deals for October and November travels?
Photos of Cloud Gate, Chicago
This photo of Cloud Gate is courtesy of TripAdvisor

Chicago, Illinois – Get yourself a CityPASS to gain entry to Chicago’s 5 best attractions: Shedd Aquarium, The Field Musem, Skydeck Chicago, John Hancock Observatory or Museum of Science and Industry and Adler Planetarium or Art Institute of Chicago. Go take your picture in front of the giant silver bean and don’t forget to pack a warm coat for those windy Chicago days and nights.
Rhode Island – Fun for the whole family awaits you in this New England state. If you love the outdoors, you can be busy for weeks hiking, boating, fishing, golfing, biking, paddling, bird watching, drinking wine and visiting farms and gardens. If that doesn’t sound all that appealing to you, there are spas, museums, scenic tours, sports and art galore to keep you all entertained.

Photos of Denali State Park, Alaska

This photo of Denali State Park is courtesy of TripAdvisor

Denali, Alaska – Another great place to travel for outdoor enthusiasts. The national park has wildlife galore, beautiful scenery and the Junior Ranger program to get kids involved, having fun and secretly learning!
Vermont – It may be small and maybe all you know about it is people go there and Connecticut to watch the leaves turn, but there is so much to do in this state. Winter sports abound here, but what about when there isn’t snow? So much! Apple festivals, Halloween celebrations, corn mazes, scenic drives, plus museums, food artisans – cheese, sugar, beer and wine! – fairs, shopping and more.

Hawaii – Hawaii is usually on everyone’s travel wish list, but fall is their low season, which means fewer crowds at the beach and everywhere else! I’ve also seen super cheap airfare – starting around $300 – and hotel rates as low as $78 per night. Plus, if you’re looking for something truly unique to do, the Ironman Triathlon finals competition happens in Kailua Kona in November. Need more ideas? Here are ways to stretch your dollar in Honolulu.
Washington DC – There are so many things to do in Washington, D.C. Museums, parks, the National Mall. Here’s a previous post on how to spend 48 hours in the capital and do it on a budget!

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Bangladesh – Why yes, there are foreign countries on this list! Hopping nightlife, lovely beaches (where you can lay out, snorkel, swim or scuba dive), huge bazaars and interesting new food come together to create a unique vacation experience that will fit into whatever budget you have.
Nicaragua – Beaches surrounded with forests? You’ll find it here. As well as amazing restaurants, food tours, great surfing, sea turtles laying their eggs, island-hopping, historical architecture, hiking, petroglyph tours, ziplining and open-air markets. All this in beautiful landscapes, full of lovely people and affordable prices? Why aren’t you planning this trip already?!

Photos of Santa Fe Balloon Company, Santa Fe

This photo of Santa Fe Balloon Company is courtesy of TripAdvisor
Santa Fe, New Mexico – If you are an art-lover or foodie, then October and November is the time to travel to this Southwestern state. In just those two months you can experience the Santa Fe Gourmet Classic, the Harvest Festival, the Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta, Santa Fe Independent Film Festival, Ballet Folklorico de Mexico, Dia de los Muertos, Recycle Santa Fe Art Festival and the SWAIA Winter Indian Market. That’s not even a complete list of awesome things to do!
Cyprus – So, Hawaii wasn’t quite exotic enough for you in terms of beaches? Why not hop over to Greece’s little sister? Here you can dive, swim, snorkel and catch some rays all while eating delicious, delicious food. Don’t spend all your time in your bathing suit though, because there are gorgeous buildings and museums full of history all over Cyprus. Of course, all the money you save on airfare and lodging is bound to be sucked up in all the fab things they have to see and do on the island. Plan ahead.
What do you think about these Autumn travel suggestions? Do any of them make your list for must-visit this year?

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