Summer is a very popular time for cruising. Families go on vacation when their children are out of school. This is an opportunity for teachers to get away too. If everyone seems to be on vacation, ports can get crowded, and airfares are high. If you can get away in the fall, where should you go?
- Fall foliage cruises. Plenty of cruise lines do trips up the New England coast during September and October. They often sail up into Canada too. The “leaf season” varies based on the coldness of the average temperatures. Put another way, fall arrives sooner in North Carolina than it does in Massachusetts and Maine. You can enjoy some spectacular scenery.
- The land down under. It is easy to forget the seasons are reversed south of the Equator. Australia and New Zealand are starting Spring when we are entering the Fall in the US. That’s why Santa seems to appear on beaches in their magazines! If you don’t like colder weather, this is a good time to consider a cruise to the other side of the world.
- The Mediterranean. Many cities have become victims of their own success. Venice is overrun with tourists most of the year and has limited the size of cruise ships they allow in the Grand Canal. August is Europe’s official vacation month. After that, everyone (should be) back at work. Visiting famous European cities in the off season is a good way to avoid the crowds.
- European river cruising. You have heard about droughts lowering the water level in rivers. You know about the crowds in cities during the summer tourist season. Rain often comes in the fall, which should help river levels. Fall is also harvest season in the vineyards. This can be exciting to watch as your ship glides along the water.
- The Caribbean. You might think twice because it’s hurricane season. Cruise ships adjust their schedule accordingly, moving the ships to warmer climates with the seasons. September and October have been called the shoulder season, meaning the weather is still good and prices have come down past their peaks.
- American river cruising. Perhaps you don’t want to leave the US. Maybe you don’t have a passport. You might live near a major river like the Mississippi. Rough seas are not an issue. You should still get the fall foliage too.
- Bermuda. It’s not that far away from the US east coast. A few cruise lines have ships that go out and back, serving as your hotel while docked at the island for a few days. Some ships move from one end of the island to another. Bermuda gives a taste of British culture in an area not too far from home. They speak the same language too.
The arrival of fall does not have to mean the summer is over. You can still have fun.
Ed. Notes: CruiseCompete and its member travel advisors provide many curated cruise and land deals, offers and amenities on over 50 cruise lines with over 500 cruise ships sailing all around the world.
Cover photo: Sightseeing boats cruising on the Vltava River in Prague © Dennis Cox / Photo Explorer Productions, All Rights Reserved