Autumn is fast approaching. This magnificent time of the year is easily my favorite, as it’s full of change. Nature turns from green to rich hues of gold and ruby; warm, stuffy air turns crisp and lively, and if you pay close attention, you’ll witness a sort of uncanny calmness in the atmosphere. It’s the perfect opportunity to round up your best friends or family and head out on a cozy, nature-filled getaway!
Chose a location encapsulated by nature. If you’d like to travel internationally, the English Countryside, Germany’s Black Forrest and Nikko, Japan are all breathtaking panoramics; however, if you’d prefer to keep it local, places like the Pocono [Mountains] in Pennsylvania, California’s Lake Tahoe, or Canaan Valley, West Virginia are all spectacular, each with beautiful autumn landscapes.
Go rustic! Rent a cabin or chatlet in the woods by a lake, or a farmhouse with a pond on acres of land in the countryside. There’s nothing better than sitting in a comfy old chair with a fire going, spending time among nature with the people you love. (Or if you really feel like getting back to nature, grab some tents and go camping!)
Use local, seasonal ingredients. What could be better than going to a farmer’s market and picking up fresh, in-season fruits and veggies and planning your meals around what you find? Grab a pumpkin, parsnips or squash to make rich, hearty soups, or round up a bushel of apples to bake a delicious pie. Drink seasonal beverages like spiced coffee, cider and pumpkin ale; if possible, visit a local brewery to see what’s on tap, or a local vineyard to seize a rich cabernet.
Engage in outdoor entertainment. There’s no better way to enjoy the beauty of the season than to spend time outdoors. There is a plethora of activities from which to chose. Pick a couple and have fun! Some choices include:
- horseback riding
- nature walks (or hike)
- mountain biking
- apple orchard (for fall harvest)
- flag football
Create the perfect fall playlist. Music has the unique ability to set a scene. Use this getaway as the chance to construct that playlist you’ve been putting off. Incorporate lots of bucolic, mood-heavy music like folk and jazz, or go for a more ethereal sound with piano and cello-driven classical. Choose genres that will enhance your experience by allowing you to hone in on the beauty that surrounds you.
The most important thing to note, however, is that autumn is all about tranquility and feeling at ease in one’s environment. This is a transitional time of the year— your time away should reflect that. So whatever you plan, be sure it involves the art of comfort and relaxation. What better way to ease into the hussle and bustle of holiday season than with peace of mind… Happy Travels! —VJ