Go with the flow of the season’s heart-warm­ing glow

The Sunday Telegraph - Travel - - Front Page -

Whis­per it softly, but there is now a dis­tinct nip in the air. The nights are draw­ing in; the chil­dren are set­tling into school; the first leaves are fall­ing; and the short­sleeved shirts of sum­mer – that in­cred­i­ble, record-break­ing, lifeaf­firm­ing sum­mer – have re­luc­tantly been folded away.

The fact is that, in ex­actly a week’s time, the au­tumn equinox q will be upon us. There is in­creas­ing talk of blus­tery ry winds. The next thing we know, it will be Christ­mas. as.

No mat­ter what misty-eyed ed po­ets may say, this change of season is not ot a cause of un­al­loyed oyed joy. Who re­ally lly wants it to get colder and darker? For the traveller, ler, though, the com­ing weeks have ve much in their favour, as Tele­graph graph Travel writ­ers re­veal in the fol­low­ing pages.

There’s the drop in tem­per­a­ture er­a­ture for a start. No mat­ter how much h we say we love the heat, gen­er­ally we e feel much more com­fort­able in more tem­per­ate climes.

Ex­plor­ing cities in par­tic­u­lar is so much more en­joy­able when the tem­per­a­tures are in the com­fort­able 20s rather than the fur­nace-like 40s. For those seek­ing in­spi­ra­tion for an au­tumn city break right now, Nick Trend sug­gests Am­s­ter­dam, Madrid, Vi­enna, Mi­lan and the peren­nial favourite, Paris.

Then there are the spec­tac­u­lar au­tumn leaves, the ex­quis­ite shows of colour from the New For­est to New Eng­land to the Rock­ies, which, while mark­ing the end of na­ture’s an­nual cy­cle, gen­er­ate such a heart­warm­ing glow. In ad­di­tion to tried and tested favourites at home and across the Pond, Paul Wade has some well con­sid­ered sug­ges­tions for trips to the forests of Ger­many and, much far­ther afield, Ja­pan, a coun­try with au­tumn reds and golds which, in their own way, are as dra­matic as the fa­bled cherry blos­soms of spring.

The new, wel­come fresh­ness in the air lends it­self to mo­tion, a rekin­dling of the de­sire to en­gage with the great out­doors and the “mel­low fruit­ful­ness” of harves har­vest time. Au­tum­nal strolls and coun­try pub re­fresh­ments loom, with Richard Mad­den’s pro­pos­als ex­ten ex­tend­ing from day-trips to D Dorset and the Lake Dis Dis­trict to a week’s walk walk­ing in the hills and go gorges of Crete.

Of course, you may pre­fer to use this time of year to head to the beaches bea of south­ern Europe E where un­til well w into Oc­to­ber – and min mi­nus the crowds (and prices) o of high season – you can still catch the warm­ing rays of the sun and swim in a sea that will re­tain the heat of sum­mer for many weeks to come. Jane Foster’s sug­ges­tions range from m Nice and the A Amalfi Coast to Mon­tene­gro ro and the is is­land of Rhodes.

And you know what, for all the talk of blus­tery winds, it may re­main pretty nice here, too, with fore­cast­ers pre­dict­ing we are in for a warmer than av­er­age rest of Septem­ber and Oc­to­ber.

I know, I know, when did the fore­cast­ers ever get it right? But keep those short-sleeved shirts handy just in case. And en­joy it while it lasts…

Adrian Bridge Brock­en­hurst was built in 1650 from re­claimed ships’ tim­bers. From £90 a night for b&b in Oc­to­ber. Ride the Lake Louise Gon­dola up p to the view­ing plat­form at 6,850ft. ft. Look out at mighty moun­tains, a glacier, a sap­phire lake and the zingy y yel­low of mil­lions of alpine larches. Spot griz­zly bears and big horn sheep be­low; hear elk bugling. Hike ke or pad­dle a ca­noe un­der the bluest luest of skies. In au­tumn, the Cana­dian dian Rock­ies are a must.

Win­dows on the Wild (020 020 8742 1556; win­dow­son­thewild.com) com) of­fers seven nights in Al­berta erta from £1,080. In­cludes re­turn flights ights to Cal­gary, car hire, ac­com­mo­da­tion. mo­da­tion. Sweaty armpits, sun­burnt nose, chicken-like legs peep­ing pal­lidly from shorts… Bri­tish men never look quite at home in sum­mer. Dark, chilly au­tumn suits us much bet­ter. Michael Dea­con Ja­pan’s spring­time Cherry Blos­som Fes­ti­val is fa­mous. What is less well-known, how­ever, is the au­tum­nal momi­ji­gari or koyo, view­ing the red and gold leaves. Dur­ing the sur­pris­ingly long season, last­ing through­out Novem­ber, temples are ac­cented by bright maples. Munch on roasted chest­nuts and try momiji tem­pura – sugar-dipped maple leaves, fried in tem­pura bat­ter. In­sid­eJa­pan (0117 370 9730; in­sid­e­japan­tours.com) has 13-night Au­tumn Splen­dour self-guided trips fro from £2,600 (flights ex­tra) with top koyo sights, cy­cling, tea cer­e­mony, pri­vate gar­den tou tours and more. In­cludes trans­port,tran ac­com­mo­da­tion and some­som meals.

Lake Louise, main; Hainich Na­tional Park, be­low

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