Autumn holidays and autumn festivals around the world have begun!
While we experience crisp mornings, the crunch of golden leaves beneath our feet and a chilly breeze, other parts of the world celebrate the wonder and magic this season can bring.
You can venture west, to a leaf collecting location for an ‘autumn leaves holiday’, to watch the changing of the leaves during an autumn walking holiday. Or, go east and immerse yourself into the autumn festival traditions around parts of Asia.
After reading this article, you may be inspired to opt for a skip generation holiday when the leaves start to change.
Experience an autumn holiday in Canada
One of the best and most beautiful fall destinations in Canada is Ontario. As the second-largest province, it is not only home to Niagara Falls but 70 million hectares of forested land. So put your hiking boots on and get set for some ‘leaf-peeping’!
The forests in Ontario that you can visit in fall include:
- Southern Ontario and the Great Lakes
- St. Lawrence Forest of central Ontario
- Boreal forest or Hudson Bay Lowlands forest found in the north
- Carolinian forest
Fall activities in Canada also include:
- Fall fairs in Ontario Canada to discover autumn treats, produce and amusements.
- Cranberry harvests
- Thanksgiving Parades
- Salmon Celebrations
As Canada is in the northern hemisphere fall season in Ontario Canada begins on September 23rd. The temperature will be similar to the UK at this time. If it starts to rain, find a restaurant and enjoy one of Canada’s most famous exports – Maple Syrup with pancakes!
If you’re a fan of maple syrup or sweet treats, journey to Japan for the Momijigari festival – a festival in Japan during autumn, where cakes are shaped into maple leaves and eaten with friends and family…
An autumn festival in Japan
In Japan, Momijigari or Koyo occurs every year in mid-autumn. Momijigari means ‘red leaf hunting’ and the tradition involves the visiting and viewing of autumn leaves in Japan.
Japan is known for its strict rules of etiquette but what Japan should also be recognised for is its beauty. This is in abundance and ready to be discovered in the autumn.
Japan autumn equinox day, occurs on September 23rd, so Momijigari dates run from mid-September to early December. In contrast to the rest of the northern hemisphere, the average temperature of Japan in autumn is much higher than the UK at 23ºC to 28ºC.
Where should I go in Japan this autumn, to view the leaves?
- Mid-September on the island of Hokkaido.
- Red leaves can be spotted in the Kanto and the Chunu regions from late September.
- Visit Mount Nasu-dake, Fukushima, from Late September to early October.
- Fuji Five Lakes situated around Mount Fuji, from Late October to mid-November.
- Experience Momijigari in Eikando Temple in Kyoto from mid to late November.
However, the dates the leaves change colour can vary due to the country’s temperature, elevation and latitude.
To ensure you don’t miss out on watching the change of the red maple leaves, Japanese maples and all of the other orange, yellow and brown deciduous leaves, follow the Japan fall foliage forecast.
Across the sea in China, you can experience another autumnal festival…
Experience the Mid-Autumn Festival
An autumn festival holiday in China occurs during September or October, on the 15th day of the 8th month of their lunar calendar.
What are the mid-autumn festival origins?
The mid-autumn festival story began 3000 years ago when Ancient Chinese Emperors used to pray for the harvest, fine weather and peace for the country. However, the festival was first celebrated in the Song Dynasty (960-1279) and has taken place each year when the moon is at its fullest, in mid-autumn. Since then, the moon has symbolised the mid-autumn festival throughout China. Mid-autumn festival food is both sweet and fresh. Try a mooncake with assorted nuts, which signifies completeness and reunion.
What are the mid-autumn festival activities?
Apart from eating moon cakes, many Chinese families gather together after travelling from each corner of the country. This year, 105 million Chinese tourists travelled back to their home towns to be reunited, before watching the full moon. The events across the festival also include the promotion of family values, patriotism and traditional Chinese culture.
Where else can mid-autumn festivals be celebrated?
- Hong Kong
- South Korea
Ensure you have specialist travel insurance
Whether you decide to fly east or west to hunt for leaves and enjoy autumn, make sure you have specialist travel insurance arranged before you travel.
Free Spirit provides travel insurance solutions for people with disabilities or existing medical conditions. With no upper age limit, we believe in offering medical travel insurance for everyone and that health should never be an obstacle that prevents you from discovering the world.
Our friendly team of specialists will talk you through our medical travel insurance options to enable you to set off for autumn leaf-peeping trips with complete peace of mind. From cover for cancellation, emergency medical expenses and much more, you can jet off on your trip knowing that you are covered.
To find out more about our services and receive your no-obligation cover quote, you can either fill in our online form or call our friendly UK-based team on 02392 419 080 (lines open Monday – Friday, 8am – 6pm, closed Bank Holidays).