Feeling blue that summer is over? Now’s the time to take advantage of deals at popular fall travel destinations!
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If you’re like my family, you tend to do the bulk of your travel during the summer months. That way, you don’t have to worry about taking time off from school and the weather is usually fantastic.
However, summer is also one of the most expensive times of year to travel.
When it comes to travel, fall is the perfect time of year to head out on a new adventure. It’s a perfect time because the temperature gets cooler and the colors of nature get more vibrant.
Those vibrant colors make an amazing photo backdrop for Instagram, or just for your family photos for home.
While the temperatures and the colors make this a great time to travel, it’s also a great time to travel to many for the more popular tourist cities.
Why is that?
Because the fall is their off-season – so it winds up being more budget-friendly.
I’ve done a ton of research (and asked friends) and here are 10 of the cheapest places to travel during the fall!
10 Fall Travel Destinations That Won’t Break the Bank
So which areas in the U.S. can you spend a fall vacation in, where you would not have to spend a lot of money? Take a look at this top 10 Fall travel destinations list:
A lot of people count Alaska out, but in Anchorage, it is an excellent place to visit during the fall season.
You can book a cruise without having to pay premium rates. If you are into the landscape, you definitely could take the Railroad Trail where you can also have a pretty good view of Mount McKinley.
The fall is a great time to catch the Northern Lights and, if you’re lucky, you just might stumble upon some local wildlife like a Dall sheep or a spot moose.
Budget-Friendly Alaska Hotels
Super 8 by Wyndham Juneau
This little gem is in the best location in Juenau. The Super 8 is far enough away from the hustle and bustle at the port, but it’s close enough that you can go see things there.
Prices start at $86/night.
Westmark Fairbanks Hotel
Conveniently located in downtown, the Westmark Fairbanks sets the standard for elegance, style and service in the Golden Heart City.
Prices start at $99/night.
Located in the Chucagh Mountain Range about 40 miles from downtown Anchorage, Hotel Alyeska is a gorgeous hotel and spa.
Prices start at $108/night.
Chicago has tons of things to do, both free and very inexpensive and the best part? The Windy City is known for its fresh air and picturesque grounds.
You can also attend the World Music Festival which kicks off in September.
If you do not want to drive around the city, feel free to take the public transportation system so you can easily go from point A to point B without any hassles.
A trip to Chicago would not be complete without a visit to one of the most amazing boardwalks in the US which are Navy Pier in Lake Michigan.
You cannot leave the area either without grabbing a bite of deep-dish pizza. I mean, that is what Chicago is known for after all! You can eat it while you bask in the wonderful fall colors.
Find out the top 10 kid-friendly Chicago activities.
Budget-Friendly Chicago Hotels
Travelodge by Wyndham Downtown Chicago
Located in the downtown/The Loop neighborhood, the Travelodge is close to Michelin-rated restaurants, amazing architecture, and “The Bean.”
Prices start at $135/night.
Best Western Plus Hawthorne Terrace Hotel
Located in the vibrant Lakeview East neighborhood of Chicago, the Hawthorne Terrace is near Chicago’s lake shore, one-of-a-kind boutique shops, and fun restaurants.
Prices start at $180/night.
Hyatt Place Chicago Midway Airport
Located on the popular Midway Hotel Center Campus, the Hyatt Place Chicago Midway Airport hotel is two blocks Midway Airport and 8 miles from downtown Chicago. Plus, they offer 24-hr free airport shuttle service.
Prices start at $162/night.
Arizona is so hot during the summertime and because of that, it might not be your number one choice for a fall destination trip, BUT It is the absolute best time of the year to visit.
The colors are so inviting during this time and you won’t have an enormous crowd of people like you does during the summertime. And, the rates for flights and accommodations are not too high.
Hotels can be booked for much less during fall than what a room would have cost in January.
You can take a beautiful venture out towards the Grand Canyon which will allow you to see nature in all its glorious autumn colors.
Budget-Friendly Arizona Hotels
La Quinta Inn & Suites by Wyndham Phoenix Scottsdale
The La Quinta in Scottsdale offers free breakfast, a swimming pool, and a shuttle service. Plus, kids stay free!
Prices start at $76/night.
Holiday Inn North Phoenix
The Holiday Inn Phoenix North is the newest in contemporary styling and the most modern hotel in the North Phoenix area and it’s conveniently located just a short drive from downtown Phoenix, Scottsdale, Tempe, Peoria,
Prices start at $55/night.
Best Western Legacy Inn & Suites
Located in Mesa, the Best Western Legacy Inn & Suites has a free deluxe buffet breakfast and a beer and wine bar. Plus, it’s just one mile away from the Big League Dreams Sports Park.
Prices start at $80/night.
I was chatting with some Louisiana locals a few months ago and they told us that September was the best time of year to visit New Orleans!
Visiting Louisiana, especially New Orleans during the fall will give you a two-fold dose of the area.
You get to see the beautiful fall foliage and be able to enjoy the area without having to deal with a ton of people and lots of crowds.
The best time to visit (probably without kids in tow) is during the New Orleans Burlesque Festival which is held in September.
They have music festivals, and the elusive Po Boy Festival and so many off the wall things to do during a visit here.
You cannot leave the area without tasting and trying all the Creole cuisine your heart desires.
Budget-Friendly Louisiana Hotels
Best Western Plus St. Christopher Hotel
The historic St. Christopher Hotel is a boutique style hotel located in the heart of New Orleans and just 50 steps away from the world famous French Quarter.
Prices start at $95/night.
The Alder Hotel is located near Tulane and Loyola Universities and has some of the liveliest spots for food and live music..
Prices start at $89/night.
The Whitney Hotel
Head to The Whitney Hotel for an intimate New Orleans hotel with beautiful rooms and thick walls (so you won’t hear other guests.)
Prices start at $99/night.
I visited Portland, Maine this past spring and it’s stunning! I can can just image how beautiful it would be in the fall.
In Portland Maine, you can bike, hike or walk your way through all of the gorgeous fall foliage.
Maine also has some of the world’s most photographed lighthouses, including Portland Head Light and the adorable Bug Light!
During their bustling seasons, it can be pretty expensive to visit here and sight-see all the things, but during the fall (which is their off-season) you can save a ton of money on attractions (including lobster fishing at its finest and more!)
Plus, it’s a great time to eat your way through the city with a Maine Foodie Tour!
Budget-Friendly Maine Hotels
The 8th Maine Regiment Lodge and Museum
Stay just a 15 minute ferry ride away from downtown Portland at the 8th Maine Regiment Lodge, which is both an American Civil War museum and a Victorian era lodge.
Prices start at $119/night.
Quality Inn & Suites
A hidden gem in South Portland, the Quality Inn and Suites is located near Maine’s largest mall and I-95.
Prices start at $92/night.
Acadia Ocean View Motel
Acadia Ocean View Motel‘s secluded location is ideally situated on the brow of Ireson Hill, the highest elevation on the east side of Mount Desert Island just minutes from Acadia National Park and charming downtown Bar Harbor.
Prices start at $130/night.
6. NOVA SCOTIA, CANADA
Visiting Canada will make you feel like you’ve turned back the clock as you visit a local fishing village that’s straight from the eighteenth century.
You can whale watch in Nova Scotia, and tour some of the preserved wood-framed houses on the streets. It is really like looking in a museum.
Fall is an excellent time to visit Canada because you can save money buying tickets to attractions like the Fisheries Museum, the local pubs, and accommodations.
The rates for these are lower during the autumn season as compared to summer when tourists from the U.S. abound.
Budget-Friendly Nova Scotia Hotels
Comfort Hotel Bayer’s Lake
Halifax’s newest hotel, the Comfort Hotel Bayer’s Lake, has free hot breakfast, free high speed wireless internet, a heated pool and a full service restaurant.
Prices start at $102/night.
Delta Hotels by Marriott Dartmouth
Delta Hotels by Marriott Dartmouth has a fitness center, pool, yoga studio, free Wi-Fi, and has great showers and comfortable beds.
Prices start at $127/night.
Coastal Inn Antigonish
If you’re looking for a quaint inn, head to the Coast Inn Antigonish for a free breakfast. It’s a great resting spot between Halifax and Cape Breton’s Cabot Trail.
Prices start at $98/night.
Savannah in Georgia is one of the most beautiful cities you will see in the fall. During the summer, it is completely overrun by tourists and fares to visit it can skyrocket into the hundreds of dollars.
But, if you visit during the fall, not only will you find the fall leaves in full bloom, but you will be able to enjoy and take in the area without the issues of too many tourists.
Don’t forget about all the amazing festivals they have too, like the Savannah Bacon Festival which is held every September.
Budget-Friendly Savannah Hotels
Holiday Inn Savannah Historic District
Head to Savannah’s premier downtown hotel, the Holiday Inn Savannah Historic District, located one block from Savannah’s iconic River Street, the City Market, and adjacent to the Ships of the Sea Maritime Museum.
Prices start at $128/night
The Thunderbird Inn
The Thunderbird Inn is a quirky motel where refined Savannah’s so-historic location and so-hip eccentricities hook up. Hotel rates include Moon Pies and Krispy Kreme donuts!
Prices start at $122/night.
Staybridge Suites Savannah Historic District
The Staybridge Suites Hotel Savannah Historic District is located just steps from famous River Street, Factor s Walk, Old Savannah Tours and the shops and restaurants of City Market River Street.
Prices start at $138/night.
Denver is the city to be in Colorado, especially if your fall vacation falls in mid-October.
They have beautiful and dazzling foliage while you are biking at Cherry Creek.
In Denver, you will find that they have their very own Oktoberfest with the Great American Beer Festival where more than 400 breweries are featured.
Budget-Friendly Colorado Hotels
Clarion Hotel Denver Central
Newly remodeled, the Clarion Hotel is located in the heart of Denver and has a free hot buffet breakfast and a free shuttle.
Prices start at $81/night.
Ramada by Wyndham Denver International Airport
As the name suggests, the Ramada by Wyndham is located near the airport and offers a free shuttle as well as a free breakfast buffet and free WiFi.
Prices start at $132/night.
Embassy Suites by Hilton Denver Tech Center North
Located minutes from downtown Denver, the Embassy Suites Denver Southeast offers complimentary cooked-to-order breakfasts every morning and nightly evening receptions featuring complimentary snacks and cocktails.
Prices start at $142/night.
If you want to enjoy the Kentucky fall, take a trip to Louisville, which is known for its delicious bourbon, racing horses, and lots of green pastures.
The backdrop of the green against the colors of fall makes for an amazing place to take a budget-friendly vacation.
If you’re not necessarily a fan of alcohol, you can simply stroll along Iroquois Park where thousands of carved pumpkins along with the local fall foliage make for an amazing sight.
Budget-Friendly Kentucky Hotels
Red Roof Inn Louisville Fair And Expo
Red Roof Inn Louisville Fair and Expo is one of the best 100% smoke-free budget hotels in Louisville near the Lousiville Slugger Museum, the Louisville Science Museum, the Kentucky Derby Museum, and Louisville Mega Cavern.
Prices start at $75/night.
Tru by Hilton Louisville East
Tru by Hilton Louisville East hotel has a ‘Build your Own’ breakfast toppings bar featuring 30 sweet and savory toppings for cereal, bagels, yogurt and more. Plus a four zone lobby.
Prices start at $115/night.
Hampton Inn Louisville East/Hurstbourne
Get free breakfast at the Hampton Inn Louisville East/Hurstbourne, located just 13 miles from downtown, the University of Louisville, and Louisville International Airport.
Prices start at $116/night.
10. NEW YORK
Visiting the Big Apple is the perfect backdrop for your fall vacation. Yes, you can visit New York on a budget. All you have to do is a plan before you go and do your research!
You can check out when attractions like the American Museum of Natural History can be visited for free or at a discounted rate.
You can also take advantage of the free Big Apple Greeters program, where greeters will go on an private, narrated walk and talk about their neighborhoods.
If you cannot find any attractions that are within your budget, no worries!
If all else fails, you can simply bask in the foliage of the trees at Central Park while eating a delicious pretzel or feed the squirrels some hot nuts from the vendors!.
Plus, you can get free tickets to see Late Night with Seth Meyers!
Budget-Friendly NYC Hotels
An affordable place to stay in New York City, the Morningside Inn is in the heart of New York City’s vibrant Upper Westside – Morningside Heights. The hotel is housed in a 6-story, elevator pre-war building with the old world charm of that era.
Prices start at $151/night.
Manhattan Bowery Lodge
Manhattan Bowery Lodge is located in the heart of Chinatown in Lower Manhattan, surrounded by many great restaurants and shops.
Prices start at $159/night.
International Student Center
Located in Manhattan, in a beautiful and safe neighborhood of the Upper West Side the International Student Center is a hostel 1/2 block from Central Park and the subway. They serve young travelers passing through New York City.
Prices start at $200/night.
In the end, if you still feel like you cannot afford a fall vacation simply visit the local park in your area or the nearest national park.
The trees will do all the work for you, as the colors change from one brilliant hue to another and you get caught up in the magic that is the foliage of fall.