The 12 Most Romantic Fall Getaways in the U.S
Travel experts weigh in on where to go and what to do for a little fall romance.
Romantic fall vacations are always fun for couples looking to take in the changing colors of the leaves, enjoy the crisp fall air, and of course, get great deals thanks to shoulder season travel. While you can find some sense of romance in almost any destination, some have a more love-filled vibe than others in autumn. To learn more about these spots, keep reading to hear from travel experts about the most romantic fall getaways in the U.S.
The 12 Most Romantic Fall Vacations
1. Park City, Utah
"It's secluded, being tucked away in the mountains. Outside of the resort, there aren't any stores around, restaurants nearby, traffic lights, not any of the hustle and bustle of city life," she tells Best Life. "There aren't distractions, so it's very calming and tranquil and the perfect environment to just relax and focus on the time being spent with each other."
The main street in Park City is about 15 minutes away from the resort, so if you do want to go into the tourist area, "you can explore the small boutiques, theaters, dessert parlors, and five-star restaurants," Burks says. "Main Street also has small bars and lounges if you want to leave the resort for a night out."
2. Lincoln, New Hampshire
Couples who enjoy reconnecting with each other through nature will want to visit Lincoln, New Hampshire and the Flume Gorge in Franconia Notch State Park.
"The Flume Gorge is a narrow 800-foot-long gorge hidden away in a serene forest in the heart of New Hampshire. The peaceful but picturesque setting is perfect for a romantic stroll," says Kristen Morgan from Where Are Those Morgans travel blog. Travelers who choose to hike through the gorge will pass granite walls, see cascading waterfalls, and cross over covered bridges.
After a day of hiking, you'll likely be ready for something to eat. "Be sure to check out the Common Man, a popular bar and tavern serving American classics with a bit of rustic and old-time charm," says Morgan.
3. Sedona, Arizona
Sedona, Arizona is known for its red rock formations and serene desert landscapes—both of which stand out as the foliage changes for the season.
"Its rich colors and majestic vistas make it an amazing destination for couples seeking a romantic escape," says Justin Albertynas, travel expert and CEO of hotel booking engine RatePunk, who adds that exploring the trails as the autumn colors blend together with the red rocks is a one-of-a-kind experience.
To truly immerse yourself in the surroundings, Albertynas recommends staying at L'Auberge de Sedona. "The crisp air, vibrant sunsets, and the allure of Sedona's spiritual energy set the stage for cherished moments together," he says.
4. Hudson Valley, New York
Just 90 minutes outside of New York City is the Hudson Valley, a charming area where you can watch the leaves change, enjoy time outside, and stay at the new Wildflower Farms.
"This brand new resort combines the ultimate in luxury accommodations with the natural beauty of the Hudson Valley, offering an easy escape from the hustle and bustle of city life," says Diego. "Reconnect with nature and enjoy the farm-to-table experience, the stillness and peace of your surroundings, and restore yourself with the wellness offerings. This property is about rekindling the romance with your partner [and] reconnecting with nature."
Around the resort, couples can do everything from baking classes and making campfire snacks to soaking in the meadow hot tubs and resting in the relaxation room.
The Hudson Valley is also well known for its cideries and breweries, as well as beautiful hiking trails.
5. Banner Elk, North Carolina
Travelers who want to make a road trip of their romantic getaway can head to Banner Elk, North Carolina.
"Western North Carolina has so much to offer traveling couples looking for a romantic getaway," Erin Moreland, travel blogger at Super Simple Salty Life, tells Best Life. "From leisurely walks to plunging waterfalls and wineries with mountain views, to staying in gorgeous chateaus or quaint bed and breakfasts, there is so much to do in North Carolina mountain towns."
"Guests can stay right at the Banner Elk Winery in the on-site villas which is right in the heart of the Blue Ridge Mountains," she says. The area is also known for its wide array of restaurants, which range from high-end eateries to mom-and-pop delis.
6. Greenville, South Carolina
Greenville, South Carolina has it all this fall. Take your honey to one of the many orchards for apple picking or indulge in hot apple cider donuts. There's also an eight-acre pumpkin patch in the city, Stewart Farms, where you can pick your perfect pumpkin or try to escape a corn maze together.
After a day of exploring, the Grand Bohemian Lodge in the city is ideal for couples. "Nestled within the heart of Falls Park on the Reedy River [it] is the perfect destination for a romantic getaway," says Ron Nagy, general manager of Grand Bohemian Lodge Greenville, Autograph Collection. "With signature bohemian interiors, couple massages at Poseidon Spa, one-of-a-kind artwork throughout the lodge, and dining at our upscale restaurant, Between The Trees, a curated itinerary for two awaits."
7. Montecito, California
Montecito is a small gem of a city just south of Santa Barbara, California, with some of the most gorgeous stretches of coastline in the state. Even as the temps cool down this time of year, the Mediterranean climate keeps it warm enough to take a leisurely stroll along the beach with your partner.
If you're looking for more activity, there are several hiking trails that will get your blood pumping while you take in the gorgeous views. The adorable downtown offers gourmet restaurants and plenty of shopping, too.
Tucked away in the seaside town is San Ysidro Ranch, a small resort with just 38 accommodations, each of which has its own private entrance. The beautiful resort is known for its award-winning dining including the Stonehouse, which is "located in the historic 19th-century citrus packing house, with creek views, and a dining experience that feels as if you've stepped into the vineyards of Italy," says Maria Diego, owner and luxury travel advisor at Diego Travel.
"Aside from the award-winning dining experience, San Ysidro also stands out thanks to its world-renowned wine cellar which is the only property to hold a Grand Wine Award and is also the only place in the world that has two vertices of Pertruce from Bordeaux," Diego adds.
8. New Glarus, Wisconsin
New Glarus is an adorable town that's a slice of Switzerland in the middle of the country, and it offers up some seriously cozy vibes.
"Couples visiting New Glarus can experience Swiss culture without leaving the country—coined as 'America's Little Switzerland,' this town to this day is the embodiment of Swiss Heritage," says Bekah Stauffacher, executive director for New Glarus Chamber of Commerce.
"For the ultimate romantic vacation, couples can fully immerse themselves in local culture by enjoying savory Swiss food, spending the night in an alpine chalet, and exploring the local museums, brewery, and winery," she continues.
Enjoy walking through the Swiss Historical Village Museum, which shows the growth of the area, or take part in a self-guided scavenger hunt of sorts to find 14 hand-painted cow statues around town.
RELATED: The 12 Quirkiest Small Towns in the U.S.
9. Herman, Missouri
For a more low-key getaway, consider Herman, Missouri.
"Hermann may be a lesser-known destination, located in the heart of the Midwest just an hour west of St. Louis, but this charming town is nestled within a popular Missouri wine region and offers the perfect romantic weekend getaway for couples," says Carly Brown, travel blogger at Seek Out Serenity.
The adorable area is known for its Oktoberfest, which occurs during the first four weekends in October, along with its leaf peeping, which peaks in mid-October. There are many unique lodging options, including private cottages, treehouses, and bed and breakfasts that all offer couples the chance to reconnect with each other while on vacation.
10. Massanutten, Virginia
Known for its spa experiences and skiing options, Massanutten Virginia should be included on your list of romantic places to visit in the fall. Located in the Shenandoah Valley, you'll find fall colors and activities that exude swoony, romantic vibes.
"While it's not time for skiing just yet, a full spa, plenty of nature trails, and activities like golf, mountain biking, and a waterpark make this the perfect place for visitors who want a little relaxation paired with some outdoor fun, says Taylor Beal, owner and author of the travel blog Traverse With Taylor.
The Massanutten Resort is the perfect place to sit back and enjoy some pampering. Your days can be spent enjoying the lush forests and exploring the area, while your nights may include some cuddling by the campfire.
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11. St. Pete Beach, Florida
Nestled along the white sand shores of St. Pete Beach is the iconic Don CeSar hotel.
"The Don CeSar was founded by Thomas Rowe as a tribute to his lost love nearly 95 years ago and continues to serve as a romantic destination with the hotel's iconic pink facade and private beachfront," says Thomas Fraher, hotel general manager.
After a day at the beach soaking up the sun—because it's still well into the 80s in fall in South Florida—Fraher suggests couples indulge in a spa treatment for two at the hotel's Spa Oceana or enjoy fine dining at Maritana, which is named after the opera where Rowe met his love, Lucinda.
Away from the hotel, couples will find plenty to do. A few favorite activities include taking in the sounds of the Florida Orchestra, exploring the Salvador Dalí Museum, or taking a walk through nearby Ybor City with its Cuban influence in dining and nightlife.
12. Kohala Coast, Island of Hawaii
Visiting Hawaii in the fall is a perfect setting for you and your partner because the crowds have left for the summer but haven't come in for the holidays yet. The shoulder season allows couples to see more of the islands and experience the spirit of aloha without the throngs of other tourists at every hotel and attraction.
The Kohala Coast on the Island of Hawaii is a great destination for fall, according to Bradley Doell, director of sales and marketing for the Mauna Kea Resort.
"The iconic oceanfront resort is comprised of two luxury resorts—The Mauna Kea Beach Hotel and The Westin Hapuna Beach Resort," he says. "Guests can enjoy amenities at both properties during their stay, from outrigger canoeing and Manta Night Swims to world-class oceanfront dining and luxury spas." The resort also hosts romantic wine dinners and tasting events throughout the fall season.