Summer is over, but that doesn’t mean you have to put your adventurous lifestyle on hold until the weather warms up again. There are plenty of season-specific experiences to keep things exciting as the temperatures cool. Check out some of these autumn adventures below!
1. Fall Festivals
Autumn is a popular time for a variety of festival-style events that really bring in the season. If travel is part of your ideal adventure this fall, there are plenty of festivals abroad (think Oktoberfest in Munich, Germany) and across the United States (e.g. the International Balloon Festival in Albuquerque, New Mexico). Plan ahead and hit the road to take part in these exciting events to celebrate the changing season.
If travel isn’t in the cards for you this year, don’t worry! There are usually an assortment of local fall festivals to be enjoyed as well, so there’s no obligation to take a long journey. Events will be specific to individual locales, but here’s a list of some autumnal activities in North Dakota to illustrate my point:
- Numerous Oktoberfest-style festivals in the German tradition
- Norsk Hostfest, a weekend long festival celebrating all things Scandinavian
- Multiple arts & crafts fairs
- Christmas shows
- Dickens Village Festival, a two week long, city-wide event inspired by A Christmas Carol.
Check out what’s going on in your hometown! Whether you’re heading to an event that’s become an annual tradition or experimenting with a new experience, fall festivals only come around once a year, making them perfect for an autumn adventure!
2. Harvest Activities
In addition to the general fall festivities described above, there are also many events that focus on celebrating the season harvests. These are great places to buy autumnal harvest foods, such as apples, corn, etc. while also enjoying old-style games and activities. If you’re looking for something specifically designed for children and families, pumpkin patches and corn mazes are a popular choice. Check out what’s going on in your area to plan which harvest activities you’d like to partake in!
3. Seasonal Foods
After you’ve stocked up on all those seasonal foods from attending the harvest festivals, you can head home and have an adventure in your kitchen! Leading an adventurous life doesn’t have to be all about travel and the outdoors. Just trying new things can lead to exciting experiences, even when it’s something as simple as cooking and/or eating a new dish.
The fall season is a great time to try new foods due to the abundance of certain crops. When you have a lot of something, you tend to get creative with how you prepare it, as to avoid the same old same old. After you’ve run out of traditional recipes, make a point to cook up a new one and experience a classic piece of produce in an exciting new way!
If the kitchen isn’t your home court, don’t miss out! You can still get plenty of seasonal specialities pre-made in the grocery store and in restaurants. The typical flavor we see this time of year is pumpkin spice, but there’s so much more beyond that! Keep your eyes open for limited-time goodies to get that same seasonal experience.
4. Outdoor Recreation
Once you eat all that pumpkin spice cheesecake and apple butter, you’re going to want to work off your indulgences with exercise! Luckily, the fall season can be a great time to get outdoors. With the temperatures coming down, autumn is full of outdoor recreation possibilities.
For example, if you live somewhere with very hot summers, running outside isn’t always the best choice. Use the fall season to get your cardio and some fresh air before the snow hits! Switching up your running routine and/or route is always great for growth, so use the changing season to your advantage by adapting with it.
Another great option for autumn is hiking. Although the activity is usually associated with summer and greenery, fall can be a lovely season for hiking thanks to the changing tree colors. In some areas, the trails are considered even better in the fall than in any other time of year for that very reason. Ask around to see if there are any spectacular fall hikes in your area! If you’re in North Dakota, I can recommend the trail to Mineral Springs Falls, which sports beautiful autumn foliage the entire way! You can read about that hike here!
5. Holiday Events
Finally, don’t forget to look into events celebrating autumn’s holidays. Halloween and Thanksgiving are the two biggies, and both can lead you to excitement if you know where you look!
Halloween-themed activities are many and varied, which is great because there’s usually something for everyone! Some classics include Halloween parties (put yourself out there!), indoor trick-or-treating events (in areas where the cold hits by the end of October), and haunted houses (to get your heart racing!). Check your local area to see how your community is celebrating Halloween. If you’re having trouble finding something that suits you and your family, perhaps consider putting on an event yourself! Now that would be an adventure in my house (and by adventure I mean catastrophe) — hah!
Similarly, Thanksgiving is a great time to try something new, though the feel is usually different. Keeping the focal point on giving and being thankful, Thanksgiving-themed events will usually involve some type of volunteer work. Although this experience may not be overly enlightening for an adult, giving time to the community can be a wonderful and teachable experience for a child. If you don’t usually engage in these types of activities as a family throughout the year, Thanksgiving may be the perfect time to look into participating in a food drive, cooking meals for the homeless, etc.
Moving forward, holidays invite even more adventure when you open the possibilities to travel! Typically we think of holidays being celebrated at home, but it doesn’t truly have to be so. If you have family in another area, holidays make the perfect excuse to pack your bags and head somewhere refreshing for a holiday weekend. Even if you don’t, many common destinations have special holiday-themed events, making it possible to celebrate anywhere! Have you ever seen Disneyland during Halloween or Thanksgiving? Maybe this is your year!
These suggestions are base on both prior experience and current aspirations! Fabian and I haven’t done everything proposed above, but it’s on our list! Now that we’ve considered the many adventures we can enjoy specifically during autumn, we’ve been working on crossing them off our season bucketlist before winter. We’ll keep you updated as we do so and hope you will as well in the comments below! 🙂