Where to see spectacular autumn colours around the world: our readers’ tips-off

Its the season for mom nature to dazzle us with golds, reds, yellows and oranges Our readers recommend the most vibrant autumnal displays in Europe, North America and Japan

Winning tip: Ojcow national park, Poland

They call it the Zlota Polska Jesien – the Polish Golden Autumn. It’s when the oaks and sycamores around Krakow do their best New England impression. Just 20 minutes’ drive north of the city is the smallest national park in the country: Ojcow. A series of small, sylvan valleys turns into a beautiful patchwork of ochre and rust-red from the very beginning of September. There are forest trails operating past creeks, caves and crooked cottages. You can climb up to lookout points for positions over the tops of the timbers, and assure Ojcow Castle studding the hillside like something out of Bram Stoker’s Dracula.
Bolkonsky

UK

Bolton Abbey, North Yorkshire

Bolton
Photograph: Alamy

A walk through Strid Wood with its sessile oaks and Wharfe river positions takes in the full range of autumnal wonder. The abbey is wonderful abbey, there’s a river feature called the Strid, where the Wharfe abruptly narrows, or a longer stroll to the top of Simon’s Seat in the moors to view the season’s multicoloured glories from above.
Jamie Samuel

Lake District

Autumn
Autumn position over the countryside and Windermere from near Troutbeck and Ambleside. Photograph: Alamy

As you stroll along Windermere to the centre of Ambleside, autumn colourings are abundant. Looking across the water, it seems that the treeline is alight with red and orange leaves. As you round the bend on to the road into town, you are faced with a hillside that celebrates autumn at its best, highlighting different colours throughout the day. Catch it at merely the right time in the morning and you’ll assure the mist creeping down and giving the trees an eerie presence. Catch it as the sunlight is descending in the late afternoon and you’ll be amazed at the vibrancy of the colouring as the foliages are framed by the light from the setting sun.
Alice Southern

Westonbirt Arboretum, Gloucestershire

Japanese
Photograph: Alamy

The entire arboretum is fascinating at any time of year, but in late October the acer( Japanese maple) glade is absolutely magical. It’s a good idea to stay at the Hare and Hounds hotel( doublings from PS125 B& B ), which almost adjoins the arboretum and go to Westonbirt early in the morning to beat all the daytrippers and photographers because it does get very busy in the autumn. Another attraction is a new 300 -metre aerial walkway that takes you 13 metres up into the canopy.
lindaashworth

Herne Hill, London

Beautiful
Photograph: WhereAngelsPlay/ GuardianWitness

After picking up a coffee in Herne Hill or breakfast at the wonderful Lido Cafe, take a stroll around Brockwell Park for wonderful views of the London skyline and beautiful autumnal colours. One place to bide or go for a drink is the Half Moon, right on the doorstep.
WhereAngelsPlay

Dolgoch’ rainforest ‘, north Wales

Falls
Photograph: Alamy

Snowdonia national park provides some of the richest, and most unspoilt autumnal views in the world. The Talyllyn Railway spoils visitors not just with a seven-mile journey from the Tywyn seafront up the beautiful Fathew valley towards the peak of Cader Idris on steam trains, but also gives direct access to the autumnal majesty of the Dolgoch Falls and Nant Gwernol woodland. Alighting at Dolgoch station and next following the waymarked roads, guests are soon amid the valley’s temperate rainforest habitat, sometimes referred to as the Celtic Rainforest, surrounded by ancient trees and carpets of moss and ferns. This habitat is full of life and, in autumn, the landscape glows in lush greens and golden browns.
ID069708

Peebles, Scotland

Golden
Photograph: Alamy

The glorious town of Peebles, an hour’s drive south of Edinburgh, is scenic at all times of year but, come early October, the trees that surround the town explode into a riot of colour. For close-ups of huge specimen( including the caramel-smelling Japanese katsura tree) visit the nearby superb Dawyck botanic gardens( adult PS6. 50, child free ), which has an excellent cafe. Peebles itself has a top-notch coffee shop/ chocolate boutique, Cocoa Black.
Gavin Pearson

ELSEWHERE IN EUROPE

Cinque Terre, Italy

Cinque
Photograph: Getty Images

Autumn is the best season to see and sense the explosion of colourings in the woods and tracks high above the Mediterranean as you walk from one township in Italy’s Cinque Terre to another. The Sentiero Azzurro connects the villages between Monterosso al Mare and Riomaggiore over 12 km and will take you from shady copses sheltered by red- and gold-leafed trees to deep green olive groves before you emerge into sunlit walkways with views of the shimmering sea. However, some of the route is shut at present( most famously the Via del’Amore at Riomaggiore, reopening in 2019) due to landslides, and in autumn there are often closures as wet weather injuries tracks. On some sections there’s a charge if EUR5-EUR 7 to use the track- the money helps with mend bills.
gallarate

Lake Bled, Slovenia

View
Photograph: Pintai Suchachaisri/ Getty Images

Autumn is a genuinely special time to visit Lake Bled. The intense autumn colours of the surrounding hills are mirrored in the lake with its fairytale church island. The walk around the pond is wonderful but the views are even more stunning from Bled Castle, which sits on a high crag overlooking the whole glorious scene. Out of season, Bled remains a hidden gem. We visited in October and had this incredible landscape almost completely to ourselves.
Isadyl

Transylvania’s Piatra Craiului mountains

Piatra
Photograph: Alamy

One October, I travelled in the spectacular Transylvanian countryside of Brasov and the Carpathian mountains. At this time, when the leaves are turning and the crowds thin, the Piatra Craiului mountain range is great to explore. The trails are marked clearly and up high are views that you would expect to enticement hordes of guests. Not in this place.
Mitchell Fung

Finnish Lapland

Colorful
Photograph: Getty Images

A cycling trip in Finland , north of the Arctic Circle, in September is unbelievably colourful. Autumn is one of the eight seasons for human rights and indigenous Sami people: time to round up their free-roaming reindeer. The Finnish term for autumn colouring is ruska : it’s the time when silver birches turn gold, the forest floor becomes thick with jewel-coloured blueberries and lingonberries, and mountain ash is heavy with scarlet berries. All this is set against a backdrop of evergreen firs, the taiga stretching from Norway to Siberia, and the silver of Finland’s 180,000 lakes, soon to turn white with ice and snowfall. The midnight sky joins in too, illuminated with the greens and reds of the northern lights.
MagBazTravels

CANADA and USA

Dorset Lookout Tower, near Toronto

Panoramic
Photograph: Alamy

Ontario’s Muskoka region is Toronto’s great outdoors, boasting red granite outcrops, tumbling rivers and waterfalls, and some of the most dramatic autumn colourings on countries around the world. East of Bracebridge, highway 117 passes through bewitching dapples of red and golden light under beech, birch, maple and poplar. Before you reach Dwight, climb the Dorset Lookout Tower, 142 metres above the Lake of Bays. From up here, the canopy is an autumnal quilt reaching to the horizon, refreshing the eyes and invigorating the spirit.
CanIJustSay

Adirondack mountains, New York State

Keene
Keene Valley. Photograph: Kerrie Ann Kirkwood/ GuardianWitness

From an easy, well-marked pull-off on Route 73 in the Keene Valley( three miles south of Saint Huberts and not far from Lake Placid ), a half-mile trail results through deciduous woodland to the shores of the stunning, if patently named Round Pond. The area, in northern New York State near the Vermont state line, is about five hours’ drive from New York City, and there are plenty of fine places to remain and lots of hiking trails.
Kerrie Ann Kirkwood

Cape Breton Island, Nova Scotia

Cape
Photograph: Alamy

The entire island becomes rolling mountains of shimmering reds, golds, and ochres in autumn. Whether you are on the scenic Cabot Trail, or driving along the Bra d’Or Lakes Unesco Biosphere Reserve, the raw rugged beauty is stunning. To top it off you are able to attend Celtic Colours International Festival( 6-14 October ), which celebrates the region’s heritage and is held at the height of the island’s spectacular autumn colours.
Joanne MacKinnon

Great Smoky Mountains, Tennessee/ North Carolina

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