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9 Surprisingly Affordable Fall Destinations to Book Now

Deal-chasers, take note.

U.S. News & World Report

9 Surprisingly Affordable Fall Destinations to Book Now

Agia Galini - Crete

Discover unexpected places where you can snap up a serious travel bargain this autumn.Getty Images/Flickr RF

If you missed out on an epic summer vacation due to budget constraints, fret not: It’s not too late to pull off a fall escape in a beautiful destination. From rustic camping retreats to high-end bed-and-breakfasts, there are plenty of places offering off-peak season rates, packages and deals, allowing you to enjoy mild temperatures, top attractions and fun activities at wallet-friendly prices. Book a trip to these unexpectedly affordable destinations for an autumn retreat that won't break the bank.

Crete, Greece

Foodies looking for an affordable escape should look no further than Crete, where you can secure reduced rates and enjoy fewer tourist crowds (and pleasant temperatures in the 60s and 70s) in September and October. Delight in traditional Greek cuisine and specialties like loukoumades (think: Greek doughnut holes), before checking out natural attractions like Samaria Gorge in Chania, as well as the Palace of Knossos. Best of all, the U.S. dollar goes far against the euro, making Crete an ideal pick for price-conscious travelers.

Shackleford Banks, North Carolina

Camp out among wild horses at Shackleford Banks across from historic Beaufort in North Carolina. Rustic camping is offered on the beach, but keep in mind, permits are required for crowds of 25 or more. Travel to the Cape Lookout lighthouse or enjoy swimming, sailing, fishing, clamming and shelling. Ferry service is available to and from the island starting at $16 per adult.

Buenos Aires, Argentina

With the high value of the U.S. dollar against the Argentine peso, autumn is a great time to check out Buenos Aires (spring in the Southern Hemisphere), and enjoy strolling through the area's vibrant markets, shopping in San Telmo or Palermo or taking in the vibrant modern art murals across town. Another must is checking out the city's serene Rose Garden.

Newport, Rhode Island

Newport is a charming city by the sea. In Newport, you'll find reasonable prices and adorable spots to explore as the fall season winds down and wealthy tourists leave. Bundle up and explore the area shops and restaurants, minus the commercial tourist attractions in autumn. For a memorable, albeit indulgent experience, buy tickets to watch the Newport Nutcracker at the Rosecliff Mansion, which is a small splurge for getaway savings at around $85 per ticket for adults and $55 for children.

Bella Vista, Arkansas

Bella Vista is a popular place for snowbirds, but it’s also a yearly refuge for those who want to escape the daily grind and get back to nature. Streams and trails intertwine with the vibrant downtown areas, and hiking in Arkansas is a great way to relax in the fall. Stay in a B&B or camp alongside one of the many beautiful lakes in Bella Vista, including Lake Norwood and Lake Rayburn, to enjoy boating, fishing and swimming, among other activities.

Mazatlán, Mexico

The advantageous exchange rate against the peso makes Mazatlán a prime budget destination. Get away from popular tourist destinations and embrace an authentic and typically all-inclusive experience at top hotels like El Cid Marina Beach.

Abingdon, Virginia

Nestled in the Blue Ridge Mountains, Abingdon offers the chance to enjoy hiking and other outdoor activities, before catching a show at the Barter Theatre or exploring charming restaurants and shops in town. Bed-and-breakfasts like the White Birches Inn set high standards for comfort and convenience. Plus, you can easily secure affordable accommodations.

San Pedro, Belize

San Pedro on Ambergris Caye offers a variety of cost-effective accommodations that include perks such as local wines and bike rentals. When you're not checking out Mayan ruins or fascinating places along the barrier reef, such as the Great Blue Hole or Hol Chan Marine Reserve, take some time to check out the keel-billed toucans, jaguars, monkeys and other impressive animals at the Belize Zoo. Just keep in mind the rainy season lasts through mid-November, so check the weather forecast before you go and expect a few showers.

Marrakech, Morocco

Marrakech's colorful and chaotic streets, ancient medina and cultural gems lure visitors year-round. But fall is an especially attractive time to visit if you're on a budget. Stay in cost-effective yet luxurious hotels such as the Riad Yasmine, which is just blocks from the Musée de Marrakech, one of the famous souk markets.

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About En Route

Practical advice on the art of traveling smarter with tips, tricks and intel from En Route's panel of experts.

Contributors have experience in areas ranging from family travel, adventure travel, experiential travel and budget travel to hotels, cruises and travel rewards and include Amy Whitley, Claire Volkman, Holly Johnson, Marsha Dubrow, Lyn Mettler, Sery Kim, Kyle McCarthy, Erica Lamberg, Jess Moss, Sheryl Nance-Nash, Sherry Laskin, Katie Jackson, Erin Gifford, Roger Sands, Steve Larese, Gwen Pratesi, Erin Block, Dave Parfitt, Kacey Mya, Kimberly Wilson, Susan Portnoy, Donna Tabbert Long and Kitty Bean Yancey.

Edited by Liz Weiss.

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