Visiting the biggest continent in autumn poses a challenge to insatiable travelers because the choices are so numerous we can barely wrap our heads around it. The list of the best places to travel in October in Asia could go on forever but for the sake of keeping it simple, here are the ultimate tops with the weather, trip ideas, and things to do included.
What Weather Can You Expect in Asia in October
Being that enormous (almost 45 million km²), Asia has an incredibly diverse climate pattern. It reaches the equator on one side and stretches all the way to the northern belt on the other while some of its areas protrude into the tropics. In other words, Asia has every possible climate there is.
Even if you do get caught up in the rain, the chances are those will be just short outbursts and not the boring all-day drizzles. After the rain season, the weather stabilizes, the typhoons wear off, and you have average temperatures from 73°F to 82 °F. Although the temperatures vary from region to region, you can mostly expect them to be anywhere between 46.2 – 66 °F (Beijing) and 90.7 F – 76.6 °F (Bangkok).
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Best Places to Travel in October in Asia
Asia comprises almost 50 countries. It comes as no surprise that the number of attractive destinations exceeds all expectations. Still, the weather in October excludes a fair deal of them, simply because the temperatures are way too low, with frequent showers and downpours. Some of the islands in Southeast Asia still remain relatively warm but Vietnam, Thailand, and Cambodia are not that good to visit at this time of year. On the other hand, China, Japan, India, and Indonesia present October travelers with a wide range of destinations that cater to all tastes and preferences.
1. Kyoto, Japan
The autumn foliage brings a special kind of atmosphere to Kyoto. The maple trees burst with color and the centuries of rich Japanese history live up to their fame. Kyoto is one of the cities that sustained absolutely no damage during WWII, which is why it’s so wonderfully preserved. Bamboo forests, kimono-clad geishas, ornate temples, and just the right amount of urban life make up for a unique mixture of the bygone times and the present.
Things to do: If your visit to Kyoto happens to be in October, make sure to visit the iconic Fushimi Inari-Taisha Shrine, Kinkakuji Temple, and watch out for your bag in Monkey Park Iwatayama as these playful sneaky animals won’t hesitate to snatch your possessions in search for something tasty.
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2. Nara, Japan
Nara is a city straight out of a fairytale and it takes no more than an hour to get there, either from Osaka and Kyoto. What makes this city so special is the fact that 1 000 deer live side by side with Nara’s residents, roaming freely and enjoying all the privileges worthy of such majestic animals. In addition to this, Nara is home to some of Japan’s oldest temples and there are dozens of them. When autumn comes, the city splashes with vibrant colors, creating a picture-perfect setting for unforgettable memories.
Things to do: Feed the deer, explore Kasuga-Teisha Shrine and Kofuku-ji Temple, or pay a visit to Nara National Museum.
3. Mount Fuji, Japan
The tallest mountain in Japan is, by far, one of the country’s biggest landmarks and the perfect time to see it in all its glory is in autumn. Though fairly close to Tokyo, it’s still not easily visible year-round. In October, however, you will be able to catch sight of this majestic giant and if you’re an early bird, the chances are even higher. October mornings tend to be bright and there aren’t any clouds wrapped around the mountain, preventing you from admiring it.
Things to do: Admire Mt Fuji from the nearby Lake Kawaguchiko, climb the top of the mountain and soak up the spectacular view, or peep at the snowy top from Arakurayama Sengen Park.
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4. Jiuzhaigou, China
The natural splendors of China live up to their full potential in the valley of Jiuzhaigou. Tucked between the mountains of Nanping, Songpan, and Pingwu, this magical valley is home to nine Tibetan villages and an incredible diversity of lakes and waterfalls, all of which look ethereal in the fall. For this reason, the national park of Jiuzhaigou was declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site. On top of that, it is here that you can visit Panda Breeding and Research Center and admire the lovely gentle giants from up close.
Things to do: Get up close with the cute pandas, visit the largest lake in the valley – Xiniu Lake, feel the watery air at Shuzheng Waterfall, and take a walk among the dozens of lakes known for their vibrant colors and otherwordly surroundings.
5. Guilin, China
Hugged by the calm waters of the Li River from one side and set against the most dramatic landscapes from the other, the city and prefecture of Guilin is a no-miss in October. Perhaps the most remarkable trait of this entire region are the hills or karsts comprising dolomite rocks and limestone. This peculiar and unique scenery dates back to ancient history, and some caves even contain scriptures from 729 AD. Seeing these majestic geographical features from afar is a captivating experience, particularly in autumn.
Things to do: Take a river cruise and admire the sights of the city, don’t miss a visit to a tea plantation for all the tea in China, or explore the cascading rice terraces.
6. Tibet, China
Can you think of a better way to revel in the hues of autumn than watching them from the roof of the world? Indeed, Tibet is a place like no other. The sanctity and serenity of this spellbinding place far away in the Himalayas have been attracting tourists who want to unravel the secrets of the spirituality of Buddhist monks and pay a visit to some of the most sacred monuments in China.
Things to do: Lhasa, Tibet’s cultural capital, is a wonderful place to explore in October. There, you can walk around the imposing fortress of Potala, the temple of Jokhang, or the palace of Norbulingka.
7. Silk Road, China
This road is almost as old as China itself. 2 000 years ago, it used to connect today’s Xi’an (Sian) and Ancient Rome. With almost 2 500 kilometers half of which wound through the territory of China, there are so many attractions that have miraculously withstood the ravages of time.
Things to do: Revere the timeless Terracotta Warriors, visit the Great Mosque of Xi’an, Hukou Waterfalls on the Yellow River, and Jiayuguan Pass along the Great Wall of China.
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8. Goa, India
India tends to be crowded as December approaches so visiting it any time before this month is great, especially in October. The temperatures are just right to take a dip at the beach or even enjoy an abundance of water sports, including parasailing, boat rides, and jet skiing.
Things to do: Many music festivals and cultural events take place in Goa in October, such as the celebration of Mahatma Gandhi’s birthday on October 2nd, Oktoberfest, and Vintage Bike and Car festival. Make sure not to miss the splendors of Old Goa, with numerous churches, shrines, and museums holding the relics of the past times.
9. Bali, Indonesia
Bali enthralls tourists year-round but October brings special conveniences. It’s out of the peak season which means you will have the chance to bask in the white-sand beaches without too many people around. You can get a great bargain on the hotel rates and spend your Bali nights at the numerous festivals taking place in October.
Things to do: Nusa Penida Festival, Bali Heritage Food Festival, and Nusa Dua Fiesta spark the festive spirit on the island, with colorful displays and sounds of music coming from all directions. You can also take a dip at the Kuta Beach, see the iconic Pura Ulun Danu temple, or explore Bali’s artistic world at Agung Rai Museum.
10. Pattaya, Thailand
October is the time when visitors should steer away from Bangkok and instead, head for Pattaya. Not only does this picturesque fishing village offer some amazing stretches of coast and sunbathing opportunities but you can also experience the Thai nightlife at its finest.
Things to do: Nong Nooch Tropical Botanical Garden, Jomtien Beach, Sriracha Tiger Zoo, and ziplining at Flight of the Gibbon are only some of Pattaya’s unmissable attractions. Nightlife in Pattaya is definitely worth the experience too, especially if you visit the Walking Street.
Looking at this list of the best places to travel in October in Asia, it seems like this is the perfect time to start packing your suitcases. October is knocking on your door and urging you to explore this magnificent continent.