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Autumn comes around every year. The dates never change, but you can change how you experience it. Instead of watching the leaves fall from your window, go jump in them. Maybe, in place of looking at the world from the usual ground-level, go view the landscapes from the sky in your very own hot air balloon. See if you can find your way out of the world’s biggest corn maze. Be a bird-watcher. There are so many ways to see, drink in and explore the world, and there’s no better time to do it than autumn. Here are 19 trips to put on your fall bucket list:

Related: San Francisco is the best U.S. city in autumn and here’s why…

Pumpkin Village in Pecan Grove, Texas

Pumpkin Village in Dallas, Texas | Flickr CC: Janesa

Pumpkin Village: Dallas, TX

What has 90,000 pumpkins, was named one of “America’s Best Pumpkin Festivals” and was also named “One of the World’s 15 Most Breathtaking Gardens”? The one-acre Pumpkin Village at Autumn at the Arboretum in Dallas, Texas, of course! From September 17–November 23, experience “The Art of the Pumpkin.”

Oktoberfest USA: La Crosse, WI

Clink a couple of beer steins together with your compadres and say cheers at this ebullient Midwest beer fest happening September 29-October 2 in Charming La Crosse, Highlights include the Festmaster Ball (and subsequent crowning of the new Festmaster and Frau!), a Lederhosen Luncheon, an Oktoberfest Medallion Hunt, a Craft Beer Hunt and the consumption of lots of pretzels!

Sky Top Orchard apple picking: Flat Rock, NC

Atop mesmerizing Mt. McAlpine in Flat Rock, North Carolina sits ripe, panoramic views of 100 acres of fruits and vegetables. You’re in for more than just a delicious bite of fun with trails into the bamboo forest, apple cider, pumpkins, a barnyard full of peacocks, sheep, goats, turkeys and more. Gobble up the magic!

Open House New York: New York, NY

This. Is. A. Must. For one entire weekend in October, normally off-limits historic buildings, architectural masterpieces, renowned landmarks and various attractions all over NYC open their doors to the public. Go for a snoop; stay for the culture.

corn maze at Richardson Adventure Farm

Photo courtesy of Richardson Adventure Farm

World’s Biggest Corn Maze: Spring Grove, IL

No surprise here. The world’s biggest corn maze is in Illinois, at Richardson Adventure Farm in Spring Grove to be exact. The a-maze-ing Star Trek design across 33 acres of live corn will be a challenge for even the most well-traversed corn maze extraordinaire.

Most entertaining 5K race: Windsor, VT

Lace up your running shoes (no walking allowed) on Sunday, October 9 for the Harpoon Octoberfest Road Race in Windsor, Vermont. When the race concludes,Harpoon Octoberfest begins! So keep your legs movin’ with nonstop live oompah music and chicken dancing. See incredible views of Vermont’s upper valley in the peak of foliage season. Indulge on cake, bratwurst, and of course barrels upon barrels of freshly brewed Harpoon beer.

Collegiate football game and tailgate

Saturday nights at LSU’s Tiger Stadium in Baton Rouge are unlike anything else in college football. Holding over 102,000 screaming fans and rivals, it’s a sight and sound you have to actually experience to believe. And it’s a little known fact that the majority of Tiger’s fans get to the stadium at least 5 hours before game time to get the tailgate going, so it’s really a day-long party.

Hot air balloon ride over Napa Valley

Hot air balloon ride over Napa Valley | Flickr CC: Ali Hamden

Most scenic hot air balloon ride

Picturesque Yountville is the launch site of Napa Valley Aloft hot-air balloon rides. Soar above the green rolling hills and ripe vineyards as you take in views that reach all the way to San Francisco and the Sierras.

Chili Fest: Chicago, IL

The finest chili vendors converge for a delectable showcase October 17 and 18 in Chicago‘s River North neighborhood. Go for the variety of gourmet chili, stay for the variety of gourmet chili, then eat some more chili. Plus, watch the weekend’s best football games, like Michigan State vs. University of Michigan. Choose from the Chili Sampling Package, Tailgate Drink Package and Ultimate Combo Package. Then eat another bowl of chili.

Most full-bodied fall winery: Dundee, OR

If you like pinot noir, you’ll love Panther Creek Cellars in Dundee, Oregon. This winery boasts one of Oregon’s most established pinot noir producers, and every sip expresses the personality of the vineyard. Prepare yourself for a full-bodied, start to finish experience.

The Kills at the CMJ Music Marathon

The Kills at the CMJ Music Marathon | Flickr CC: Steven Pisano

CMJ Music Marathon: New York, NY

Boundless beats. A gaggle of gigs. 1,400+ live performances over five sublime days throughout effervescent Manhattan and Brooklyn. Exact festival dates are tbd, but you can bet on a Tues-Sat in mid-October.

Bird Fest: Coral Gables, FL

Fairchild’s Bird Festival in Coral Gables, Florida offers activities for the whole family—birders and non-birders alike—including an amateur bird photo contest, photo exhibit, educational activities, and tours of bird habitats. Leave with a bird-attracting plant and a new affinity for the species.

Movies In The Park, LALA Style: Los Angeles, CA

ScreamJurassic ParkThe Addams FamilyEdward Scissorhands. See the classics as you gorge on grub from trendy food trucks, dance to live beats and enjoy surprise visits from special tbd guests at well-known parks like Eagle Rock Rec Park, Victory Park in Pasadena and Pointsettia Rec Park in West Hollywood.

View from Old Rag Mountain

View from Old Rag Mountain | Flickr CC: Karen Blaha

Toughest, most gratifying fall hike: Shenandoah National Park, VA

Lace up the hiking boots and head to Old Rag Mountain in Shenandoah National Park, Virginia. Not for novice hikers, this rugged, steep, winding 9-mile circuit will welcome you with 360-degree views of Shenandoah National Park’s picture-perfect 200,000 protected acres. In the vivid bright orange, gold, yellow and red autumn palette, this wondrous place truly comes alive.

The Taste: Los Angeles, CA

Hosted in Los Angeles, The Taste is a four-day foodie extravaganza—the first of its kind for the city! Head to the City of Angels for a series of tastings, cooking demos, seminars and meet and greets with the hottest names in gastronomy, held in iconic hotspots like the Paramount Pictures Back Studio Lot. When it comes to mingling and chowing down, there’s nowhere else you’d rather be.

Harvest on the Harbor: Portland, ME

A gallivant to Maine in the fall? No brainer. From October 20–23, dine on Maine’s finest locally sourced foods created by top chefs, and other a-Maine-zing Maine-made goodies, like brews and vinos. Check out the tastings and the live music at this authentic extravaganza in Main’s largest city.

New England Fall Foliage

New England Fall Foliage | Flickr CC: Anthony Quintano

Fall foliage sightseeing tour: New England

Watch the vibrant fall colors come to life on this day-long guided tour through the New England countryside. Through the quaint Massachusetts and New Hampshire towns you can see a variety of  taverns, farms, apple orchards and even babbling brooks, all set against a stunning backdrop of vivacious fall hues. Bring the nice camera for this one.

Italian Film Festival: Miami Beach, FL

Nope, not in Italy. In Miami Beach, Florida. The event begins poolside at the Opening Night Party at the Delano Hotel. Watch the 10 best films of the past year by day, and party at the hottest Miami Beach clubs by night.

Pilgrimage Music& Cultural Festival: Franklin, Tennessee

In Franklin, Tennessee on September 24 and 25, listen to the sweet stylings of Beck, Cake, Better Than Ezra, Preservation Hall Jazz Band, Kasey Musgraves, Daryl Hall & John Oates and over 35 more musical acts. The rolling hills, natural amphitheaters and breathtaking vistas of the 230-acre farm make this music festival magical.

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Jenna Pfeifer

Jenna Pfeifer

Jenna Pfeifer is a writer during the day, and a juggling, soccer-playing, songwriting songstress by night. Yes, she has a master juggling certificate and tried out for American Idol.

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