By September, the summer crowds have mostly dispersed and it’s a wonderful time to be in Europe. Destinations like Malta and Italy have cooled down somewhat, making them more pleasant for exploring. For a real adventure, consider Namibia or Peru. Both are in their dry seasons, providing optimum conditions for wildlife spotting and exploring the many sights.
Below are our top picks for where to travel in September.
Warm days & cooler evenings
Let the landscapes do the talking in Namibia. Scale mighty sand dunes, have fun in the perspective-skewing salt pans of Sossusvlei and Deadvlei, or take a helicopter over the Skeleton Coast for a spine-tingling view of the shipwrecks and whale skeletons that line this treacherous stretch of sea. Or if you want a cultural immersion, visit the Himba tribe in Damaraland and learn about a way of life unchanged in generations. September is the peak of the dry season, making it the optimum time for spotting animals on safari.
Cooler weather, perfect for exploring
Malta is a rising star on the luxury travel scene, with the emergence over recent years of high-end gastronomy, sophisticated hotels and exclusive private experiences. Stroll the lively streets of Valletta flanked by chic cafés and bars. Explore the ‘silent city’ of Mdina, with its elaborate architecture and sleepy atmosphere. Soak up the island’s rugged coastline, where cobalt blue seas play host to a range of colourful marine life, or head out into the countryside for a rural adventure. The weather in Malta in September has cooled slightly and is more pleasant for exploring.
Warm, dry weather for soaking up all the sights
From the magnificent Inca ruins of Machu Picchu to the puzzling Nazca Lines, Peru is a land of wonder. Add to this towering Andean peaks, lush Amazon rainforest and eclectic cities and there is nothing this captivating country lacks. September is an ideal time to visit Peru, when conditions are dry and warm across the whole country and you can really soak up all the highlights. In the Amazon, the drier weather lends itself to a wilderness adventure. Get back to nature in this vast jungle, and you may even be lucky enough to spot caiman and tapirs.
Cooler weather and fewer crowds
In September, after the heat of the summer has died down, Italian cities come to life. Explore the streets of Rome by bicycle, stopping to throw a coin in the Trevi Fountain and sip an Aperol Spritz looking down over the Spanish Steps. Meander along picturesque canals in true Venetian style, on board a private gondola. Step back in time to the golden era of the Renaissance in Florence’s incredible museums and art galleries. Pick a city and pair it with a stay in the stunning countryside or on the coast for the ultimate Italian experience.
Komodo & Bali, Indonesia
Avoid the crowds by going in September
With peak season coming to an end and families returned to school, visiting Indonesia in September is ideal if you’re looking to beat the crowds. dreamy beaches, inspiring sunsets, diverse culture and the friendliest locals – Bali plays out all levels of life and captivates every heart of travellers that visit. Venture east of this beautiful island and visit the mighty Komodo Dragons in the only place to visit them in the wild, visit pink sandy beaches and dive through blue waters teeming with marine life.
You can see humpback whales off the coast
The exquisite coastline of Mozambique offers the chance to experience deserted golden sand beaches, sparkling turquoise waters rich in coral and marine life, as well as clusters of castaway islands. Days can be spent exploring the surrounding islands, picnics on private beaches, snorkelling in crystal clear waters, diving with manatees. Humpback whales can be seen off the coast at this time of year, making your holiday extra special. Mozambique is also close to safari hotspots so you can easily combine this tropical paradise with a thrilling safari.
Good time to see the Northern Lights
The epic landscapes of the Arctic are truly breathtaking; towering icebergs, tranquil fjords and untouched landscapes along with ancient communities and incredible wildlife. It's the ultimate bucket list destination for the adventure seeker, with ocean voyages taking you from Greenland to Alaska (and everywhere in between). The summer months from June to September are the best time to visit, and in some areas, you can enjoy almost 24 hours of daylight.
Greece is so much nicer when there are fewer crowds
Beat the post-summer blues and discover Greece's wonderful coastline while it's still hot. While away your days discovering this cultural melting pot where you can spend your days perusing colourful markets in Kos, ogling at spectacular scenery at Delphi and sampling mouthwatering cuisine wherever you go. Then settle by the turquoise seas of the Aegean, where lazy days by the ocean await, this is a destination for couples and perfect for an autumn break.
Warm & sunny
Peppering the Indian Ocean with a smattering of white sandy beaches, overwater stilted villas and five-star resorts, Seychelles has always been a castaway's paradise. It's still warm and sunny in September you so you can stretch out on sugar-white beaches or explore oceans teaming with kaleidoscopic fish and all manner of marine life. This destination is simply brilliant and utterly romantic, making Seychelles a must-visit at this time of year.
Temperatures are rising & flights are not too expensive
Temperatures are starting to warm up in South Africa so now's the time to head out to South Africa for a spot of adventure. This iconic country is home to mountain ranges, stunning beaches, national parks with amazing game viewing, the Winelands and of course, the vibrant city of Cape Town; this destination is a brilliant mix of cosmopolitan city life and big five safari adventure.