England in Autumn is amazing. You can find great foliage and fall vibes. Let me show you all of the very best places to experience Autumn in England. If you’re looking for cheaper trips, foliage, romantic experiences and lesser crowded attractions than this is the destination for you.
Autumn is the shoulder season in England, so the rates will be better, and the weather only slightly cooler. Because England is quieter in the Autumn, you’ll get to see more and really enjoy the seasonal spirit. Let us show you some of the most beautiful places in England to visit on your fall vacation.
OUR GUIDE TO ENGLAND IN AUTUMN
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What you need to know about exploring England in Autumn
The UK in Autumn is still warm in early Autumn. It’s the perfect time to enjoy the shoulder season without the prices and the crowds. If you want to see beautiful foliage however, you’ll need to come later in the season. Prepare to rug up as winter approaches and plan your itinerary with shorter daylight hours in mind.
When it comes to October holiday destinations, England has that perfect combination of temperate weather and beautiful fall leaves. Whether you’re enjoying autumn in London or in the country side, you’re in for a beautiful experience.
1. Enjoy a pop of colour in the Cotswolds
The quaint stone villages and beautiful countryside make the Cotswolds one of the prettiest places to enjoy Britain in Autumn. Villages such as The Slaughters and Stowe-on-Wold come alive with ivy lined walls burning red.
Make sure to stroll through a churchyard or two. The combination of a misty morning, amber leaves and ancient stone building is magical.
The Cotswolds is one of the prettiest places to take an Autumn walk. Blenheim Palace is the perfect place to explore and crunch fall leaves underfoot.
2. A trip in England in Autumn would be incomplete without punting in Cambridge
Cambridge is beautiful year-round. In autumn however it transforms into one of the most magical places to experience Autumn in England.
Stroll through the laneways and warm up with a pot of tea (or pint) in a local pub before getting ready to punt.
An experienced punt operator is the best option in Autumn.
It’s fall too cold to risk falling in! Take note of the brilliant red ivy that lines the buildings. Weeping willows glow in shades of yellow and orange. Punt a little closer to the shore for a good look. It’s one of the most beautiful places in England to visit and one of the best day trips from London.
LET’S PUNT | Prebook your punting tour here
3. Rug up and enjoy the beach to yourself in York
Fall foliage is king, but why not mix it up with a trip to the beach? The summer crowds have packed up and long expansive beaches like those in York are perfect for an autumnal walk.t
Walk down the sea wall at Bridlington to the beach. When the tide is out, the sand stretches for miles. Unlike Beachy Head and other beaches on the South Coast of England, Yorkshire has stunning sandy shores.
Autumn brings wales and porpoises to the York Coast. Boat tours run from Staithes and allow you to get up close.
If you’d prefer to head a little further inland, the moors come alive with heather. It is a purple haze as far as the eye can see. Autumn is apple harvest season and the perfect time to enjoy a cider. Try it warm and spiced to warm up post exploration!
Whilst you’re in the area
READ | Our guide to Bridlington – a pretty seaside town in York
READ | Plan your trip and visit England’s most beautiful cathedrals (hint, one’s in York!)
4. Immerse yourself in beautiful foliage at Bedgebury Pinetum
A pinetum is a botanic garden that focuses specifically on conifers. Bedgebury Pinetum is one of the largest of its kind in the world. Despite focussing on conifers it also has a large range of deciduous trees.
Instead of a hike, why not bike ride through the autumnal foliage? The park features miles of gravel paths perfect for all ability levels. When the fall foliage is at its peak it’s absolutely stunning riding through a canopy of red. It’s a bucket list place to experience Autumn in England and one of the prettiest days out in Kent.
There is an onsite cafe, lake and easy parking. Bedgebury Pinetum is located in Kent. It’s an easy drive from London and there is plenty of parking.
5. COSY UP IN AN OAST HOUSE IN RYE 5. Cosy up in an oast house in Rye
An Oast House is a traditional building that is found in Kent. They were traditionally used to store hops. These days many are converted into homes and uniquely one in to a hotel!
A big day out enjoying Autumn in England must end with cosy accommodation. There’s nothing quite like a roundel room (a round room in the heart of the oast building) to tuck in for the night.
Playden Oasts Hotel in Rye is close to Bedgebury Pinetum and also the coast. Why not combine a walk along the sandy Camber Sands beach with your stay. It’s the ultimate Autumn minibreak vacation.
Plan your visit
WHAT: Playden Oasts Hotel and Restaurant
WHERE: Rye Road, Playden, Rye TN31 7UL
READ | Our post on staying at the Playden Oasts Hotel in Rye
BOOK | Spoil yourself with a night in the Roundel Room at the Playden Oasts Hotel
Enjoy Autumn leaves in London
6. Stroll through St James’s Park
Spending Autumn in London is the ultimate fall experience. Start with a stroll through St James’s Park. It’s right near Buckingham Palace and the perfect place to spot squirrels.
The park is full of deciduous trees at at 57 acres in size (23ha) – there is plenty to explore.
St James’s park is in the city of Westminster in central London. Best of all its very close to Windsor Castle and the Horse Guard Parade. Get off at Victoria station if you are taking the train.
7. Rug up and explore beautiful Hyde Park
Hyde Park is a must see London attraction regardless of the time of year. In Autumn, however, it is a great place to see beautiful autumn leaves.
Hyde Park is the largest of the four royal parks that form a chain around Kensington Palace. It spans 350 acres (140 ha) and features many paths lined with deciduous trees.
Take a seat on one of the iconic black wrought iron benches or talk a walk around the lake. The large number of deciduous trees means that you will be in for a spectacular display of colour no matter which area of the park you’re visiting.
8. See the flaming red maples at Hamstead Heath
Head 30 minutes north of London to see the incredible maple planting at Hampstead Heath. Known for their flaming red leaves, Hampstead Heath is a unique place to experience Autumn in London.
Known locally as ‘the Heath”, the park spans an impressive 790 acres (320ha). A combination of woodland and meadows, at just 5 miles north of the city, it is a haven from the hustle and bustle.
To get there, take the train from St Pancras station. If you prefer you can also catch a bus.
9. Take a walk along the Thames
Take a walk along the Thames. Its the perfect place to spot iconic sights like Big Ben framed in an autumnal leaf frame. Towards November the sky lights up with fireworks to celebrate Guy Fawkes Day. It’s simply unmissable.
Additionally, many of the Christmas lights are turned on in early November. Celebrating Christmas in London is a truly unforgettable experience.
Plan your visit
READ| Our comprehensive London itinerary to plan your stay
BOOK | A London Hop on Off Bus in advance to see the best sites easily!
PLAN | Visit late Autumn and experience the London Christmas lights
READ | Discover the best things to do in London at Christmas
10. Spot the deer at Richmond Park
Richmond Park is a protected nature reserve and its just 10 miles south west of London. Located in the Borough of Richmond, it is around one hour from London by public transport or road.
What makes Richmond Park special is that it supports a large range of rare species including fungi, birds, beetles, bats, grasses and wildflowers. What most people visit for though is the deer.
Deer run free in the reserve and autumn is their rutting season. This is when the males rough and tumble in order to gain favour of the females. It is a spectacular site to see. Remember to give the deer plenty of space and adhere to deer safety protocols.
11. Experience Bondfire night in Lewes – An essential England Autumn experience
Whilst London celebrates Guy Fawkes Day, there’s no celebration like Lewes. Lewes is the home of Bonfire Night and the village in which you’ll see the best parades and celebrations.
Lewes is on the Brighton and Eastbourne lines, so easily accessed from London. Additionally, it is around 1 hour’s drive from Rye and the Bedgebury Pinetum.
Arrive early to get a great spot to watch the parades. There are multiple vantage points throughout the town, so there is plenty to see. It’s a unique fall experience in England that you surely won’t forget.
The ancient township of Lewes is also very beautiful. It is the location of Anne of Cleves house (one of Henry VIII’s wives), a castle and beautiful traditional stone buildings. Arrive during daylight to explore. Festivities start at sunset.
Whilst you’re in the area
READ | Come back to the region in winter to experience the nearby Burning of the Clocks festival in Brighton
12. Escape on a narrowboat
As the temperature cools down, Autumn is the perfect time to rug up and set off on a narrowboat getaway.
Imagine waking up on a crisp morning with ducks and swans for company. Autumn is a great time for getting back to nature. From birds picking winter berries to animals preparing their winter haul – there’s plenty to see.
Narrowboats are usually equipped with heating – some even log heaters – so you’ll be warm and comfortable.
If you’re new to narrow boating, look for a route without locks. Anglo Welsh Ltd offer a great route in Birmingham great for beginners.
More reasons to experience Autumn in England
In addition to the many beautiful places that you can enjoy Autumn in England, there are also many events to enjoy.
Halloween is widely celebrated in England and is great fun. Partake in some trick or treating or enjoy the decorations. Autumn is traditionally harvesting time in England. Enjoy apples, cider and delicious food at this time of plenty before the winter.
The fall is a time to cosy up and explore without the bite of winter. It’s the perfect time to visit England.