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If capturing selfies with a colorful backdrop of fall foliage is what you’re after, there are some wonderful spots across the globe to do just that this year. Whether you want to travel near or far, to classic destinations in New England, Europe, or beyond, there’s sure to be a pick here that will inspire you to book. With the season just around the corner, you’ll want to do so now to avoid disappointment.
*Practice safe selfies. Be aware of your surroundings whether near wildlife, thermal areas, roads, or steep cliffs.
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One of the most famous regions to visit in Vermont, the Green Mountains of Vermont are transformed into glorious hues with violet-red pin cherry and yellow alder leaves along with blazing orange and red maple trees. The most vibrant shades of foliage can be found along the Green Mountain Byway that travels between Waterbury and Stowe, which makes a fantastic base for a stay in the area, dotted with charming villages and covered bridges that are sure to bring many great photo-ops.
While most people think of visiting botanical gardens in the spring, the Portland Japanese Garden, renowned as the most authentic Japanese gardens outside of Japan, may be best visited in autumn. That’s when this popular Portland garden boasts Japanese maples that turn into fiery shades of red and orange, which are reflected in the tranquil ponds and contrasted with native evergreens. Fall brings a true spectacle of color to its Natural Garden, but the Strolling Pond Garden, Tea Garden, Flat Garden and the Sand and Stone Garden, with pagodas, bridges and an authentic teahouse are worth visiting too.
Aspen is renowned for its brilliant display of, not surprisingly, aspens! The mountain town itself will be surrounded by impressive hues of golden bronze and dazzling yellows, but arguably the best spot for a selfie is at the Maroon Bells. You can drive there or catch the shuttle from Aspen to marvel at the jaw-dropping autumn colors with the jagged mountain peaks reflecting into the calm waters of the lake. There are miles and miles of trails in the area for hiking too.
The sight of the magnificent white Church of the Assumption, set atop a little craggy islet in the midst of sapphire-blue Lake Bled, draws visitors to Slovenia all year round. But in autumn, when golden foliage is set against the snow-capped Karavanke Alps, the scene is even more magical and perfect for a selfie. One of the top spots to take in the dazzling display is from medieval Bled Castle, which brings especially dramatic lake views and also hosts a number of scenic trails for hiking along the shore.
One of the most stunningly beautiful lakes in Italy, Lake Bries, or Lago di Braies, is part of the Fanes-Sennes-Braies nature park located in the heart of the dramatic Dolomites. It’s become a popular spot for Instagram selfies with its dazzling water in hues of deep emerald and aquamarine. In early autumn it may be even more jaw-dropping with vibrant foliage lining the shore. You can hike around it to enjoy various views of the soaring mountains above or rent a rowboat and enjoy a tranquil paddle.
If you like wildlife, you’ll love Nara. It’s famous for its Sika deer that roam the streets and wander into shops and restaurants. Nara Park is their primary home, and when autumn rolls around it’s the perfect time to capture photos of the animals as they walk around hoping visitors will feed them. With the park painted with thousands of brilliantly colored trees, it makes the perfect backdrop for any selfie too. While you’re there, you can also check out the museum that showcases Buddhist paintings, statues, ceremonial objects, ancient treasures and archaeological artifacts.
Montreal is covered with trees, bringing a blanket of vibrant hues in the fall. One of the best places to capture a selfie here with those dazzling hues is to head to its highest point, Mount Royal Park. From the entrance at Avenue des Pins and Rue Peel, you’ll be able to witness an array of fiery reds, brilliant yellow and orange maple, oak and pine trees.
Acadia National Park offers it all – you’ll find a myriad of fantastic spots for selfies, with everything from ocean to mountain backdrops. Climb or drive to the summit of Cadillac Mountain, the highest mountain on the North Atlantic seaboard for an especially epic view of it all from above. Renting a kayak and paddling around the shoreline is a great way to enjoy it from the water.
One of the most beautiful national parks, Grand Teton is amazing in the fall as the much less crowded neighbor of Yellowstone. It’s filled with abundant wildlife, including elk and moose along with awe-inspiring scenery that includes lush meadows, snow-capped mountains and beautiful lakes. Jenny Lake is its most famous and you’ll see it surrounded by aspen, willow and cottonwood trees that turn gorgeous shades of yellow and red from early September to mid-October, typically peaking around the third week of September.
Stanley Park offers an oasis of nature and it’s a top attraction in Vancouver. While a stroll along its 5.5-mile-long seawall is a must in every season, fall is an especially ideal time with the wonderfully fresh, crisp air and vibrant splashes of color that makes for a picturesque selfie backdrop. You’ll also enjoy views of Lions Gate Bridge, Burrard Inlet, the North Shore Mountains, and downtown Vancouver along with landmarks like the 32-million-year-old Siwash Rock that rises from the water and the “Girl in a Wetsuit,” a modern-day mermaid sculpture.
Summer brings thick crowds to Croatia’s Plitvice Lakes National Park with its cascading falls and surreal aquamarine pools that make it look like something out of a storybook, absolutely irresistible for selfies. But in autumn, those crowds have faded away and the changing leaves create an especially magnificent scene that may be even more ideal. Walk the wooden boardwalks winding through the streams and lakes which reflect the foliage of the surrounding trees for some of the best shots.