Sceneries at Jiuzhaigou, Nikko, Nami, Nepal or Bright are much more dreamlike and charming in the autumn. From Asia to Australia, these five attractions are among the best places to check-in, explore and enjoy the beautiful images of autumn. Let’s discover top 5 most beautiful fall foliage destinations in Asia & Australia below.
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Namiseom Island (Nami Island), South Korea
If you are a fan of the drama Winter Sonata, you should not miss visiting Namiseom island should you everset foot in South Korea. On this island, a famous love story of Min-Hyeong and Yoo-Jin was been written and this is where couples often visit to relax in the fresh air and peaceful space. This tiny half-moon shaped island is about 50km from Seoul city center. Its name originated from General Nami, who died at the age of 28 after being falsely accused of treason during the reign of King Sejo, the seventh king of the Joseon Dynasty of Korea.
The most famous place on Namiseom island are the lines of ginkgo trees along Metasequoia street. At the end of autumn, ( the end of October and the beginning of November), the ginkgo forest will change their colour to yellow, creating a charming scene.
In addition, Baekpungmilwon garden is also a favourite place on the island. It includes more than 300 red maple trees and some friendly wild animals such as squirrels, rabbits, ducks, ostriches and other birds.
If you like adventures, you can visit Namiseom by ZipWire, an eco-friendly leisure facility. When you come to the area by the Han river in Chuncheon, find the highest tower, which is the ZipWire tower. At the price of KRW 38,000 (including return coach), you can start from an 80-meter-high tower and zoom down along a wire cable to the island. Here, you can witness the Han river from the air. After the “A day and a half” program broadcasted on KBS channel, an large number of visitors often register for ZipWire, so it’s wise to book in advance before you visit this place.
If you have more time after coming back from Namiseom island, you can drop by Petite France village, about 25 minutes from the wharf by bus (Gapyeong Tour Bus). The village, imitates the description in Le Petit Prince, a novel written by Saint-Exupery, with striking pastel buildings, galleries, museums and European souvenirs.
+ Climate: The temperature in autumn in Korea is about 5 – 12 degree Celcius.
+ Note: Visitors start to visit Namiseom island after 10:30a.m. If you come earlier, you can take many more beautiful photos. If you would like to stay overnight, you can book a hotel around the central lake.
+ Transportation: From Seoul, you can take an underground to Mangwoo, and then take another tram to Gapyeong station. After that, take a bus or taxi to Namiseom wharf.
Nikko town is the gate to a national park near Tokyo with many mountains, lakes, waterfalls, hot springs, pagodas and shrines. The autumn in this region often lasts longer than other areas because the mountain trees of different heights will change their colours at different intervals. Toshogu Shrine, a famous structure in Nikko, features a wooden architectural style, scattered with golden items on the green forest behind it making the whole area a picturesque scene.
The best place to view the yellow foliage in Nikko is Okunikko around Chuzenji lake. This area is most beautiful at the end of October, when the tree forests around the lake change to yellow. Visitors can go hiking, bathe in the hot spring in Yumoto Onsen, or visit the two most famous waterfalls, Kegon and Ryuzu.
Don’t miss Kegon waterfall at a height of 100m as it is ranked as one of three most beautiful waterfalls in Japan. Meanwhile, Ryuzu, also known as “dragon head”, waterfall is more imposing in autumn when the surrounding trees on both sides turn color to yellow and red to appear as fires surrounding a dragon body.
+ Transportation: From Tokyo, you can take shinkansen speed train to Utsunomiya and then transfer to JR Nikko to Nikko.
+ Recommendations: At Nikko town, you can wander around pagodas and shrines, and then take a bus to Chuzenjiko Onsen near Chuzenji lake.
Bright Town, Australia
About 4 hours from Melbourne by car, the small village of Bright is regarded as the best place to enjoy autumn in Victoria, Australia. In autumn, trees in this region change to different colors from green and yellow to orange and red.
During April and May, the town hosts Bright Autumn Festival over 10 days to showcase specialties of the highlands in Australia, including cheese, honey, wine and fruit jam.
There are many other interesting activities to be found during autumn in Bright. Visitors can visit private lovely gardens, only opened for several days of the year, or pick up chestnuts at the local farms. You should put on gloves to pick up chestnuts because newly-fallen nuts often covered in thorns. You can uncover them and cook them in a myriad of ways.
For its location far away from Melbourne, Bright is like a hidden gem to tourists, but a popular destination of locals.
+ Transportation: From Melbourne, Australians often drive along M31 or B300 national roads to Bright and then stay one or two nights to enjoy the peaceful ambiance of the countryside.
+ Recommendations: If you don’t have much time, you can enjoy the autumn in the Royal Botanic Gardens in Melbourne. However, the leaves here often change their colors in May or June.
Autumn (from the middle of September to the end of November) is the best time to visit Nepal, especially for those who love trekking. After the rainy season, the sky is clear and the air is fresh revealing mountains. From Kathmandu, you can follow the Annapurna Circuit or the Kathmandu Valley path to Nepal. You can even take an adventure by exploring the way to Everest Base Camp. On the way here, you can view the mighty Himalayas and experience Sherpa culture by coming to roadside monasteries.
If you ever visit Nepal, you must visit Chitwan national park. If you are lucky, you will have a chance to see one-horn rhinos, deer, monkeys or even Bengal tigers. In addition, Pakhara valley is famous for its green meadows, terraced fields, Amapurna mountain range and Fish Tail peak.
+ Activities: Spend the last day in your journey to explore local markets, Buddha and Hindu temples in Kathmandu. Other attractions include Boudhanath, the biggest stupa in Nepal; Pashupatinath temple; and Lumbini, the birthplace of the Lord Buddha and the Buddhist pilgrimage site in Nepal from the 3rd B.C.
It is said that if there should be wonderlands on the earth, Jiuzhaigou must be one of them. This attraction, which includes 108 marvelous lakes and waterfalls, is located among snowy mountains with many famous places that used to appear in many movies. This place is named Jiuzhaigou because it has 9 villages of Tibetan people.
This destination is fantastic in autumn, when the maple and birch trees change their colors, creating sparkling leaf patterns shading in turquoise water. Wuhua lake is a highlight of Jiuzhaigou with its eloquent water in the wild mountain; Luwei lake with a cool flow in the canebrakes or the pristine Zhenzhu waterfall, which is the junction of streams from the height of 2,700m making hundreds of small falls flowing like a huge curtain.
+ Transportation: You can fly to Jiuzhai Huanglong Airport from Chengdu, Dongqing, Xian, Beijing, Shanghai or Hangzhou. Then, take a bus to Jiuzhaigou in just 90 minutes. The ticket price to the site is 220 renminbi and the bus price to tour around the site is 90 renminbi.
+ World’s heritage site: Jiuzhaigou was recognized as a world’s natural heritage site by UNESCO in 1992.