Fall is one of the best times of year to travel to Eastern Europe. The autumn weather maintains a touch of warmth, though the hottest days are left in the past. Rain is often more scarce than it is in springtime. Though nights can get chilly, the brisk air creates a perfect excuse to savor a hot meal near an outside heater on a restaurant terrace or find an inviting pub to relax in until it's time to return to the hotel. Mornings are refreshing, mist lingering over city-center waterways, the streets quiet while other travelers sleep in. If you're looking for a time to travel when the weather is most conducive to enjoying your trip and the crowds are less dense, autumn is the time to do it!
For many travelers who are able to visit the Czech Republic in the fall, Prague in September
has the most appeal. The number of visitors is reduced significantly during this time, though the potential for beautiful weather is still high. Those who travel during this month will find it possible to take day trips to nearby attractions without dealing with unpleasant weather. Strolls in the dusky evenings—especially on Castle Hill, where a view of the city's red rooftops and “thousand spires” can be seen—allow the city to be savored.
Fall in Budapest is all about the flavor of the city: enjoy a piping hot bowl of goulash soup to relish the Hungarian's special knack for paprika-seasoned dishes; sample wine at bars whatever the hour and gain an appreciation for this industry that is steadily growing despite setbacks of the past; and historic cafes serve up turn-of-the-century specialties that pair well with steaming cappuccinos.
Bratislava in AutumTravelers to Bratislava in the fall will be welcomed by vendors selling roasted chestnuts and coffeehouses with open doors. Though cold weather approaches, Bratislava carries on with a market selling local goods, and buskers will play for a few coins. Evening may call for attending a performance at the Slovak National Theater.
Krakow in AutumnKrakow in the fall months is an exciting time. Though some tourists remain, obtaining a seat at a restaurant on the main square is easy. Main Market Square stays lively with outdoor concerts and events, and students and tourists mix when evening falls. Visit Wawel Castle or shop at the Market Hall.
Warsaw in AutumnWarsaw's historic center is lovely in the golden light of fall evenings. Stroll in one of its parks or gardens to catch the last blooms of the season. Jazz, Jewish culture, and even circus arts are celebrated during the fall with seasonal festivals.
Moscow in AutumnVisit Moscow during September to enjoy the fading heat of summer. Outdoor attractions, such as Sparrow Hills, the Novodevichy Convent, and Red Square are pleasant to visit during the early fall season. Moscow's winter weather takes hold early, however, so if you travel towards the end of October or in November, prepare for temperatures that dip below freezing.
Ljubljana in AutumnLjubljana, Slovenia's capital city, will welcome you during the fall months. When chilly weather prevails, pop into one of the many charming cafes in the town's historic area, and warm up with a mug of hot coffee and a pastry. Alternatively, visit a museum or Ljubljana Castle to become more familiar with the city's history and cultural heritage.
Dubrovnik in AutumnTemperatures in Dubrovnik don't drop below 50 degrees Fahrenheit until December, so though you'll need a sweater or a jacket if you'll be doing sightseeing or strolling after dark, the weather remains mild. Enjoy walking the old town's walls or enjoy a glass of Croatian wine as the sun sets over the Pearl of the Adriatic.