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50 Reasons Fall Is Our Favorite Season Ever

Leaves are cool and all, but can we also get a holler for fewer mosquito bites, new seasons of TV, and no more bikini line maintenance? Fall. Is. The. Best.

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Fall is here

Summer is coming to an end and all things fall are starting to pick up. The temperature is cooling down, the leaves are changing color, and the school year has just begun. Read on to discover other reasons that fall is our favorite season ever. Also, make sure you do these 50 things to get your home ready for fall.

Three caramel apples with nuts against rustic woodjenifoto/Getty Images

Dipping caramel apples

Whoever came up with the idea to dip one of the tastiest fruits in one of the yummiest candies was a genius. Start simple with the humble caramel apple or go all out with layers of peanut butter, candy, cookies, toffee, nuts, and other goodies. The only hard and fast rule? You must use tart Granny Smith apples. Only heathens dip red delicious. Quick, while you still have time, these are the things you need to do before fall.

dad and son use mosquito spray.Spraying insect repellent on skin outdoorElizaveta Galitckaia/Shutterstock

No more itchy bug bites

Mosquitoes, biting gnats, ticks, and other pesky bugs can make being outside in the summer downright miserable but dropping temps drop those pests fast. You can finally enjoy your backyard bonfire without slapping yourself (and others) like a maniac. We can’t get enough of these gorgeous fall pictures.

family enjoying a hay ride in autumnDavid Prahl/Shutterstock

Hayrides (haunting optional)

Not many sensations say “fall” more than the familiar bumping of a wagon along a dirt path with a puttering tractor in front. Whether you’re heading for a pumpkin patch, getting spooked in the dark, or just taking a ride around a field, a hayride is a must for the fall! These are the best places to spot fall foliage in America.

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Gaining an hour of sleep

Sure, November’s end of daylight savings might be a bummer because it means it gets darker earlier, but on the bright side (so to speak), we all get to sleep for an extra hour! Plus, it’s a great time to get a little extra me time in the morning, when you’re not waking up in the pitch dark. Here’s why Americans say “fall” instead of “autumn.”

Elevated View of Family of Three Lying in a TentAndersen Ross/Getty Images

It’s the best time to go camping

Summer camping can be a blast too, of course. But there’s nothing like camping in the fall—you’ll encounter fewer bugs, as well as the cool, crisp feeling of waking up in a tent on a chilly morning. Plus, one of the best parts of camping is getting cozy in front of a crackling fire with some blankets, and who wants to do that during the summer? Even if you don’t live in an area where the trees turn beautiful colors, fall is the best time for a camping trip! If you want to take a road trip too, check out our ultimate American road trip guide.

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It’s also a great time to travel, period

Sure, summer and vacations are pretty much synonymous. True, school vacations are in winter and spring. But don’t let that deter you from planning a getaway in fall—it’s actually one of the best times to travel! You’ll find lower fares and less crowded destinations, not to mention all these other great reasons you should take a fall vacation

Clouse up image couple in love legs in comfortable laser shoes and denim pantsSoloviova Liudmyla/Shutterstock

Hair removal needs go way down

Whether it’s your bikini line, your back carpet, or just your legs, chances are you feel like you have to do a little “landscaping” before you can wear your favorite summer swimsuit or outfit. Well, drop the razor, tweezers, and wax because we have great news for you: In the fall no one will ever know how furry you are, much less care! These are the best socially distanced weekend trips for fall.

A cozy reading nook in the fall with a blanket and coffeeMundusImages/Getty Images

Warm days, cool nights

On the one hand, fall weather can be frustratingly variable, making you feel like you need to wear half your closet to survive the temperature swings. But on the other hand, it’s kind of the best of both winter and summer. You get to enjoy beautiful, warm days outdoors and then snuggle up on the couch during chilly evenings. Check out the best places to see New England fall foliage.

Led TV on TV stand in empty room with white brick wall. decorate in loft style.JTaI/Shutterstock

Watching your favorite spooky movies

Whether you prefer fun family-friendly classics like these great Halloween movies for kids or scream-inducing terror-fests like the scariest movies of all time, there’s nothing like gathering friends and family for the spook-tacular time that is a fall movie night.

Autumn. Multicolored fallen leaves.Timofey Zadvornov/Getty Images

Putting away the lawnmower

Unless you live in a place with a year-round warm climate, fall gives you official permission to let your lush, green lawn and garden turn brown. It’s fine! It’s how it prepares for winter! And you’re free from mowing and weeding it every week, plus you save on water bills. That doesn’t mean fall scenery isn’t gorgeous, however. Check out the most stunning photos of fall across America.

Family look clothe child walking through corn fieldtaras.chaban/Shutterstock

Getting lost (and then found and then lost again) in a corn maze

Corn mazes these days are elaborate affairs that take years to plan and grow. Some have themes, mysteries to solve, obstacles to climb, or are haunted. They’re guaranteed to entertain and exhaust the whole family. And don’t forget to pick up some fresh apple cider on the way out. You don’t want to miss these stunning photos of fall across New England.

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Downing some fresh cider

Did someone say fresh apple cider? Sorry, grocery stores, but nothing compares to freshly picked-and-squeezed apple cider. Some places will even let you watch to see how it’s made and get a lesson in local craftsmanship.

Great shoes complete any outfitPeopleImages/Getty Images

Getting the perfect sandals on clearance

Swimsuits, beach towels, pool floats, sun hats, and other summer staples go on clearance during early fall to make room for incoming cold-weather gear—not to mention all the holiday decorations that seem to show up earlier and earlier every year. The store’s loss is your gain, however, so stock up on seasonal favorites for next year. These are the best Airbnbs to book for fall foliage.

Northern lights (aurora borealis) display near Kaamanen, Finlandtravelview/Shutterstock

You’re more likely to see the Northern Lights

This is an awesome fall perk you may not know about. The longer hours of darkness make fall and winter an optimal time to see this amazing phenomenon, plus it’s a lot more common in fall than during midsummer or winter! “Twice as many storms (geomagnetic) occur on average during the equinoctial months (March and April/September and October) as during the solstitial months,” experts from UCLA’s Institute of Geophysics and Planetary Physics explained to Wanderlust.

Mixed raced family in a forest, throwing maple leaveslisegagne/Getty Images

All those glorious trees!

Trees are pretty any time of year, but fall is when they turn into real show-offs, turning the most amazing colors. As if that weren’t cool enough, they change from one day to the next, morphing from a peppy yellow to a BAM! in-your-face red seemingly overnight. Take a scenic drive or try one of these 28 things to add to your fall bucket list.

A couple walking a dog in the park.Kei Uesugi/Getty Images

Taking crunchy walks

Even dead leaves are a good time. Rake a giant pile to jump in or simply take a walk through a wooded area (if you must be a grown-up) and enjoy the satisfying crunch. And have we mentioned the smell yet? There’s nothing quite like the fragrance of leaf piles that screams “bring on sweater season”!

Tech Savvy Senior Womanvitapix/Getty Images

New TV… finally!

Let us celebrate fall’s bounty of…new television shows and new seasons of your old favorites. (What, you thought we were going to say pumpkins? Keep reading, they make the list too!) Summer is slim picking in TV land, but fall is when all the studios release their new lineups and suddenly those long, dark evening hours don’t seem so hard to fill. Check out the best fall weekend getaways.

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Sunsets that beg to be on Instagram

Forget the beaches of summer, the new (scenic) stars of social media are fall’s brilliant sunsets. The vibrant colors, the way the sun hovers low over the horizon, and the unexpected burst of warmth are all a reminder that the days are getting shorter so you should soak up every bit of sunshine you can. Don’t miss the most spectacular sunset from every state.

Late evening campfire at a beatiful canadian chaletWarchi/Getty Images

Fires worth snuggling up to

Bonfires on summer evenings may be great for s’mores and hot dogs, but they’re terrible for everything else. Who wants to be hotter when temps are already soaring? Fall is bonfires at their best. Or snuggle up in front of the fireplace and enjoy that magical feeling of being safe and warm inside when it’s oh-so-chilly outside.

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Breaking out your sweater collection

As soon as the leaves start dropping, it’s time to unbox your favorite fall gear, including cozy cardigans, chunky knit turtlenecks, cashmere crew-necks, and bright pullovers. It’s like wearing your favorite blanket, except more socially acceptable. Hint: Switching out seasonal clothes is one of the 50 things you should do before fall.

Daughters with father harvesting in apple orchardCavan Images/Getty Images

Picking apples like you’re a farmer in training

Bust out the boots and baskets, it’s time to harvest some apples! It’s a proven fact that store-bought apples don’t hold a candle to the crisp, sweet taste of apples picked fresh from the tree. Plus you get to scratch that farming itch without actually having to do the hard work of planting and tending.

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Touchdown!

Football fans wait for fall like kids wait for Christmas—planning, plotting, stocking up on sugar, and praying for a miracle. America’s favorite sport is going to look a little different this year, but the players are back in the stadium starting with the NFL kickoff game on September 10, 2020.

Brown leather baseball glove on a wooden benchMike Flippo/Shutterstock

Home run!

Football might just be starting, but sports fans know that baseball is ending, too! The baseball post-season usually begins in early October, when the best teams of the year duke it out for the coveted World Series ring. Sports fans get anywhere from four to seven nail-biting World Series games to see which team comes out on top.

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Finally getting some peace and quiet

Harried moms and dads breathe a big sigh of relief when the fun chaos of summer comes to an end and they can send the kidlets back to school. You get a quiet house and a structured schedule and they get to learn new things and make new friends. Make sure to check out these hilarious back-to-school pictures every parent can relate to.

Children Wearing Halloween Costumes For Trick Or TreatingMonkey Business Images/Shutterstock

Judging people’s hilarious, clever, or bizarre Halloween costumes

Who doesn’t love an excuse to dress up and get free candy? Kids from two to 92 can enjoy this scary-fun season with spooky movies, creepy treats, scary crafts, creative costumes, and learning these facts you probably never knew about Halloween.

Different kind of pumpkins closeupSmitt/Getty Images

Finding our passion for all things pumpkin

Yeah, OK, it’s a squash but consider the number of things you can do with this versatile fall vegetable. What other food can you carve into a scary face, use as an elegant table centerpiece, make delicious bread from, visit as entertainment, make the seeds into a savory snack, bake into pies, use as a photo prop, decorate your porch with, and even dress up as? Pumpkins rule.

overhead view of candy in divided wood caseLisa Stokes/Getty Images

Taste-testing all the new candy corn flavors

If you think companies get creative with jelly beans for Easter, wait until you see all the weird flavor concoctions they come up with for the humble candy corn. Go fruity with caramel apple, spicy with cinnamon, or stay traditional with the regular flavor (that tastes absolutely nothing like corn, go figure). Check out these bizarre facts you never knew about candy corn.

reese's pumkin halloween peanut butter cupsvia amazon.com

Reese’s pumpkins

The Internet is in agreement: Reese’s special holiday candies are a cut above the (already delicious) regular old peanut butter cups. They have a better peanut-butter-to-chocolate ratio and melt-in-your-mouth texture. Of course, you can get Reese’s holiday goodies four times a year—Valentine’s hearts, Easter eggs, Halloween pumpkins, and Christmas trees—but when Halloween rolls around, the last time these beauties were on the market was Easter, and absence just makes the heart (and taste buds) grow fonder.

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Filling up a gratitude jar

Get ready for Thanksgiving by actually giving thanks for all of the good things in your life. Set an empty mason jar on the counter with a stack of strips of paper so your family can write their blessings down as they think of them. The jar will serve as a visual reminder throughout the fall season. Bonus: Taking time to be grateful every day has great mental and physical health benefits.

Autumn still life with mug of coffee and pumpkinstenkende/Getty Images

Drinking pumpkin spice lattes

Say what you will about the trendy drink but there’s a reason it’s become so popular it’s now a meme: People love pumpkin spice lattes. And with good reason! The combo of fragrant fall spices, caffeine, sugar, and warmth make it the perfect beverage to keep the fall chill away.

Homemade Autumn Pumpkin Muffinswmaster890/Getty Images

Putting pumpkin pie spice on every darn thing

Pumpkin spice lattes are just the beginning of the fun you can have with this blend of allspice, cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, and cloves. From cereal to doughnuts to ravioli, you can get this festive flavor in almost any type of food, sweet or savory. And don’t stop with food—indulge in pumpkin spice body wash, hand soap, candles, and air fresheners. Or try one of these 10 fun ways to get pumpkin spice without a latte.

Homemade Sugared Apple Cider Donutsbhofack2/Getty Images

Eating apple cider doughnuts

What’s a coffee beverage without a baked good to go with it? A wasted opportunity, that’s what. Apple cider doughnuts make the perfect pairing for warm fall drinks. Get yours from a farmer’s market or make your own with this simple recipe.

Full length of elderly man holding shopping bag walking with dog on road during autumnMaskot/Getty Images

Going on a lunch hour walk without needing a shower after

With summer temps spiking, it can be hard to run, bike, or hike outside without drowning in a puddle of your own sweat. (How does sweat manage to go up your nose even when you’re upright?!) As soon as fall hits though you can hit your favorite trails again, in comfort. You can even run on your lunch break!

Black female runner in forest tying shoe, low section detailmonkeybusinessimages/Getty Images

Racing through a fall fun run

Is running a 10K or trying an obstacle race still sitting on your list of 2019 resolutions, unchecked? Fall is the perfect time to try out a fun run, turkey trot, mud run, obstacle race, color run, blacklight race, or any number of the creative and entertaining outdoor fall events.

Young female skateboarder laughing with boyfriend in parkBiz Jones/Getty Images

Wrapping up in a cozy scarf

Knit beanies, soft scarves, warm mittens, and woolly boot socks are the ultimate fall fashion statement. It says “I’m cute, I’m trendy and I also won’t get frostbite on my knees!” Unless you live in the south, in which case it says, “I’m committed to cute fall fashion, and I’m not afraid of heatstroke.”

Londoners group of friends meet up in a pubLeoPatrizi/Getty Images

Grabbing a pint at Oktoberfest

Whatever your local fall festival is called, it’s guaranteed to have games, seasonal treats (mmm…kettle corn!), and plenty of beverages of both the kid and adult varieties. Support local farmers and artists while enjoying the crisp air. Find out the best small town Oktoberfests around the country.

Yellow clapboard with blue and white trim cottage style home facade in autumn, Quebec, CanadaPerry Mastrovito/Getty Images

Utility bills going way down

It’s too warm to need a heater and too cold to warrant air conditioning, your yard needs less water, and you don’t yet need to provide power to hundreds of holiday lights and inflatable snowmen. All of which means…really fantastic utility bills! (Unless you use an “equal payment plan” in which case you can still celebrate, but it won’t be quite as much fun.)

SweetcornBRETT STEVENS/Getty Images

Chowing down on corn on the cob

You don’t have to be from the Midwest to enjoy a piping hot ear of grilled corn on the cob, dripping with butter and a sprinkle of seasoning.

Halloween popcornLynne Mitchell/Getty Images

Or enjoy corn of the popped variety

Popcorn is a fall staple—hello, kettle corn! But while butter and salt is a tasty classic, there are so many fun things you can do with the humble popcorn kernel. Mix up the flavors by going spicy, fruity, cheesy, smoky or sweet with these flavored popcorn recipes.

Boogie Monster in the Tentchrispecoraro/Getty Images

Telling creepy tales

Scary stories in springtime feel inappropriate but come fall everyone wants to hear a paranormal tale and enjoy the little shiver of fear up their neck. If your listeners can handle it, share these spooky stories from the world’s most haunted places. Or if you have little listeners or people who prefer horror-lite, try these hilarious ghost stories the whole family will enjoy.

Aromatic spiceskajakiki/Getty Images

Enjoying the unique scents of fall

Cinnamon, cloves, and oranges star in these stove-top potpourri recipes, making it fun and easy to bring in the spicy, sweet scent of fall. If you’ve got kids who want to help (or “help”), this is the perfect fall craft. They’ll love pushing cloves into oranges, breaking up cinnamon sticks, smashing vanilla beans or cutting cranberries in half with a butter knife.

Homemade Leftover Thanksgiving Sandwichbhofack2/Getty Images

Making the perfect turkey, stuffing, and gravy sandwich

Are there any leftovers better than Thanksgiving leftovers? No, no there are not.

Middle aged couple decorating for the holidaysJodiJacobson/Getty Images

Holiday prep

Christmas and Hanukkah might be thought of as winter holidays, but, since winter doesn’t technically start until December 21, a lot of the pre-holiday hubbub actually takes place during the fall! Putting up decorations, listening to carols, and putting together shopping lists are all fall activities (as long as you don’t do it super last minute, of course). Not to mention, Hanukkah itself often falls at the end of November or beginning of December, so it can be considered a fall holiday!

young woman doing pedicureSilke Woweries/Getty Images

Taking your beauty routine down a notch

Swimsuit and sandal season is over so you can relax with things like tanning lotion, hair highlights, bronzer, whole-body exfoliation, and pedicures. You’ll save time and money thanks to fall staples like boots, pants, and hats. Embrace your naked toenails!

Moment for myselfAleksandarNakic/Getty Images

No more chub rub

Two words: Swamp butt. Or: Chub rub. Or: Back sweat. Every year summer reminds us of just how many places sweat can get and how much damage it can do to sensitive skin. Once fall hits, all your chafed bits can heave a sigh of well-ventilated relief. Thank you loose pants, long skirts, and tights!

Baking cookies with dadkate_sept2004/Getty Images

Baking all the things

Summer often finds us avoiding our ovens but fall makes baking fun again. There’s just something amazing about whipping up a pan of hot rolls, a warm pie, cinnamon buns, or fresh-from-the-oven chocolate chip cookies on a chilly day, especially when you make a plate to take to the neighbors. Check out these adorable vintage photos that prove fall is every kid’s favorite season.

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Nanowrimo

Nanowrimo—a mashup of National Novel Writing Month—is one of the most under-appreciated events of the fall holiday season. Who hasn’t toyed around with the idea of writing their memoirs, a family cookbook, or even the great American novel? Here’s your chance! They provide small, achievable goals and support and before you know it, you’ll have your masterpiece.

Top view of a large group of school or office supplies on wooden tablefcafotodigital/Getty Images

Organizing notebooks and labeling crayons

Even if you’re not a kid, you can remember the supreme joy of a perfectly arranged desk or backpack. Fall is the best time to scratch your organizing itch. Help your child label all their crayons and color-code their folders. Or use this as an opportunity to restock your home office.

Happy black parents having fun with their daughter at the park.skynesher/Getty Images

Celebrating the autumnal equinox

On Monday, September 23, 2019 at 3:50 am EDT, the earth’s equator aligns with the center of the sun. That’s fun and all if you’re into astronomy but what it means practically speaking is on this date, the day and night will be basically equal. Take advantage of this by planning some fun day-to-night activities and learning these fun facts you never knew about the fall equinox.

Happy young woman wearing wooly hat in a park in autumnWestend61/Getty Images

Wearing dark nail polish and lipstick without looking like a goth teen

Deep reds, dark purples, smoky grays, and inky blacks are all on-trend for fall. Go bold with an aubergine lipstick or just have a little fun with a dark red manicure accented with gold. Next, find out the weird ways the world changes during the fall.

Charlotte Hilton Andersen
Charlotte Hilton Andersen, BS, MS, has been covering health, fitness, parenting, and culture for many major outlets, both in print and online, for 15 years. She's the author of two books, co-host of the Self Help Obsession podcast, and also does freelance editing and ghostwriting. She has appeared in television news segments for CBS, FOX, and NBC.